This is a supervised assignment on a topic that students choose for themselves. The topic must be chosen from one of the IB subjects but does not have to be in a subject which you are studying for the Diploma. It should take about 40 hours in total and may be experimental or library research based. Students should choose a subject that is both interesting and challenging but one that can be examined in depth. A teacher supervisor will give the student guidance and advice on the research and presentation of the essay. The maximum length is 4000 words. The processes of research and writing develop important skills that will be good preparation for university.