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What Do the Best International Baccalaureate Programs Have in Common?

February 6, 2023

The International Baccalaureate is a rigorous, highly respected academic curriculum that was originally created to prepare high school students for college and university. Today, the IB has expanded into four distinct programs that comprehensively educate students in pre-K through grade 12 in IB schools worldwide.

An alternative to Advanced Placement or A Levels pathways, the IB — and especially the IB Diploma Program -– is similarly recognized by top colleges and university admissions officers, and prepares students for university level study and for life after graduation. 

If you are looking for the best IB program for the student in your life, consider the following six criteria that all IB programs should include.

best international baccalaureate program

Six Must-Have Subjects
The IB develops depth and breadth of knowledge and understanding, and fosters open-minded and well-rounded students. In order to support its mission, the program includes six academic subject groups. Students take courses in the following categories:

  • Language and Literature
  • Language Acquisition
  • Individuals and Societies
  • Sciences
  • Mathematics
  • The Arts

Students in the IB program must take one class from the first five subjects, and then either take a class in The Arts or an additional class within the categories of Language Acquisition, Individuals and Societies, Sciences, and Mathematics.

In addition to this requirement, students must take three or four courses at a designated “Higher Level” category. 

College Preparation
One of the biggest benefits of the IB is its thoroughness in preparing students to be future global citizens. Students enrolled in IB programs participate in independent research study, writing, and community service projects. They approach learning from a global perspective, making connections across academic disciplines. The IB program helps students develop effective time management skills, too, and gives students the freedom to take charge of their learning, which fosters personal growth as well as academic success.

Students at the nationally ranked Dwight Global Online School have the opportunity to enroll in the IB Diploma Program, a two-year curriculum for high school juniors and seniors. Dwight Global has partnered with the IB to offer the IB DP online in a pilot program beginning in fall of 2022. Dwight Global students are admitted to top colleges and universities all over the world, and receive college counseling beginning in ninth grade.

The best international baccalaureate programs educate and develop the whole student, and IB courses pique students’ interests, encouraging them to explore the world beyond academic pursuits.

“The Dwight Schools have been successfully delivering the IB Diploma since the early 1970s, and the IB mission and vision is interwoven into the fabric of who we are as a school,” said Elizabeth Hutton, Dwight Global’s IB Diploma Program Coordinator.  “Our entire faculty and staff embrace and exemplify what it means to be a lifelong learner. The IB isn't just what we offer, it's who we are -- caring, curious, and knowledgeable individuals.”

One crucially important factor when considering an IB program is the institution’s accreditation. This mark of credit proves that a school has earned the high standard of education and is consistently working to uphold this standard. 

A legitimate IB program must be authorized for each IB program it offers. When a school is authorized, it means that it upholds the high standards of the IB curriculum worldwide.

The nationally ranked Dwight Global was founded in 2014 as part of the Dwight School, a New York City K-12 school with 150 years of educational tradition behind it. Dwight Global is accredited by Cognia, an accrediting organization recognized in the United States and beyond. 

The best IB programs will have systems in place for student assessment, curriculum planning, and language placement. These schools will be well resourced and offer students options to meet their various needs and interests, an important element for academic and personal success.

Personalized Learning
Because Dwight Global students are able to choose IB as well as Advanced Placement classes, they receive a truly personalized online education to set them up for success. The school offers one-on-one support, an experienced faculty trained in the IB methodology, and a full complement of extracurricular clubs and activities, including invitations to in-person events at Dwight School physical campuses across the globe. 

Click here to learn more about Dwight Global Online School and all its offerings.