According to John Dewey’s famous quote:
“We don’t learn from experience we learn from reflecting on experience.”
Reflection plays a major role in the learning process. The core component of IB: TOK, CAS and EE are student’s individual work, carried out by the student with minimum guidance. To make best of this experience and learn maximum from it, it is important for student to reflect on their learning journey.
As extended essay involves 40 hours of student individual work, there are more chances of student being deviated from the track. To make this process smooth and enjoyable for the student a regular tracking is done by meeting the supervisor at different stages of development. These meetings are then recorded in the form of reflection in the RPPF (Reflection on Planning and Progress form).
The communication between the student and supervisor enables student to find the right path to success. It helps the student to think over the effectiveness of the topic and ideas. It make them think about their strengths and weakness and possible changes that they can make in their research and writing journey. Effective reflection highlights the engagement of the student in intellectual and personal process.
The first reflection is written after the 10 minutes of formal meeting between the student and supervisor. However, before meeting it is important that student makes the mind map of the topic available to the supervisor, the mind map should include:
- The topic
- Tentative RQ
- Reason for selecting the topic
- Tentative plan of working
- Ways of gathering data (both primary and secondary)
A first reflection of approx.150 words is based on the above experience
From here student starts his journey of collecting data and writing a formal piece of research work. After almost completing the work student again needs to meet the supervisor for 10 minutes and this time the following work is made available:
- Proper RQ
- Consolidated methodology
- Collected data
- Processed data
- Reasoned arguments
An interim reflection of approx. 150 words is based on the second discussion
Finally the student meets the supervisor for Viva voce. This discussion is the most important part of Extended essay and last for 20-30 minutes. For this meeting student should make supervisor available with extracts from RRS and the final essay. During this discussion student is made to reflect on the entire journey of research. Student from this discussion:
- Identify their strengths and weakness
- Their learning outcome
- The development of skills
- The impact of this research on their personality
- Get a feeling of accomplishment
On the other hand supervisor from this meeting:
- Check the academic honesty of the work
- Gets opportunity to ask open ended questions
- Get information which enable to write their comment on the RPPF
These reflections are uploaded along with the essay and are assessed for 6 marks under the criteria E of extended essay.