English Literature IA Topic Ideas

The Internal Assessment is an important part of the International Baccalaureate program. It is worth around 20-25% of a student’s final grade and helps to build their academic profile. The IA typically requires a research project or essay, which must be completed during the two year IB program.

English Literature is an option for IB Internal Assessments. By choosing to study English Literature for their IA, students can explore their interests in language, literature, and culture, as well as hone their research, writing, and critical thinking skills. The IA can involve exploring topics from plays, novels, poetry, or other texts from any time period.

When writing the IA in English Literature, students are expected to demonstrate an understanding of literary techniques, conventions, and contexts. They should also demonstrate an ability to develop independent research and form their own opinion based on evidence. Ultimately, the goal of the IA is for students to select and explore a topic that interests them, with minimal guidance from teachers.

Advantages and Challenges of Writing an IA in English Literature

Writing an Internal Assessment in English Literature can be very rewarding and exciting. While it is not without its challenges, the rewards that come with a successful IA make all the hard work worthwhile.

Advantages of An IA in English Literature

English Literature allows students to explore the human condition through literature and provides the opportunity to develop an understanding of the nature of language. Writing an IA in English Literature teaches important research and writing skills that can be applied to other areas of studies. It also helps develop analytical and critical thinking skills, which will be invaluable throughout life.

In addition, an IA in English Literature allows you to delve into texts and cultures that you are passionate about. You can explore themes and symbols, write about topics that interest you and create an in-depth understanding of the topic that few people have the opportunity to achieve.

Challenges of An IA in English Literature

The main challenge of writing an IA in English Literature is the amount of work it requires. Writing an IA requires extensive planning, research and analysis; as well as the ability to construct an argument and express your ideas clearly.

It is also essential that you keep up to date with the latest literary theories, as you will need to consider and apply these theories to your IA. Additionally, you must be comfortable citing and referencing evidence in order to back up your arguments. All of this requires significant effort and dedication.

In conclusion, while writing an IA in English Literature can be challenging, it can be incredibly rewarding, providing meaningful insights and valuable skills that can be used in academic and professional contexts.

English Literature IA Topic Ideas
  • Exploring the Role of Nature Imagery in William Wordsworth’s Poetry.
  • The Depiction of Women in Shakespeare’s Tragedies: A Comparative Analysis.
  • Use of Symbolism in F. Scott Fitzgerald’s “The Great Gatsby”: An Exploration.
  • The Gothic Elements and their Influence on the Narrative in Mary Shelley’s “Frankenstein”.
  • Examining Social Class and Morality in Jane Austen’s “Pride and Prejudice”.
  • Exploring the Theme of Racism and Prejudice in Harper Lee’s “To Kill a Mockingbird”.
  • Religious Allusions and Their Role in John Milton’s “Paradise Lost”.
  • The Impact of Historical and Cultural Context on Chinua Achebe’s “Things Fall Apart”.
  • Examining the Symbolism of the Sea in Ernest Hemingway’s “The Old Man and the Sea”.
  • The Role of the Supernatural in the Narrative Structure of Emily Brontë’s “Wuthering Heights”.
  • The Influence of Greek Tragedy on Arthur Miller’s “Death of a Salesman”.
  • Unraveling the Feminist Themes in Virginia Woolf’s “Mrs Dalloway”.
  • Exploring the Depiction of War in Wilfred Owen’s War Poetry.
  • Examining the Impact of Colonialism in Joseph Conrad’s “Heart of Darkness”.
  • The Role of Memory and Past in T.S. Eliot’s “The Waste Land”.
  • Analysis of the Treatment of Love and Loss in John Donne’s Poetry.
  • Depictions of Madness and Reality in Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s “The Yellow Wallpaper”.
  • The Elements of Dystopia in George Orwell’s “1984”: An Analysis.
  • Exploring the Dual Nature of Humanity in Robert Louis Stevenson’s “Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde”.
  • Examining the Role of Morality and Society in Oscar Wilde’s “The Picture of Dorian Gray”.

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Overview of the criteria your IA needs to meet to reach the expected standard

When writing an Internal Assessment for English Literature, there are certain criteria that must be met in order for it to reach the expected standard. This criteria includes the academic rigour of the research, the depth of analysis used, and the overall structure of the IA.

When researching, it is important to use reliable and reputable sources of information. Make sure to investigate multiple sources and make sure they are credible. Ensure that all sources are properly cited to avoid plagiarism.

In terms of analysis, each aspect should be explored thoroughly and presented in a clear and concise manner. It is important to emphasize the main points and arguments while supporting them with relevant evidence. Be sure to analyze how various elements interact and contribute to the overall ideas being discussed.

