World Religions IA Topics: SL and HL Ideas

As a seasoned IB writer, I’ve seen firsthand how a well-chosen topic can impact a student’s Internal Assessment (IA). Choosing the right IA topic is crucial for Higher Level (HL) and Standard Level (SL) students, particularly in the World Religions. It’s not just about meeting academic requirements; it’s about sparking a genuine interest in your subject. In this article, I share insights and ideas to help you select an engaging and appropriate World Religions IA topics.

What Is the World Religions IA?

The IB curriculum strongly emphasizes understanding and appreciating different cultures and beliefs. Consequently, the World Religions Internal Assessment is a window into the vast array of spiritual practices around the globe. In my opinion, this understanding is essential in our increasingly interconnected world.

The key to a successful IA in World Religions is choosing a topic that resonates with you personally. It should be relevant to the curriculum, of course, but also something that genuinely interests you. This personal connection will make the research and writing process much more engaging.

Also, an effective IA is backed by thorough research. Use various sources, from academic journals to interviews with religious practitioners. Remember, quality over quantity is the rule here. And don’t forget about the Internal Assessment word count!

World Religions IA Topics and Research Questions

Regarding the distinction between HL and SL levels, the expectations vary significantly. As I know from experience, HL students are expected to dig into more complex and nuanced topics, while SL students often focus on a broader understanding of key concepts. It’s vital to keep this in mind when choosing your IA topic.

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World Religions IA Topics

Standard Level (SL) World Religions IA Topics

SL students, on the other hand, might focus on more accessible topics. For example, you could research the rituals and ceremonies of a specific religion. Also, consider these options:

  1. The Role of Rituals in Hinduism. How do daily rituals shape the lives of practicing Hindus in India?
  2. Christianity’s Influence on Western Art. In what ways has Christianity influenced Western art from the Renaissance to modern times?
  3. Buddhism and Mental Health. How do Buddhist practices contribute to mental well-being and stress reduction?
  4. Jewish Dietary Laws. What is the significance of dietary laws in contemporary Jewish life?
  5. Islamic Architecture. How does Islamic architecture reflect the spiritual and cultural values of Islam?
  6. Sikhism’s Five Ks. What is the significance of the Five Ks in the daily life of a Sikh?
  7. Confucianism in Modern China. How is Confucianism manifested in modern Chinese society and governance?
  8. Shinto and Japanese Festivals. What role do Shinto beliefs play in traditional Japanese festivals?
  9. The Impact of Christianity in Africa. How has Christianity influenced social and cultural norms in sub-Saharan Africa?
  10. Taoist Philosophies and Environmental Ethics. How do Taoist philosophies influence contemporary environmental ethics in China?
  11. The Growth of Buddhism in the West. What factors have contributed to the growing popularity of Buddhism in Western societies?
  12. Rastafarianism and Its Global Influence. How has Rastafarianism influenced global music and cultural movements?
  13. Gender Roles in Traditional Hindu Society. How are gender roles defined and practiced in traditional Hindu societies?
  14. The Bahá’í Faith’s Approach to Global Unity. How does the Bahá’í Faith promote the concept of global unity and peace?
  15. Religious Syncretism in the Caribbean. How have African religious traditions been syncretized with Christianity in Caribbean religions?
  16. Animism in Indigenous Cultures. How does animism manifest in the spiritual practices of indigenous cultures in the Amazon?
  17. The Influence of Greek Mythology on Modern Culture. In what ways does Greek mythology continue to influence modern Western culture?
  18. Religious Practices in Ancient Egypt. How did religious beliefs shape daily life in Ancient Egypt?
  19. The Role of Pilgrimage in Islam. What is the significance of Hajj in the life of a Muslim?
  20. Religion and Conflict Resolution. How can religious teachings contribute to conflict resolution in a specific regional context?
  21. Religious Symbols in Christianity. What are the origins and meanings of major Christian symbols?
  22. Vodou Practices in Haiti. How do Vodou practices reflect the history and culture of Haiti?
  23. The Spread of Buddhism in Southeast Asia. What factors influenced the spread of Buddhism in Southeast Asia?
  24. Pagan Traditions and Modern Practices. How are ancient pagan traditions preserved and transformed in modern practices?
  25. Religion and Morality. How does religion influence moral decision-making in adolescents?
  26. Interfaith Dialogue and Peacebuilding. How does interfaith dialogue contribute to peacebuilding in a multi-religious society?
  27. Quakerism and Social Justice. How have Quaker beliefs historically influenced social justice movements?
  28. Mormonism in American Culture. How has Mormonism shaped social and cultural aspects in contemporary American society?
  29. Eastern Orthodox Christianity’s Unique Practices. What distinguishes Eastern Orthodox Christian practices from other Christian denominations?
  30. The Influence of Zen Buddhism on Japanese Aesthetics. How has Zen Buddhism influenced traditional Japanese aesthetics?

These subjects allow for a comprehensive overview without overly complex analysis.

