Matt Herinckx, IB Coordinator
The International Baccalaureate (IB) program is a college preparatory academic option intended to enhance the international perspective of students. The IB goal is to educate an international community of skilled, thoughtful, compassionate, and responsible citizens: citizens whose commitment to their fellows and to their communities transcends national, cultural and social barriers, students whose zest for learning continues throughout their lives.
Established in 1967, the IB program has grown to include more than 900 participating schools in more than 73 countries. Currently, there are 60 IB schools in the northwest region, including Alaska and Canada. The IB program is a rigorous pre-university course of study that meets the needs of the highly motivated secondary student. Participants become part of an international group of students enrolling in similar courses and taking internationally accredited examinations, many evaluated by instructors from other countries. IB contributes to the development of the whole person by engaging students in the in-depth study of languages, sciences, mathematics and the humanities. The program at CHS also includes studies in the fields of technology and theater arts.
In order for students to gain an understanding of real world issues, the IB program requires students to take an active role in extracurricular activities as well as in the local community. Such interaction extends the student beyond the self by contributing to a community that has nurtured his/her education. It is believed that such participation fosters an understanding of the multiple perspectives and values that are prevalent in today’s society.
The International Baccalaureate Diploma Program officially begins in the eleventh grade, but younger students typically develop skills necessary for upper division success in ninth and tenth grade honors classes. Successful completion of ninth and tenth grade courses is required for admission to the IB program. The IB encourages students to become full diploma candidates and test in six areas, and is interested in students working on their weaknesses as well as their strengths. CHS students may participate in IB in one of four ways:
Enroll in one or more IB courses, but do not officially register with the IBO. Note: Capital High School transcripts will indicate participation in the selected IB courses, but official IB registration is required for credit to be forwarded to colleges and universities. Enrollment is on a space available basis as priority will be given to certificated and anticipated students.
Option 2: Certificated Candidate
(Juniors and Seniors)
Register as a certificated candidate in one or more IB courses for May IB tests in the related subject area(s). Many students choose this option and earn IB certificates by testing in both Higher Level (HL) (2 years of instruction) and/or Standard Level (SL) (1 year of instruction) subjects.
Option 3: Anticipated Candidate
Register as an anticipated candidate in first year Higher Level courses in English, History and Chemistry, as well as one or more Standard Level courses required for the IB Diploma. Anticipated candidates will register as diploma candidate in the fall of the senior year. Anticipated candidates must begin fulfilling the IB CAS (Community, Action, Service) requirement and will begin the required extended essay in the spring of the 11th grade year. Additionally, anticipated candidates will participate in monthly Theory of Knowledge seminars on specified Wednesday mornings from October through April and a one week ToK focus class to be offered 0-hour in June, after spring IB tests.
Option 4: Diploma Candidate
Students register as a diploma candidate for the May IB tests. The subjects that comprise the core of the International Baccalaureate curriculum are divided into six categories. The diploma candidate is required to select and test in three subjects at the Higher Level (HL) (2 years of instruction) and three at the Standard Level (SL) (1 year of instruction). Additionally, diploma candidates must submit an extended essay based on original and independent research, complete the Theory of Knowledge course and satisfy the CAS (Creativity-Action-Service) requirements. Anticipated candidates who choose not to fulfill IB diploma requirements may convert their registration to certificate status.
NOTE: IB diploma candidates fulfill CHS graduation requirements and are elligible to waive certain state minimum graduation requirements under the following conditions: The student must complete and pass all required IB assessments and courses as scored by the school, must have completed all required projects and products as scored by the school and the final esaminations administered by IBO in each of the reqired subjects under the IB diploma program. Additionally, the student must successfully complete the CHS High School and Beyond Plan, earn all credits required by the Olympia School District, meet CAA/CIA requirements established by Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction and meet standards on the required assessments as established by OSPI. Students who fail to meet these specified requirements or leave the program prior to completion will be required to fulfill state minimum requirements before being allowed to graduate.
