IB Diploma Requirements

How does a student achieve the IB diploma at Central High School?

The IB Program is a diploma program, meaning that students must fully immersed in the IB curriculum and its courses.

IB Requirements - 6 Subject Areas
  • English (Group 1)
    • English Language and Literature HL
  • Foreign Language (Group 2)
    • Spanish SL, or
    • French SL
  • History (Group 3)
    • History HL
      • History of the Americas (Junior Year)
      • 20th Century World History (Senior Year)
  • Science (Group 4)
    • Biology SL
  • Mathematics (Group 5)
    • Mathematics SL
  • An Elective Subject (Group 6 or from Groups 1-5)

HL vs. SL

Three courses are to be taken at the "Higher Level" and three at are to be taken at the "Standard Level."

What is the difference between "high level" and "standard level"?

  • It is NOT the quality of instruction, but the quantity of instructional time.
    • HL = 240 hours (i.e. a 2 year course)
    • SL = 150 hours (i.e. a 1 year course; however it can be offered over 2 years)
  • Differences also lie in the number of assessments per subject.

The IB assessments in every subject are divided between internal assessmentsand external assessments.

  • Internal Assessments = graded by the classroom teacher. Student samples are sent and moderated by an external examiner by IB
  • External Assessments = all work sent to an IB examiner to grade. These exams are held in May of the senior year, except for IB Biology, which is given at the end of the students’ junior year.

Every IB subject is graded on a scale of 1 to 7. That score is a composite of various assessments.

Earning the IB Diploma:

Subjects Taken (6) X Points Possible Per Subject (7) = 42 Subject Points

"Bonus" Points:

In addition to the 42 subject area points, IB also provides a way to earn up to 3 additional points using a matrix consisting of a student’s grade in TOK (Theory of Knowledge) and the Extended Essay (EE) grade. A student needs to do well on both their TOK presentation/essay and on the Extended Essay.

How many points does the student need to earn an IB diploma? 24

*From these 24 points...

  • 12 points must come from the HL courses (Literature, History, 6thSubject)
  • 9 points must come from the SL courses (Biology, Mathematics, Foreign Language)
  • The student cannot earn a 1 in any course or a 2 in HL
  • The Extended Essay must be completed
  • All internal and external assessments must be completed
  • All Creativity, Action, and Service hours completed (150 hours total, 50 for each category)

Every IB subject is graded on a scale of 1 to 7. That score is a composite of various assessments.

English HL

Internal Assessments: Part II - Oral work - formal oral commentary (15%), Part IV - Oral work - individual oral presentation (15%)

External Assessments: Part III (Exams) - Paper 1 - literary commentary of unseen work (20%), Paper 2 - essay on at least two works studied (25%), Part I Written Assignment (25%)

Parts I and IV are typically completed during the junior year. Parts II and III are typically completed during the senior year.

Foreign Language SL (Spanish or French)

Internal Assessments: Individual oral presentation (20%), Interactive oral activities (10%)

External Assessments: Paper 1 - text-handling (25%), Paper 2 - productive skills (25%), Written Assignment (20%)

History HL

Internal Assessments: Study Report (20%)

External Assessments: Paper 1 - short answer (20%), Paper 2 - extended response (25%), Paper 3 - extended response (20%)

Biology SL

Internal Assessments: Individual Investigation (20%) and Group 4 Collaborative Project

External Assessments: Paper 1 - Multiple Choice (20%), Paper 2 - Extended Response (20%), Paper 3 - Option(20%)

Mathematics SL

Internal Assessment: Exploration (20%)

External Assessment: Paper 1 - No Calculator (40%), Paper 2 - Calculator Required (40%)

Physics HL

Internal Assessments: Individual Investigation and Group 4 collaborative project (20%)

External Assessments: Paper 1 - multiple choice (20%), Paper 2 - data analysis/short answer/extended answer (20%), Paper 3 - options (20%)

Visual Arts HL

Internal Assessments: Exhibition (40%)

External Assessments: Comparative Study (20%), Process Portfolio (40%)

Theater Arts HL

Internal Assessments: Collaborative Project - original theater piece (25%)

External Assessments: Solo theater piece (35%), director’s notebook (20%), research presentation (20%)

Theory of Knowledge
Oral Presentation and 1600 word essay. More on TOK from IB: http://www.ibo.org/en/programmes/diploma-programme/curriculum/theory-of-knowledge/
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