Matthew Sinclair 43 Posted May 11, 2011 Report Share Posted May 11, 2011 (edited) Hey all,I just answered a PM from someone asking for Bio tips/advice/help etc and it could have some useful information for you other students. It's mainly for Biology (it applies to both HL and SL) but has values that can be applied to the whole of the IB. I'll copy and paste my response here. Some of it is similar advice to the first poster (and that's because that advice is very good).Also, in regards to the IAs. I got 48/48 (thanks to the OSC IA guide I would say). I knew the IAs I sent in as my finals were pretty much impossible to get marked down because with the guide, feedback from others etc etc I knew that everything was included.(I say pretty much impossible, because I'm not stupid and completely conceited. Although I promise you I put in at least 15-20 hours for each bio IA. They all were around 5'000 words. Although this isn't necessary. If you can make it more concise, it's probably better for everyone involved haha). Ultimately, my IA wasn't selected for moderation. Ultimately, I got a 6 for the IAs which would mean a mark down of AT LEAST 8 points, right? So word of advice that applies to everyone: moderation affects everyone and isn't necessarily fair. Mine very well could have deserved a 48/48 (equally, it might not have! who knows haha). That's why it is CRUCIAL to try your very hardest to get good marks on the IAs in order to prepare for the often negative outcomes of moderation. I was originally going to submit my final IAs with a total of 45/48, but using the advice I just gave, I made sure I did another IA to get higher marks. In the end, it could have been the difference between a 6 and a 7 in biology for me.Oh and for the options, I chose (and self studied both as in our school we're meant to self study one and then do further human physiology or w/e together....and I had a protest and said no haha) Ecology and Conservation, and Neurobiology and Behaviour. They are both great and I loved them and recommend them. Especially Ecology and Conservation. It is SO easy (while some people may find it boring/dry, I really liked it). Eco and Conservation is similar (and helpful) with the Ecology topic that you're forced to do anyway.....and it's good if you're doing Biology -Ecology on the SAT subject tests. Just saying - be smart and try and merge things when possible to make it easier. Like for me it was the link to SAT bio (and my love for ecology) and also I did Psych so the Neurobio and behaviour was great/easy! :)" Hey As far as HL bio goes, it's A LOT more content than SL. I'd say it's probably the biggest difference content-wise in regards to most of the other subjects. So be sure before being fully committed to HL.That being said, it's definitely possible! I recommend: LOTS of revision and LOTS of memorization. Biology is pretty much all about memorisation. Which is good, because it means it's a lot of regurgitation. The IAs are EXTREMELY important if you want to get a good grade (in any subject). I recommend the OSC IB Biology IA guide. It's green and available online. It is AWESOME. It lays out the IAs SO SO SO well and it has so much stuff. If you follow it, you should be able to do very well on the IAs. For general content revision, I used: the big green OSC IB Biology SL + HL revision guide and Andrew Allots IB Bio revision guide. Together they work well. I also had the individual guides for the options units. They were VERY good, and also available in the Allotts guide and my regular textbooks. I think I went over four different authors texts for each of my options and then did study/memorisation. Doing past papers is EXTREMELY important. I can't emphasise that enough. Do them under exam conditions as well. And in paper 1 (multi choice), the questions are in the order of topics, so it's good for a diagnostic. Also, memorise your diagrams!! In the big OSC IB Bio revision guide, in the back, there is a list of all of the diagrams etc you must memorise. What I did (and would recommend) is you go to the diagrams in the book and photocopy them (in colour) and then memorise them. I made a little booklet with diagrams/labels/annotations etc.A great way in bio, and other subjects, to memorise things is to use memory jingles. I made probably between 5-10 for biology. It's for when you have a list of things. Like for example: "the basic functions of life" (excretion etc etc). I made a jingle to remember the first letter of each word....make them really dirty/about sex/something funny and it's easier to remember. This is embarassing, and makes no sense whatsoever, but this is what I had for one of my psych jingles: "Crazy Parties Intrigue Dirty Rastifarians" to remember "Confidentiality, Protection of participants' psychological and physical condition, Informed consent, Deception, and Right to withdrawal". I can assure you it made me remember and I still remember it! haha. Don't judge me on that example (I can't believe I'm publishing this jingle, but whatever, it gives you an example haha). Actually, I'm changing the first word...hahahahah too dirty for IBS perhaps. So crazy was not really the word I used. Use your imagination and come up with better words For the things with lists, I put them on palm cards and did heaps of work just memorising them. It's good to over study in my opinion. Also, for Bio, try and go over the content of the upcoming classes beforehand. Try and understand it yourself before your teacher explains it. Biology is 1) understanding, and then 2) memorisation I would say. Try and do weekly revision if you can. Like summarise what you've done up till that point. TRY NOT TO FORGET WHAT YOU'VE LEARNED. keep it in your memory and reinforce it. Over the holidays, study, revise, and memorise! Get a tutor? They can also help with the IAs (even though the tutors may not be in the IB themeselves). (ps: tutors are also good for drafting an extended essay!! just saying! ). (past student or uni student in the subject could be a BIG help). Of course you have to do it yourself, but they can help with feedback etc. For all subjects, photocopy the diagrams or whatever and stick them to the back of the toilet door, and to your shower screen. Don't waste time. There's so much extra time to be found if you think about it. I would always study on the bus/train, in the bathroom whenever! haha of course, still try and have a life and have some fun what else.....oh yeah! Pay to get a VIP membership of IB survival! No joke, I think I would've gotten maybe at least 2 or 3 points lower in my IB if it weren't for being a VIP on this site. The VIPs have access to heaps more! It is AMAZING. it puts you at such a good advantage if you know how to use it. I don't know if paying VIPs have access to the same things as the nominated VIPs, but there is still a lot which you can access. Although don't ask VIPs (such as myself) to give you access to such stuff without you being a VIP in the first place. rules are rules! Do past papers. Get them from your teacher with the markschemes/explanations/teachers reports if you can! Also, never cheat on your in school exams or mocks. You'd only be cheating yourself and it doesn't prepare you at all. I never did and I'm thankful. Bio = study study study.It also helps if you like the subject. If you don't like it either change to a different HL or try and love it. It is SO much easier to do well in a subject that you like/love. My two least favourite subjects were my worst (not that I'm complaining about a 6 haha). but definitely if you have a passion, you will go further. So find interesting stuff about bio that you like. It shouldn't be hard. become a bio nerd! Also, don't fully underestimate your teacher. There's a lot they can help you with/lots of resources they can give you access too. At least in your case you're one on one so that is an advantage! Good luck and have confidence in yourself. You have time, you can do it! Matt " Edited May 11, 2011 by Matthew Sinclair 7 Reply Link to post Share on other sites
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