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International Baccalaureate: What's this all about?

Hi folks! I've heard of this program called 'IB' lately. Can someone please explain what this is? How does it compare to regular high school curriculum, and is it beneficial for college admissions?

13 days ago

The International Baccalaureate (IB) is a globally recognized high school program that encourages international-mindedness and independent thinking. It extends over two years and is considered particularly rigorous, with an emphasis on breadth and depth, involving six subjects, an extended essay, theory of knowledge (TOK), and creativity, activity, service (CAS).

The six subjects include three taken at Standard level and three at Higher Level. Among these are at least two languages (one of which is usually the student's native language), a social science, an experimental science, mathematics, and an arts subject or another subject from the previous mentioned categories.

In terms of how it compares to the regular high school curriculum, the IB program is typically more challenging. It encourages critical thinking, research, and writing skills, and these qualities are highly valued at the college level. Therefore, completing an IB program can be seen as an indication of readiness for higher education.

As for whether the IB is beneficial for college admissions, selectivity matters. Highly selective schools may consider it favorably because it signifies that a student is pursuing a rigorous course load. However, it's worth noting that schools traditionally focus more on academic performance (i.e., GPA) and SAT/ACT scores (at schools that are not test-optional/blind).

In the end, choosing whether or not to pursue an IB program depends on your personal academic goals and the universities you aim to apply to. You should also consider whether you have the capability and motivation to handle the rigor of the IB program since it can be demanding.

13 days ago

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