Structuring your Geography extended essay

There is no longer the need to add an abstract - so don't. Try not to put anything in footnotes - other than references (if that is the referencing approach you are taking). Do not put too much 'stuff' in appendices.


Title page

This should include:

  • the title of your extended essay
  • the research question
  • subject for which the essay is registered... Geography! (if a world studies essay also state the theme and the two subjects utilised)
  • your candidate code
  • the word count

There should be no candidate, supervisor, or school name on the title page, page headers, appendices or acknowledgment pages


Contents page

All the pages of your EE should be numbered and every graph and map such have a figure number and title. Use the contents page to list the page numbers of the major sections listed below and all of the figures in each section.



Here you need to identify and explain the research topic. The purpose and focus of the research needs to be clear.

This section must make it very clear to the examiner that your EE topic and research question in geographical. You must make it clear why your research questions is worth asking.

You should explore the scales applicable to your EE. You may discuss a global or regional issue at a local scale.



You need to make it clear that you have used an appropriate range of relevant source(s) and/or method(s) and that these have been selected in relation to the topic and research question.

You need to outline the major sources of secondary data, why you chose to use them and how much you trust the accuracy of the data.

For primary data collection you need to explain the methods used, much like you would have done for your Internal Assessment.



This is the main discussion part of your EE. It can be further broken down with sub-headings. You must be analysing and not just describing. Your analysis must be clearly linked to your research question.

Maps and graphs should be incorporated into your discussion, where they are appropriate. You should not have a separate section for your graphs.

You should develop a focused and reasoned argument.

You should be using geographical terminology and concepts accurately and consistently, effectively demonstrating your knowledge and understanding.

Any labelling should contain the minimum information to ensure the examiner understands the significance of the map, chart, diagram or illustration. It must not include commentary, as this will be considered as part of the essay discussion and thus included in the word count.

The use of photographs and other images is acceptable only if they are captioned and/or annotated and are used to illustrate a specific point made in the extended essay.



This conclusion much be based on your argument and the evidence you have presented. This is not the section to be introducing new content or ideas.



You should have a consistent system of academic referencing throughout your EE. You should have in-text citations. Your bibliography should be a list of all the sources referenced by your in-text citations listed alphabetically by author.