The International Baccalaureate program is a curriculum widely used in international schools in Hong Kong and increasingly so among local schools. The progam is divided into three subdivisions which are namely the Diploma program (Grade 11-12), Middle Years Program (Grade 7 -10) and Primary Years Program (Grade 1 to 6).
Middle Years Program
At the Middle Years Level, the program comprises of eight subject groups.
Language and Literature
Individual and Societies
Physical and Health Education
According to the International Baccalaureate Organization, the MYP requires 50 hours of teaching time for each subject group. year 4 and 5 studnets can opt to take six of the eight subject group courses within certain limits.
Students in MYP also engage in one interdisciplinary unit that involves two subject groups. They will need to complete a long-term project on the side to decide what they want to learn and set a proposal and criteria for it.
At the Diploma Level, students need to complete three core elements in order to graduate from the program.
Theory of Knowledge (TOK): students will reflect on the nature of knowledge and on how they know what they claim to know
Extended Essay (EE): An independent, self-directed piece of research complemented by a 4000 word paper
Creativity, Activity, Service (CAS): a project related to those three concepts
Students are also required to choose courses from the following subject groups.
The Six Subject Groups
Studies in language and literature
Individuals and societies
According to the International Baccalaureate Organization, students may opt for studying an additional individuals and societies, languages or an additional sciences courses instead of an arts course.
Students are also required to take at least three (but not more than four) subjects at the higher level and the remaining at standard level, meaning that roughly half of the courses are HL. To quantify, standard level subjects take up to 150 teaching hours and higher level subject comprises 240 teaching hours.
Compared to the programs such as I/GCSE and GCE, this program may not seem as well structured and often confuses many students who are new to the system. In spite of that, the IB program helps students to acquire valuable analytical skills and a critical world view which prepare them well for undergraduate studies.
Diploma level courses are generally much more demanding than middle years courses; without a solid foundation, students could become poorly prepared for is ahead at the diploma level. For instance Diploma level English expects a student to critique and analyze a wide range of literary works with flair and insight. As one can imagine, those without sufficient exposure to literature, pool of vocabulary and essay training would most likely suffer in their dipoma years. It is in the students' best interest to prepare for diploma level courses as soon as they start the middle years program.
Diploma level Maths and Sciences subjects are also foundation based. Past paper drill alone do not work as diploma level maths requires a student to understand and answer complex questions in a very tight time frame.
Except for Primary Years Program, students in the program are graded out 7. A 5/7 student would indicate an average student. Hudson Academy students often score around 6/7 or even 7/7.