IB Math HL IA Topics

Writing an Internal Assessment is an important part of the IB Math program. An IA is a research paper, which must be written on a topic in Mathematics. It is an opportunity to explore a specific topic in-depth and showcase your knowledge and understanding of mathematics.

When choosing a topic for your IA, it’s essential to select one that will allow you to demonstrate your ability to think critically, analyze data and present reasoned conclusions. The best topics will be both challenging and interesting so that you can put your best foot forward.

In this guide, we will look at twenty different topics to help you decide which area of mathematics to focus your work on. We will also explore the scope of the IA, provide practical advice on writing IAs and cover how to choose and research the perfect topic.

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IB Math IA Topics

20 Suitable Topics for an IB Math Internal Assessment

Choosing the right topic is essential for your Internal Assessment. Here are some great ideas that will help you get started:

  • The Effects of Temperature on Rainfall: How does the temperature of a location affect the amount of rainfall? You could use data from different climate zones.
  • Correlation Between Population and Economic Growth: Can you determine the relationship between a country’s population and its economic growth? You could analyze data over the years using various statistical methods.
  • Prediction of Stock Market Movement: Can you predict the future movement of the stock market using regression analysis? You could also compare different stock indices.
  • Exploring Linear Patterns in Life Expectancy: How has life expectancy changed over time? You could look for linear patterns in the data and explain why these patterns exist.
  • Delaying Payments for Maximum Interest: How can you make the most out of interest payments? You could create a model to explore how delaying certain payments can maximize interest.
  • Measuring the Reliability of Anomaly Detection: Can you use machine learning to detect anomalies in data? You could measure the reliability of your model using sensitivity and specificity.
  • Analysis of User Behavior on Social Media: How can you predict the behavior of users on social media platforms? You could use clustering techniques such as K-means.
  • Effectiveness of Weighted Voting Systems: How can you measure the effectiveness of a weighted voting system? You could use an algorithm such as the Shapley Value.
  • Optimizing Transportation Routes: How can you optimize transportation routes for a given set of conditions? You could use integer programming to find the most efficient solutions.
  • The Impact of Financial Aid on Student Performance: How does financial aid affect student performance? You could analyze data on grades and graduation rates to see if there’s a correlation.
  • Comparing the Efficiency of Different algorithms: How do different algorithms compare when it comes to efficiency? You could evaluate their run times in various situations.
  • Analyzing the Impact of Data Visualization: How does data visualization impact our understanding of data? You could study different visuals to see which ones are more effective.
  • Determining Factors That Influence Air Quality: What factors influence air quality in a given area? You could use multiple linear regressions to identify the main influences.
  • Forecasting Sales with Time Series Analysis: How can you predict future sales with time series data? You could explore different methods such as exponential smoothing or ARIMA.
  • Exploring Unsupervised Learning Techniques: How can unsupervised learning techniques be used for pattern recognition? You could experiment with different algorithms to find the most accurate results.
  • Classifying News Articles Using Natural Language Processing: Can you automatically classify news articles using natural language processing? You could use a supervised machine learning technique such as support vector machines.
  • Assessing the Effectiveness of Sports Analytics: How can sports analytics be used to gain an edge in competition? You could analyze data from past performances to assess the impact.
  • Evaluating the Accuracy of Corporate Financial Forecasts: Can you measure the accuracy of corporate financial forecasts? You could compare them to actual results to determine the reliability.
  • Predicting Elections with Sentiment Analysis: How can sentiment analysis be used to predict the outcome of elections? You could collect data from social media platforms and analyze it with machine learning.

Understanding the Scope of Your IA Project

When studying a topic for an IB Math Internal Assessment (IA), it’s important to understand the scope of your project. The scope is how broad your paper should be and what information needs to be covered within it.

You need to choose a topic that is manageable while still providing enough material to form a complete IA paper. It’s important to plan out your research and aim to find sufficient sources, data and evidence to make a strong argument or prove a point.

When focusing on the scope of your IA, you should think in terms of questions you want to answer and theories you want to prove. Brainstorm ideas, search for relevant sources, and plan out how the information will fit together in your paper.

Having a purpose and understanding the scope of your project from the beginning will help you structure your research and present a clear argument. Additionally, understanding the scope of your project can help with the understanding of the bigger picture of the topic as well.

