From the Head of the Program
Dear Riverview IB,
We are constantly asked to ‘define’ and/or otherwise explain the International Baccalaureate Diploma Program.
In an attempt to do so:
The ‘international’ refers to an ongoing emphasis on global awareness, international interdependence, and, appreciation of cultural diversity. We like to use an all encompassing term of international-mindedness. That is, without deemphasizing one’s patriotism in any way, we foster an attitude that it is critical for contemporary learners to have a grasp of the ever-changing global context.
The term ‘baccalaureate’ connotes skill preparation/readiness for university studies. The IB’s approach to learning follows a constructivist educational philosophy. That is, in order to be effective, skills need to be refined and revisited over the course of the program. This is why the IB Diploma Program is a two-year program, with the subject areas’ curriculum being multi-years of study.
The approaches to teaching and learning stress a balance between independent learning, collaboration- group work, oratory skills, and, written deftness. All teaching, learning, and, assessment, in every subject area, should pivot around these four approaches.
Completion of the IB Diploma Program involves successful negotiation of the hexagon, and its nine elements. These are: studies in a primary language, a secondary language, Individuals and Societies, Experimental Science, Mathematics, and The Arts/Elective, as well as its core – CAS (Creativity-Action-Service), Extended Essay, and, Theory of Knowledge.
The IB is a program of character and is born out of desire for diplomacy, mutual understanding, and tolerance. In order to make a better world, all members of the IB community strive to live the learner profile. That is: to be principled, caring, open-minded, reflective, communicators, inquirers, risk-takers, balanced, thinkers, and, knowledgeable.
Let’s make 2012-13 another wonderful year!
Paul Gallagher, Ed.D.