IB English 1-HL
IB English 2-HL
World Lang. Year 1
World Lang. Year 2
IB World Lang. Year 3
IB World Lang. Year 4
Social Studies Elective
World History Elective
IB History of the Americas 1-HL
IB World History (20th Cent.) 2-HL
4 Math/Science Strands:
Algebra 2 and Biology
Geometry and Physical Science
Geometry and Biology
Algebra 1 and Physical Science
IB Pre-Calc and Physics
Algebra 2 and Biology
Algebra 2 and Physics
Geometry and Biology
IB Mathematics-SL (Calc) or IB Math Studies-SL (Discrete) and IB Chemistry 1-HL
IB Pre-Calc and IB Chemistry 1-HL
IB Pre-Calc and IB Chemistry 1-HL
Algebra 2 and IB Chemistry 1-HL
Math elective and IB Chemistry 2-HL
IB Mathematics-SL (Calc) or IB Math Studies-SL (Discrete) and IB Chemistry 2-HL
IB Mathematics-SL (Calc) or Math Studies-SL (Discrete) and IB Chemistry 2-HL
IB Math Studies-SL
(Discrete) and IB Chemistry 2-HL
IB Electives (SL):
Info Tech Gl. Soc. (ITGS)
Theory of Knowledge (0-Hour)
|Theory of Knowledge seminars monthly on specified Wednesday mornings from October through April; 1-week ToK focus class, 0-hour in June, after spring IB tests.||
Diploma candidates are also responsible for a 3000-4000 word Extended Essay and completion of CAS.
Courses in BOLD print indicate year of IB exam.
The objectives to be achieved in each subject offered in the program are set forth in a syllabus provided by IB without specifying the teaching methods to be used. Both the syllabuses and the examinations are prepared and administered under the direction of a multinational team of examiners.
Examinations are normally a single session of 1 to 4 hours per subject in May. The marking scheme has seven rankings:
6. very good
1. very poor
After the examinations at the end of grade 12, candidates’ scores in each subject are added and combined with a possible 2 points for the Extended Essay and 1 for the Theory of Knowledge course. Students achieving a score of 24 points receive an IB Diploma.
The Extended Essay
Every IB diploma candidate must submit an maximum 4000 word extended essay. This requirement begins in the spring of the 11th grade year when anticipated candidates select a faculty supervisor and begin the research process. It culminates in November of the 12th grade year when the student submits the final draft of his/her essay to the supervisor. NOTE: STUDENTS WILL NOT BE REGISTERED AS DIPLOMA CANDIDATES UNLESS THE FINAL DRAFT OF THE EXTENDED ESSAY IS SUBMITTED BY THE DEADLINE. The extended essay is defined as an in-depth study of a limited topic within a subject. Its purpose is to provide candidates with an opportunity to engage in independent research. Emphasis is placed on the process of engaging in personal research, on the communication of ideas and information in a logical and coherent manner, and on the overall presentation of the extended essay in compliance with IB guidelines. The subject in which the extended essay is registered must be chosen from the list of available subjects specified by IB. It is advisable to choose the subject for the extended essay before deciding what the topic or research question of the extended essay will be. Since IB specifies the range of permitted subjects, certain topics may not be appropriate for an extended essay. The subject chosen for the extended essay does not have to be one of the subjects being studied by the diploma candidate, but care should be taken to choose a subject about which the candidate has sufficient knowledge and skills. Candidates should also base the choice of subject on the level of personal interest they have in that subject.
Theory of Knowledge
The interdisciplinary Theory of Knowledge (TOK) course is designed to develop a coherent approach to learning which transcends and unifies the academic areas and encourages appreciation of other cultural perspectives. Each candidate must submit for external assessment an essay on one of the ten titles (topics) prescribed by IB for each examination session. The titles entail generic questions about knowledge and are interdisciplinary in nature. They may be answered with reference to any part or parts of the TOK program, to specific disciplines, or with reference to opinions gained about knowledge both inside and outside the classroom. Additionally, students must make one or more individual and/or small group oral presentations to the class during the course and complete a self-evaluation report. These presentations are internally assessed according to specific IB criteria and are a required component of the course. At present, Theory of Knowledge is scheduled as a “0-Hour” course, meeting at 7 am.
