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IB Music: Musical Links Investigation: Information about Your Assignment

Musical Links Investigation

The musical links investigation requires the student to engage in a sustained investigation that is self-directed.  It is designed to allow the student the opportunity to investigate the musical connections between pieces from two distinct musical cultures by exploring one (or more) musical piece(s) from each musical culture.

From IB Music syllabus

Musical Links Examples Graded by IBO

Additional Examples from IB Online Curriculum Guide

Sources and Citations

In the written media script, the student must cite both primary and secondary sources used. Sources of information must be acknowledged and a consistent format used (for example, Chicago style).

In accordance with the style used, Internet sources must be accurately and completely cited.  It is not enough to simply cite the web address. Students must cite the author, title of the article or entry, and date of access to the site.

Primary sources must be used and may include live performance and recordings, website streaming, musical notation, interviews and discussion with practitioners in the field. Secondary sources may include textbooks, documentaries and articles.

As the sources must be acknowledged, if the choice of media script does not lend itslef to the includsion of references within the text, footnotes should be used.

From IB Music Syllabus

Note from Mrs. Harper: Include a separate section in your Bibliography for a Discography. The discography section should include citations for any sound recordings you used. To format your discography citations, simply follow the MLA, APA or Chicago style manual for "Sound Recording."

Suggestions for Media Script Formats

Magazine or newspaper/newsletter article: Use Microsoft Publisher, Microsoft Word, or Google Docs (all have templates for newsletters, which work well for articles ). See links to Google Docs templates below, use the template search in Microsoft Publisher and Word.

Slide Presentations: Examples: Powerpoint, Google Slides, Prezi
Websites: Weebly, Google Sites (linked to your HF student gmail account)                                                                                                               Blogs: Blogger, Wordpress , Edublogs       

Other formats and tools: the links below are for media script resources that might be more challenging.

Newsletters:, Microsoft Publisher

Online Magazines: 

Radio Script
Play or Movie Script:
Printed newspaper or magazine article:
You Tube videos (you will need a transcript)


wiki: Example: Wikispaces

game show or talk show

Remember, whatever media script format you decide to use, you must be able to print it out for submission to IB.


Microsoft Office: Microsoft Word has newsletter templates that could be used for magazine articles.

Format of Assignment

The Musical Links Investigation must be submitted as a media script of no more than 2,000 words.

Mass Media communication in the 21st century has many formats, such as radio, televsion, CD-Rom, Internet, printed article, or lecture. The musical links investigation should be conceived for any form of mass media communication. A range of possibilities could include straightforward narration, interview, or dramatization.  However, the focus must be on the music itself and not on peripheries such as biography or social discourses that may detract from the musical links investigation. Scripts that concentrate on such peripheries at eh expense of content will not successfully fulfill the assessment requirements.

The length of the media script, not including quotations and citations of sources, must be no more than 2,000 words. The variety of styles of media script may affect the length of the student's musical links investigation. For example, a student who presents similarities and differences in a tabular form as part of a website could achieve the same outcome in fewer words than a student who writes in a more narrative form, such as a magazine article or a radio show. 


For purposes of external assessment, students must submit a paper copy of the media script, regardless of the medium chosen. For example, if a student chooses to present the information as a website, the screenshots must be printed out in order for the submission to be examined.

From IB Music Syllabus