The International Baccalaureate offers a forward-thinking curriculum and teaching style, helping students gain knowledge and skills that will ready them for their future studies. One of the key components that contribute to this is the scoring method employed in assessments.
Each of the different IB programmes—the primary years programme (PYP), middle years programme (MYP), and diploma programme (DP) uses its own specific process for assessing students. For the DP, instead of a more typical percentage-based system for grading students, the programme relies on a level system where students can be placed between the levels 1 (low) and 7 (high) for their work. The number that is awarded is meant to be an appropriate reflection of a student’s achievements and development.
Do you want a deeper look at how assessments work in the diploma programme? Here’s a look at some of the important steps involved in creating and administering assessments for DP students.
Assessment Models Are Created for Each Level of Each Subject in IB Courses
There are many different courses available to IB students—everything from English, to mathematics, to computer science, and more. Each subject has a standard level and a higher level option. For each standard level and higher level course offered, a specific assessment model is used. This helps to ensure that assessments for different courses:
- Are at an appropriate academic standard
- Don’t overlap too much with other courses, but rather complement them
- Are manageable for students, teachers, and the IB programme
- Do not duplicate existing assessments
From there, guidelines for exams, quizzes, assignments, and other kinds of assessments are created for the classes. This level of specificity and guidance ensures that assessments are academically rigorous, fair, and effective for all courses. Your child can pursue different subjects (three standard level and three higher level) while completing the international baccalaureate diploma requirements, feeling confident that each course will have been carefully planned to ensure great development.
Each Level on the 1-7 Scale Indicates a Different Level of Achievement
For every course your child takes while completing the International Baccalaureate diploma programme, the specific established guideline will have a corresponding scoring system. This scoring system outlines the specific qualities a student must demonstrate in order to attain a particular grade.
For example, to receive a score of ‘4’ in a language course, a student should be able to offer responses that are “generally valid in analysis,” demonstrate “satisfactory” ability to communicate, and complete their tasks to a generally acceptable level. For a score of ‘7,’ a student would need to offer “consistent” or “perceptive” analyses, have a high level of ability in expressing themselves, and complete their tasks to a sophisticated level.
Every course has similar guidelines for each level of the 1-7 scoring system, ensuring there is ample guidance both for your child to achieve a high grade, and for the instructor to grade their work fairly. Working in this system can provide students with accurate feedback for future improvement and allow them to make amazing progress while preparing for their future studies.
Many Assessments for IB Courses Are Marked By External Examiners
Internal assessments, or assignments evaluated by your child’s teacher, will be a part of the many courses your child will take. There are also, however, a number of assessments in the International Baccalaureate diploma programme that are marked externally.
Around the world, thousands of examiners work on coursework and exams submitted by students in IB courses, grading them according to the assessment guidelines established for each piece. Students’ work will be graded by teachers who are not affiliated with the school they attend, and multiple rounds of grading are used. The obvious benefit of this practice is that your child can expect fair and impartial assessment for much of their work. This is an important cornerstone of the high academic standard the International Baccalaureate is known for.
Teams of outside examiners are used for a number of assessments to ensure grades are fair
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