By researching thoroughly and documenting your work properly, you can create an IA that covers the scope of your project comprehensively and effectively.

Practical Advice to Plan an IB Math Internal Assessment

When it comes to planning out your IB Math Internal Assessment (IA), research and brainstorming ideas beforehand can really make all the difference. Here are some practical tips to help you understand the importance of planning before you start your IA.

Do Your Research

Before you start, it’s important to do a thorough research about the topic you’re going to study for your IA. Try to look into any journals, articles, and even books related to the topic you’ve chosen so that you have reliable sources for your IA paper. Don’t limit yourself to just one source of information, as this will cause your IA to be repetitive and uninteresting. Take time to search for multiple sources and use them to your advantage.

Brainstorm Ideas

Once you’ve done your initial research, make sure to take some time to brainstorm ideas with your friends or family. Brainstorming can help you explore different perspectives and angles of the topic, and come up with unique ideas to explore. Get your friends and family involved in your IA brainstorming to get fresh and unbiased opinions. Don’t limit yourself to the first ideas that come to you – instead, explore multiple possibilities and pick the best ones.

Prioritize Your Ideas

After brainstorming, it’s time to prioritize the ideas you’ve come up with. Pick the ones that are most interesting and relevant to the topic you are studying. Once you’re done with prioritizing your ideas, make sure to organize them in a way that makes sense. This will help you structure your IA paper better and make it more comprehensible.

Start Planning

Now that you’ve got your ideas ready, it’s time to put them into action! Sit down and make a plan of how you want to structure your IA paper. Try to break it down into steps, from collecting resources to writing the paper and finally submitting it. Having a plan will help you create a clearer and more organized IA paper.

The Final Step

One of the most important steps when it comes to creating an IA paper is to start writing. Even if you think it won’t be perfect, start writing. By writing, you can develop your ideas further, find flaws, and make improvements. With the help of your plan, you can have an easier time when it comes to writing the paper. With these tips, you should be ready to write an amazing IB Math Internal Assessment paper!

Choosing an IB Math Internal Assessment Topic

Choosing a good topic for your IB Math Internal Assessment (IA) is essential for achieving the best results. It’s important to not only pick a subject you’re already familiar with, but also one that presents a challenge to you. So how do you choose the best topic? Let’s explore this.

When selecting a topic for your IA, consider a few key factors. You’ll want to find a topic that you’re interested in studying, has enough sources and resources available and aligns with the scope of your class. For example, topics related to probability and statistics are often taught in most math classes and have a lot of resources available. Finding a topic that’s both familiar and challenging will help ensure you get the most out of it.

When you’ve chosen a topic, research it further. Look up books, articles, and websites that can give you more information about the area you’re studying. Review the materials and make sure they’re relevant and reliable. This is important to ensure that your IA is based on accurate information.

Finally, try to balance the difficulty of the topic against your skill level. It’s important to challenge yourself, so don’t be afraid to choose something that may require extra work. But don’t spend too much time trying to come up with an original idea or get stuck on one point. Select a topic that’s interesting to you and manageable for the amount of time you have.

When you’ve considered all these factors, choose the topic that provides the perfect blend of familiarity and challenge. With careful research, your IA project will be engaging, meaningful and well-written.

Researching Quality Sources

Researching sources for your IB Math Internal Assessment (IA) can be overwhelming. With the right tips and tricks, you can find quality sources to use in your IA. Here are a few tips to get you started:

  • Start by narrowing down your goal: Before researching, take a few minutes to decide what knowledge and information you need to accomplish your IA goal. This will help you identify which sources of information you should consider.
  • Check the source type: Sources come in all different shapes and sizes. Some types of sources work better than others when it comes to researching an IA topic. Aim for scholarly or peer-reviewed sources like research articles, books, and websites run by educational or scientific institutions.
  • Be mindful of biases: Not everything you find online is true! Be sure to check the author’s credentials and background. Also, if you’re using a website, look for contact information, dates of updates, and other signs that it is legitimate.

Once you’ve done the groundwork of finding reliable sources, the next step is organizing them and taking notes. It’s a good practice to create a list of references with all the info you need so you can quickly access them when needed. Taking notes while reading is also helpful as this lets you break up information into small chunks, making it easier to understand.