Higher Level (HL) World Religions IA Topics

For HL students, I suggest researching topics that require a deeper analysis. You can consider these options:

  1. Theological Comparisons Between Christianity and Islam. What are the key theological similarities and differences between Christianity and Islam?
  2. Hindu Nationalism and Politics in India. How has Hindu nationalism shaped contemporary political dynamics in India?
  3. The Role of Women in Buddhism. How have the roles of women evolved in different branches of Buddhism?
  4. Judaism and the Concept of God. How is the concept of God understood and interpreted in various Jewish denominations?
  5. Sufism’s Influence on Islamic Poetry and Art. How has Sufism influenced the development of Islamic poetry and art?
  6. The Intersection of Shinto and Buddhism in Japan. How do Shinto and Buddhism coexist and interact in Japanese religious practice?
  7. Atheism in the 21st Century. What are the main factors contributing to the rise of atheism in the 21st century?
  8. The Evolution of Christian Thought Post-Reformation. How did Christian thought and doctrine evolve after the Reformation?
  9. Religious Fundamentalism in the Modern World. What causes the rise of religious fundamentalism in various world religions?
  10. The Impact of Colonialism on African Religions. How did colonialism impact traditional African religions and spiritual practices?
  11. Tibetan Buddhism and the Role of the Dalai Lama. What is the historical and spiritual significance of the Dalai Lama in Tibetan Buddhism?
  12. Religious Pluralism in India. How does India’s religious pluralism affect its social and political landscape?
  13. Zoroastrianism’s Influence on Abrahamic Religions. In what ways has Zoroastrianism influenced the development of Abrahamic religions?
  14. The Role of Religion in Modern Israeli-Palestinian Conflict. How does religion exacerbate or mitigate the Israeli-Palestinian conflict?
  15. Mysticism in Contemporary Religious Practice. How is mysticism manifested and practiced in contemporary world religions?
  16. Comparative Study of Creation Myths. How do the creation myths of various world religions reflect their cultural and philosophical foundations?
  17. Secularism and Religion in Europe. How has the rise of secularism affected religious practices and institutions in Europe?
  18. Ethical Implications of Artificial Intelligence in Religion. What are the ethical implications of artificial intelligence from different religious perspectives?
  19. The Role of Prophecy in Abrahamic Religions. How is the concept of prophecy interpreted and valued in Abrahamic religions?
  20. The Impact of Digital Media on Religious Practices. How has digital media transformed traditional religious practices and communities?
  21. Religious Perspectives on Environmental Conservation. How do different religions approach environmental conservation and sustainability?
  22. The Politics of Religious Identity. How does religious identity influence political behavior in a specific country?
  23. Religion and Gender Identity. How do different world religions approach the topic of gender identity and expression?
  24. Comparative Analysis of Eschatology. How do various religions perceive the concept of the end times or eschatology?
  25. Religious Responses to Globalization. How have world religions responded to the challenges and opportunities presented by globalization?
  26. The Evolution of Witchcraft Perceptions. How have perceptions of witchcraft evolved in different cultural and religious contexts?
  27. Intersections of Religion and Law. How does religion influence the legal systems in various countries?
  28. Religion and Bioethics. How do religious doctrines influence ethical decision-making in bioethics?
  29. The Phenomenon of Religious Revivalism. What factors contribute to religious revivalism in a specific region?
  30. Religion in Utopian and Dystopian Literature. How is religion depicted in utopian and dystopian literature, and what does this reveal about societal views on faith?

These topics demand a nuanced understanding and will showcase your analytical skills.

How to Narrow Down World Religions IA Topics?

Start by identifying what aspects of World Religions fascinate you the most. Is it a particular religious practice, a historical development, or a comparative study between different faiths? Your interest could be the key to a compelling and enjoyable IA.

Teachers are invaluable resources in the IA process. Discuss your ideas with them and seek their advice. They can provide insights into the feasibility of your topic and suggest ways to refine it according to IB standards.

Then, engage in some preliminary research to explore potential topics. This step helps you understand the depth and breadth of information on your chosen subjects. It’s also an excellent way to find new angles or aspects you might not have considered initially. Ensure you have access to enough quality sources to support your research. A topic with limited resources can become a significant hurdle. Use your school’s library, academic journals, and interviews with religious scholars (if possible).

After your initial research, narrow down your list to a few topics. Evaluate each based on your interest, the guidance from your teacher, the availability of resources, and IB requirements.

A common mistake is choosing a topic that is too broad or too narrow. Aim for a balance. Your topic should be specific enough to be manageable within the word count but broad enough to provide substantial content for analysis.

Remember, the Higher Level and Standard Level requirements can differ. HL students might be expected to engage in more complex analysis or cover broader themes, while SL assessments might focus more on basic understanding and explanation.

In the end, choose an option that you find intriguing and manageable. A good IA topic should meet academic standards, spark your curiosity, and encourage a deeper understanding of the subject.


As we conclude, remember that your World Religions IA is a chance to deepen your understanding of the diverse spiritual landscape of our world. Approach it with curiosity and creativity, and you will surely find it a rewarding experience. Good luck, and don’t forget that our IB IA Writing Service experts are always ready to help you!

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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