CS Assessment Descriptors for Students

Basic assessment information for the CS on this page: a summary of the criteria and required tasks, simple, clear, concise. The Comparative Study is an external assessment task in which you analyze and compare artworks from different cultural contexts. This component is submitted as a PDF composed of a determined number of screens for each level. The Comparative Study comprises 20% of the final grade.SL

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Comments 30

Irene Winkel 2 March 2017 - 09:40

Hi Heather, how are you? If a student has selected fro example three french artists but each from different times in history, will this be acceptable?

Heather McReynolds 2 March 2017 - 19:56

Im well Irene, thank you! The important thing is to make a good case for the differing contexts by showing how the cultural context (and time periods in this case) influenced and shaped the artworks

Irene Winkel 4 March 2017 - 15:54

Hi Heather, regarding my previous concern about a student selecting 3 french artists, each from differing periods... after reading (please see below) this from last years clarifications, I got a little nervous: 'If the works chosen are from the same cultural origin then they will receive 0 in criterion A.' For example, Heather a student will get a 0 in CA if he/she chooses 3 pop artists and simply focuses on that movement and obviously cultural context. You know how I still get after so many years at this time of the year :-)

Heather McReynolds 4 March 2017 - 17:41

I understand your concern Irene and it depends on how the examiner interprets "culture"- i personally would be ready to be convinced of the different cultural context of the three different time periods, but if you want to play it safe introduce at least one artwork from another culture. Ok?

Judi Morgan 16 March 2017 - 20:07

Hello Heather. There seems to be conflicting information on citations for CS. Should they be on the same screen at the art image or just on the resource page or both? Also, it appears to me that the resource page is separate from the actual CS file and so does not count for the pages. Is that correct? Or can you have bibliography within the CS pages and also a separate document?

Heather McReynolds 17 March 2017 - 09:48

Hi Judi, the sources page is uploaded as a separate document form the CS. However the images can also be cited in the CS screens. My preferred method is a brief in text citation ( i.e. title, artist) followed by a number that refers to the full citation in the sources page

Irene Winkel 18 March 2017 - 18:13

Hi, Heather and thanks for your comment. On the new 2017 Visual Arts publication (OCC), there is a slight change of wording in the descriptors for each level criterion of the three components. I am preparing my marking comments for the sample work submissions and was wondering if you recommend we use the new terminology. Every change makes me a bit nervous, as you know. Thank you, Heather

Heather McReynolds 18 March 2017 - 18:24

Hi Irene, I understand you, and yes, by all means use the new wording, the essence is the same.

Judi Morgan 28 March 2017 - 19:40

Thanks for the info, Heather. One more question....should students put their student numbers on their CS title page?

Heather McReynolds 28 March 2017 - 20:32

not neccessary as pages are not extracted individually

Tamara Rusnak 29 March 2017 - 03:25

HI Heather, I (think I) have a query about criterion C. It states that students are to "Evaluate the cultural significance" of the artworks -- which to me implies that students must make a judgement about the significance of each of the artworks. In the Clarification notes on the IBO site, it states that this evaluation is to be made "with respect to the original audience and purpose as well as to a contemporary audience" I guess I just want confirmation that I am understanding the information accurately: that the students should articulate if/why/how their chosen works are culturally significant to past and to present audiences.

Heather McReynolds 29 March 2017 - 17:35

I think your understanding is correct Tamara, and you also might find this page useful thinkib.net

Heba Yosri 5 April 2017 - 07:22

Hi Heather,
For HL,should the student work be a resolved piece? or could it be a sketch or unfinished work?

Heather McReynolds 5 April 2017 - 19:36

Heba, for the CS it neednt be resolved work, its about making connections, not the work itself

Heba Yosri 6 April 2017 - 10:18

Thank You Heather!

Heba Yosri 14 April 2017 - 21:13

Hi Heather,
For the CS format, is it acceptable to use hand writing and not typing?
For me I feel it's not clear and a kind of PP screen! your opinion is highly appreciated.

Heather McReynolds 15 April 2017 - 16:46

Heba, it is acceptable as long as it is clearly legible. An alternative would be to insert typed text boxes...

