Individual Oral – the process

The following guide to the individual oral outlines one approach to the the main stages of the process.

You will likely start the individual oral before your HL essay. There is a bit of strategy involved in your choices of work and body of work. Remember the requirements for your assessments:

  • Individual oral must include a body of work AND a work.
  • HL essay is based on a body of work OR a work.
  • Paper 2 is based on two works.
  • (Paper 1 is based on texts you have seen before so your choices for your other assessments don’t affect it).

Preparing for your Individual Oral

If you use a body of work or a work for one of your IB assessments, you CANNOT use it for any another IB assessments. For this reason, it is a good idea to read ahead in your course as much possible. You want to have at least a basic ideas of the bodies of work and works you will study. This will help you to make better decisions about whether or not to use a work of a body of work on a particular IB assessment.

Fairly early on in year one you need to start thinking about the individual oral:

  1. Carefully read through the individual oral requirements and criteria.
  2. Read the individual oral prompt and take note of its connection to terms in the criteria.
  3. Analyze individual oral audio samples and outlines. Make sure you understand how an individual oral sample addresses the assessment requirements and criteria.
  4. As you work through bodies of work and works in your class, create a list / chart with global issues, bodies of work and works that you are considering using for your individual oral. Keep adding details / depth to your list / chart as you move through the course.
  5. Work extremely hard on your schoolwork and school assessments. Although you may not fully realize early on, these are designed to build the knowledge and skills necessary to be successful on your individual oral. The DP is a grind and it is very, very difficult to “catch up” if you aren’t focused right from the start.

Developing your Individual Oral

  1. Choose a global issue that your individual oral will focus on.
  2. Choose one work.
  3. Choose one extract from the work. Make sure this extract follows individual oral requirements.
  4. Choose a body of work.
  5. Choose an extract from the body of work. Make sure this extract follows individual oral requirements.
  6. Create a rough outline and start putting together your individual oral.
  7. As your individual oral takes shape, frequently check that your ideas match the individual oral prompt and the criteria.
  8. Your teacher will give you an outline form where you will create an outline for your individual oral. Analyze sample outline forms and then fill yours in. Compare the points you have made in the outline form with the individual oral prompt and the criteria.
  9. You must give your teacher copies of your extracts at least one week before your individual oral. These must be clean copies (i.e. no annotations). This is an IB requirement and is stated in the Subject Guide (pg. 57).
  10. Practice, practice, practice.

Doing the Individual Oral

  1. Double check that you know where the exact time and place your individual oral will be held.
  2. Have a copy of your extracts and outline ready. Remember you can only bring clean copies (i.e. no annotations) of your extracts and your outline into the room where the individual oral will take place. This is an IB requirement and is stated in the Subject Guide (pg. 57).
  3. Make sure you wrap up your individual oral at the 10 minute mark – the last 5 minutes is for teacher questions.
  4. Some time after the individual oral is complete it will be marker by the teacher. Remember that this assessment is an internal assessment and is moderated by the IB. The mark your teacher gives you may be moderated up or down by the IB.
  5. Your cohort’s marks, audio files, extracts, and possible the outlines will be submitted to the IB. Each school has a slightly different way of managing this process so make sure you follow your school’s instructions.
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