An Introduction to the IB Diploma Program
Village High School students may begin the IB Diploma Program at the beginning of 11th grade. The program involves a two-year commitment to a particular course of study, alongside the special classes of “Theory of Knowledge,” an “Extended Essay,” the completion of an experiential learning program called “CAS” (Creativity, Activity, and Service), and final examinations.
Students who successfully complete the IB Diploma Program have an admissions advantage at colleges and universities and may be awarded credit for their IB classes where they earn passing grades.
IB students study six courses, typically three at a higher level and three at a standard level. They choose classes from five subject areas, ensuring a breadth of experience in languages, social studies, the experimental sciences, and mathematics. The sixth subject may be an arts class, or the student can choose another class from other subject groups.
In addition, the program has three core requirements to broaden students' educational experience and challenge them to apply their knowledge and understanding.
The Extended Essay requires students to engage in independent research through in-depth study of a question relating to one of the subjects they are studying.
Theory of Knowledge is a course designed to encourage each student to reflect on the nature of knowledge by critically examining different ways of knowing (perception, emotion, language, and reason) and different areas of knowledge (scientific, artistic, mathematical, and historical).
Creativity, Activity, Service (CAS) requires students to actively learn from the experience of doing real service projects beyond the classroom.
Students take written examinations at the end of the program, which are graded by external IB examiners. They also complete assessment tasks in school, which are either initially evaluated by teachers and then confirmed by external moderators or sent directly to external examiners.