Help!! Biology or Psychology EE?

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Gabriela.K
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#1
Report Thread starter 4 years ago
#1
Basically I have to decide this week on the topic I will be writing my EE on. I have two ideas, I don't feel comfortable about putting here the actual research questions but I will say that one of them is for Psychology and it has to do with Asperger's and the other one is for Biology and it has to do with heart rate.

For the bio ee I would have to collect a lot of raw data and process it whereas psych is literature based.
So I was wondering is it harder to get an A in Biology than Psych?
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Doremi963
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#2
Report 4 years ago
#2
You can find official IB statistics for this online.
But it's definitely easier to get an A on sth you're interested in, so I think that should be a priority
Regarding your sources, I think it's best to have a combination of previous research and your own original material, so think which topic would allow you to do that (while fitting in with your holiday plans, i.e. how feasible will it be to carry out biology experiments)
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Katarinanokat
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#3
Report 4 years ago
#3
Statistics are sometimes misleading I must say. Sometimes just more people do an EE in one course or schools generally teach a course for EE badly so the results are skewed.

I personally did my EE in biology, but it had to do with microbiology and biochemistry specifically. It's different than your idea, but a lot of my classmates did psychology EEs on a range of interesting subjects. Quite frankly, I think the skills you need for both essays are drastically different, even if the criteria is the same.

Right off the bat, I would be very hesitant about your biology topic. I don't know much about it but I already see quite a few red flags as someone who did one in the subject. The first is the expectations of data collection. Heart rate is an incredibly sensitive thing and is wrought with human error, so anything other than a very large sample size may make it seem like you did't think through your experiment or may give you data that will be useless in analysis. My experiment was conducted on E. coli bacteria, and even then I was required to grow 7 petri dishes as samples for my longitudinal experiment. Even that I would say was dancing on the brink of being badly planned, but I luckily managed to get some workable results. I personally loved doing my biology EE, but it takes time and effort to fully plan your experiment.

Secondly, without knowing the topic your bio idea seems a little less refined. I just want to warn you that it's generally much more beneficial to go off syllabus for your EE, as it gives you much more leniency to work with and really allows you to gain depth. Due to the restrictions of many high school labs, it would be difficult to study a complex phenomenon that allows you the depth to write a stellar EE if studying heart rate. You may find yourself trapped in a study that simple just due to the level of equipment available, and then you'd be trapped with a simplistic EE that does not allow for the analysis required for high marks.

Thirdly, an experiment on humans (or animals, if that was your plan) is heavily regulated by the IB. There are many specific rules, such as the inability to use any form of bodily fluid, which often extends to cheek cell samples (or so it does at my school), and thus you are even further limited in your experiment. My school is incredibly strict because it does not want to break any of the IB rules, and even things like the ingestion of soft drinks or coffee an unacceptable for experimental purposes. You'd also be restricted to participants over the age of 16, unless you want to be giving consent forms to parents, and you'd be required to consider many ethical considerations, which you know about from psych. Honestly, human experiments are a pain, and a friend of mine did a sports science EE and found that survey collection for correlation studies was the way to go due to the need for a large sample size and to get around all of these restrictions.

With psych however, it really is having the skills and ability to read and analyse research. It's hard. A lot of research papers go on for hours and you have no idea what to say about them, but you must teach yourself to be critical about them. I did a similar project for my MYP personal project, but with medical research paper and I found the book "how to read a paper" by Trisha Greennhalgh to be the most useful thing. Although, it is specified towards medical research I think it's good use for analytics of general experimental research on humans.
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Fupa
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#4
Report 3 years ago
#4
Hi! I'm considering Bio EE. Would you mind sharing your EE with me? It would be incredibly helpful if you could! Thanks.
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medreams
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#5
Report 3 years ago
#5
Bio EE:s tend to be more difficult to get good grades in but that's really up to you. Also something I have heard is that it is easier to score well if you have your own original data, so personally I'd pick bio. Yeah, there are uncertainties related to heart rate, but that will just make you evaluation better. I did my EE in bio, and it wasn't too bad as I was really interested in my topic. So yeah, pick the one that you won't mind using hours and hours writing
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