Wanderlust: Expat Life & Style in Thailand The Relationships Issue - Page 43
Kids & Education least two languages . They may also choose to study the arts .
Kimberley , a Grade 10 student at KIS International School — one of the first schools in Bangkok to attain full IB World School status — chose an IB program to be prepared for university : “ I find the IB Diploma very easy to understand , and I like the structure of it ,” she says . “[ T ] he Diploma allows us to analyze and use critical-thinking skills in class . I have chosen the program because it is challenging . And this challenge will give me a good base of knowledge before I go to university to help me know what to expect when I get there and to help me organize my time and work .”
CREATIVITY , ACTION , SERVICE
KIS DP Coordinator Daniel Trump describes a number of essential aspects of the IB Diploma , including an extended essay and the “ Theory of Knowledge ” module , a course during which students discuss and reflect on knowledge . But “ perhaps most importantly ,” he says that students complete the CAS program ( Creativity , Action , Service ), which gives them the opportunity to work on a creative , sporting and charitable project of their choosing . “ It ’ s in the CAS program that we see the development , characteristics and personality needed to deal with a changing world that students will be entering ,” explains Mr . Trump .
Though not formally assessed , CAS enables students to enhance their personal and interpersonal skills by learning through experience , involving students in a range of activities alongside their academic studies . When the students apply for university , their CAS experiences can help them stand apart from the competition .
According to Mr . Trump , universities favor IB students because these students tend to exhibit high levels of skill , development , and cognitive understanding . Research shows that in Canada , the USA , the UK — and in other major university destinations — that these well-rounded IB students fare better than students who have gone through a national system . A study by Dr . David Conley and a team of researchers from the Education Policy Improvement Center ( EPIC ) compared two groups of university students — International Baccalaureate ( IB ) Diploma Program alumni and non-Diploma Program alumni — to examine the extent of their academic , social and emotional preparation for college as they transitioned from high school . When compared to non-IB graduates , IB students tended to be better at meeting expectations and managing both their time and demanding workloads , thereby increasing odds for success in university and the workplace .
A HEAD START IN LIFE
Perhaps better-prepared still are the students who have followed the IB curriculum throughout their entire school lives . The IB ’ s Primary Years Program ( PYP ) and Middle Years Program ( MYP ) precede the Diploma . The three programs are philosophically aligned , with each one fostering independent thinkers who can engage with people in an increasingly globalized , rapidly-changing world . Students who have taken the PYP and MYP , then , are well prepared for the challenges of the Diploma . At KIS for example , many of the most successful graduates have been at KIS since primary level .
Michael Hirsch , Secondary School Principal at KIS explains : “ Many of our students who have come up through the PYP or just the MYP already have skills required in the Diploma Program and at university . For example , they are able to do effective research ; analyze sources ; manage time ; and think critically .”
On average , the school ’ s IB Diploma score ranges from 33 to 35 points , compared to a global average of 29 to 30 points . Pass rates are always high , and last year ( once again ) 100 percent of KIS candidates passed their IB Diploma , compared to 79 percent globally .
KIS is a pioneer of the IB curriculum throughout the country , with many staff members holding roles within the global IB organization . The Head of School , Sally Holloway , served on the IB Board of Governors for a total of six years and currently serves as both vice-chair of the board and chair of the governance committee . This close relationship with IB ensures that KIS students benefit from an in-depth understanding of the IB .
Many KIS graduates have gained acceptance at top universities around the world , including Durham University and the University of Manchester in the U . K . and Johns Hopkins University , Carnegie Mellon University and Columbia University in the U . S .
Of course , an IB education cannot guarantee a student entry to university nor can any particular kind of curriculum . But the IB ’ s broad and rigorous academics , coupled with essential life-skills training , arguably give graduates an edge — an edge that just might make a difference when applications flood the admissions office of your child ’ s preferred university .