IB: Offering an alternative degree

2014-04-05

Himalayan News Service

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“I have grown as a person, and now I can put myself before the world,” said Hritesh C Regmi, one of the students pursuing IInd Year International Baccalaureate (IB) at Ullens School sharing his experience at the Orientation for IB Diploma Programme held on April 10 on the school premises, Khumaltar.

Amidst the presence of guardians and SLC appeared students, Regmi and a few other students doing International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme (IBDP) shared that they had become more confident with critical thinking.

“IBDP is a rigorous two-year pre-university international education programme that meets the needs of highly motivated secondary school students between the ages of 16 and 19 years” and Ullens School is the first and the only IB World School in Nepal that has been authorised by the Switzerland-based International Baccalaureate Organisation (IBO) to offer IBDP from June 2009.

As per Dinesh Lal Shrestha, IB Diploma Coordinator at Ullens, the curriculum of this programme contains six subject groups together with a core made up of three separate parts. As such the students study six subjects selected from the six subject groups namely — Studies in Language and Literature, Language Acquisition, Individual and Societies, Experimental Sciences, Mathematics and Computer Science and The Arts.

And students can put into practice the skills they have learnt in their academic year with Project Week — part of Creativity, Action, and Service — where they go for a week-long stay in the rural community. Also the students need to write a 4,000-word research-assignment called Extended Essay.

One can expect an “all-round development of a student through this course because it has a holistic approach that enables a student to be an independent learner” as per Lakshyana KC, another IInd year IB Student at Ullens. This learning has proved beneficial for the students as out of 26 students in the first batch, 19 students have already made their way to reputed universities in different countries. “IBDP is a globally recognised course that prepares students for the international universities. Many universities in the US and Canada provide extra credit to IB graduates,” revealed Shrestha who added that students can skip one year in four-year Bachelor’s level course in the US and Canada in most universities if they are IB graduates.

Then, is this course similar to that of A level or O level?

“No, because those courses are exam-oriented, but this course aims its learners to become inquirers, thinker, principled, open-minded, risk-takers, balanced and more,” claimed Shrestha.