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IB - Experimental Sciences at Parkfield School

Course description

Students can choose to study Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Design Technology, Environmental Systems, Sport, Exercise and Health Science. Some of these will only operate if there is sufficient demand.

Course content

Students at this level will undertake either the International Baccalaureate's Diploma Programme (IBDP)or the career-related programme (IBCP) The IBDP requires students to take three subjects at higher level (240 hours of study) and three at standard level (150 hours of study). The curriculum is broad, and requires students to maintain the study of English, Maths, Science, Humanities and a modern language.

Entry requirements

1. Extended essay – a 4000-word essay on a choice of ten topics completes the IB Diploma Programme. This represents about 40 hours of work, concluding in a viva voce interview with the supervisor

2. Theory of Knowledge (TOK) – encourages critical thinking about knowledge and learn, debate and report on different aspects of knowledge issues Parkfield School 01-07-13 Page 11

3. Creativity, Action, Service (CAS) – enhancing students’ personal and interpersonal development, creating greater community awareness and maintaining a healthy lifestyle. (50 hours of each) Creativity – arts and other creative thinking experiences Action – physical exertion Service – unpaid, voluntary work in which the student learns something beneficial.

Assessment

At the end of Year 13, students will sit external IB Diploma Programme examinations which will lead to the IB Diploma qualification.

Future opportunities

IB Diploma Students are well prepared for the demands of higher education, according to OFQUAL’s latest report. Ofqual has published a report (11/05/2102) which considers how A levels available in England compare with the qualifications offered at a similar level. Findings suggest that the IB Diploma Programme offers a broad education with an international perspective and an emphasis on mathematics and languages which successfully prepares students for the demands of higher education.

The report identifies a key strength of the IB Diploma Programme as its emphasis on independent study, in the form of an extended essay which “can help to build the skills of deep thought, synthesis, research and self-directed learning which are so highly prized by universities.” The report also praises the Diploma Programme’s focus on the importance of practical chemistry as an investigation which “requires higher-order skills to design, conclude and evaluate findings.”

Further information

Competition to secure a place at a good UK university is fierce. Whilst IB Diploma students are not immune from the same sort of application issues that A-level students face, IB Diploma students do stand out as students who can offer qualities and skills that transfer well to university-level study. An admissions tutor at a leading Russell Group university says: "Students who have taken the IB qualification are generally much better prepared for a degree than those who have taken A-levels. IB students tend to have better independent study skills, greater ability to take sensible notes in lectures, and are more able to deal with open-ended and multi-part questions than their A-level counterparts."’ (Independent, 3 February 2011)

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Parkfield School directly.

Last updated date: 21 July 2015

Key information

  • Start date: Next September
  • Duration: 1 - 2 Years

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