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Extended Essay - Criteria: Criterion C: Critical Thinking

Criterion C: The Strands

Main Body and Conclusion

Because critically evaluating evidence in order to produce a reasoned argument and sound conclusion is the key focus of any research paper, Criterion C has the most marks allocated to it.

There are three key strands that you should address in Criterion C:

  • Research
  • Analysis
  • Discussion and evaluation

Research

All research materials must be relevant to answering the research question.

Analysis

The research findings must be effectively analyzed in order to produce a reasoned argument. 

The analyses must be supported by relevant evidence.

Discussion and Evaluation

You must develop a coherent and well-reasoned argument that is supported by the evidence presented. 

You should provide a critical evaluation of source material.

Conclusion

YOUR CONCLUSION MUST ANSWER THE RESEARCH QUESTION!

The conclusion should reiterate your key findings and main points developed in the body of the essay and provide a resolution to your research question.

Recommended word count for the conclusion: 350-450 words.

When writing your conclusion, you should:

  • Respond to the actual research question as stated on your title page.
  • Comment on any inconclusive findings or multiple interpretations if that is what your research has indicated.
  • Disprove your thesis if your evidence has lead you to this conclusion.
  • Offer an evaluation of the value and limitations of the methodology or sources you have used.
  • Mention any unresolved or additional questions that have arisen as a result of your research and explain why answering those questions goes beyond the scope of your current work.
  • Summarize the key points raised in the main body and synthesize them into a final analysis.

AVOID: 

  • Introducing new material.
  • Offering no conclusion at all.
  • Including any personal statements.
  • Including any accusations.
  • Answering a question that is different from the one on your title page.