top of page

How to structure your Extended Essay

Assuring the proper structure of your extended essay forms the foundation of any great essay. It is important to follow the required structure as set by IB, as failure of such can also affect your assessment. The assessment is based on the five criteria: focus and method, knowledge and understanding, critical thinking, presentation, and engagement.

Starting with the formatting, the extended essay needs to be written in correct, coherent and formal academic style, pertinent to the chosen subject. The required formatting to achieve an academic and professional look is as follows:

12-point, in the font Calibri or Times New Roman;

double spacing throughout entire essay;

page numbering - top right corner;

no candidate or school name or supervisor name on the title page or page headers.

Following this format allows for easier readability for examiners and sets the proper time for your essay.

Moving on to the structure, there are six required elements for the EE; title page, contents page, introduction, body of the essay, conclusion, references and bibliography.

Title and content page

The title page should only include: the title of the essay, the research question, the subject the essay is based off of, and the word count which has a limit of 4000 words. Moreover, a contents page must be presented at the beginning of the essay and all pages should be numbered.


The introduction should clearly inform the reader briefly regarding the contents of the essay. It should be able too communicate the focus of the essay, the scope of the research, an indication of the sources to be used, and an intuition into the line of argument to be taken. A tip is to finalize the introduction once the body of the essay is finalized.


This section is the central task of the extended essay, it should be conferred as a reasoned argument. The body makes up the research, analysis, discussion and evaluation components of your essay. Structuring the body your essay depends on the expected conventions of your chosen topic and the relevant subject. A good tip is to use sub-headings in your essay in order too help the reader better understand your argument.


This part of the essay is meant to determine what has been achieved, it should be able to summarize the findings of the research, in addition to the inclusion of limitations and any lingering questions that has not been resolved. The conclusion needs to be related to the research question raised earlier.

References and bibliography

You can choose between the academic referencing of MLA or CSE. It is advised to start referencing as soon as you start writing your essay so that you do not end up losing your citation, it is also much simpler than adding them at the end.

Overall, writing your extended essay might seem like a difficult challenge at first, but with following the right structure and proper time to reflect on the arguments you choose to approach, you will find it to be a piece of cake.


‘Extended Essay Guide: Criteria, Format, Sample EEs’-

11 views0 comments


bottom of page