Q: What is a process journal in MYP?
First, let's take a brief look at the Middle Years Program (MYP) before discussing the process journal.
The MYP is a program designed for students aged 11-16 by the International Baccalaureate (IB) foundation. The MYP aims to foster creativity, critical thinking, and intellectual discipline among students. Through MYP, students are urged to make connections between their studies and the world at large. It is a stepping stone to the Diploma Program (DP) offered by the IB.
As a part of the MYP, students need to work on and submit a personal project in the final year of the program. Students choose a project based on their personal interests. Due to its various aspects (indicated below), the project aims to help students grow both intellectually and as individuals.
The process journal is an essential aid in working on the personal project. The journal is meant to document both the student’s process and progress in working on the project.
Here are the key points about the journal.
- It is meant to capture your growth in the five Approaches to Learning (ATL) skills established by the IB: Thinking, Social, Communication, Self-Management, and Research.
- You need to document the process and progress of the project along four criteria or stages: Investigating, Planning, Taking action, and Reflecting. Accordingly, you need to divide the journal into four sections and show your progress for each criteria or stage.
- You may record a variety of information (such as conversations, observations, and comments) by a variety of sources (such as teachers, seniors, and experts).
- The form may be electronic (such as a blog or site) or physical (such as a notebook or scrapbook). The format may differ too. Thus, one kind of record could be an audio file, another a video, yet another a photo, one simply a short note, and so on. However, be sure to check with your school as they may insist on a certain form and format.
- It is meant to be a regular log, but not a daily one. However, as it is intended to capture the process and your progress, it helps to be regular. So, ensure you record necessary information in it every two-three days or at least once a week.
- It is not meant to be submitted along with the personal project. However, you do need to provide a maximum of 10 appendices to go with the project.
You may go through this document to view a more structured form of a process journal including appendices.
In sum, the process journal and the personal project as a part of the MYP are aimed to spark and fuel a zeal for research among students. So, you should take this seriously, but also have fun along the way!
Having said that, as MYP is a formalized program, it would be best to discuss the journal with your teacher before getting started. All the best for your project!