ITGS Extended Essay topic ideas

ITGS Extended Essay

It is the time of year again when we start thinking about writing Extended Essays. The blog post Thinking of Writing an ITGS Extended Essay? explains some of the things to consider when deciding whether or not to write an ITGS extended essay. This post is going to focus on topics that are suitable for an ITGS EE.

Note that the ideas listed below are topic ideas and areas, not Research Questions. They need refining into a specific and sharply focused Research Question before they are suitable for an extended essay. However, you receive marks in Criterion A for doing this, so I am not going to do it for you here!

Business and Employment EE topic ideas:

  • The effectiveness of solutions to prevent online fraud
  • The use of employee monitoring technology
  • Cost savings of FOSS compared to commercial software
  • The use of social networks by small businesses

Education EE topic ideas: 

  • The use of computer models to replace science experiments in schools
  • The impacts of 1-1 computer programmes in schools
  • The use of student information systems to improve teaching and learning
  • The privacy impacts of student tracking systems
  • Effective solutions to ensure appropriate technology use in a school

Environment EE topic ideas:

  • The use of Geographical Information Systems (GIS) when planning construction projects
  • The awareness and impact of electronic waste
  • The use of virtualisation as a method of reducing server power consumption

Health EE topic ideas:

  • The use of tele-medicine to treat patients in rural areas
  • The impacts of implementing electronic health records in a hospital
  • The effectiveness of mobile phone technology for distributing health advice and education
  • Software and hardware to help disabled users with poor eyesight

Home and Leisure EE topic ideas:

  • The impact of software / music / film piracy

Politics & Government EE topic ideas: 

  • The impacts of open government sites on service provision
  • The use of online technology for election campaigning

This is not a definitive list by any means – there are dozens, if not hundreds, of other possible topics. But remember – these are only topic areas. An extended essay (ITGS or otherwise) needs a sharply focused research question that can be addressed within the 4000 word limit.

16 Comments on ITGS Extended Essay topic ideas

  1. Hi,

    I would like like ask you if i can use your posts on my blog with your reference as they are of great help to my students and me.


  2. Hey,

    I wanted to ask if Social and Ethical of social networking is a good topic? Or can you help me in framing a proper research question related to social networking??

    • Well, it is rather vague. I would suggest you look more closely at some articles relating to social networking and check the list of specific ITGS social and ethical issues to see which issues are raised. This should help you better understand the topic options that are out there.

    • Hi,

      It probably needs focusing down: RFID tags are used in a lot of areas and by a lot of different stakeholders (for example, everything from monitoring good in supermarkets to monitoring students). To achieve the level of detail required in the extended essay, you should definitely narrow things down.

    • As an IT system Virtual Learning Environments fall into ITGS, definitely. In fact they are in section 2.2 of the syllabus (Education). However, you cannot just write an extended essay about an IT system – you need to add context so that you can examine the social and ethical impacts of the system in that context. For example, a good topic might be the use of VLEs in schools or the use of VLEs in prisons. Once you have a 'general' topic, then you need to refine it to produce the research question.

  3. Hello,

    I was wondering how you would approach the research question of To what extent has the development of new technologies accelerated the outsourcing of white collar jobs from the United States to Southeast Asia.

    • I'd say you need to narrow it down, a lot. "New technologies" is very vague (and remember that not all technology is information technology and therefore not suitable for ITGS). "White collar jobs" is also very broad. I would focus on a particular area of technology and a particular industry, and perhaps even narrow down the geographical area too.

    • Well, obviously you need to focus on social impacts….so start by finding out who is involved in the e-waste “situation” (the stakeholders). Then you will need to do a little bit of research on each to see how they are affected. This will probably lead you to discard some ideas. You should consider the quality and quantity of research material available, and also what *primary* research you can do. This will help you narrow things down. The focus should be quite narrow: something like “The impacts of e-waste on LEDCs and MEDCs and manufacturers of equipment across the world” is FAR too broad and would make a bad question.

  4. I decided to write my extended essay in ITGS.
    i’m interested in writing about the introduction of IT systems in schools, libraries. its effects on people life style.

  5. Hi there!

    I’m thinking of writing my essay on ransomware yet I am having difficulty structuring a question. I would like to discuss the impacts of ransomware on different stakeholders and strategies used to tackle the problem of ransomware.

    I was thinking of a question along the lines of “To what extent has the rise of ransomware changed the way technology is used”, however it is too broad and I’m not quite sure how to make it more specific.

    • You’re right, it is too broad. It sounds obvious, but tighten up the bits which are too broad. “Technology” and “is used” are prime candidates. Which technology? And used where? The impacts of ransomware will be somewhat different for home users compared to large businesses. That second question might depend a fair bit on your initial research. Even last week a Canadian university paid ransomware authors to get their data back:

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