Francis Trainor 26 April 2017 - 11:19

Hello Heather. Above in the criteria chart what do you mean by "Chapter 6 discusses function and purpose in depth."? Chapter six of what?

Heather McReynolds 26 April 2017 - 17:05

Hi francis, good for spotting that! It refers to my course book for students, Visual Art for the IB Diploma ( Cambridge, 2016). Instead you can go to this site page for the same info on function and purpose thinkib.net

Lisa Schooling 23 July 2017 - 20:48

Hi Heather,
Could you give some guidance on the use of images for the CS or other IB required essays? I have a student who wants to use specific examples of an artist but is wondering if she can use scanned images from books as long as it is cited properly. Some of the images are from museum visits and have not been published or reproduced before. Thank you!

Heather McReynolds 24 July 2017 - 01:30

Hi lisa, scanned images from books are fine, properly cited, as are photos taken by the student at a Museum- indicate this in addition to the citation. For guidance on citation Refer to the page thinkib.net

Lisa Schooling 24 July 2017 - 19:55

Thank you for the quick reply!

Becky van Paassen 18 August 2017 - 12:51

Hi Heather,
I was off on maternity leave last year and am picking up my year 12's again this year. I asked the cover teacher to set them the task of starting the CS over the summer, they have all made great progress. I get my 2nd years to work around a broad theme in year 2, does it matter if the CS is different to the PP and Exhibition work if their theme is different to what they have done for the CS?

Heather McReynolds 19 August 2017 - 12:32

Hi Becky, not really, since each component is separately assessed. The connections with studio work for HL is the only clearly linking part in theory.

victoria mc elhill 26 September 2017 - 07:07

Hi Heather, do you think there would be a problem with one of my students looking into 2 current artists, who have both done work relating to Palestine, Laila Chawa and Banksy.

Heather McReynolds 26 September 2017 - 21:09

Victoria, dont see a problem at all

Ina Isnaedi 27 September 2017 - 07:44

Hi Heather,
Hoping you are well and the weather changes have been treating you well! I have a question that links to Becky van Paasen's question (19-8-'17), just making sure; for HL, is it suggested that the studio work that have been influenced by artists from the CS, be part of the final exhibition? It seems like a lot of the high achieving student samples posted here have a very coherent theme from CS, PP through to Exhibition..

Ina Isnaedi 27 September 2017 - 08:20

Oh I think I found your feedback to this type of question in another thread from the page Integrating the CS: "My advice Andrew, is to choose artists that they feel strongly connected with or influenced by to start, but if this isnt the case, they could make connections with studio work from year 1 ( remember the art work itself is not assessed but the ability to make connections), or even explain how this may have been a starting point and how they have developed the work in relation to...does this make sense? "

Erin Kenealy 9 October 2017 - 13:55

Hi Heather,
I have a few questions in regards to my students' artist picks for the CS. One student has selected 3 different artists and artworks, but all of them are European (though from different time periods). He wants to focus on the subject of death and mortality in artwork, so wishes to look at "The Ambassadors" by Hans Holbein the Younger, "An Experiment on a Bird in the Air Pump" by Joseph Wright of Derby, and Damien Hirst's "For the Love of God". Do you feel there would be enough difference in cultural context to make this a successful CS? I think his choices are great, but I don't want to do him a disservice by saying yes and then he gets marked down for looking only at European-based artists.

My second student would like to examine Wayne Thiebau's cake paintings and decided to compare the 19th century "Jadeite Cabbage with Insects" from China, as this meets cultural context requirements. However, the artist of this work is unknown. Would she be able to still use it as long as she considers the political and social environment during the time it was created, as well as other characteristics of artwork being made at that time?

Sorry for such a long inquiry, but thanks in advance for your assistance with this! My students last year had more straight-forward artist choices, but I'm happy these guys are challenging themselves and thinking outside of the box!

Heather McReynolds 10 October 2017 - 17:10

Great questions Erin, I like these interesting choices of artworks. Yes to the first comparison, they are form very different contexts.
In the second option, the unknown artist is fine, its the art work being analyzed, not the artist, and she can certainly consider the whole context of the time if was made.
Good work!

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