Recommended reading

One of the common questions from teachers new to the program is - what books should we have in our library? The answer? Books that students want to read. Planning your library collection for students who might do an extended essay may result in many books that no one ever reads. Below is a list of some of the books that students in our school enjoy reading. If your students are readers like mine, you may find that students will suggest titles that will enrich your collection.

Magazines and databases

The following magazines and databases are good resources for extended essays.

The EBSCO & the Questia databases are the two most commonly used databases in high schools. The EBSCO database has a module called "Psychology and Behavioural Sciences Collection." This has full original articles. In addition, the "eBook Academic Collection" and "eBook High School Collection" both have several full texts online. If you only have this one source, you can do your EEs. In addition, EBSCO, like Questia, has tools for students to take notes and highlight texts for later use.

Questia also has many ebooks and original articles available. The program has more tools for student research than EBSCO, but the research that is available tends to be older.

The Inquisitive Mind

The Psychologist - published by the BPS. Quarterly. Also contains teacher support materials.

Scientific American Mind - a monthly publication with many topics highly relevant to the IB curriculum. Highly recommended. All back copies are available in EBSCO.


The art of choosing - Sheena Iyengar

The Big Disconnect - Catherine Steiner Adair

Blink - Malcolm Gladwell

Crazy like us - Ethan Watters

Drive - Daniel Pink

Everyone loves a good train wreck: why we can’t look away - Eric Wilson

The gene: An intimate history: Siddhartha Mukherjee

The geography of bliss: one grump’s search for the happiest places in the world - Eric Weiner

The Happiness Effect - Donna Freitas

Influence - Robert Cialdini

The Influential Mind: What the Brain Reveals about our Power to Change Others Tali Sharot

In the shadow of the Holocaust: the second generation Aaron Hass

The invisible gorilla - Chabris & Simon

Love at Goon Park – Deborah Blum

The Lucifer effect - Philip Zimbardo

Mad in America - Robert Whitaker

The Man who mistook his wife for a hat - Oliver Sacks

Mistakes were made, but not by me - Carol Tavris

Moonwalking with Einstein - Joshua Foer

Musicophilia: tales of music and the brain - Oliver Sacks

Neuromarketing: Understanding the buy buttons in your customer's brain - Renvoise & Morin

Night falls fast – Kay Redfield Jamison

Nudge: Improving decisions about health, wealth and happiness - Richard Thaler

Numbers rule your world: The hidden influence of probabilities and statistics on everything you do - Kaiser Fung

Nurture shock - Bronson & Merryman

The Optimism Bias - Tali Sharot

Outliers: the story of success - Malcolm Gladwell

Parenting without borders - Christine Gross-Loh

Patient HM - Luke Dittrich

The Person and the situation - Ross & Nisbett

Phantoms in the brain - Vilnyur Ramachandran

Predictably Irrational - Dan Ariely

A Primate's Memoir - Robert Sapolsky

The psychopath test - Jon Ronson

The Shallows: how the internet is changing the way we think - Nicholas Carr

Social Psychology: Revisiting the Classic Studies Joanne Smith and S Alexander Haslam

Spark: the revolutionary new science of exercise and the brain - John Ratey

The spirit catches you and you fall down - Anne Fadiman

The Sports Gene – David Epstein

Strangers to Ourselves: The adaptive unconscious - Timothy Wilson

Suspicious minds – how culture shapes madness - Gold & Gold

Taste matters: why we like the foods we do - John Prescott

Then they started shooting: Growing up in wartime Bosnia - Lynne Jones

Thinking fast and slow - Daniel Kahnemann

The time paradox - Zimbardo & Boyd

Why they kill: the discoveries of a maverick criminologist - Richard Rhodes

Why Zebras don’t get ulcers - Robert Sapolsky

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