Tuesday, July 8, 2014

New Website

Hi everyone!

IB Screwed has transferred all our material over to one new website: www.ibscrewed.org

You can find a collection of Biology information at: Biology

We will be uploading video tutorials to YouTube starting in September 2014. You can view them at our YouTube channel: YouTube

In the meantime, connect with us on Twitter @ibscrewed4ib or on our Facebook Page

Good luck with your studies!

IB Screwed

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Preparing for Term Papers and Quizzes

Throughout the two years of doing IB, school will give you many tests that will count towards your ongoing grades. We all would like to do well (and often have parents who expect us to do better still), so it means a lot to get great marks. What is the best way to prepare for these smaller tests?

Early in the IB, I think it is important to stay away from past papers. They are limited in number, and using them all up before you hit exam time is not a good idea. However, it is likely that your teachers will still use past exam questions to make your papers, hence it is important to get a good grip on the IB question style. Plus, practice makes perfect. Here is what I suggest you do:

1. Use textbook questions - these should be the first ones you use. Every textbook that I've ever seen has a series of practice questions at the end of each section or chapter. Whilst these are typically not in the IB style (nor are they as challenging), they are still an excellent way to check that you have grasped the basic concepts and actually understand what you just learnt.

2. Online Quizzes - Like textbooks, many websites will have practice questions that will offer further insight into how well you've understood the things you've learnt. They are a great way to look at new questions without using up the valuable IB papers. You need to be saving the IB papers for the last few months in the lead-up to mocks and finals.

3. IB Question Banks - Teachers will usually tell you which topics are being covered on your upcoming exams, which allows you to revise the specific content. If you've run out of questions elsewhere, purchasing the questionbank allows you to filter out past paper questions on those sections. It will also help you learn to answer according to the IB style, which will be useful as you prepare for the term papers and the actual IB papers.

The reason I say to avoid the full IB papers is so that you still have sufficient resources to practice at the end. It is very frustrating to be a few weeks away from finals and find that you've seen all the other papers before. When you are doing practice exams, you want to be able to do them under proper conditions - you won't have seen the questions on your real paper before, so doing questions you know will not give a proper indication of the areas you need to work on. However, if your finals are less than 5 months away, it is definitely time to start using past paper questions if you haven't already done so. Just don't start using them when you are still a year away from it. Good luck with you study :)

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Helpful Links

Here is the list of the links I've posted about - checked to ensure they aren't broken :)

Lanterna IB Online

Intense Cogitation

The Open Door Website

IB Guides

Khan Academy


Biology Definitions



Biology For Life

Dr. Saul’s Biology in Motion

Lab Report Guide

Learn Genetics

National Centre for Biotechnology

The Biology Corner

Life—The Science of Biology

Revision Notes for IB Biology


IB Survival

Write Check

Biology Online

Nanotechnology Blog

Guides by Julie

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Reminder about Images on the Blog

Hey guys,

I just thought I'd remind you that if you click on any of the pictures in my posts, they will open up in a larger & clearer format :)

Good luck with your studies!

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Starting Biology Study

I always hear people discount Biology as a subject that involves nothing more than drawing pretty pictures and learning a load of facts.

However, this is not true. Understanding many complex concepts makes up the majority of the Biology syllabus, especially if you are studying at HL.

To make sure you are aware of these concepts, it is essential that you have a copy of the syllabus so that you can see exactly what you need to know and to what extent you need to be able to use it in exams. As such, you should refer to the Command Terms to find out exactly what the IB expects. Some only require you to define a term, others may require an in-depth explanation.

These command terms are also used in the final exams, so if you learn them, then you can be more confident that you have answered a question correctly.

With this in mind, the best method for making notes is to:

- read the syllabus statement
- identify the command term and what it means
- makes notes on the objective to the degree specified by the command term

Good luck. Don't forget to use the notes on Scribd as an aid as you make your notes and learn how to study Biology :)

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

How to Study Biology

Below are some notes on good techniques for studying Biology and enhancing your learning.

Definitions Book
Just skimming over the syllabus, you will see that the command term ‘Define’ appears frequently. Every time you see it, write the definition in your notes, as well as to a physical book that you keep separately for definitions. You should also record ones that come under the command term ‘Distinguish.’ This will provide a quick, easy reference, as well as reinforcing them!!

Diagram Book
Diagrams occur often in the syllabus as well, so it is important that you know them. Look out for command terms such as ‘Draw’ and ‘Annotate’ and ‘Label.’
Make sure you use colour, since this can actually help you to learn them better, as well as drawing the diagrams clearly and accurately. Drawing them incorrectly or so that you can’t even distinguish what they are will only be detrimental when you try and study them later!!



Thorough Notes
Many people make the mistake of making vague notes, that only briefly outline what the syllabus asks for. Don’t.
When the statement is define, make sure you also write a sentence or two on why this is the case, how it works, or something extra. Not only will this mean you remember and understand it better, but you will not be risking losing marks on exams because you could not describe or analyse in depth.
Most of your notes for each syllabus statement should be AT LEAST half a page for objective 2 command terms, and over a page for objective 3 command terms. Below is a list of the command terms, which objective they belong to, and what they mean.

Use Multiple Resources
No single website, textbook or other resource is perfect. They are always liable to miss something, or not go into enough depth. For each syllabus statement, you should make your notes from at least 2 different resources. Always use an IB-approved textbook — websites, while fantastic and helpful, are not reliable. They are still important, however, so you should use them. Just ensure that you back it all up with a textbook.
Also, each resource has a different way of explaining things, so if there is a concept you don’t fully understand, by looking at another book, you are more likely to get it.

Learn the Command Terms
These statement are used in the syllabus. When you do your notes, make sure you have covered everything the statement tells you to include.
They may also be used in your exam, so learning these will allow you to ensure that you have answered the question in the way they are looking for.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Note Taking

Hi all,

One of the biggest things that can make your study effective, or a waste of time, is how you organise your notes. With a subject as huge as IB Biology, it is extremely important that your notes are up-to-date and organised. I would recommend that you do this in one of two ways

1. Order everything exactly as the syllabus does. This means that you can easily keep track of where you are at in the subject, and syllabus points are easier to find.

2. Use a structure similar to the one found in the link below. This involves grouping topics that fall under the same banner, so that interrelated topics are not split up. This can make things more clear and straightforward.


Either way, you should really choose a style now and stick with it. Organisation is crucial for you, otherwise you may waste precious time trying to search for notes because you have no idea where they are.

Happy studying :)

An example of noting only the basics: