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The concept behind the International Baccalaureate (IB) model of education originated among the "international schools". It was developed to fill what was seen as a need for a rigorous, academically challenging education approach for students worldwide. The IB model is considered holistic in that it addresses a students' social, emotional, cultural, physical, as well as academic aspects.
IB learning activities are considered developmentally appropriate for students in their corresponding program levels. There are three levels available: the Primary Years Programme (PYP) for ages 3-12, the Middle Years Programme (MYP) for ages 11-16, and the Diploma Programme (DP) for ages 16-19. The three programs are related but independent. Enrollment in the lower levels is not required for success in the Diploma Program. IB is also offered at "United World" colleges in several locations throughout the world. Students are provided a cultural experience as part of their total education program.
The IB level program that is probably most familiar is the Diploma Programme (DP). The DP provides excellent preparation for university level studies. Upon successful completion, a student receives the IB diploma which is recognized and honored at universities throughout the world. The two-year DP program is designed for highly motivated secondary students. The academically challenging DP is a liberal arts program which contains additional courses that are unique to IB. Those unique IB courses include "theory of knowledge" (interdisciplinary coursework), "CAS" (150 hours in creative-, action-, and community service-related endeavors), and an in-depth study into an area of interest to the student.
There are currently over 600 active IB schools in more than 80 countries throughout the world. In order to be recognized as IB, a school must be approved by the International Baccalaureate Organization (IBO). IB approved schools have demonstrated their ability to provide a high quality standardized IB program for the student population they will serve. In order to maintain their accreditation, schools must adhere to the strict IB guidelines. The highly qualified and specially trained IB instructors are allowed some flexibility within the standardized IB scope and sequence, teaching methodology, and student assessment strategies.
IB schools are communities of active learners in which education and knowledge are highly valued. The comprehensive, interdisciplinary IB curriculum provides traditional academic subjects as well as courses in the arts, foreign languages, physical education, business, technology, personal and social development, etc. The IB approach is believed to encourage the development of good work habits, productivity, self-discipline, social responsibility, and excellent oral and written communication skills. Students are encouraged towards inquiry, critical thinking, reflection, and risk-taking. Due to IB's global worldview, students move toward open-mindedness, intercultural/global awareness, and a deeper understanding and care of others.
For additional information: contact International Baccalaureate North America (IBNA), 200 Madison Avenue, Suite 2301, New York, NY 10016 USA; Telephone: (212) 696-4464 Fax: (212) 889-9242; E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org &/or
International Baccalaureate Organisation (IBO): email@example.com
IB WORLD (The Magazine of the International Baccalaureate Organisation)
For subscriptions contact: IB WORLD Subscriptions, Publications Department, International Baccalaureate Organisation, Peterson House, Fortran Road, St. Mellons, Cardiff CF3 0WB Wales, UK ($20 per year for three issues)
Peterson, A.D.C. INTERNATIONAL BACCALAUREATE; ASIN 0245505210.
Petersen, A.D.C. SCHOOLS ACROSS FRONTIERS: The Story of the International Baccalaureate and the United World Colleges; ASIN 081269046X.
Renaud, Gaerard EXPERIMENTAL PERIOD OF THE INTERNATIONAL BACCALAUREATE: Objectives and Results: Study Prepared for the International Bureau of Education; ASIN 9231012266.
Rusinow, Dennison I. SHAPING THE INTERNATIONAL BACCALAUREATE: An Adventure in International Culture and Education; ASIN 9996615960.