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Extended Essay in History Initial tips from Þorsteinn and Guðmundur.

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Presentation on theme: "Extended Essay in History Initial tips from Þorsteinn and Guðmundur."— Presentation transcript:

1 Extended Essay in History Initial tips from Þorsteinn and Guðmundur

2 The Research Question Is it suitable? –Can it be asked and answered? –Is it worthwhile to answer? Dangerous research questions: –Those that are too wide. –Those that are “obivous.” –Those that you can not answer due to lack of sources available to you. –Those that are too narrow. –Those that are subjective. –Those that are purely hypothetical (pseudo history)

3 Bad Questions and Topics How did the Versailles treaty affect world history? – too... ? How was Jónas frá Hriflu dressed at his funeral? – too... ? Who was Adolf Hitler and what was he like? – too... ? Why was Joseph Stalin so cruel? – too... ? Would Germany have gone to war without Hitler? – too... ? Governmental phone taps in 1990s Iceland: extent and purpose. – too... ?

4 Forms of Research Don’t restrict yourself to a narrative! –This is perhaps the most common problem with history essays –The point of a research essay is not simply to tell a story – regardless of whether it has a happy ending or not. Comparitive essay –Compare and contrast examples A and B with regards to question X. Bibliographical essay –What has the historiagraphical development been like in a certain narrow topic.

5 Two Actual Questions How was the Holy Roman a continuation of the Roman Empire? –Problems with definitions (“what’s a ‘Roman’ Empire”) and sources (nobody has claimed this directly since the 19th century). How did the Western Icelanders manage to create a distinctly Icelandic colony in Canada? –Problems of defintions – what does it mean to be ‘distinctly Icelandic’.

6 Two more How important was Diocletian in the history of Rome? –This one isn’t half bad... if rephrased and answered well. –E.g. “Did Diocletian’s rule save the Roman Empire?” How important was the role of the Orthodox Church in the creation of Moscow Russia? –This one is actually quite good.

7 Quotations and citations When refering the reader to your sources it is customary in history to use footnotes –Ixnay on the racketbay! Direct quotations: –Placed in quotation marks. –Used to ‘spice up’ the text Citations: –Used much more than quotations. –Save up valuable space

8 Working habits and tips Keep your sources at a distance –Talk to your sources – don’t let them dictate to you –Remember that they are not absolute truths – you should evaluate them not let them control you Photocopy the title page of every book you borrow from the library –This will save you valuable time later on – you will need the full title, place and date of publication later on. Start building the bibliography right away –Time saving! Once you quote someone put in a reference right away –This way you won’t have to look for the source later on –And remember... use footnotes!


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