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Impington Village College

International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme

What is the IBDP?

The International Baccalaureate is a rigorous pre-university programme. The general objectives of the IB are to provide students with a balanced education, to facilitate geographic and cultural mobility, and to promote international understanding through a shared academic experience. In the forty years since its founding, the IB Diploma has become a symbol of academic integrity and intellectual promise. It is accepted for admission to universities in virtually every country in the world.

Who is the IBDP for?

If you are an all-round student, who is confident across a range of subject areas, the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme is great for you.

This course particularly appeals to those who are excited at the thought of learning with people from many different cultural backgrounds and who are attracted by the idea of learning within an international context.

Entry requirement

To study this programme students need at least an overall UK GCSE B grade profile or equivalent. For subjects you wish to take at higher level you will need at least a B grade.

The IBDP Curriculum

Students choose one from each of the following six areas. Three subjects are taken at higher level and three at standard level.

Best or First Language 

English is available to everyone and is the language of instruction.

Most other languages are possible. Students are currently studying:

  • French
  • German
  • Italian
  • Polish
  • Portuguese
  • Spanish
  • Swedish
  • Hungarian
  • Slovakian
  • Russian

Second Language 

If you have studied the language before:

  • English
  • French
  • German
  • Spanish

Also available for beginners at standard level - ab initio - requiring no previous training:

  • Japanese
  • Spanish

Individuals and Societies

  • Economics
  • History
  • Geography
  • Psychology
  • Environmental Systems and Societies (at standard level only)


  • Environmental Systems and Societies (at standard level only)
  • Physics
  • Chemistry
  • Biology

N.B. Environmental Systems and Societies can count as both your Individuals and Societies and your Science options.


  • Higher level Mathematics
  • Standard level Mathematics
  • Mathematical Studies (This latter course is the least difficult)

N.B. Further Mathematics is usually taken in conjunction with higher level Mathematics.

Creative Subjects or Option

  • Art and Design
  • Music
  • Theatre
  • Film
  • Dance

This can be an option block. You do not have to take a creative subject; you could choose instead another Science or Individuals and Societies or another Language.

Additional components of the IB Programme – The Core

In addition to the six subjects, all students follow:
  • Theory of Knowledge – an epistemology course (basic philosophy – how do we know we know?)
  • Extended Essay – a substantial piece of academic research
  • Creativity, Activity and Service (CAS) - all students have the opportunity to take part in a wide range of musical and artistic activities, sports and community service placements
N.B. All courses are available subject to demand while particular combinations of subjects are dependent on timetabling constraints.