Human relationships

The options are a chance for the students to apply their understanding of concepts from the core of the course.  SL candidates must study one option; HL candidates must study two. 

Each option has three "topics."  The exam will give them three questions to choose from - they will choose one to write a well-developed essay in one hour.  Each question comes from one of the three topics.  There may not be two questions from the same topic.

This section contains activities and curriculum tips, teaching ideas, revision strategies, key studies and writing samples for different ERQs.

Learning objectives

The curriculum does not have clearly defined learning objectives, but the questions are set by using the grid in the curriculum guide.  Remember that the general questions can be combined with the questions below.  For example, Discuss approaches to research in studying the role of communication in relationships.


  • Biological, cognitive and sociocultural factors in human relationships.
  • Approaches to research in the study of human relationships
  • Ethical considerations in the study of human relationships

Social responsibility

  • Bystanderism
  • Prosocial behaviour (biological, cognitive and sociocultural factors)
  • Promoting prosocial behaviour

Personal relationships

  • Formation of relationships (biological, cognitive and sociocultural factors)
  • Role of communication in relationships
  • Why do relationships change or end (biological, cognitive and sociocultural factors)

Group dynamics

  • Cooperation and competition
  • Prejudice and discrimination
  • Origins of conflict (biological, cognitive and sociocultural factors)
  • Conflict resolution
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