International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma Program

Frequently Askeimaged Questions

When did the International Baccalaureate Diploma Program begin at the Lab School?

How will I know if the Diploma Program is right for my child?

When will a student apply to enroll in the Diploma Program?

How will the Lab School choose IB candidates?

What courses constitute the IB Diploma Program?

Can a student choose to take one or two IB courses without committing to the full diploma?

Does a Diploma Program student have to give up sports and extra-curricular activities?

Will Diploma Program courses carry weighted GPA's?

In addition to the IB external exams, does a student have the option to also take and AP exam?

With TOPS and LSU's admissions requirements in place, how will IB help the typical U-High graduate?

Can a student withdraw from the IB Diploma Program once he is enrolled?

Will IB enrollment result in summer obligations for students?

As parents contemplate enrolling their children in IB, should they consider any other factors?

If I have more questions about the IB, to whom should I talk?


When did the International Baccalaureate Diploma Program begin at the Lab School?

Our first diploma class began IB courses in the fall of 2001.

How will I know if the Diploma Program is right for my child?

The IB motto is "Education for Life." The Diploma Program is aimed at college-bound students who value a liberal arts education. This means several things: proficiency in various subjects' disciplines combined with an appreciation for thinking, dedication to citizenship and service, and the development of a strong work ethic. If a student possesses or desires these traits and plans to attend college, IB would be a good choice. IB is not a course of study reserved for geniuses and bookworms.
 

When will a student apply to enroll in the Diploma Program?

In January of the 10th grade year.
 

How will the Lab School choose IB candidates?

Students will be recommended for the IB Diploma Program from several sources. First, they must apply to the IB Coordinator to be accepted. Second, they must be recommended for the program by both their math and English teachers in the 10th grade. They also must submit a third recommendation by another member of the staff, along with an application essay. ( See Application) Their standardized test scores and Degree of Reading Power scores will be examined by the IB Coordinator, who will recommend acceptance into the Diploma Program to the high school principal and Director, who will make the final decision on entry into the program. Before this process begins, students and parents will be fully apprised of the content of the Diploma Program. Additionally, each tenth grader's cumulative file will be examined by the guidance counselor, IB coordinator, and Dual Enrollment Cooridnator to ensure that students and parents are aware of the educational opportunities available and related outcome expectancies.

 

What courses constitute the IB Diploma Program?

Students take a two-year course of study in 11th and 12th grades. IB courses are offered in six subject disciplines: English, foreign language, history, science, mathematics, and elective. Within this framework, students have a wide range of options. However, all Diploma candidates must take at least three courses at the higher level.  In addition, IB requires that all students take a one-year  interdisciplinary course called Theory of Knowledge.

 

Can a student choose to take one or two IB courses without committing to the full diploma?

Yes, but students who are capable of handling the demands of the full diploma will be counseled to commit to the full program. Students who choose individual IB courses are called certificate students. They are required to take both years of two-year courses. Higher level course enrollment requires commitment to take the IB external examinations at a cost of $190. In addition IB students may also chose to take AP exams in applicable courses for a minimal cost.

 

Does a Diploma Program student have to give up sports and extra-curricular activities?

No! The goal of IB is to encourage well-rounded students. Diploma students have also been all-parish football, basketball, volleyball, and soccer players, active members of the choral and instrumental music programs, and leaders of school clubs and activities. Since its inception, the president of the Student Council has been a Diploma student. The program does make time demands that encourage students to develop excellent time management and study skills. The bottom line is that the Diploma program will require students to use time wisely as well as to make judicious choices about their out-of-school time.

Will Diploma Program courses carry weighted GPA's?

Yes. Courses will be weighted. An *A* will count for 5 quality points, a "B" for 3.75, a "C" for 2.5.

 

In addition to the IB external exam, does a student have the option to also take an AP exam?

Yes. Students may chose to take AP exams in addition to external exams in applicable courses. The cost is minimal and students must declare this choice by the deadline dates specified by the school.

How will IB help the typical U-High graduate?

Besides the potential for advanced credit, scholarships, and higher standardized test scores, IB promises to help our graduates in the competitive world of collegiate academics. Studies have shown that IB graduates are more self-sufficient, more self-motivated, and more self-disciplined in their academic efforts than students participating in a traditional high school curriculum. These are all vital contributors to college success on a campus of thirty thousand plus. Successful performance on IB higher level examinations will earn advanced placement at LSU,  up to nine semester hours per HL examination, depending on scores. In a large university setting wherein only half of all freshmen graduate in five years, IB dramatically increases the odds of college success.

Can a student withdraw from the IB Diploma Program once he is enrolled?

Yes. Every resource that is available to the school will be applied to produce student success. In those rare instances in which students find they have overextended themselves, provisions will be made to have them drop some of their IB requirements at the end of the first or second semester of study. Parents and students should be cautioned that enrollment in the Diploma Program is not to be undertaken lightly but only after due consideration.

Will IB enrollment result in summer obligations for students?

Yes. A number of optional summer activities are offered. These include international travel opportunities. Students will also have the opportunity to work on their CAS hours over the summer, though they may accumulate these hours during the two years of the program. They also may wish to work on their extended essay during their junior-senior summer. All IB English and history students will have summer reading assignments.

As parents contemplate enrolling their children in IB, should they consider any other factors?

Yes. The close collaborative work involved in IB courses will ensure a unique academic experience for IB students as they and their teachers prepare for IB examinations. The CAS service requirement, extended essay, and Theory of Knowledge course guarantee a cooperative and personalized educational experience which is exceedingly rare in current American education. The impact of such an experience is literally priceless and constitutes the very best that Lab School faculty can offer to its students.

If I have more questions about the IB, to whom should I talk?

Please contact the IB coordinator, Dr. Altazin, or a school administrator for further information.