Diploma candidates must satisfy the Creativity-Action-Service (CAS) requirements as a condition of receiving the International Baccalaureate Diploma. This involves investing and documenting 150 hours of CAS during the 11th and 12th grade years. 11th grade students who have registered as Anticipated candidates ( 11th graders who anticipate becoming diploma candidates in their senior year) file a CAS plan and begin to satisfy the requirements when school starts in the fall of the junior year. Participation in school activities such as tutoring, student government, clubs plays, musicals and athletics all satisfy CAS requirements in the areas of creativity and action. IB students are also expected to participate in activities which benefit the larger community and fall under the title of service. These may include volunteer work for charities, food banks, retirement homes or the Humane Society.
Specific information related to CAS is available from the CAS Coordinator, who is responsible for monitoring and documentation. Periodically, the IB organization audits student participation and has denied certificates and diplomas to students who did not satisfy CAS requirements.
Individual students are responsible for selecting and participating in CAS activities. To assist them in locating worthwhile activities, students may contact the Youth Referral Service at the Volunteer Center located in the Olympia Center to be referred to a variety of community service opportunities.
Application and Selection Procedures
In February or March, prospective IB students and their parents will be invited to an informational meeting. Interested candidates must then complete the application process in the spring. All students with a strong work ethic and a high level of motivation are encouraged to apply. Where appropriate, applicants must complete the math placement exam required of all incoming ninth grade students. In addition to placing students in mathematics courses, the math exam is used to evaluate the applicant’s mastery of the algebraic skills necessary for success in future science course work.
“To IB or not to IB”
Self Quiz for Students
1. Are you thinking of attending a college or
university after graduation? YES NO
2. Are you concerned with obtaining excellent
preparation for post secondary or university studies? YES NO
3. Are you looking for an extra academic challenge? YES NO
4. Are you willing to dedicate a block of time to homework
each day? YES NO
5. Do you like to read without being told to do so? YES NO
6. Are you willing to commit yourself to completing
assigned tasks on time? YES NO
7. Are you willing to commit extra time to improvement
of writing skills and studying skills? YES NO
8. Do you have an interest to undertake independent
study in one subject area of your choice? YES NO
9. Are you willing to set high academic standards and
work hard to achieve them? YES NO
10. Are you willing to spend extra time and effort to earn
a Diploma or Certificate in an internationally recognized
program which as been used for admission, credit,
advanced placement, or various combinations of these,
at major universities throughout the world? YES NO
To score: If you have answered “yes” to seven or more of the above questions, we encourage you to study this web site and become familiar with the International Baccalaureate Program at Capital High School.
Why Enter the IB Program?
Here are six of the most important reasons for considering the IB Program:
1. It is a rigorous academic program that will meet the needs of scholarly students planning on continuing post high school studies at a college or university.
2. It presents participating students with a challenging, stimulating and motivating program.
3. It emphasizes the philosophy of learning skills in addition to the acquisition of knowledge.
4. It involves participating students in a “global” school in that they, for the most part, share a common curricula and common external exams, establishing common standards.
5. It offers a possibility of course credit or advanced placement without credit in a large number of colleges and universities.
6. It facilitates transfer to other IB public schools. This is advantageous when one considers the mobility of population today.
Candidates who achieve a 4 average on the total program (3 Higher and 3 Standard level courses, extended essay, CAS and Theory of Knowledge course) receive an IB Diploma. Students who do not fulfill the full requirements of the diploma receive certificates stating the score achieved in each subject in which the student tested. While credit depends on the program in which a student enrolls, it is advisable to visit the web site of individual institutions with regard to credit granted by that institution for IB scores.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Why has Capital High School chosen to offer the IB program?
IB presents a rare opportunity to provide highly motivated and engaged students with a rigorous course of study. The IB philosophy promotes more breadth and depth in the learning experience. The exam schedule requires participants to be engaged in their studies throughout their senior year.
Why should college bound students enroll in the IB program?
U.S. and foreign universities are increasingly interested in the IB program as a way of identifying highly qualified and motivated students. The IB program gives the student an outstanding preparation for a successful experience at the university and career level.