Finally, the structure of the IA must be considered in order to ensure that all parts are flowing logically and that the paper does not stray from the main points. It is important to begin by introducing the topic, presenting the research question and methodology, discussing the evidence gathered and the data collected, and concluding with the overall findings and implications.

By following these criteria, you can be certain that your IA will meet the expected standard. By using reliable sources, conducting thorough analysis, and constructing a logical structure, you can craft an IA that stands out from the rest.

Outline of the Various Approaches to Writing an IB English Literature Internal Assessment

When writing an IB English Literature Internal Assessment (IA) there are several different approaches you can take when planning, researching and constructing your IA. Here we will outline a few of the most common approaches that can be used.

1. Storytelling approach

The storytelling approach solicits readers’ emotions by presenting a narrative that captures their attention. It is a great way to focus on the theme or main idea of the IA. When taking this approach, you should choose a story that is interesting to you and make sure it is related to your topic. Then it’s important to research the story in detail, looking into its context and background, as well as exploring why the author chose to tell it in the way they did. You can then use this information to portray a narrative that links the story to your topic.

2. Analytical approach

The analytical approach is best suited for topics that are more objective in nature. This approach requires you to break down a topic into its component parts and look at each part in detail. You should analyse the various aspects of a topic and organise them into a logical structure. This is the most time-consuming approach, as you have to delve deeply into the subject and look beyond the surface level. When writing your IA, you must ensure that you make valid conclusions based on detailed evidence.

3. Argumentative approach

The argumentative approach is used for topics where there is room for debate. In this approach, you must find two opposing views on a subject, analyse both sides of the argument, and then draw a conclusion based on your research. You should present your arguments in a well-structured manner and provide evidence to support your statements. Make sure to be objective and unbiased when writing your IA using this approach.

4. Comparative approach

The comparative approach is most suitable for topics that involve comparisons. In this approach, you must look at two objects or ideas and compare their similarities and differences. You must then evaluate the differences between the two and make a conclusion based on your findings. This approach helps you to understand a topic on a deeper level and develop your critical thinking skills.

By understanding the various approaches you can take when writing an IB English Literature Internal Assessment, you will be able to decide which method best suits your topic. This will help you to create an IA that meets the expected standards.

Advice on Choosing the Right Topic and Creating a Research Question

Choosing the right topic and forming a research question are important steps in completing your IB English Literature Internal Assessment. The best topics are based on topics you have studied during your class, or a theme or concept you find interesting. Once you have narrowed down your subject area, the next step is to create a research question. This will provide guidance throughout the writing process and help ensure the assignment meets the criteria.

Choosing Your Topic

When selecting a topic, it should be something you are passionate about in order to avoid becoming too overwhelmed. Try to think of an angle that has not been explored before, something that you can investigate and explore in detail. Look for topics with plenty of resources available, so you don’t waste too much time looking for materials. Choose a manageable topic; try to pick something you can cover in 4,000 words.

Creating Your Research Question

Once you have chosen a topic, the next step is to create a research question. This should be crafted carefully, as it is the driving force behind the entire assignment. Keeping the IB criteria in mind, you need to ensure it allows you to explore a wide range of materials. You should also make sure it is something you can answer in 4,000 words. Your question should be specific, yet open-ended, encouraging exploration and analysis of your chosen topic.

Guidelines for Research Questions

  • Your question should be precise and relevant to the topic.
  • It should encourage critical thinking and analysis.
  • It should be neither too broad nor too narrow.
  • It should allow you to draw upon characters, settings and themes from the texts you are studying.
  • It should be focused enough to be answered within the word count.

Crafting a well-thought out research question is one of the most important steps when writing an IB English Literature Internal Assessment. With a clear and concise research question, you’ll be able to structure the essay in a way that meets the criteria and ensures your IA is successful.

Creating a structure for your Internal Assessment (IA) in English Literature is a vital part of the process to ensure that you present your work clearly and in an organized manner. A well-structured IA will stand out, helping you to secure good marks for your assignment. The structure of an IA should be carefully planned and laid out before you start writing. It should include an introduction, body paragraphs and a conclusion. The introduction should provide some context for the topic and outline the main argument of the essay. The body paragraphs should each cover a key point and introduce evidence to support it. Finally, the conclusion should summarize the main points of the IA, draw together the arguments, and give a clear resolution on the topic. The structure of your IA should also include a clear argument or point of view. This should be developed through the use of evidence and primary sources, such as literary texts, photographs or interviews. It is important to focus on a specific research question, as this will make it easier to structure your argument throughout the IA. To help keep your IA organized you can use a variety of techniques. A simple approach is to create a mind map, outlining key points and evidence that you want to include in each section. Additionally, you can use diagrams and tables to display results from primary research and relevant data. It’s also helpful to use headings, subheadings and transitional statements to connect the sections. This will help to tie your IA together and ensure that it flows logically from one idea to the next. Creating a structure for your IA is an important step in the process as it will make sure your work is well presented and organized. Once you have a clear structure, it will be much easier to write your IA.

