Facing a Viva-voce
The viva voce is a short interview between the student or employee and the supervisor or employer and is a recommended conclusion to the extended essay procedure. Generally, it is a celebration of the completion of the essay and a reflection on what the student has learned from the process. As you are going to face a viva-voce to get yourself admitted to a college, you need to know some instructions to be successful. The viva voce should last between 10 and 15 minutes. This is included in the amount of time the supervisor should spend with the student. The first purpose of the viva voce is to establish that the work is your own – i.e. you are able to explain and justify it. It an opportunity to ask the student a variety of open-ended questions to elicit holistic evidence of the student’s learning experience. It is also an opportunity for the supervisor to confirm the authenticity of the student’s ideas and sources.
You may be nervous to face viva-voce. So first of all, remove your nervousness thinking it easy. There will be an examining panel consisting of your supervisor and at least one other extended essay supervisor, possibly from a different subject area. If you are nervous, you will not be able to answer the questions asked by the interview board. Examiners want to know that students understand any material that they have included in their essays. As well as being an assessment of how much you know about your essay, it is also an opportunity for you to show the fruits of your labors. Be attentive to your serial number. Respond to your call earnestly. Show due respect and reverence appearing before the interview board. Your answers will help your supervisor justify the grade given for criterion K for internal reporting purposes and also will act as a guide for the supervisor writing their report on the essay to the external examiner.
The viva voce serves the following purposes:
- a check on plagiarism and malpractice in general
- an opportunity to reflect on successes and difficulties in the research process
- an opportunity to reflect on what has been learned
Take your seat gently if you are asked to do so. Answer the questions asked by the interview board by showing courtesy. They will ask you questions after your presentation to determine how familiar you are with the contents of the essay. Your presentations will be viewed by an audience consisting of students, staff and anyone you choose to invite (e.g. your parents). Don’t exaggerate your answer. Just answer them what they ask. Finally, leave them if you are asked to do so. Unless there are particular problems, the viva voce should begin and end positively.