Congratulations for considering whether you would like to pursue an International Baccalaureate diploma.

Did you know that two-thirds of students who attempt to earn the IB diploma at GRS succeed?

An IB diploma is the badge of honor that you may earn after two years of rigorous, thought provoking work in an internationally recognized curriculum that focuses on global issues. When you earn an IB diploma, you

  • share an accomplishment with students around the world in the global IB community
  • can celebrate your success in undertaking and accomplishing meaningful personal challenge
  • are thoroughly prepared for college writing and learning
  • may earn multiple college credits and/or scholarships
  • earn a high school transcript and resumé that reflect your ability to think analytically, and to work independently to meet rigorous goals, which will be welcomed by leading universities and employers around the world.

Watch a brief video titled “Education for a better world: IB Diploma Programme”

Helpful links for IB candidates:

To earn an IB diploma

Students take classes and show what they know on IB assessments in each of six groups (Language, Second Language, History, Experimental Sciences, Mathematics, and the Arts).  Students must also participate in three core requirements:

  • Extended Essay – The extended essay is a research paper on a topic of interest by the student.
  • Theory of Knowledge – Students in this course examine the nature of knowledge by critically examining the different ways of knowing (perception, emotion, language, memory, intuition, imagination, faith and reason) and different areas of knowledge (natural sciences, arts, mathematics, human sciences, history, religious knowledge systems, indigenous knowledge systems, and ethics). Students become increasingly aware of themselves as thinkers, of the complexity of knowledge, and recognize the need to act responsibly in an increasingly interconnected world.
  • Creativity, Action and Service – Students  choose new roles for themselves as they explore the community outside GRS. CAS involves a 3-4 hour per week commitment throughout students’ years in A3, which enables students to explore life outside the academics of their IB courses. Students learn by undertaking real tasks that have real consequences and then reflect on these experiences over time. Student CAS projects, which are supported and approved by students’ advisors, should provide a balance of creativity, action and service each semester.

IB Core Elements Brief

To take one or more IB exams without pursuing the full IB diploma

Students may choose to take one or more IB exams without pursuing the full IB diploma. Those students who elect to pursue the full diploma but do not earn the IB diploma may still earn college credit for many of the exams they have taken, depending on which college they will attend. Colleges often grant credit for scores of 4 or 5 or higher for individual courses even if a student has not earned the IB diploma. Registration deadline for taking one or more IB exams without pursuing the full IB diploma is November 1 of a student’s junior year. Payment for exams due Nov. 1 during the school year in which the IB exams will be taken (usually senior year).

What does registering for and taking exams in an IB course entail? Check out these IB Curriculum Briefs for many IB courses offered at GRS.

SL Spanish B Brief
HL History Brief
SL Physics Brief
SL Math Studies Brief
SL Mathematics Brief
HL Mathematics Brief
SL Music Brief
HL Music Brief

Important documents for IB Candidates

Great River School’s IB World School policies:
Great River School – Academic Honesty policy
Great River School – Assessment Policy
Great River School – Inclusion Special Educational Needs Policy
Great River School – Language Policy


There are fees involved with the IB testing.  They are outlined in the Frequently Asked Questions documents available to download above. Payment is due by Nov. 1 in the school year that students will take IB exams (usually senior year). Written requests for a scholarship for IB fees must be submitted to Melanie or Sam by October 30 and must be accompanied by a completed application for free/reduced lunch. Any student who qualifies for a scholarship for IB fees is expected to follow through in good faith with all internal assessments and exams for courses for which they registered for IB exams. Any student who qualifies for a scholarship for IB fees and does not turn in an IB internal assessment on time or take all exams for the course will be billed the full cost of the corresponding IB registration.

Important Dates for GRS IB students
October 20, 2014 — Last day for class of 2015 IB diploma candidates to submit completed draft of Extended Essay
October 30, 2014 — Class of 2016 last day to register for individual IB exams; Class of 2015 last day to pay IB exam fees, complete free/reduced lunch application, change IB registration
December 19, 2014 — Final Extended Essay due for Class of 2015 IB Diploma candidates
April  24, 2015 — Class of 2017  registers for IB diploma (if desired)
May 4, 2015 — IB exams begin at GRS