The Diploma Programme (DP) is a rigorous pre-university course of study designed for students in the 16-19 age range. It is a broad-based two-year program that aims to encourage students to be knowledgeable and inquiring, but also caring and compassionate. There is a strong emphasis on encouraging students to develop intercultural understanding, open-mindedness, and attitudes necessary for them to respect and evaluate a range of points of view.
The program is presented as six academic areas and required core components. It encourages the concurrent study of a broad range of academic areas. Students study two modern languages (or a modern language and a classical language), a humanities or social science subject, an experimental science, mathematics and one of the creative arts. It is this comprehensive range of subjects that makes the Diploma Programme a demanding course of study designed to prepare students effectively for university entrance. In each of the academic areas students have flexibility in making their choices, which means they can choose subjects that particularly interest them and that they may wish to study further at university.
Universities recognize the outstanding qualities of IB Diploma Programme students. Typically, diploma holders are ready to debate real-world issues from an international perspective and to provide leadership and support in the local and global community. They demonstrate a capacity for in-depth study while maintaining a broad perspective of the different subject areas. They are able to ask challenging questions but also know how to research a topic and express their opinion.