Extended Essay Topics

An extended essay is a substantial research project required for the International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma Program. It typically consists of 4,000 words and allows students to delve deeply into a subject of their choice. Here are 3,000 words discussing various extended essay topics across different subject areas.


The Extended Essay (EE) is a unique and integral part of the International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma Program. It offers students the opportunity to engage in independent research and produce a substantial piece of work. The EE provides students with a chance to explore a topic of interest in depth and develop important academic skills such as research, critical thinking, and communication.

The EE is a 4,000-word research paper, but for the purposes of this discussion, we will explore a wide range of extended essay topics across various subject areas with a focus on 3,000 words. These topics are intended to provide inspiration and guidance for IB students as they embark on their extended essay journey.

Extended Essay Topics in Sciences

The Impact of Climate Change on Coral Reefs

Analyze the effects of rising sea temperatures, ocean acidification, and pollution on coral reefs and explore potential solutions for their preservation.

The Role of Genetics in Obesity

Investigate the genetic factors contributing to obesity and their implications for public health and policy.

Quantum Computing and its Potential Applications

Examine the principles of quantum computing and explore its potential applications in cryptography, medicine, and more.

The Chemistry of Food Preservation

Investigate the chemical processes behind food preservation methods like canning, drying, and freezing.

The Physics of Renewable Energy Sources

Analyze the physics behind solar panels, wind turbines, and other renewable energy sources, and assess their efficiency and environmental impact.

Extended Essay Topics in Mathematics

The Use of Game Theory in Economics

Explore how game theory concepts are applied to economic decision-making, such as pricing strategies and negotiations.

Fractal Geometry in Nature and Art

Investigate the presence and aesthetics of fractal geometry in natural phenomena and artistic creations.

The History and Significance of the Number Pi

Trace the history of the mathematical constant pi (π) and its importance in various mathematical and scientific fields.

Prime Number Distribution and the Riemann Hypothesis

Explore the distribution of prime numbers and the famous Riemann Hypothesis, one of the unsolved problems in mathematics.

Mathematical Models in Epidemiology

Analyze the use of mathematical models to predict and control the spread of infectious diseases.

Extended Essay Topics in Humanities

The Impact of Literature on Social Change

Investigate how literature has played a role in shaping social and political movements, using specific works or authors as case studies.

The Representation of Gender in Media

Analyze how gender roles and stereotypes are portrayed in film, advertising, or literature and their effects on society.

The Influence of Ancient Philosophy on Modern Ethics

Trace the philosophical ideas of ancient thinkers like Aristotle and Plato and their relevance to contemporary ethical dilemmas.

Comparative Analysis of Religious Art

Compare and contrast the representation of religious themes in the art of different cultures or time periods.

The History and Impacts of Hip-Hop Culture

Explore the origins, evolution, and socio-cultural significance of hip-hop culture.

Extended Essay Topics in Languages

Language Preservation and Endangerment

Investigate the factors contributing to the endangerment of indigenous languages and explore efforts to preserve them.

Translation and Cultural Identity

Analyze the challenges and nuances of translating literature or media while maintaining the cultural identity and context.

The Role of Language in Political Propaganda

Examine how language is used as a tool for political propaganda and its impact on public perception.

The Evolution of Slang in the Digital Age

Explore the rapid changes in language and communication due to the internet and social media.

Language and Identity in Multilingual Societies

Investigate how multilingualism affects individual and collective identities in diverse communities.

Extended Essay Topics in Arts

The Influence of Impressionism on Modern Art

Explore how the Impressionist movement in painting has influenced contemporary artists and art movements.

The Use of Symbolism in Cinema

Analyze how symbolic imagery and motifs are employed in film to convey deeper meanings and emotions.

Fashion Photography as Art

Investigate the artistic and creative aspects of fashion photography, considering its cultural and social significance.

The Impact of Music on Human Emotions

Examine how music can elicit specific emotional responses and its therapeutic applications.

Street Art as a Form of Social Commentary

Explore the role of street art in commenting on political and social issues in urban environments.

Extended Essay Topics in Social Sciences

The Effects of Social Media on Mental Health

Investigate the relationship between social media usage and mental health issues, such as anxiety and depression.

The Economics of Global Food Distribution

Analyze the global food supply chain, food security, and the impact of economic disparities on access to food.

The Psychology of Prejudice and Discrimination

Explore the psychological factors contributing to prejudice, discrimination, and strategies for reducing bias.

Criminal Justice Reform: A Comparative Analysis

Compare and contrast different approaches to criminal justice reform in various countries.

The Impact of Globalization on Cultural Identity

Investigate how globalization has influenced cultural identities and the preservation of traditional cultures.


The extended essay is a significant undertaking that allows IB students to immerse themselves in a subject they are passionate about. The choice of topic is crucial, as it should be something that genuinely interests the student and enables them to explore complex questions or issues.

The topics listed in this discussion are just a starting point. It’s important for students to work closely with their EE advisors to refine their research questions, conduct thorough research, and produce a well-structured essay. Moreover, they should ensure that they have access to reliable sources of information, consider ethical implications, and maintain a clear focus throughout the research process.

Whether a student’s passion lies in the sciences, mathematics, humanities, languages, arts, or social sciences, the extended essay offers a unique opportunity to engage deeply with a subject and develop valuable skills that will serve them well in future academic and professional endeavors. By carefully selecting a topic and approaching it with curiosity and diligence, students can create a meaningful and impactful extended essay that reflects their intellectual growth and commitment to knowledge.

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