The International Baccalaureate (IB) programme is a pre-university two-year course of extensive and rigorous study, which is designed to meet the needs of highly motivated students. It is recognised internationally as an excellent preparation for university.
The International Baccalaureate is not based on the pattern of a specific country, it is a deliberate compromise between the necessary specialisation in some national systems and the breadth preferred in others. It offers an international, innovative, balanced and flexible curriculum.
Regarding the options of subjects, IB regulations guarantee that breadth and balance are maintained. The flexibility in the choice of subjects of higher level allows students to follow areas of personal interest and satisfy special requirements for access to university. All students at St. George’s follow the full Diploma Programme and it is recommended that at the end of their studies they take the international exams to obtain the Diploma or Certificate in specific subjects to complete their passage through the Programme successfully.
The IB curriculum consists of six groups of subjects, offered in Standard and Higher level. Courses in the higher level study the themes in greater depth and require more class time than standard level courses.
Students must choose one subject from each of the six thematic groups. The choice of the programme and the topics will depend on the individual needs of each person according to their future education and academic recommendations for each subject. The choice of option Group 6, the Arts and Electives, may be replaced by a second subject from Humanities, Sciences or Languages.
At least three and no more than four of the six subjects must be taken at Higher Level, and the other subjects at Standard level to be eligible for Diploma. In addition to the six subjects, candidates must complete three essential requirements:
• Extended essay, a personal and individual research paper of an average of 4000 words.
• Theory of knowledge (TOK), which leads students to engage in critical thinking and analysis, to make a rational argument. TOK explores the relationships between the various disciplines and provides students a unified learning approach.
• Creativity, Activity and Service, a programme that offers students the opportunity to participate in a variety of activities to enhance their social and personal development. Although emphasis is put on some aspects of community service, the participation of each student in the activities should cover all three aspects of the programme.
The Diploma programme is complemented by the courses of Peruvian Studies and Physical Education.
As an alternative to the full Diploma Programme, students entering Grade 11 can choose to follow a certificate Programme. This programme allows students to take any number of subjects offered in Higher or Standard level. As a result of this flexibility, it is usually possible to adapt a Certificate Programme to meet the individual needs of the student.
Students who follow Certificate Programmes are required to adopt the course of Theory of Knowledge or the presentation of an extended essay. St. George’s College requires that all IB students participate fully in the CAS programme (Creativity, Activity and Service).
IB assessment methods ensure that students have the opportunity to demonstrate their academic achievement throughout the course, and at the same time, comply with global regulations. A significant proportion of the scores of IB is based on coursework and the continuous evaluation that is performed from the start of the Programme. The value of these elements of assessment represents between 30-50% of the final result of the student, according to the course. Final examinations are taken in October/ November, at the end of Grade 11. After their completion, tests are immediately sent to examiners around the world.
All subjects, either at Higher or Standard level, are graded on a scale of 1 (minimum) to 7 (maximum).The pass mark for individual courses is 4. The award of the Diploma requires a minimum total of 24 points and the successful completion of all requirements. Bonus (a maximum of three) points can be granted to a Theory of Knowledge essay of exceptional or outstanding quality.
Students who successfully complete one of the IB language courses in Group 3 or 4 and meet all requirements, are granted a bilingual Diploma. Students who have opted to follow the Certificate Programme, are awarded a certificate for each completed course.