Finally, remember that the way you store and organize the sources is just as important as finding them! As you research for your IA, keep track of ideas, sources, and notes in one place. That way, you won’t forget something important or get overwhelmed when it comes time to write your IA.

Writing the IB Math Internal Assessment

Writing an IB Math Internal Assessment (IA) is an important part of the curriculum and can be daunting. That’s why it’s essential to know the layout and structure of how to write the IA correctly. Here’s some helpful tips on getting it right.

Layout and Structure

Begin by introducing the topic, providing an overview of what you are studying and why. Then provide the different sections of the paper that are needed. For example, the Hypothesis, the Methods Used, Findings, Discussion and Conclusion. Each section will have its own paragraph, but all should flow together in a logical order. As you write each section, be sure to reference specific points made in the introduction to allow for consistency throughout the paper.

Editing and Proofreading

Once the paper is written, it’s important to go back through and review it. Check for clarity and accuracy in the information being presented and make sure there are no typos or grammatical errors. Additionally, consider running the paper through a spell and grammar checker to help catch any mistakes you might have missed.


Finally, ask a friend or classmate to peer-review the paper and provide feedback. They may be able to point out any errors you didn’t catch or suggest changes that could improve the overall quality of the paper. It’s also helpful to read the paper aloud to yourself as this can help spot any potential problems you may have overlooked.

Writing an IB Math Internal Assessment is a great way to deepen your understanding of a subject. With the right preparation and knowledge, it can be a rewarding experience.

Finalizing the IA

By the time you finish your IB Math Internal Assessment (IA), you are almost ready to submit it! Here are some final tips to help you make sure your IA is the best that it can be.

Presentation Guidelines

After all of your hard work, it is important that the IA looks great too. That’s why most IB programs require strict presentation guidelines to ensure your IA is professional and easy to read. This includes double-spacing your IA, using a 12 pt font, and including a title page with appropriate information about you and your chosen topic. Additionally, for an IA it is important to properly cite any sources you used in the document following the correct citation format that has been provided.

Deadline Advice

The deadline for submitting the completed IA is also an important consideration. Make sure you give yourself enough time to finish your IA and don’t wait till the last minute. Most IAs need at least 2-4 weeks for research, writing, and editing. If some unforeseen circumstance arises, talk to your teacher as soon as possible. Your teacher may be able to offer suggestions or extensions depending on the circumstances.


Finally, proofreading your IA is a must – no matter how well you think you wrote it, there may be errors you overlook. Have someone else read through your IA and give you honest feedback. Review your paper carefully before submission, it might be helpful to read it out loud and make sure it makes sense.

Finishing your IA is a huge accomplishment, and taking the time to carefully review your work will ensure that it meets the criteria for the assignment. Good luck!

Wrapping Up Your IA

Completing your Internal Assessment is no small feat. You have worked really hard and you should be proud of yourself! Taking the time to reflect on your research and writing process can be very beneficial for improving the quality of your IA for the future. Here are a few tips to consider:

  • Did you choose a good topic? Did you explore topics that were both familiar and challenging?
  • Did you keep track of your sources and cite them correctly?
  • Was the paper written with a suitable structure and flow?
  • Did you research and brainstorm effectively?
  • Did you stick to the right formatting conventions?

Remember, an effective IA needs to provide a comprehensive answer to the question while demonstrating an appropriate level of critical analysis and study. If you’ve addressed these needs, you should feel confident with the quality of your work.

Hopefully this guide gave you a better understanding of the Internal Assessment process and helped you prepare to tackle your own project. Working through the IA may feel daunting at times but it’s also a great opportunity to hone your skills and showcase your abilities.


Throughout this guide on IB Math Internal Assessments, a few technical terms have been used which may need further explanation. Here is a list of some of these terms and their definitions.

  • Internal Assessment: This refers to an assessment done as part of an IB Math course, without the aid of external resources.
  • Scope: This means the range or area of a particular topic.
  • Practical Advice: This is information designed to help the student plan or complete their IA in the most effective way.
  • Sources: This refers to research material such as books, websites, journals, and databases.
  • Layout: This refers to the presentation and structure of the written work.
  • Editing: This is when an author makes changes and corrections to their work before it is ready to be published.
  • Peer-reviewing: This is when a student’s work is read and critiqued by other students or experts in the field.
  • Presentation guidelines: Rules on how the finished work is to be presented for marking.

