The start of a new school term is always an exciting time, and for International Baccalaureate (IB) students, the beginning of the IB school term is especially significant. As you gear up for a new academic year, it’s important to have a plan in place to make the most of your time and achieve your goals.

Key features of the IB programme

The International Baccalaureate (IB) curriculum is a set of educational programs and standards developed by the International Baccalaureate Organization (IBO). The curriculum emphasizes the development of critical thinking, research, and communication skills, as well as a strong sense of international-mindedness. It is known for its high academic standards and rigorous assessment. The IB program also includes some unique components that make it stand out.

Extended Essay

This is a 4,000-word research paper that students write as part of the Diploma Program (DP). The Extended Essay allows students to conduct independent research on a topic of their choice, and to develop important research and writing skills. This also forms part of the bonus points for the final IB grades.

The Internal Assessment (IA)

The IA is a component of each subject in the program, and it is completed by the student under the supervision of the teacher. The IA allows students to demonstrate their understanding of the subject in a practical, hands-on way, and it is typically worth 20-30% of the student’s final grade. The IA can take different forms depending on the subject, such as lab reports, fieldwork, or oral presentations.

Theory of Knowledge (TOK)

This is a compulsory course that is unique to the IB program. The course is designed to encourage students to think critically about the nature of knowledge and how we know what we know. The course is interdisciplinary, meaning that it is taught across all subject areas and encourages students to explore the connections between different branches of knowledge. The TOK course is assessed through an oral presentation and a written essay.

Creativity, Action, Service(CAS)

In addition to these three core components, the IB program also includes a Creativity, Action, Service (CAS) component which is designed to encourage students to develop their personal and social skills through creative, physical, and service-based activities. This component helps students to develop important life skills such as self-motivation, time management, and problem-solving.

Here are some tips to help you get off to a great start:

  • Get organized: Take some time to organise your schedule, materials, and workspace. This will help you stay on top of your responsibilities and minimize stress.
  • Set goals: Identify what you want to achieve this term, both academically and personally. Write down your goals and create a plan to achieve them.
  • Get involved: Participate in extracurricular activities and events. This is a great way to make new friends, learn new skills, and have fun.
  • Stay focused: With so many distractions, it can be challenging to stay focused on your studies. Set aside dedicated time for studying and stick to it.
  • Familiarize yourself with the IB coursework requirements: Read through the guidelines and criteria for the IA and EE, so you have a clear understanding of what is expected of you.
  • Choose your topics wisely: For the IA, select a topic that you are passionate about and have a genuine interest in. For the EE, choose a subject that aligns with your interests and career goals.
  • Plan ahead: Start planning your research and writing process well in advance. Set realistic deadlines for yourself and stick to them.
  • Keep your advisor informed: Your advisor can offer valuable guidance and support throughout the process. Make sure to communicate regularly and seek their input when needed.

Starting the IB school term can be overwhelming, but with a little preparation and a positive attitude, you can make the most of this exciting time. Remember to focus on your goals, seek support when needed, and have fun. We wish you all the best for a successful and fulfilling term!