There are two types of assessment identified by the IB:
• Formative assessment informs both teaching and learning. It is concerned with providing accurate and helpful feedback to students and teachers on the kind of learning taking place and the nature of students’ strengths and weaknesses in order to help develop students’ understanding and capabilities. Formative assessment can also help to improve teaching quality, as it can provide information to monitor progress towards meeting the course aims and objectives.
• Summative assessment gives an overview of previous learning and is concerned with measuring student achievement.
Assessment of the extended essay is a combination of formative assessment (the Reflections on planning and progress form) and summative assessment (the extended essay itself). However, generic assessment criteria are used with subject-specific interpretations.
What are the criteria to assess the Extended Essay?
There are five (A-E) criterion to assess the EE and each criterion is organized at three levels of information.
Firstly, the mark band, which relates to the mark range available; secondly, the strand, which relates to what is being assessed; and, thirdly, the indicators, which are the demonstration of the strands within a mark band.
Criterion A: Focus and method – This criterion focuses on the topic, the research question and the methodology.
Criterion B: Knowledge and understanding – This criterion assesses the extent to which the research relates to the subject area/discipline used to explore the research question.
Criterion C: Critical thinking – This criterion assesses the extent to which critical-thinking skills have been used to analyze and evaluate the research undertaken.
Criterion D: Presentation – This criterion assesses the extent to which the presentation follows the standard format expected for academic writing and the extent to which this aids effective communication.
Criterion E: Engagement – This criterion assesses the student’s engagement with their research focus and the research process.
Overview of criteria
How is the Extended Essay assessed?
All extended essays are externally assessed by examiners appointed by the IB. They are marked on a scale from 0 to 34.
A – work of an excellent standard.
B – work of a good standard.
C – work of a satisfactory standard.
D – work of a mediocre standard.
E – work of an elementary standard.