By understanding these terms, it will be easier for you to effectively create your IB Math Internal Assessment.


A bibliography is a list of sources used throughout the article. It is important to reference sources correctly, in order to help readers find the same material you are using to inform your understanding of a topic.

Creating a bibliography can help you keep track of everything you have read and make sure your Internal Assessment is accurate and up-to-date. You can include books, journals, magazines, websites and more, as long as they are reliable sources.

You should also consider suggesting personal sources for further reading. You can provide links to other articles, videos or podcasts that you have found useful as a way of deepening readers’ understanding of the IA topics you are discussing.

At the end of the guide, cite all of your sources in the format that is appropriate for the type of source. This could be MLA 8th edition, APA 6th edition, Chicago 16th edition, or Harvard referencing, for example. Make sure you label it clearly as ‘Bibliography’ so that readers can easily distinguish it from the references.

Ultimately, a comprehensive bibliography improves the quality of your IA and shows readers that you are confident in the material you have chosen to support your points.

Reflecting on the Internal Assessment

Once you have thought about your topic, done your research and written the paper, it can be helpful to reflect on the process. Reflecting is an important part of the learning process; it allows you to question and assess what you have achieved.

The reflection does not need to be a formal essay or journal – it just needs to allow you to critically think about your experience. Consider some of the following questions: What did I find challenging or difficult? What new skills did I gain? What could have been done differently?

Reflecting on your IA can also help to increase your confidence and understanding as you move on to other projects. Ask yourself, how will this project help in my future studies?

Encourage yourself and your peers by discussing your experiences and sharing your successes. This brings us back to the importance of collaboration – talking about the challenges and successes of an IA can be greatly beneficial for the learning process.

FAQ’s About IB Math Internal Assessments

  • Q: What is an IB Math Internal Assessment?
    A: An IB Math Internal Assessment (IA) is an academic work required by schools to assess student understanding of IB Math topics. IA requires students to research and apply their knowledge to a chosen topic.
  • Q: What are some suitable topics for an IA?
    A: Suitable topics for an IA include probability, statistics, descriptive geometry and dynamical systems. Others include advanced algebra, binomial distributions and ODEs.
  • Q: What is the scope of an IA?
    A: The scope of an IA should contain a statement of purpose and objectives, a description of the problem or opportunity, and a proposed timeline. This helps the student understand their own topic and guide them in research.
  • Q: What is the importance of researching and brainstorming ideas when writing an IA?
    A: Researching and brainstorming ideas helps the student plan out their IA effectively and can provide invaluable insights into the chosen topic and allow them to explore new ideas.
  • Q: What are some considerations in choosing an IA topic?
    A: When choosing an IA topic, the student should consider their own abilities, the availability of relevant data, the complexity of any equations or models, the level of difficulty whether the topic is interesting and enjoyable.
  • Q: How can I find quality sources for my IA?
    A: To find quality sources for an IA, students should rely on reputable published books, scholarly journals and peer-reviewed articles from public libraries and university databases. Private resources such as museums, archives, and specialized experts may also be consulted.
  • Q: What can I do to ensure that my IA paper follows the correct structure and layout?
    A: To ensure a good structure and layout for the IA paper, make sure the introductory section clearly outlines the purpose, follow the structure of style guide, use diagrams and graphs to make ideas more visual, add conclusions and recommendations where applicable, and proof read the entire paper.
  • Q: What are the presentation guidelines for the IA paper?
    A: Presentation guidelines for an IA paper include ensuring that referencing is included correctly in the document, citing all sources accurately, including illustrations, graphs and other visual aids, and meeting the deadline set by the educational institution.
  • Q: What are some ways I can improve the quality of my IA paper?
    A: Steps to take in order to improve the quality of an IA paper include reviewing notes with peers to get feedback, revising and editing based on comments made by instructors, double-checking the logic and applicability of any models used, and addressing any potential gaps.
  • Q: Is there anything else I should know before starting on my IA paper?
    A: Before embarking on work for an IA paper, it is important to continue reading around the theme language of the subject in order to help with writing. It is also important to receive regular feedback and set realistic goals to maintain focus and morale.
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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