The learning exploration, development, collaboration, application of knowledge using the IB learner profile such as principle, thinker, open minded, risk-taker or the key attributes of Approaches to Learning (ATL) are critically linked to the IB Diploma programme (DP). The DP helps transform high school students to future-ready students ready to engage the world. As such it was incumbent that the Grade 10 guidance lesson in collaboration with the DP Coordinator Mr. Ben Darko, successfully discussed and handled in detail what the DP curriculum entailed. He also noted emphatically that;
- Students will be guided and assisted at every step of the IB DP
- The IB Diploma Programme is an academically challenging curriculum, hence it requires much effort and commitment from
- The curriculum is balanced, requiring learners to select subjects across six subject groups, in addition to the
- The DP adequately prepares students aged 16-19 for success at university and life
Guidance class was a very insightful time. We had a session with Mr. Darko, the DP Coordinator, and he took us through everything we need to know for DP. He began by first defining what the IB DP was. It was defined as an “academically challenging and balanced programme of education with a final examination that prepares students 16-19 for success at university”. From this definition, the IB DP to me is a programme that requires a lot of hard work and through this hard work, I will be equipped for the challenges of university. We then went through the 6 subject groups in DP and through these, students are able to pick one from each subject group to make up their 6 subjects for IB or two from the same subject group for their sixth subject. During the session I realized how similar DP was to MYP in some areas. In DP, the approaches to teaching, our inquiry-based learning, conceptual understandings, there are global and local contexts, there is always effective teamwork and collaboration and the teaching styles are different to fit the needs of all learners. Personally, I feel like the knowledge gained from studying MYP will be of great help in DP. Another key point were the different parts of DP. There is the Diploma and Course, though the teaching is the same, course has a wider scope for your choice of subjects. For the Diploma, you are only allowed 6 subjects, 3 higher level subject and 3 standard level subjects, but for course you can choose as many or fewer subjects. There is also the option of no Extended Essay or CAS, if you pick the option of doing the course rather than the Diploma. Focusing on the Diploma, for all your HL subjects you will have to go through 240 teaching hours, do more units and at TIS, you will have 5 teaching hours each weekly cycle. However, for SLs, there is only 150 hours of teaching and 3 hours of teaching in a week at TIS. The choice for these subjects should always be guided by your future career and requirements of your desired university. ~Karen Quarshie
“During our guidance class, we had a discussion about the IB Diploma Programme we would be joining next academic year. I had learnt a lot during this guidance class. Some of the things I realized was that DP is not so much different from MYP. The Extended Essay is similar to Personal Project and this is a 4,000 word essay which requires extensive research and it takes two years from Grades 11-12. Another new interesting fact I got to learn about was that, there are 6 subject groupings in which a student is required to choose any six subjects. The core of the DP includes: Theory of Knowledge (TOK), Extended Essay (EE) and Creativity, Activity and Service (CAS). I have realized my experience in MYP has helped me, in order to be prepared for the IB DP programme”. ~Kelvin Kofigah
“During this presentation from Mr. Darko, we were able to learn the basics of the Diploma Programme and what it consists of. He explained to us how the DP isn’t something that should be taken lightly. He went on to tell us that the DP will push us in order to get the best out of us, and there would be no time to waste. We learnt about how you have to do a 6 minimum subjects plus the 3 cores which are CAS, TOK and EE. The EE is a 4000-word essay that will endure the 2 years of this IB programme and you must spend 40 hours of research to complete it. Another thing that we learnt about the DP is its rigorous curriculum. There are many failing conditions, but the two that stood out the most was how you must not get lower than 12 points in your 3 HLs and must not score grade E in either the TOK or EE. In all, I believe that this presentation has widened our scope about the DP programme as a whole”. ~Ryan Tano
“During the “Introduction to the IB Diploma Programme” meeting I learnt a lot about the experiences I am going to find thrilling, experiences I might find challenging, and some experiences that I might find down right stressful. I learnt that there are 6 different groups of subjects within the IB programme and they are, Language and Literature, Mathematics, Language Acquisition (French, Spanish), Arts, and I and S (Individuals and Societies). I learnt about what to expect during the EE (Extended Essay), TOK (Theory of Knowledge), and CAS (Creativity, Activity, Service). I learnt about the grading system in the Diploma Progarmme. Last, I learnt about one of the most important processes within the DP which is the final examinations”. ~Omar Abul Rashid
Perspectives from the Principal
Let’s correct some misnomers!
- The IB Diploma Programme (DP) is one of four programmes of the IB
- PYP (Primary Years Programme) includes Early Years and Primary Years (K1-G6);
- MYP (Middle Years Programme) includes Grades 7-10 (MYP2-5);
- DP (Diploma Programme) includes Grades 11-12; and
- CP (Careers Programme) is an alternative program to DP, but currently not offered at
- The MYP provides a continuum for the It’s a smooth transition in terms of inquiry learning and critical thinking.
- IB DP provides two pathways to universities:
- DP: core + 6 subjects (3 at HL and 3 at SL)
- DP Course: no core: no minimum of HL subjects, subject to individual
Overall, the DP experience matures our students to be successful at university. MYP ensures a continuum and we are eagerly looking forward to our G6 students who will progress to MYP in 2021. G7 teachers will need to prepare themselves for a completely new experience from our PYP students.