5 Top Tips for a Smooth Transition into the IBDP
- January 23, 2023
The International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme (IBDP) is one of the most popular education programmes globally, based on well-defined standards while teaching students to be accountable for their work. It is a rigorous pre-university program that offers a curriculum through which students develop analytical abilities, critical thinking skills and resilience acquired by the effective learning and teaching methods. The programme can be a challenge to students of all abilities, from both national and international curricula because of its superior standards and emphasis on independent thinking.
We have combined 5 top tips you can follow to ensure a smooth transition into this incredibly diverse and demanding high school diploma program for students in grade 11 and 12.
- Refine your research skills and broaden your knowledge
It is important to get into the habit of doing thorough research. For those who aren’t aware, research plays a central role in the development, quality assurance and assessment of IB programme outcomes. The several essays and articles you will be expected to write for each subject, requires you to conduct detailed research plans with academic integrity. To brush up on this critical skill, you should:
- Familiarise yourself with the art of keyword searching and develop your search strategy.
- Explore the different databases and search engines available to you such as Oracle, MySQL and Microsoft SQL.
- Save and manage all your references in a systematic way. You can consider using tools such as spreadsheets, folders and EndNote.
- Learn how to recognise quality sources by tracing high-quality sources and checking credibility.
If you are starting with subjects that are unfamiliar, it can be particularly beneficial to undertake extracurricular reading. By reading articles and literary pieces related to your upcoming coursework, you can broaden your horizons and increase your chances of acing your assessments.
Improve your reading and writing skills
As an IB student, writing will be an invaluable tool in terms of the academic demands of the programme. The average IB student is expected to submit multiple drafts of a 4000 word Extended Essay, Internal Assessments for each subject, written assessments throughout the year and various mathematical explorations. On the same note, final exam schedules can be very challenging unless you are well prepared in advance. Students should expect to complete up to three written papers on the same day. Irrespective of what subjects you take, you will be required to produce a substantial amount of writing for your reflective projects. Hence these skills are crucial to help you comprehend instructions and clearly communicate your ideas to the examiner in a relevant and insightful way. To hone this crucial skill you can:
- Read widely to expose yourself to different writing styles and ideas. Try to read books, articles, and newspapers on a variety of topics to expand your knowledge and vocabulary.
- Practice writing different types of texts, such as essays, narratives, reports, journals or even a blog.
- Use online resources to improve your writing. You can find a plethora of web dictionaries, thesauruses and grammar tools.
- Seek feedback: Ask your teachers, parents, or friends to read your writing and give you feedback.
- Take notes: Whenever you read something, take notes on the main ideas, arguments, and evidence. This will help you better understand the text and remember the information.
- Focus on time management and being organised
As an IB student, time is your most valuable resource. Learning to manage it is essential to power through the challenging tasks, projects, tests and exams which you will face in the programme. It is important to keep in mind that each effort and each moment can be productive and contribute to your academic journey. Self-discipline is key to ensure the goal of overall productivity is met, while avoiding the pitfalls of procrastination.
With the workload you will expect to receive in the IB, it is important to devise a study strategy and routine with allocated time slots, based on your own personal habits and priorities. Some highly recommended tips to achieve method through the madness include:
- Create and regularly manage a digital/ non-digital monthly and weekly calendar with deadlines.
- Set completion deadlines for all of your assignments and tasks, and track them daily to ensure timely completion.
- Timing yourself when you begin doing a task so that you’re motivated to concentrate and see the task through.
- Set a reasonable ‘reward’ to keep yourself motivated throughout the semester after completing all tasks for the week or month.
- Try to set a daily or weekly limit on social media hours.
- Get support
While exploring your subject choices, it is highly encouraged to approach your tutors and mentors to gain a deeper understanding of the subject syllabi and expectations held by the IBDP. If you have already made a decision on your subject choices, now is the time to sit and reflect on them. It is important to ask questions about whether you will enjoy them, whether they are the correct level for you (Standard Level or Higher Level) and whether they fit your future aspirations.
- Get a headstart into the IBDP with CourseLeap
With CourseLeap students can use their summer wisely so that they have a smooth transition into this demanding pre-university curriculum. Our Pre-IB program will help students develop good study habits, hone their time management skills and inculcate different learning styles. It also provides them with the distinct advantage of having explored and gained a foundation in their IBDP subjects of choice.
Our Pre IB summer courses are strongly encouraged for those who are considering the IB Diploma, since they help understand the heavy criteria based nature of the program, build solid research, writing and reading skills and utilise higher-order thinking for success in the IBDP.
Our experienced teaching faculty have developed these courses to strengthen necessary skills that they have noticed tend to be weaker; thus focusing on the key areas that would give students confidence in their knowledge base before they become IB students.
We provide a range of courses to not only ease your transition, but give you a headstart as a new IBDP student:
– Pre IB Computer Science (Further loans available on request)
Looking to participate? Contact Us to find out more about our cutting edge Maths courses!