The IB Diploma Programme is a challenging, broad-based two-year pre-university curriculum, primarily aimed at students aged 16 to 19. It leads to the IB Diploma which is widely recognized by the world’s leading universities.

The curriculum contains six subject groups together with the DP core: Creativity, Action, Service (CAS); the Extended Essay (EE); and Theory of Knowledge (TOK). This is illustrated by the Diploma Programme model, as shown below, with the learner situated in the centre.

Candidates studying for the diploma select six subjects from the various subject groups.

One subject must be selected from five different subject groups:

  • Studies in Language & Literature (Group1)
  • Language Acquisition (Group 2)
  • Individuals & Societies (Group 3)
  • Sciences (Group 4)
  • Mathematics (Group 5)

The sixth subject may be selected from Group 6, Visual Arts, or a second subject from Group 3 or 4.

Normally three subjects are studied at higher level (HL = 240 teaching hours), and the remaining three subjects are studied at standard level (SL = 150 teaching hours).

Bilingual Diploma 

A bilingual diploma is awarded to a successful candidate who fulfills one or both of the following criteria:

  •  Completion of two languages selected from group 1 with the award of a grade 3 or higher in both
  • Completion of one of the subjects from group 3 or group 4 in a language that is not the same as the candidate's nominated group 1 language. The candidate must attain a grade 3 or higher in both the group 1 language and the subject from group 3 or 4.

At the end of the two-year programme, IBDP candidates are assessed both internally and externally. They receive grades ranging from 7 to 1, with 7 being the highest. Students receive a grade for each of the six DP courses attempted.  A student’s final Diploma result score is made up of the combined scores for each subject. The diploma is awarded to students who gain at least 24 points, subject to certain minimum levels of performance including successful completion of the three essential elements of the DP core. 

IB Learner Profile

Apart from helping students to become knowledgeable and inquiring, it is also hoped that they will be caring and compassionate towards others. There is a strong emphasis on encouraging students to develop intercultural understanding, open-mindedness, and the attitudes necessary for them to respect and evaluate a range of points of view.

The International Baccalaureate Organization hopes that for these well-balanced individuals, the IB Diploma Programme is only a stepping stone on the journey of life-long learning and contributions to the world around them. The aim of the IB programme is to develop internationally minded people, who, recognizing their common humanity and shared guardianship of the planet, help to create a better and more peaceful world.

The following qualities are embodied in the IB learner profile and it is believed that these attributes, and others like them, can help individuals and groups become responsible members of local, national and global communities and prepare them to make exceptional contributions in all aspects of their life.

IB Learners strive to become:

  • Inquirers
  • Knowledgeable
  • Thinkers
  • Communicators
  • Principled
  • Caring
  • Risk-takers
  • Balanced
  • Reflective

© International Baccalaureate Organization 2013


Core requirements of the Diploma

All three parts of the core—Extended Essay (EE), Theory of Knowledge (TOK) and Creativity, Action, Service (CAS) —are compulsory and are central to the philosophy of the Diploma Programme. Note that a student registered for the CAIE – AS/A Level examinations can now register for one, two or all three core elements.

Extended essay (EE)

The Extended Essay (EE) is a substantial piece of independent research of up to 4,000 words. It offers the students the opportunity to investigate a topic of their choice and become acquainted with the independent research and writing skills expected at university. Universities are particularly interested in students who have completed such independent research and students usually cope very well with the demands of university life after this experience.

Theory of knowledge (TOK)

Theory of knowledge (TOK) is a course within the school timetable designed to allow students to explore the nature of knowledge across disciplines. It encourages an appreciation of other perspectives and cultures with the view of acknowledging alternative ways and solutions to problems. The students learn to think critically about the validity and accuracy of the information they are confronted with on a daily basis and create links between all their subjects.

Creativity, Action, Service (CAS)

Creativity, Action, Service (CAS) is at the heart of the DP and aims to help develop, strengthen and extend good life habits and skills for both personal and social pursuits in all students. The programme fosters students’ awareness and appreciation of life beyond the academic arena.

Creativity– Arts, and other experiences that involve creative thinking.

Action– Physical exertion contributing to a healthy lifestyle, complementing academic work elsewhere in the DP.

Service– An unpaid and voluntary exchange that has a learning benefit for the student. The rights, dignity and autonomy of all those involved are respected.



  • Visual Arts
  • Information Technology in a Global Society
  • Biology
  • Business Management
  • Chemistry
  • English A: Literature
  • English B
  • Environmental Systems and Societies
  • Economics
  • French A – Language and Literature
  • French B
  • French Ab Initio
  • Geography
  • History
  • Mathematics
  • Mathematical Studies
  • Physics
  • Sport, Exercise and Health Science
  • Theatre