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Diploma Programme

Upon entering their junior year, Saint Andrew's School offers students the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme (DP), designed to develop the whole student by guiding them to analyze, think critically, and form conclusions about knowledge in the effort to become globally-minded citizens.

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IB Learner Profile

As with the Primary Years and Diploma Programmes, the IB Learner Profile defines the type of lifelong learner that the MYP strives to develop. The IB learner profile represents 10 attributes valued by IB World Schools. We believe these attributes, and others like them, can help individuals and groups become responsible members of local, national, and global communities. (IBO, 2013). The profile aims to develop learners who are:

Balanced Reflective


The International Baccalaureate Organization’s Diploma Programme (DP) was created in 1968. It is a demanding pre-university course of study for juniors and seniors that leads to examinations and is recognized by elite universities in the United States and around the world as an excellent preparatory curriculum. The IB Diploma Programme is designed for highly motivated secondary school students and is currently found in over 4500 schools in more than 145 nations worldwide. Over the last several years, The IB Diploma Programme has become the program of choice for high schools in the United States seeking to offer a world class college preparatory curriculum.


The IB Diploma Programme (DP) curriculum provides a cohesive and comprehensive liberal arts and sciences program of study for highly motivated students of different educational backgrounds, abilities, and interests. It is not just a set of examinations but also a robust academic program, emphasizing academic achievement, critical thinking, research skills, and community service. The DP aims to provide a balanced program, which stimulates thought and creativity and enhances the international perspective of students. Students who satisfy the demands of the program demonstrate a strong commitment to learning, both in terms of mastery of content and the development of skills. The purpose of the DP curriculum is to

  • Educate young people to act intelligently and responsibly in a complex society.
  • Ensure knowledge of traditional academic disciplines and of the individual's own heritage, while fostering inquisitiveness and openness to new ideas.
  • Equip students with a genuine understanding of themselves and others, heightening the capacity for tolerance and engendering respect for different points of view within the IB Program.

An IB Diploma Programme education centers on learners, delivers well-researched instruction, and explores diverse, global content.


There are many college preparatory programs available, so “What makes the DP different from other college prep programs?” It starts with the philosophy that knowledge is not static, that bodies of knowledge are continually shifting, and that a person should engage with that knowledge rather than passively absorb it. The DP is not simply about acquiring a body of information; it is about how to think. IB Learner Profile The International Baccalaureate learner profile came into existence from the IB mission statement. IB aims to develop inquiring, knowledgeable, and caring young people who help create a better and more peaceful world through intercultural understanding and respect. It is the backbone and beginning place for the entire IB program. The Learner Profile has become the values that define the type of learner that IB students strive to be, but also something IB teachers and administrators aspire towards in their careers. International Mindedness IB programmes aim to develop internationally minded people who recognize their common humanity and shared guardianship of the planet and help create a better and more peaceful world. International mindedness empowers people to perceive the world in a manner that lessens focus on oneself while accentuating a greater sense of the others.


Saint Andrew’s School believes that the IB Diploma Programme should be available to all students, allowing any student to pursue either the IB Diploma or an individual DP course(s). Each pathway should be discussed with a student’s counselor during course registration. Students who enroll as a full IB Diploma Programme candidate embark on a twoyear intensive curriculum. Students interested in the challenge and rigor offered by the DP courses, but not necessarily in all subject areas, may take a DP course in one or more areas of interest rather than the full diploma. Students must take corresponding prerequisites to the DP courses, as outlined in the Course Guide. Successfully completing a course results in a “certificate” in that area. All students who enroll in a DP course are required to take the IB examination in May.


The IB Diploma Programme is a rigorous two-year course of study leading to externally assessed examinations. The DP offers both breadth, in terms of the range of courses offered, and depth, in that students must take many courses for two years. It is a deliberate compromise between the specialization required by some colleges and universities and the breadth preferred by others. IB Diploma candidates are required to complete coursework in each of the six groups during grades 11 and 12. Candidates must then complete three higher level and three standard level examinations in May related to the courses studied. An elective can be substituted as a group 6 course if the student chooses.


In addition to the six subject areas, the Diploma Programme has three core requirements that are central to the philosophy of the DP and challenge candidates to apply their knowledge and understanding. The three core requirements are: Theory Of Knowledge (TOK) This requirement is a course taken during the spring of the candidates’ junior year and the fall of their senior year. The course challenges students to investigate sources of knowledge (ways of knowing) and how it relates to the larger world (areas of knowledge). It is in effect a course on thought and a student's relationship to it. TOK is a course about critical thinking and inquiring into the process of knowing, rather than about learning a specific body of knowledge. Creativity, Activity, Service (CAS) Creativity, activity, service (CAS) involves students in various activities alongside their academic studies throughout the Diploma Programme. CAS enables students to enhance their personal and interpersonal development through experiential learning. Through IB, students are challenged to understand the impact of their service personally, locally, and globally. Extended Essay (Advanced Research) Students complete an independent, selfdirected piece of research, finishing with a 4,000-word paper on a topic of their choosing. A faculty member supervises every student engaged in writing the extended essay. The supervisor’s role is to encourage, support, advise, and guide the student as he/she goes through the writing process. This academic experience prepares a student to be able to conduct independent research, a skill highly valued by colleges and universities.


The goal of earning the IB Diploma is achieved by a candidate showing their knowledge of the six subject areas through Internal Assessments (IA) and comprehensive examinations (external assessments) at the end of the course. IBDP examinations are scored on a scale of 1-7. In order to be awarded the IB diploma, a student must score a total of 24 points from their examinations and IAs (minimum of 12 points in HL coursework). There are other opportunities to gain points towards a student’s diploma total. Depending on what students score on their Extended Essay (EE) and Theory of Knowledge (TOK) a student can earn up to 3 points that will be applied to their total points.


Group 1: Language and Literature

Group 2: Language Acquisition

Group 3: Individuals and Societies

Group 4: Sciences

Group 5: Mathematics

Group 6: The Arts 

UNIversity Recognition

The IB Diploma Programme prepares students for university and more universities are recognizing the value of an IB Diploma. They find IB Diploma Programme students to have the qualities they look for in prospective students – they are inquisitive, energetic, committed, hard working, internationally minded. Research shows students who take IB coursework are better prepared to succeed in college than if they did not participate in this rigorous academic program. Students who complete the IB Diploma Programme earn a high school diploma and the internationally recognized IB Diploma. Due to the exceptional work students engage in throughout their IB diploma experience, IB courses are college credit-earning courses. The amount of college credit students are eligible to receive depends on both the colleges and universities the student is applying to and the scores the student earns in his various subjects.