International Baccalaureate

International Baccalaureate

IB logoWhy Should I Study the IB Diploma Programme?*

  • Holistic educational experience – more than a set of discrete examinable subjects.
  • Courses are current, relevant, and interesting
  • Encourages independent thinking and personal engagement with learning
  • Develops multilingual students, allowing for greater mobility beyond school
  • Encourages students to consider both local and global contexts
  • Built with international-mindedness and intercultural understanding as a founding principle
  • Developed independently of government and national systems, incorporating quality practice from research and a global community of schools
  • Internationally recognised as excellent preparation for the academic rigours of university study

"Students with the IB qualification appear to readily make (or have made) the transition from being receivers of knowledge to being seekers of knowledge"
Watson’s Parent, University Lecturer

The IB Diploma Programme Curriculum

The following diagram represents the structure and features of the IB Diploma Programme.

IB Diagram ©IBO 2012

The IB Diploma Programme aims to develop the whole person beyond purely their academic potential. Theory of Knowledge; Creativity, Action and Service; and the Extended Essay; the three compulsory components of the ‘Core’, have a strong role to play in this.

"IB gives you so much knowledge but it also teaches us to think”.

The Extended Essay is a significant piece of supported yet independent research on a topic of personal interest and is very useful preparation for further education.

“The IB is excellent because what it teaches us is relevant, fascinating and engaging. We are encouraged to connect the dots between subjects: when you learn something in Maths one lesson and apply it in Art the next it is immensely satisfying, and emphasises to us how interconnected all of our subjects are.”
David Wolffe (Class of 2013)

Theory of Knowledge is a course that aims to make links across a subject area and gets pupils to question and think actively about how knowledge is constructed. In short, it is a course in critical thinking.

“We benefited enormously from group discussions to build very productive, mature and mutually respectful learning relationships with our teachers who allowed us to direct our syllabus towards topics that would most engage us.”

Pupils must also participate in 150 hours of Creativity, Activity and Service ensuring they have a healthy and balanced lifestyle as well as serving their community.

The IB believes that breadth and depth of study are an important feature of school education and to this end pupils study six academic subjects throughout both S5 and S6; three at Standard Level and three at Higher Level.

Pupils must choose one subject from each of the groups represented above, with the exception of the Arts: pupils can either choose an Arts subject or a second subject from the other five groups.

Courses on Offer

Group 1 Group 2 Group 3 Group 4 Group 5 Group 6
English Literature,
Other Mother Tongues can possibly be supported
French B,
Spanish B,
German B,
Mandarin B,
Ab Initio Italian,
Ab Initio Spanish (available through Pamoja),
Business Management,
Global Politics,
Information Technology in a Global Society (Pamoja),
Psychology (Pamoja)

Design Technology,
Exercise and Health Science

Mathematics and Maths Studies Music, Theatre, Visual Arts

“I feel that my diploma is hard-earned and I love the internationalism and flexibility that having a universally comparable IB grade promotes. I can be fairly compared with students from Beijing, Beirut or Brasilia, and I feel equipped to take on the world.”

“Energy and passion are the key factors to making IB your own, and I felt fulfilled each time a goal was reached. I believe that this rewarding element shaped all of us into individuals with a strong work ethic who know the value of our time and thinking power, qualities that will help us for the rest of our lives. I can safely say that we are not just more globally aware for having taken IB, but also more self-aware.”
Fiona Glen (Class of 2013)

“While in Spain I lived and worked with interns from around the world, most of whom were working in other fields. I lived with people from America and South Africa, worked with others from Germany, Holland and across South America. It was one of the most amazing things I have ever done, and I honestly can say I was so grateful for the IB pushing me to work on my Spanish. It really just widened the scope of my working, social and networking opportunities while I was abroad – and I know I would not have done a language if I hadn’t had to as part of the IB. I really struggled with my Spanish, and I had to work really hard on it, but I am so glad I did.”
Alex Stephenson (Class of 2015)

“Not only did the IB allow me to keep my options open before choosing a university course, but it also taught me invaluable transferable skills which have helped me in my first year at Bath. Time management, referencing and having an international open view of the world are all thanks to the IB diploma which I believe have really helped my further studies. Having spoken to many people on my course from various educational backgrounds and systems, it is clear that those who did the IB have found first year at university much smoother due to the things that the IB has to offer – you truly do become an all-rounded and global person.”
Alexandra Brosens-Doy (Class of 2014)

“I think the IB was a great decision for me and has given me a lot more confidence in my own learning abilities, and my academic skills than I think I would have gained if I had taken another route.”
Courtney Levey (Class of 2013)

“In my opinion, IB is a brilliant course; it shapes you to be a more independent and intuitive student. You learn more than just how to memorise and regurgitate answers in order to pass exams, because you have time to actually learn what interests you. A lot of the time, you get to choose what you want to study, or write an essay about, and this often means you enjoy it a bit more. So far I’ve really been enjoying it, and I highly recommend it anyone considering it.”
Kinga Kaluszynska (S5)


* Please note that during Session 2018/19 the IB Diploma Programme is ‘on pause’. If you are interested in commencing the Programme in Session 2019/20, please let us know.