Internal Assessment

Internal Assessment

The IB physics internal assessment is all about showing the IBO that you know how to write a complete lab report.

You really need to go over and apply the mark scheme for the internal assessment again and again to your internal assessment to receive a high score. The mark scheme is given at the bottom of this section.

Ask your teacher for samples of the internal assessment. If he/she can’t provide any for you then go online and try to find some. If that doesn’t work then e-mail me at and I can send you a few.

Get your classmates to read your internal assessment and read theirs too to gain more knowledge.

The IBO does not want teachers to read more than 12 pages for the internal assessment. If your internal assessment is more than 12 pages then you are doing something wrong. If you have too many raw data tables, processed data tables, and/or graphs then consider putting that information in the appendix which will not be counted as part of your physics internal assessment.

Your internal assessment should have the following sections:

  • Cover page
    • Your cover page should have your research question as the title and the phrase “IB Physics Internal Assessment” below it in a smaller font. Nothing else.
    • Do not put your name and candidate number anywhere on your internal assessment.
    • Your cover page is not included as a page in your internal assessment.
  • Introduction
    • Give a “catchy” personal story as to why you are interested in this research question.
    • State the key physics concepts and define them well.
    • State the physics equation(s) and define each variable.
    • Insert an image or two to be more clear.
  • Research Question
    • This section should have only one sentence: your research question with a question mark at the end.
    • Your research question needs to be easy to find. This is why the title of your internal assessment is also your research question.
  • Variables
    • Make a list of the independent variable(s), the dependent variable(s), and the controlled variable(s).
  • Materials
    • Make a clear list of the materials you will use in your internal assessment.
    • Have one image of all your materials in it. Clearly label your materials on the image.
  • Method to Collecting Data
    • Make a list of steps to conduct the investigation.
    • Insert an image of your lab setup.
  • Ethical and Safety Concerns
    • If there are no ethical and/or safety concerns regarding your internal assessment then write something like “there are no ethical and safety concerns when conducting this investigation.”
  • Raw Data
    • You need a five by five table here. This table will give enough raw data to obtain processed data. It will look something like the table below:
  • Processed Data
    • You need to process your raw data. It will look something like the table below:
    • Also include a clear graph with labeled axes and uncertainties. There are many videos online which will teach you how to do this like this one. It will look something like the graph below:
  • Conclusion
    • What conclusion(s) can you make from your processed data?
  • Errors and Limitations
    • List as many errors and limitations you can think of. Go into detail for each one.
    • The “buzz words” your teacher wants to see in this section are “random errors,” “systematic errors,” “high/low accuracy,” and “high/low precision.”
  • Suggested Methods for Improvement
    • List as many suggested methods for improvement you can think of. Go into detail for each one!
  • Bibliography
    • Most internal assessments have only one resource in their bibliography. That is enough for an internal assessment.
    • You need to learn how to cite correctly. Ask your English teacher for information about this. The Purdue OWL website is a great resource for this.
  • Appendix (Optional)
    • If you have too many raw data tables, processed data tables, and/or graphs then consider adding an appendix section.
    • The appendix section is not counted as part of the 12 pages for the internal assessment.

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