Schools take on additional year of IB Programme

The junior class begins the International Baccalaureate Programme, now in its second overall year.


Leet Miller

Year 1 International Baccalaureate students work on physics problems on the whiteboard. Year 1 IB Physics is being taught on both the Broadway and the Pine-Octavia Campus, although all sections are coed.

With two years of the International Baccalaureate Programme being offered at Convent & Stuart Hall for the first time, faculty and students are adjusting to the implementation of the second year.

The Junior Class is in its first full month of Year 1, while seniors in Year 2 are beginning to prepare for the culminating exam.

The two years are similar in the content covered, but administrators and faculty have made expansions and minor adjustments to the programme.

Juniors have a wider variety of courses, including Global Politics and Computer Science, which were not previously offered to Year 1 students. Last year, the Class of 2018 had the option of choosing one of three science courses or taking two sciences instead of art.

“I wish there were more course options when I started the course,” Sam Cormier ’18 said. “The juniors have more classes available to them, and I wish I would have had the same options.”

The evolution of the Programme has given way to additional courses being offered to the juniors, according to Director of Academic Advising Betsy Pfeiffer.

Fourteen Year 1 IB candidates took a summer physics course that allowed them to take other IB sciences, while fulfilling all of their college requirements. The summer course was intensive, running from 8 a.m. until 3 p.m. during the entire month of June.

“Taking an accelerated course over the summer was definitely a challenging experience, but I definitely benefited from learning how to take a lot of complex material and understand,” Grace Boudreau ’19 said. “By completing the class, I am able to take the classes that I have the most interest in for the next two years.”

The faculty’s plan for managing the Extended Essay, a mandatory writing and research element of the IB programme, is the same as last year.

“The Year 1 IB students will be using the same requirements and guidelines for the Extended Essay as those that the Year 2 students followed,” Librarian and  Extended Essay Coordinator Reba Sell said. “While the internal timeline will be slightly changed to reflect the 2017-18 academic calendar, the internal assignments and research process will remain largely the same.”