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Understanding IB Diploma and the Benefits it Offers

GIIS communications team
Jun 21, 2021

The IB Diploma framework is uniform across IB schools everywhere and offers a diploma to meet university entry standards worldwide. Major world universities consider an IB diploma holder in high esteem. 

For its ability to develop a student's academic caliber along with good writing and analysing skills, the International Baccalaureate Diploma Program or IBDP is highly valued by universities around the world. No wonder IB students develop a holistic and international mind-set. 

An overview of IBDP

The International Baccalaureate Diploma offers a balanced course covering a wide range of subjects and activities. It provides scope for academic achievement and meaningful creative engagement in sports activities and community service.

The International Baccalaureate Diploma Program or IBDP is an assessment program for students between the ages of 16 and 19. The course is made up of DP core and six subject groups.

DP Core aims to broaden the educational experience of students and challenge them to apply their knowledge and skills; and is composed of three essential components

The three main elements of IBDP

1. Theory of knowledge:- Where students reflect on the nature of knowledge and how one can know what they claim to know.

2. Extended Essay:- It is an independent, self-directed article of research, which ends with a 4,000-word paper.

3. Creativity, activity, service or CAS:- Students complete a project related to those three concepts of CAS.

This way, the students gain wholesome knowledge that goes beyond academics, shaping a strong multi-faceted personality. 

The subjects in IBDP

The IBDP curriculum in many Dubai international schools requires students to take courses in six specific subject areas and clear exams. The six subject groups in IBDP are as follows:-

1. Science

2. Mathematics

3. The Arts

4. Studies in language and literature

5. Language acquisition

6. Person and society

IBDP students can take some subjects at the higher level (HL) and some at the standard level (SL). HL and SL courses vary in scope but are measured according to the same grade descriptor. Students are expected to show a greater share of knowledge, skills at higher levels, and understanding.

Each student should take at least three but not more than four subjects at a higher level. They can take the remaining subjects at the standard level. Standard level subjects take 150 teaching hours, while the higher-level subjects can take 240 teaching hours.

Tips for prospective IB diploma students and parents

1. Understand how topics are evaluated

2. Understand the difference between HL and SL

3. Select your subjects keeping in mind what you want to pursue at the university level

4. Choose a rigorous combination of subjects and levels that is manageable

5. Research topics you are unfamiliar with

Schools usually offer information evenings for parents and conduct informative subject programs for students of Grade 10 to help parents and students. Here, students already enrolled in the IB Diploma Program explain course content, structure and assessment to help inform parents and new entrants about various topics.

Some of the leading international schools usually organize test lessons to allow students to learn more about various IB subjects from subject teachers. At such events, students are advised by their IB coordinator and university guidance team as to which subjects are required to enter university courses anywhere in the world.

The benefits of earning an IBDP

There are many benefits to choosing IBDP. IBDP students can cope with a higher workload than their peers, manage their time efficiently, and meet the expectations required from them.

DP's extended essay improves students' approach to learning in higher education. Most of the students from Dubai international schools opting for IBDP have been selected at one of the top 500 universities in the world. 

Other IBDP benefits include

1. You Stand out

You will be in a relatively small applicant pool while applying to the university with reference to the applications received from students. This difference shows that IB students have not only faced academic challenges, but they did it through a program that is widely regarded as rigorous. It requires independent work from students. And this relative uniqueness is an advantage. Not every student can present such an illustrious qualification when filling out their college applications. 

2. It sets you apart

Some elements of the IB diploma program may allow the student to do particularly interesting and original academic work. Besides, the diploma program also gives additional opportunities to differentiate the incumbent from other applicants as far as the qualification goes. 

As mentioned earlier, one needs to complete a sufficiently independent research project to get their IB diploma. The topic of the choice for this project can say a lot about the capabilities. The ability to handle the challenges of independent work and create something truly original will present a student as a unique and recognizable candidate when it's scrutiny time.

3. The Hard work shows

The IBDP is renowned worldwide for the high quality of the courses it offers. The strength of the IB curriculum and the extensive training IB teachers and school administrators receive, assists the program to maintain this high standard and pass on the benefits to the students who are part of this program. 

4. You gain respect

The college will understand and positively look at the effort you have put into earning your IB diploma. The respect that the IBDP gets means that no other thing matters when students seek admission for further studies. College admission officers will be particularly familiar with the program's reputation. Thus, the IB Diploma is a great way to demonstrate academic skills and gain respect. 

5. Development of Critical thinking

The methodology is unique. The IBDP focus goes beyond acquiring knowledge. Students are not required to memorize facts and repeat the information learned during a regular assessment. The structure of the courses is one of the best as it allows students to develop the skills they will need to win at every stage in life.

The creative assignments and assessments provided to the students in the IBDP help build their critical thinking skills. Additionally, the students often work closely with their classmates. The association helps them to develop their collaborative skills at every level. 

Over to you

IBDP students tend to become responsible, well-informed and intelligent global citizens. Choose a Dubai international school so that your child gets exposure and learns about this multidisciplinary course along with students from different parts of the world.

GIIS communications team

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