Why Study the IB Diploma? Pros & Cons

IB program grading system

The importance of education is constantly increasing because it is considered an essential factor that affects a person’s career and quality of life in the future. It is believed that one of the main benefits of an international baccalaureate is its versatility. The program is equivalent to complete secondary education and is intended for students aged 16-19.

Advantages of the IB

The IB program grading system requires a serious approach, without which it won’t be easy to succeed in studying and passing exams. The international educational system has a long history. It was founded in Switzerland at the turn of 60-70. The world-famous international organization UNESCO and the non-profit foundation IBO, which enjoys its support, participated in its development.

The organization’s goal was to create a universal program that could guarantee a high level of training. Fifty years after its foundation, it can be concluded that the wildest expectations of its creators were justified. Let’s look at an IB diploma’s benefits in detail to ensure this.

International Perspective

Among the main benefits of IB education, it is worth noting the recognition of a sample diploma by leading universities worldwide. The international aspect is also essential because the applicant can choose the country of study at the university and further residence, considering his preferences.

Regardless of where the IB exams will be taken, their results will be counted by the admissions committee of the chosen educational institution. Compared to the country-specific syllabus, the advantages of an international baccalaureate are related to its global reach. It is easier for the admissions committee to evaluate the program’s results, which has international recognition.

Diverse Subject Range

Due to the wide choice of disciplines, each student adapts the education received to their interests and goals in the future.

Among the academic disciplines taught, students choose one subject from the following groups: society, language and literature studies, natural sciences, and mathematics. There is also an opportunity to select an art direction. However, this discipline is optional. Instead, you can study the humanities of interest, economics, and politics or master a foreign language.

Additional subjects worth paying attention to for successful course completion are the theory of knowledge, creative direction, and mandatory essay writing. Many academic hours are devoted to studying the philosophical section of the theory of knowledge. He looks at the criteria of truth and reliability of knowledge. Students explore the possibilities of learning about the world around them and determine their attitude to it.

To receive an IB diploma

Each student must write an extended essay and prepare it for defense. It is a kind of report on the research activities carried out. According to the rules, the essay must contain at least 4,000 words. Students choose the topic and discipline independently. In the work process, they receive support and consultations from the supervising teacher.

The program assumes a choice of levels of difficulty in studying the subject. They can be standard in-depth. There are restrictions in the choice of in-depth study: there should be at least three such subjects, but no more than 4. Exams are conducted in each discipline to summarize the results. First, the exam results are evaluated by teachers and then by independent experts.

Each student can get a grade from 1-7. The course of theory of knowledge and the final essay are estimated to be worth 3 points. The diploma is awarded to those students who have scored a total of at least 24 points. The highest score is 45 points.

Develop Transferable Skills

Among the advantages of the IB diploma, it is impossible not to note the development of universal transferable skills, which will be helpful in any field. They include sociability, building labour relations, stress tolerance, and increased mobility. People with advanced communication skills adapt faster to new conditions.

Higher University Admission Odds

After receiving the IB diploma, the applicant can enroll in universities in more than 100 countries. The IB DP curriculum is designed to provide a choice of further admission in different directions. The system allows you to get a place in the most prestigious institutions with highly appreciated diplomas worldwide.

Potential for Future Achievement

There are many prospects for former students. The best universities and different fields of study are open to them. Broadening horizons is one of the benefits of an IB diploma. After graduation, a person will easily find a well-paid job anywhere. He will be ready for life in a highly competitive environment.

Additional Activity Options

The creative direction helps to reveal the inherent abilities and apply them in the future. This area includes sports, personal development, and participation in volunteer activities. At least 150 hours are allocated for this direction. Considering their preferences, students choose dance classes, visit a theatre studio, work on publishing an educational institution’s newspaper, and study environmental protection measures. The block is designed to develop talents and teamwork skills.

Cons of IB

Even though there are many benefits of an international baccalaureate program, it is essential to consider some disadvantages of it.

The IB is complex and hard

The IB Diploma is more complicated than alternative programs classified as A-levels. Learning requires a lot of dedication. It is impossible to achieve success without hard work and the desire to immerse yourself in the learning process fully. In addition, the compulsory course theory of knowledge and preparation for the defense of the final essay implies the development of critical thinking skills and conducting independent research.

Alternative Programs May Align Better With Your Needs

The IB diploma is usually compared with the A-level educational program, which is considered easier to learn. This is primarily because the students’ choice of the second system focuses on 3-to four subjects. Training will require less mental effort. However, IB course students receive a more comprehensive education that they can apply for professional self-realization.


A carefully prepared curriculum assumes that the process will not be easy and require much time and effort. If a student does not have enough points to receive a diploma, he can retake the exams in a year. Completing the tests and getting a degree are considered a guarantee of admission to the institute, employers’ interest, and building a promising career in the future.

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