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St Andrew's College Dublin St Andrew's College Dublin

What is the IB?

The IB Diploma Programme (IBDP) is an academically rigorous pre-university programme taken by students instead of the Leaving Certificate (LC) during the last two years of secondary school. The IB organisation (IBO) is a non-profit organisation which was founded in 1968 to deliver a challenging international, broad and sound education to provide an international passport to higher education. The IB exams have been offered in St. Andrew’s College since 1984.

The mission of the IB is 

The IBDP is based around the IB Learner Profile which is a list of 10 qualities students will be exposed to and allowed to experience and master through the two years of the programme.


The Learner profile is embodied in the curriculum through the Approaches to Learning. 



and the approaches to teaching skills


There are several main differences between the IB and LC. One of the main differences is the structure of the IB Programme. The IB is a holistic programme where the individual subjects are linked by the core of Theory of Knowledge (TOK), Creativity Activity and Service (CAS) and the Extended Essay. International Mindedness is a concept which transcends all IB subjects and is fundamental to the IB mission

Another advantage of the IB is that it demands that students unpack and process the knowledge and skills they have gained in class.

“What matters is not the absorption and regurgitation either of facts or of pre-digested interpretations of facts, but the development of powers of the mind or ways of thinking which can be applied to new situations and new presentations of facts as they arise”. Peterson ­– 2003

“The immediate and comprehensive availability of knowledge through the Internet means that knowledge itself has little value—it is the ability to analyse, interpret and select knowledge that is required by 21st century citizens” Mitra – 2011).

Other differences are the way students are assessed in the IB and the fact that each syllabus is reviewed every seven years to ensure it is meeting the ever-changing demands of the modern world.

IB Facts and figures

There are many resources on the IBO website which give further details on an IB Education including their document - What is an IB Education?