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IB Diploma Program

What is the IB Programme?

IB Stands for International Baccalaureate.  The IB programme is a unique educational choice for students as it focuses on more than the academic acquisition of information and skills and attempts to develop the whole person.

The International Baccalaureate Organization (IBO) is a non-profit organization based in Geneva, Switzerland whose mission statement below outlines their educational goals.

The Mission of the IBO

“The International Baccalaureate aims to develop inquiring, knowledgeable and caring young people who help to create a better and more peaceful world through intercultural understanding and respect.

To this end the organization works with schools, governments and international organizations to develop challenging programmes of international education and rigorous assessment. These programmes encourage students across the world to become active, compassionate and lifelong learners who understand that other people, with their differences, can also be right.” *

IBO Offers 4 Different Certificates

PYP Programme

MYP Programme

DP Programme

CRC Programme

Primary Years Programme

Middle Years Programme

Diploma Programme

Career Related Certificate

Ages: 3-12

Ages: 11-16

Ages: 16-19

Ages: 16-19

International Baccalaureate Diploma Objectives

  • To develop a desire to seek intellectual excellence.
  • To promote the ideals of international understanding and responsible citizenship.
  • To be lifelong learners and informed participants in local and world affairs.
  • To become conscious of the shared humanity that binds all people together while respecting the variety of cultures and attitudes that makes for the richness of life. 

IB Skill Set- DP

Learner Profile (LP)

Approaches To  Learning (ATL)

Theory of Knowledge (TOK)

10 Character Profiles that teachers promote through the design of activities carried out in class.

(See Learner Profile Chart Below)

5 Skill Sets that are promoted through designing lessons to teach:

*Thinking Skills

*Communication Skills

*Social Skills

*Self-Management Skills

*Research Skills


Each IBDP curriculum has designated TOK requirements.The TOK requirements are subject specific but relates back to reflecting on the nature of knowledge and how we know what we know.         

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IB Approaches To Learning Skills

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International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme Curriculum at Archbishop MacDonald High School

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The logo above represents the full scope of the IB DP programme.

There are 2 possible IB DP registration options:

Full IB Candidate

IB Course Candidate

A student who takes the full complement of IB DP Programme Courses.

A student who takes 1 or more IB DP courses but does not enroll in the full IB DP Programme.



Allows students to:

  • expand academic potential (depth and breadth) in all subject areas.
  • receive the unique IB DP approaches to learning and teaching that allow for inter-curricular connections.
  • reap the full benefit of balanced skill development with the additional IB DP core courses.

Allows students to:

  • explore select subjects with greater depth and breadth.

·         Increases skill level in anticipation of post-secondary studies by integrating the personal skill development through integration of IB Approaches to Learning and Learner Profile.

·         Enhances understanding and critical thinking through engaging learners in curricular discussions involving IB Theory of Knowledge.

Full IB Diploma Programme

IB Diploma Core Courses

Theory of Knowledge

Extended Essay

Creativity, Activity,Service

IB Diploma Subject Groups

Group 1:
 Studies in Language and Literature

Group 2:
 Language Acquisition

Group 3:
 Individuals and Societies

Group 4:

Group 5:

Group 6:
 The Arts


Full IB Diploma Candidates must take the core courses plus one subject in each of groups 1-->5.  Students must take one additional course in either group 6 or a different course in group 1-->5.

Description of the Core Courses

Theory Of Knowledge

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A course that encourages critical thinking, inquiry and analysis as students reflect upon the process of knowing. 


Students develop essential metacognition skills that expand their capacity to develop their higher order thinking skills. 


The Extended Essay

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The extended essay is an in-depth, independently researched investigation of a focused topic. It is intended to promote high-level research and writing skills, intellectual discovery and creativity.

This leads to a major piece of formally presented, structured writing at the university level of approximately 4000 words.                                 


Students develop university level research, essay formatting and writing skills over a prolonged period of time with the individualized guidance of an advisor to assist them with the process. 

 CAS (Creativity, Activity and Service)

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CAS documents a candidate's extracurricular involvements which also require a reflection of personal skill growth. There are 8 objectives that must be met as part of their voluntary experiences and the cumulative suggested time is 150 hours. 


Provides students with an opportunity to develop a balanced curriculum vitae.This allows students to build networks to their community, to contribute and develop personal skills.

IB Diploma Subjects Offered at Archbishop MacDonald High School


Group 1:
 Studies in Language and Literature

Group 2:
 Language Acquisition

English IB (HL)

French B (SL or HL)
Spanish ab initio (SL)

Group 3: Individuals and Societies

Group 4: Sciences

History (HL)

Biology (HL) or Physics (HL)
Chemistry (SL)

Group 5: Mathematics

Group 6: The Arts

Mathematics (SL)

Theatre Arts (SL or HL)
Visual arts (SL or HL)
Music (SL or HL)

IB DP Curriculum Guides


French B
Spanish ab initio
Visual Arts

Scheduling for Full IBDP with 2 Sciences _ 1 Science & 1 Arts.jpg

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IB Diploma Programme Scheduling Information.pdf 

IB Diploma Programme Most Asked Question.pdf

Student Testimonials

More Information About the IB Diploma Programme at Archbishop MacDonald High School

University of Alberta Information for IB DP Candidates

U Of A IB Resources click here


Updated IB information and IB programme events at Archbishop MacDonald High School are posted in the monthly IB newsletter that can be found under the monthly newsletter link on the school website:

Monthly Updates click here

For more information or questions about the IB Diploma Programme at Archbishop MacDonald High School please contact: 

Jennifer Vandendooren (IB Diploma Coordinator) at: 

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