The International Baccalaureate (IB) programme
The International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme is a comprehensive and rigorous two-year course of study, undertaken in Years 11 and 12. It is chosen by a range of students as an alternative to studying the NSW Higher School Certificate.
The aim of all IB programmes is to develop internationally minded people who, recognising their common humanity and shared guardianship of the common planet, help to create a better and more peaceful world.
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2010
The programme is based on the International Baccalaureate Organization’s (IBO) Mission Statement*:
The IBO aims to develop inquiring, knowledgeable and caring young people who help to create a better and more peaceful world through intercultural understanding and respect.
To this end the IBO works with schools, governments and international organisations to develop challenging programmes of international education and rigorous assessment.
The IBO encourages students across the world to become active, compassionate and lifelong learners who understand that other people, with their differences, can also be right.
Worldwide, the IB Diploma Programme is recognised by leading universities for providing the academic challenge required for future university success.
These are the reasons the IB Diploma Programme has such popularity and has seen rapid international growth, in both State and Independent schools, since its foundation in Geneva over 40 years ago. There are more than 969,000 IB students at over 3,290 schools in more than 141 countries – and the numbers are growing!
IB Diploma Programme Curriculum
Students select one subject from each of five different discipline areas and a sixth may be an arts discipline or another subject from Language Acquisition, Individuals and Societies or Sciences. This ensures a breadth of experience in languages, humanities, experimental sciences and mathematics, a key feature of the Diploma that makes it different from the HSC.
- Three of the six subjects are studied at higher level (HL) each representing 240 teaching hours over two years
- The remaining three subjects are studied at standard level (SL) each representing 150 teaching hours over two years.
There are three core requirements that are central to the IB Diploma experience.
1. The Extended Essay (EE)
Students complete a 4000-word research essay in a discipline area of choice, on a topic formulated and negotiated between the student and a supervisor.
2. Creativity, Action and Service (CAS)
CAS is a distinctive feature of the IB Diploma and aligns strongly with MLC School’s values. It encourages students to take risks, explore, and challenge themselves. MLC School students engage in many ‘outside the classroom’ activities and these can lead to outstanding CAS projects.
- Creativity, includes a wide range of arts and other activities that involve creative thinking, like learning a new instrument or dance.
- Action, which can include participation in individual and team sports, taking part in expeditions and in local or international projects.
- Service, that encompasses a host of community and social service activities.
The satisfactory completion of this non-examined core component is mandatory for the award of the IB Diploma.
3. Theory of Knowledge (TOK)
TOK is a course unique to the IB Diploma, challenging students to ask ‘How do we know what we know?’ TOK aims to develop a student’s critical capacity to analyse, make connections, consider possibilities and understand that all individual and cultural perspectives may have strengths and weaknesses. Through understanding the nature of knowledge, this course has relevance to all the subjects chosen in the IB Diploma. Like all other IB Diploma subjects, TOK is assessed, and this includes an essay and presentation.
Key Benefits of the IB Diploma Programme
Many students in Year 10 are uncertain about their vocational or career options. Research shows that despite a demonstrated capacity, girls still under-enrol in maths and sciences in senior years, and this limits their tertiary choices. The IB Diploma requirement, that students take subjects from each area of the curriculum, including these subjects, is particularly beneficial for girls.
The IB Diploma programme is recognised around the world and ensures an increased adaptability and mobility for IB students.
The curriculum of the IB Diploma Programme has an international perspective of learning and teaching, while insisting that students fully explore their home culture and language.
IB World Schools must undergo an exhaustive authorisation process in order to offer one or more of the programmes, which includes a study of the school’s resources and commitment to the IB mission and philosophy.
IB Diploma teachers participate in a wide variety of professional development opportunities to constantly update their knowledge and share their expertise with colleagues around the world.
Many students graduating from the IB Diploma Programme find that it enhances their opportunities at tertiary institutions. The IBO works closely with universities around the world to gain recognition for IB programmes.
The core components of the IB Diploma Programme encourage students to participate in active, creative and service-oriented activities, while at the same time emphasising the importance of reflection on a personal and academic level.
|Studies in language and literature|
|Individuals and societies|
MLC School IB Results
|Read more about our outstanding IB results here.|