It boasts an internationally recognized accreditation and develops a broad skill set, critical thinking, and cultural awareness – so it’s no surprise an increasing number of students are choosing the International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma Programme as an alternative to state curricula in worldwide.
Established in Geneva in 1968, the IB is now offered in more than 4600 schools globally. Of the Myanmar schools, only 2 offer the Diploma Programme, which is aimed at senior students aged 16-19 years. Our SKT International College (formerly Horizon International School) is one of them. We have been teaching this programme since 2010 and many of our diploma graduates have joined prestigious universities around the world.
In the IB Diploma, students are required to choose a subject from six different areas of the curriculum including studies in Language and Literature, Language Acquisition (second language), Individuals and Societies (humanities), Science, Mathematics, and either the Arts or an additional language, humanities or science subject. They then commit to these subjects for two years, gaining a rich and well-rounded education.
With the addition of three essential core requirements, the IB Diploma also requires students to be self-driven and reflective; preparing them for the rigors of tertiary study.
In the Extended Essay, for example, students are required to independently research an area of interest in their chosen subject and produce a 4000-word written piece. This is a very good grounding for essay writing at university.
In an increasingly globalized world, the IB Diploma also appeals to those who are interested in international education and job markets.
IB students are citizens of the world and graduates can feel confident that their qualifications will be recognized internationally.
In addition, all IB examinations are vetted for cultural and gender inclusivity. This inclusivity is certainly worth considering as we move toward a more culturally diverse population.
While the IB Diploma offers little flexibility when compared to state programs that promote specialization and discontinuation of certain subjects, the ability to keep students’ academic options open until the end of Grade 12 is a positive step forward.
Some students don’t have the maturity or relevant career information to make early decisions about their future subject choices.
Making these subjects compulsory ensures Grade 11 and 12 graduates have the academic breadth to keep their tertiary education options open. This is increasingly important with our rapidly changing job market.