• The International Baccalaureate––what is it? What are IB classes? For many parents, whose high school years are a fairly distant memory, guiding your child to the program of secondary study that is right for them can feel daunting.

    What is IB? 

    Designed in Switzerland in the 1960s, the International Baccalaureate (IB) offers an academically challenging curriculum, designed to prepare students for success at university and life beyond. It also gives students around the world a chance to earn a rigorous, internationally recognized diploma, which can be used for entry into universities around the world. 

    IB classes can be taken either on their own OR as part of a separate Diploma Programme.

    The IB Diploma Programme includes specific course requirements, passing IB exams, an independent research project and a service component. It is a rigorous and rewarding program. 

    What are the benefits of IB Courses? 

    IB courses are known for being interdisciplinary, requiring a good deal of independent thinking, and assigning oral presentations and original research––all characteristics of college courses. And IB courses are taught through inquiry. Students take an active role in constructing their knowledge by examining authentic sources, discussion, projects and more.

    According to one study, students are better able than their peers to cope with demanding workloads, manage their time, and meet the expectations placed on them. 

    Key skills vital to thriving in a university environment and beyond. 

    IB at Lincoln

    Lincoln is an IB for all school. Meaning that virtually all students take at least one or two IB courses, most take more than that. And those who are interested can take part in the IB Diploma Prorgramme which is a broad-based, two-year course of study for juniors and seniors, presented through six academic areas. Typically about 100 students or about one third to one quarter of each year's graduating class takes part in the IB Diploma Programme. You can read more about Lincoln's IB Diploma Programme HERE.

    Regardless of whether students take individual IB courses or take part in the full Diploma Programme, many students credit IB with helping them to discover their future paths. They credit IB with giving them the tools to ask questions, take healthy risks, and to follow their passions with the skills, reflection, and knowledge instilled in them by IB. Participating students are able to take advantage of a rich and rigorous academic tradition while following their passions and developing themselves as students and as young adults. 

    With diverse IB classes like anthropology, film, computer science, history, psychology and more, there is an IB class for every student at Lincoln!

    University Preparedness 

    IB aims to develop a well-rounded, worldly student that is, importantly, ready for college or university.

    Taking IB classes is also a great way to show universities that students have taken difficult courses in a range of subjects and are able to manage college-level coursework. 

    In addition to university readiness, IB students are also more likely to persist at university (continue on to their second year). A study conducted by IB and SRI Education (PDF) found that DP graduates in the United States experienced more positive postsecondary enrollment, persistence, and graduation rates than the average American high school student. 

    An earlier study found that students that received the full IB Diploma were 35% more likely to enroll in higher education, and 40% more likely to graduate from a four-year institution than the average American high school student. 

    Longer-Term Outcomes

    While many students focus on more immediate outcomes of the IB program, the benefits extend far past university. A global study of IB alumni found that the IB has the potential to powerfully shape the lives of the students who participate in its programs. 

    A majority of former IB students in the study reported experiencing profound and long-lasting effects. These are consistent with the goals of the IB Learner Profile, a roadmap for student development. Examples of these longer-term impacts include:

    • the development of international-mindedness

    • a broader perspective on the world

    • critical thinking

    • analytical and writing skills

    • positive dispositions towards lifelong learning