The International Baccalaureat Diploma
The International Baccalaureat Diploma combines continuous assessment and examinations in six major subjects with other activities designed to prepare the student for future studies and the modern world in general. Such ideals as responsible citizenship, international understanding, respect for cultures and ideas together with developing the talents of individuals are key points in the IB organisation mission statement which we believe in here at IBS.
The programme that leads to final obtainment of the diploma can be tailor-made to suit the requirements of the student at that particular time. It is not designed to be for <top> students only, indeed certain one or two subject specialists will find this diploma particularly tough, however it does require consistency and hard work from average to good students. Motivation and enthusiasm are key factors in a decision to embark on the programme.
The IB course is prepared over two years and may be taught and studied in any one or combination of the three languages, English, French or Spanish. The students normally seclects one subject from each of the following groups....
GROUP ONE....First language referred to as A1. This combines a study of the language and literary criticism with world literature translated into the language chosen. It includes oral work and presentations. The first languages offered here at IBS are at present English, French, Spanish, Dutch and German.
GROUP TWO....Second language with three possibilities. A2 includes literature and language, B covers language only and the so-called < ab initio > is for those considered < debutants > in that particular language. The level of study is correspondingly higher for A2 than B which is more advanced than ab initio. All major languages are offered in this group according to demand.
GROUP THREE....This Humanities block includes Geography with its associated field work and History with its historical investigation component.
GROUP FOUR....This is the Sciences sector and includes Physics, Chemistry and Biology. An important part of this group is the < group four science project > which involves a great deal of personal practical work.
GROUP FIVE....Mathematics as one would expect is an integral part of the diploma but the different options available cater to all student needs; namely those whose talents lie in this direction will feel challenged by the Higher level content and those who find this subject difficult can opt for the Standard level option of Mathematical Methods.
GROUP SIX....Options - In this group many possibilities are open to the student. An extra subject may be taken from one of the groups previously mentioned. At present this means that an extra language or science is on offer.
To be eligible for the diploma, a student must choose to take at least 3 and not more than 4 at higher level and the others at standard level. The difference between levels is in depth, breadth and consequently number of teaching hours required for each. Each examined subject (and correspondingly term grades) is graded on a scale of 1 (minimum) to 7 (maximum).
In addition, each student is required to successfully complete ALL of the following........
An < extended essay > of some 4000 words written on a precise topic chosen from one of the subject areas involving research and originality from the student. This should demand about 40 hours of work and the tutor can be consulted for advice at any moment. In this school, the first draft is due much earlier in the first year of IB. Completed essays are due at the beginning of the second year and this without fail.
A course in the < Theory of Knowledge > begins upon entry into the school and will require an essay on a prescribed title and a presentation upon a topic chosen by the student. This course is designed to ensure that students engage in critical reflection and analysis of what we call knowledge. Subject teachers are invited to take an active part in the teaching of this by either including elements of the course in their lessons or by < standing in > for the regular TOK teacher from time to time.
(The award of 3 extra bonus points accompanies excellent performances in the above two disciplines.)
CAS....Creativity, Action and Service
This is a very popular part of the IB Diploma programme. It involves the students in Art, Theatre, Music, Sport and a wide variety of Volunteer activities designed to be of service to the community both here and abroad. A total of 150 hours of CAS must be accumulated over the two-year period of IB studies. Through their own experiences, students learn that being a citizen means accepting responsibilities as well as enjoying rights. They gain the insight that it is indeed more rewarding to give than to receive. Projects are related to helping around the school, helping other students, reaching out to those in need in our community and the neighborhood. The group meets weekly for the purposes of planning and organisation. The CAS coordinator is available for guidance and help and reports to the IB coordinator on ongoing progress concerning each student. All students have compulsory Art and Sports lessons.
IB Options 2012-2014 (PDF - 30.2 kb)