International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme

The International Baccalaureate® (IB) Diploma Programme (DP) is an assessed programme for students aged 16 to 19. It is respected by leading universities across the globe.

Origin of the DP
The Diploma Programme (DP) was established to provide students with a balanced education, facilitate geographic and cultural mobility and to promote international understanding. It was created by teachers at the International School of Geneva in 1968, with assistance from several other international schools.Since then, innovative and committed teachers and examiners from around the world have played a significant role in the development of the programme. 

The Academy of International Studies adopted the Diploma Programme in 2015. We offer students the opportunity to be Course Candidates where they are able to earn individual certificates for each DP Subject, or Diploma Candidates, where they strive to earn an IB Diploma. 


DP Subjects
Students choose one course from the following subject groups: 

  1. Studies in language and literature

    1. Literature HL

    2. Language and Literature HL

  2. Language acquisition

    1. Spanish SL 

    2. French SL

  3. Individuals and societies

    1. Global Politics SL/HL

  4. Sciences

    1. Biology SL

    2. Chemistry SL

    3. Environmental Systems and Societies SL

  5. Mathematics

    1. Applications and interpretation SL

    2. Analysis and Approaches SL

  6. The arts

    1. Visual Arts SL

    2. Film HL

    3. Music SL/HL

    4. Sports, Exercise and Health Sciences*

    5. Business Management*

*Students may opt to study an additional sciences, individuals and societies, or languages course, instead of a course in the arts.

Students will take some subjects at higher level (HL) and some at standard level (SL).  HL and SL courses differ in scope but are measured according to the same grade descriptors, with students expected to demonstrate a greater body of knowledge, understanding and skills at higher level.

Diploma Candidates must take three subjects at higher level, and the remaining at standard level. Course Candidates may select any combination of courses (SL or HL).

Standard level subjects take up 150 teaching hours over a two year period. Higher level comprises 240 teaching hours over a two year period,.


DP Assessment
DP assessments measure the extent to which students have mastered advanced academic skills in fulfilling these goals, for example:

  • analysing and presenting information

  • evaluating and constructing arguments

  • solving problems creatively.

Basic skills are also assessed, including:

  • retaining knowledge

  • understanding key concepts

  • applying standard methods. 

In addition to academic skills, DP assessment encourages an international outlook and intercultural skills, wherever appropriate.

External and Internal Assessment
The IB uses both external and internal assessment in the DP.

External Assessment (May of Senior year)
Examinations form the basis of the assessment for most courses. This is because of their high levels of objectivity and reliability.

They include:

  • essays

  • structured problems

  • short-response questions

  • data-response questions

  • text-response questions

  • case-study questions

  • multiple-choice questions


Internal Assessment (Administered by teachers, sent to IB)
Teacher assessment is also used for most courses. This includes:

  • oral work in languages

  • fieldwork in geography

  • laboratory work in the sciences

  • investigations in mathematics

  • artistic performances.

How DP assessment is scored
In the DP, students receive grades ranging from 7 to 1, with 7 being highest. Students receive a grade for each DP course attempted. They receive a Certificate that includes their overall IB grade. Each IB certificate/course grade can be submitted to the college/university that the student is accepted to. 

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. 

Earning an IB Diploma
Students who are enrolled as Diploma Candidates are eligible to earn an IB DIploma. They must meet the following requirements: 

  • Enroll in six IB subjects over 2 years. (Diploma Candidates must take three Higher Level courses).

  • Take IB examinations in each of the six subject areas and meet passing conditions.

  • Write an original essay (called the Extended Essay) of approximately 4000 words and achieve a passing score.

  • Take the Theory of Knowledge class for two years, and complete the TOK Exhibition and TOK Essay.

  • Participate in C.A.S. (Creativity, Activity, and Service) over 18 months, and complete a portfolio that shows Learning Outcomes have been met.


Please click here for more information related to the DP at the Academy of International Studies. 


Questions? Email Stacey Pagliaro at spagliaro@crec.org