Detailed Look at Methodology and Research Techniques

When writing an Internal Assessment for your English Literature IB course, one of the most important elements is the methodology and research techniques that you use. It’s important to understand how to research properly and choose the right techniques to ensure that your IA meets the criteria set out by the IB programme and is up to their expected standard.

The first step is to think about what type of data or information you will need in order to answer your research question. Depending on the topic and research question you have chosen, you may need to include primary sources like original writings, or secondary sources such as books and journals. You should also consider if any further data or information may be necessary. Once you have established what kind of data or information you will need, you can then decide which methods are appropriate for gathering this in the most efficient and accurate way.

For example, if you are looking at the theme of love in a particular text, you might decide to interview people on their experiences of love. This would involve designing an effective questionnaire, and making sure that you have a large enough sample size to draw conclusions from. Alternatively, you could use extant literature such as journals and scholarly articles to explore the concept. This would require you to analyse the material and evaluate the arguments presented.

Whichever method or research technique you choose, it’s important to make sure it is suitable for the task and that you are able to reference the sources correctly. Additionally, you should always keep a record of your research – notes, interviews or transcripts – so that you can refer to it easily when it comes to constructing your IA.

By familiarising yourself with the various methods and techniques available, and understanding how to choose the right approach for your IA, you will be well on your way to creating a successful piece of work that meets the IB’s criteria.

Step-by-Step Guide to Constructing an IA in English Literature

Writing an International Baccalaureate Internal Assessment (IA) in English Literature can seem like a daunting task, but with some preparation and specific techniques, you can craft an impressive paper. Here is a step-by-step guide to constructing an IA in English Literature:

Step 1: Choose Your Topic

The first step to writing an IA is to choose your topic. Pick something that interests you – something that is unique and will be enjoyable to research and write about. Consider the objectives of the course and the topics you’ve already studied to find an angle that works best for you.

Step 2: Gather Resources

Once you have picked your topic, it’s time to start researching. Explore different angles that are related to your chosen topic and look for primary texts, such as novels or poems. Always investigate different interpretations of the same text. Analyse critical sources, such as opinions from prominent authors and scholars, reviews, and articles related to your topic.

Step 3: Develop a Research Question

Your research question is the core of your paper. It should be clear, concise, and should not leave any room for ambiguity. Spend some time formulating your research question, as it will help guide your research and analysis.

Step 4: Create Outline

When you’ve solidified your research question, create an outline for your IA. This will help you structure your paper and organize your ideas. Make sure that each point in your outline supports your research question. This is also the time to review the rubric and make sure that you’re meeting all criteria.

Step 5: Write Your Paper

Now that you have an outline and resources, you can finally start writing your IA. Start off by introducing your topic and clearly state your research question. Then, provide evidence to support your argument and explain why your interpretation of the text is the best one. Use your outline as a guide and remember to integrate your sources where appropriate. End your paper by summarizing your points and reiterating your argument.

Step 6: Edit & Proofread

Once you’ve finished writing your IA, it’s important to take some time to edit and proofread. Make sure that all of your points are clear and that there are no typos, grammar errors, or factual inaccuracies. If possible, have someone else read your paper and provide feedback.


Writing an IB Internal Assessment in English Literature is a challenging but rewarding task. Following these steps and using the correct techniques can help you craft an impressive paper. Good luck!

Writing an Internal Assessment (IA) for English Literature can be a daunting task, especially if you haven’t done one before. But with some planning and determination, anyone can write a successful IA. Here are some tips to help you make the most of the IA writing process. Firstly, it’s important to create a timeline that outlines when you need to complete each task. Break down your timeline into smaller sections so you don’t feel overwhelmed by the sheer magnitude of the project. Having a deadline for each step will help keep you motivated and on track. Secondly, research is key. Take care to fully understand the IB Guidelines as they are essential when writing your IA. Explore relevant sources and collect as much information as possible. Doing this will help you gain a broader understanding of your topic and ensure your IA is well-informed. Thirdly, ensure that you use a clear structure throughout the IA. When making an argument, provide evidence to back it up and make sure that each point flows logically into the next. A strong structure will give your IA clarity and help the reader understand your thought process. Lastly, when you are writing, pay close attention to detail. Check for spelling, punctuation, and grammar errors and make sure that you are following the correct style guide. Proofreading is also essential to ensure that your IA is free from any factual inaccuracies. By following these tips and taking the time to plan and research carefully, you will be able to write a successful Internal Assessment for English Literature. Good luck with your project!

