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Extended Essay

A guide for the extended essay in the DP.

Language Acquisition Sample B

Extended Essay: Exemplar Commentary

Subject

Language B English

If applicable, theme for WSEE

 

 

If applicable, category for language essays

Category 3

If applicable, subjects used for WSEE

 

 

Title of essay

Real life violence against children compared to that depicted in fiction

Essay number

B

Examination session

May 2014

 

Assessment of extended essay

Criteria

Mark awarded

Commentary

A: Focus and method

[6]

2

The topic is communicated, but the purpose and explanation remain vague. The intention of the question is understood, but is not clearly linked to the Research question as stated. Methodology and how the sources will be used is not well set out, apart from mentioning the novel. From the introduction, it is not entirely clear what direction the candidate has chosen for the discussion that follows.

B: Knowledge and understanding

[6]

3

There is a basic knowledge of the plot of the novel and a number of examples of police or government violence in Brazil. Though the material used is mostly relevant, the connection to “overpopulation” is not very clear. Thus, the depth of understanding is somewhat dubious.

The claim that overpopulation is a cause for violence works for the novel, but is strained in the examples from Brazil. Over-crowded conditions is partly related but not well explained.

C: Critical thinking

[12]

5

The research is heavily dependent on plot summary in the case of the novel; however, the historical incidents in Brazil are well chosen. Unfortunately, the candidate has trouble clearly articulating the connection between these different contexts, though the idea is relevant and not lost on the reader. The conclusions are rather weakly put forward and only partly supported by the evidence. The weakness of the Research question is mirrored in the weaknesses apparent in the argument.

D: Presentation

[4]

3

The essay structure is generally appropriate and the expected elements of an essay (title, introduction, conclusion, bibliography etc) are included, though the section titles of “Introduction”, “Body”, and “Conclusion” do not contribute to the subject whatsoever.

The references are appropriate when used and the bibliography is properly set out. Overall, the weaknesses do not significantly impact the reader.

E: Engagement

[6]

(not included)

 

The assessment of an accompanying RPPF will affect the overall mark awarded and the grade achieved.

Total marks awarded

13

The student, though enthusiastic and engaged, has some language challenges as evidenced by the lack of a clear explanation of the connection between the incidents in the novel and those in Brazil in the past. The sources are appropriate for the topic, but neither the Research question nor the comparison is well articulated, which is reflected in the argument as well. Reading beyond the difficulties in language, the student does make an interesting comparison between the reasons for apparent state-sponsored violence toward children.

The explanation of the topic seems a little too sophisticated for the candidate.

Language_acquisition Sample C

Extended Essay: Exemplar Commentary

Subject

Language B English

If applicable, theme for WSEE

 

If applicable, category for language essays

Category 2b

If applicable, subjects used for WSEE

 

Title of essay

The changing perceptions of women's football in Great Britain

Essay number

C

Examination session

May 2014

Assessment of extended essay

Criteria

Mark awarded

Commentary

A: Focus and method

[6]

4

The candidate does identify and try to explain the Research question; however, as a category 2b essay (presumably women's football as a cultural icon or artifact), the focus of the essay seems somewhat clear in a descriptive historical sense, but is only partially appropriate because it does not focus on illustrating the changes in perception clearly (eg through changes in language or other clear measures). It would be useful to decide precisely what kind of evidence should be used to illustrate the change.

B: Knowledge and understanding

[6]

4

There is a general knowledge of the topic evident, especially historically. Sources are adequate, though not always used to full advantage, eg the statistics on spectator attraction and the gender-biased language. The descriptive emphasis is only partly appropriate and limits evidence of understanding. The language and use of terminology are adequate.

C: Critical thinking

[12]

6

The structure of the argument is vague, but there is potential. There is an attempt to present early attitudes toward the sport, but too much attention is given to historical developments that do not clearly show changing attitudes. The brief references to language in the media and later increased spectatorship show some thought, but are never exploited to contribute significantly to the argument. Thus, only some of the research and analysis is directly relevant and some key points are only partially supported or developed. The conclusion is mostly consistent, but remains somewhat superficial. It is an interesting idea, but not quite sharp enough in the presentation of the argument to earn higher marks.

D: Presentation

[4]

3

The presentation contains all the required layout elements of an essay (title, TOC, introduction, conclusion, bibliography, etc) and the structure shows evidence of some planning. The references are generally appropriate. There are, however, some inconsistencies in the presentation of information and appropriate explanation as seen, for example, in the spectator graph.

E: Engagement

[6]

(not included)

 

The assessment of an accompanying RPPF will affect the overall mark awarded and the grade achieved.

Total marks awarded

17/28

This is an interesting topic that is appropriate for Language B, though it does lack focus on the concrete evidence illustrating how attitudes have changed over time. The historical approach is limited and focuses more on the early struggles. The “turning point” is not made very clear and more modern developments are left by the wayside. The number of spectators alone is not sufficient to show a change in perception. The lack of measurable evidence weakens the argument overall, resulting in a satisfactory but not insightful attempt to present the material.

Please note: as a result of modifying existing extended essays for illustrative purposes, not all exemplars have an accompanying RPPF for assessment under criterion E (this is a mandatory element for all essays as of 2018). As a result, this essay has been marked out of 28 rather than 34.


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