Debunking 9 Myths About the IB Physics Scientific Investigation for 2025+ Syllabus
Are you ready to debunk some major myths about the IB Physics Scientific Investigation?
With the 2025+ syllabus updates to the IB Physics IA - we're now calling it the IB Physics Scientific Investigation AND - let me tell you - there's a fair share of misconceptions floating around.
This blog post will quickly clarify things and guide you towards mastering your scientific investigation - so you can guarantee that 20% of your final grade.
But wait… there's more!
If you need more information on each of these 9 myths AND you want access to:
- 100+ IB Physics Scientific Investigation ideas
- The EXACT structure to follow when writing your report
- The complete Marking Criteria
- Helpful examiner tips
I've got just the thing for you.
My comprehensive free guide, “Unlock IB Physics: Mastering the Scientific Investigation” meticulously tackles these 9 myths, offering insights and strategies that aren't just surface-level.
In this blog post I’ll address the myths surrounding these common questions about the IB Physics Scientific Investigation (2025+):
Myth 1: Do I Need an Original Topic for My IB Physics Scientific Investigation?
Myth 2: Is There a Difference Between SL and HL IB Physics Investigations?
Myth 3: Should My Report Be Limited to 12 Pages?
Myth 4: Are Title Pages and Contents Necessary?
Myth 5: Can I Work with Others on My Investigation?
Myth 6: Must My Investigation Relate to Real-Life Applications?
Myth 7: How Much Can My Teacher Help with My Investigation?
Myth 8: How Serious is Plagiarism in My Investigation?
Myth 9: Will ChatGPT Do My Investigation for Me?
Myth 1: Originality is Key in Your Topic Selection
Think you need a groundbreaking topic for your IB Physics Scientific Investigation? Not quite! With tens of thousands of IB students each year, finding a totally unique topic is like finding a needle in a haystack. The truth?
📝 Your topic doesn't have to be original, just well-executed 📝
Focus on understanding and applying the concepts within the IB Physics syllabus. Remember, it’s your approach and analysis that count!
Myth 2: SL and HL Investigations Have Different Standards
Are you losing sleep over the supposed differences between SL and HL investigations? Well, you can rest easy!
📝 The marking criteria for both levels are identical 📝
The examiners won't know whether you're an SL or HL student. So, ditch the idea of coming up with an "HL-specific idea" and concentrate on conducting a solid investigation.
Myth 3: Keep Your Report Under 12 Pages
Word on the street is that your Scientific Investigation should be concise – but how concise?
📝 The IB guidelines are enforcing a 3,000-word limit 📝
This excludes Charts and diagrams, Data tables, Equations, formulas and calculations, Citations/references (whether parenthetical, numbered, - footnotes or endnotes) and Bibliography Headers
Don't sweat if you spill over into 13 or 14 pages. Clarity and precision matter more than sticking to an arbitrary page count.
Myth 4: Title Pages and Contents Are Must-Haves
Here's a time-saver:
📝 You don't need a fancy title page or a contents section📝
Your report should start with just the essentials:
- Title of the investigation
- IB candidate code (or IB candidate code for all group members - if applicable)
- Number of words
Keeping it simple helps both you and the examiner focus on what's important – your investigation.
Myth 5: Solo Missions Only
Gone are the days of solitary research.
📝 The 2025 IB Physics syllabus encourages collaboration 📝
However, this collaboration process should only take place during the data collection stage and your teacher should be aware of the role that each member in the group is playing. Work in groups, but remember, each member should focus on a different aspect of the investigation. This teamwork mirrors real-world scientific research, blending collaboration with individual analysis.
Myth 6: Real-Life Applications Are a Must
Do you think your investigation must link to a personal passion or real-life application? Not anymore!
📝 The new syllabus doesn't include 2 Marks for Personal Engagement 📝
What's crucial is showcasing your curiosity and independent thinking throughout your investigation. Make your project stand out by tweaking a standard experiment or conducting preliminary experiments.
Myth 7: Teachers Can't Assist You
This couldn't be further from the truth. Your teachers are your guides in this journey.
📝 They should help you understand the assessment criteria and provide feedback on your draft 📝
However, remember, the final work should be your own, showcasing your understanding and skills.
Myth 8: Plagiarism Isn't a Big Deal
This is a serious one. Your work will be checked for plagiarism. Academic integrity is paramount in the IB.
📝Collaborate, but don't collude📝
Your teacher will help you understand the fine line between the two, ensuring that your report is an authentic representation of your abilities.
Myth 9: AI Tools Like ChatGPT Will Do Your Investigation for You
Busted! While it's true that the IB is open to integrating artificial intelligence into its curriculum, there's a huge misconception about what AI tools like ChatGPT can and can't do for your Physics Scientific Investigation.
📝 use ChatGPT! BUT use it wisely 📝
Let's break it down
Here’s how ChatGPT can help you with your IB Physics Scientific Investigation (IA):
- Assist in Research: ChatGPT can help you gather information and provide explanations on physics concepts, which can be a starting point for your investigation.
- Idea Generation: Struggling to come up with a research question? ChatGPT can suggest ideas based on the IB Physics syllabus.
- Clarify Doubts: Unclear about a particular concept or criterion? Ask away, and get clear, concise answers.
You Can’t Use ChatGPT to do these with your IB Physics IAs:
- Conduct Experiments: AI can't perform physical experiments for you. The essence of a scientific investigation is hands-on experience!
- Original Analysis: While ChatGPT can provide information, it can't analyze your specific data. Your unique analysis and interpretation are key to a successful investigation.
- Personal Engagement: This is all about your curiosity, your ideas, and your approach. ChatGPT can't replicate your unique perspective and engagement with the topic.
The examiners are not stupid. They’ll clearly see if your report is not your own creativity, analysis, and scientific inquiry.
Remember, IB Physics is not just about learning concepts; it's about applying them in real-world scenarios. And what's more real-world than navigating the evolving landscape of AI technology? So, use ChatGPT as a springboard for your ideas, but dive into the pool of investigation yourself!
Why stop here? Don't you want MORE than just 9 myths to get you top marks in your IB Physics Scientific Investigation?
Download my free book, "Unlock IB Physics: Master the Scientific Investigation" here today.
FREE eBook: The ULTIMATE IB Physics Internal Assessment Guide
Get your #1 Amazon Best Seller on GradePod for free here