Case Studies of Prominent English Literature IA Topics

When you’re researching and brainstorming for the perfect IB English Literature Internal Assessment topic, understanding how previous students have tackled the task can be incredibly helpful. Studying case studies of successful IAs can provide inspiration and guidance for creating your own.

When studying previous student’s work, focus on what elements made their IA such a success. Consider how they chose their topic, formed their research question and developed methods to answer it. What sources did they use and what secondary material was included to support their viewpoint?

By taking the time to look at how other students have approached the IA, you can get an insight into how you should approach yours. It can help give you an idea of how complicated a topic can be and provide plenty of ideas you might not have considered.

Remember, your IA should be unique and your original ideas must be the focus. But, understanding the techniques and strategies that have been successful in the past can help make sure your IA is as strong as it can be.

Before you start writing, take some time to look for examples of successful English Literature IAs. Below are some examples of case studies that you may find helpful:

  • A study of The Catcher in the Rye by J.D Salinger in terms of postmodernism themes.
  • An examination of the feminist themes within Jane Austen’s Pride & Prejudice.
  • A comparison of the gender roles presented in Shakespeare’s Othello and Much Ado About Nothing.

Studying the works of previous students is a great way to get started on your IA and cement some ideas of potential topics that you can use.

Examples of 20 IB English Literature IA Topics

Choosing the right topic for your IB Internal Assessment (IA) is an important step. It needs to be something that interests you and that you can research in an informed way. To help you get started, here are twenty ideas for IB English Literature IA topics:

  • Comparison of Female Protagonists in Jane Austen’s Novels
  • Exploring the Role of Nature and Weather in Macbeth
  • A Study of Character Development in Romeo & Juliet
  • Exploration of the Social Commentary in Wuthering Heights
  • A Study of The Feminism of the Bronte Sisters Across Their Work
  • Analysis of Imagery and Symbolism in Heart of Darkness
  • Exploring Masculinity in Hedda Gabler
  • A Study of Belonging in The Great Gatsby
  • An Analysis of Marginalisation in Cat on a Hot Tin Roof
  • Exploration of the Effects of Postmodernism on Shakespeare’s Works
  • Analysis of Parental Expectations in J.D. Salinger’s The Catcher in the Rye
  • How Does George Orwell’s 1984 Critique Totalitarianism?
  • Exploration of the Representation of Love in W.B. Yeats’ Poems
  • A Study of Coming of Age in Charlotte Bronte’s Jane Eyre
  • Analysis of Power in Lord of the Flies
  • An Exploration of Freedom in Frank McCourt’s Angela’s Ashes
  • Comparing and Contrasting the Portrayal of Death in Hamlet and King Lear
  • Analysis of Ideology in John Steinbeck’s Of Mice and Men
  • Exploration of Alienation and Isolation in Ernest Hemingway’s The Sun Also Rises
  • How Does Alfred Tennyson’s Ulysses Explore Heroic Values?

By looking at these topic ideas, you should have a better idea of what type of topic you might want to focus on for your IA. You can also use these examples as a source of inspiration for your own research question.


Writing an Internal Assessment in English Literature is a challenging yet rewarding process. It requires students to go beyond simply memorizing facts, and instead to demonstrate their understanding of the subject. To ensure that their IA meets the expected standard, a student must pay careful attention to both the criteria that an IA must meet and the conventions for writing an IA.

In addition to following these conventions, it is also important for students to select the right topic and create a research question that will guide their IA. This includes selecting the right approach to research and methodology that will allow the student to adequately answer their own research question. Finally, when beginning to write their IA, students should organize their thoughts into a suitably structured essay that flows logically from one point to the next.

A good IA will not only cover all the necessary topics, but it will also be tailored to the student’s individual interests and capabilities. By considering all these factors, a student can create an IA that is truly representative of their knowledge and skill levels in English Literature and one that will meet all the necessary criteria.

This guide has provided 20 topic ideas, as well as tips on how to effectively write an IA in English Literature. We understand the process of completing this type of assessment can be daunting, but with some practice and effort, students can create an IA that is up to the expected standards.

Nick Radlinsky

Nick Radlinsky

Nick Radlinsky is a devoted educator, marketing specialist, and management expert with more than 15 years of experience in the education sector. After obtaining his business degree in 2016, Nick embarked on a quest to achieve his PhD, driven by his commitment to enhancing education for students worldwide. His vast experience, starting in 2008, has established him as a reputable authority in the field.

Nick's article, featured in Routledge's "Entrepreneurship in Central and Eastern Europe: Development through Internationalization," highlights his sharp insights and unwavering dedication to advancing the educational landscape. Inspired by his personal motto, "Make education better," Nick's mission is to streamline students' lives and foster efficient learning. His inventive ideas and leadership have contributed to the transformation of numerous educational experiences, distinguishing him as a true innovator in his field.

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