IB Further Information
The programme offers special features in addition to the traditional strengths of a liberal arts curriculum. Theory of Knowledge (TOK) is a required interdisciplinary course intended to stimulate critical reflection upon the knowledge and experience gained inside and outside the classroom. TOK challenges students to question the bases of knowledge, to be aware of subjective and ideological biases, and to develop a personal mode of thought based on analysis of evidence expressed in rational argument. The key element in the IBO's educational philosophy,
Theory of Knowledge seeks to develop a coherent approach to learning which transcends and unifies the academic subjects and encourages appreciation of other cultural perspectives.
Creativity, action, service is known by its acronym CAS and is a fundamental part of the diploma curriculum. The CAS requirement takes seriously the importance of life outside the world of scholarship, providing a refreshing counterbalance to the academic self-absorption some may feel within the demanding school programme. Participation in theatre productions, sports and community service activities encourages young people to share their energies and special talents while developing awareness, concern and the ability to work co-operatively with others. The goal of educating the whole person and fostering a more compassionate citizenry comes alive in an immediate way when students reach beyond themselves and their books.
Diploma candidates are required to undertake original research and write an extended essay of some 4000 words. This project offers the opportunity to investigate a topic of special interest and acquaints students with the kind of independent research and writing skills expected at university. There are currently 60 subjects, including more than 35 languages, in which the essay may be written.
The Grading System
The grading system used by the International Baccalaureate Organisation is criterion-referenced. This means that each student's performance is measured against well-defined levels of achievement consistent from one examination session to the next. Top grades are not simply awarded "on a curve" to a certain percentage of candidates in a particular year but rather reflect attainment of knowledge and skills relative to set standards equally applied to all schools over a number of years. Validity, reliability and fairness are the watchwords of the IBO's international assessment strategy.
International curriculum planners seek to ensure that the organisation's educational aims are embodied in the structure and content of the programme itself. The diploma is displayed in the shape of a hexagon with six academic areas surrounding the core. Subjects are studied concurrently and students are exposed to the two great traditions of learning: the humanities and the sciences.
Diploma candidates are required to select one subject from each of the six subject groups. At least three and note more than four are taken at higher level (HL), the others at standard level (SL). HL courses represent 240 teaching hours, SL courses cover 150 hours. By arranging work in this fashion, students are able to explore some subjects in depth and some more broadly over the two-year period; this is a deliberate compromise between the early specialisation preferred in some national systems and the breadth found in others.
The programme ensures that the science-oriented student is challenged to learn a foreign language and that the natural linguist becomes familiar with laboratory procedures. While overall balance is maintained, flexibility in choosing higher level concentrations allows the student to pursue areas of personal interest and to meet special requirements for university entrance.
The following selection of courses from those available is offered at the Anglo European School.
First language, (English)
Second modern language (French, German, Russian, Spanish, Japanese and Mandarin.)
Individuals and Societies
History, Geography, Economics, Philosophy
Biology, Chemistry, Physics and Design Technology
Mathematics HL, Mathematical Studies, Mathematics SL
Arts and Electives
Visual Arts, Music, Theatre, or another subject from the above.
Assessing Student Work
Responsibility for all academic judgements about the quality of candidates' work rests with more than 2100 examiners worldwide, led by chief examiners with international authority. A variety of assessment methods are used to value both the content and the process of academic achievement and to take into account different learning styles and cultural patterns.
Conventional external examination techniques are chosen from a range of options: oral and written, long and short responses, data based questions, essays, multiple-choice questions. These are complemented by internal assessment of coursework by the teachers responsible for evaluating students over the two-year period. With classroom teachers and international examiners working in partnership, the emphasis is on ensuring that students have ample opportunity to demonstrate what they know and are able to communicate.
Award of the Diploma
Each examined subject is graded on a scale of 1 (minimum) to 7 (maximum). The award of the diploma requires students to meet defined standards and conditions including a minimum total of 24 points and the satisfactory completion of the extended essay, Theory of Knowledge course (TOK) and CAS (creativity, action, service) activities. The maximum score of 45 includes three points for the combination of the extended essay and work in TOK. All students are encouraged to engage in the full programme. Those who fail to satisfy all requirements or who elect to take fewer than six subjects are awarded a certificate for examinations completed. The May examination session serves the majority of candidates with a smaller November session available primarily for schools in the Southern Hemisphere.
Authorisation and Eligibility
Only schools authorised by the International Baccalaureate Organisation are eligible to teach the curriculum and to register candidates for examination. IB diploma candidates must be students in good standing at an authorised member school. Schools interested in joining the programme conduct a self-study and receive counselling through the appropriate regional office. The formal application includes an on-site inspection visit and the submission of written documentation to IBO headquarters in Switzerland. Only schools authorised by the IBO are entitled to use the organisation's name, logo and Diploma Programme designations. Separate applications are required for the Middle Years and the Primary Years Programmes. This text has been adapted from the International Baccalaureate Organisation web site: http://www.ibo.org/
Studying A Levels and I.B. Highers
There is an opportunity for A-Level students to add elements of the I.B. to their academic portfolio.
This option involves you taking three A-Levels with one or two I.B. Standard subjects. Taking an I.B. Standard subject is the equivalent to studying an AS level over 2 years.
This option is particularly useful if you are a Science based student who wishes to continue studying a Language or Humanities subject, or if you are an Arts based student who does not wish to stop studying Mathematics, for example I.B. Standard courses can be chosen from Humanities, Languages, Arts, Mathematics or English.
When I.B. Standard classes are created, priority is given to students who are taking a full I.B. Diploma Course. Students who do a combined A-Level/I.B. Standard Course can join a class provided it is not already full.
Combination courses allow you study languages not to A or IB Standard Level. We are considering offering ab initio courses in Italian, Spanish and Mandarin to those students who have not previously studied these languages. German (Intermediate) Asset.