After a much anticipated wait, on the 24th of February, a handful of graduates of the International Baccalaureate programme (IB) attended the IB Question and Answer session organized by the IB Staff. This informative session permitted current students of the Pre-IB and IB programme to perceive insightful tips and thought-provoking advice that could assist students when pursuing the IB programme. In the past, many students found the IB programme to be the most intimidating and stressful two-years of their life, but fortunately, the warm and friendly session allowed students to constructively and critically think of ways on how to better equip themselves to handle the programme.
Some pertinent topics discussed by the alumni were ways of reducing stress and essentially the benefits IB candidates would experience after completion. A summation of benefits of the IB programme as mentioned by the alumni is as follows:
- Allows students to cope with university-style workloads by forming and working in small study groups
- Superior grades that help IB students stand out from the academic stream and have a lower probability of about 5% of “dropping out” compared to academic students
- International recognition of the IB diploma allowing students to pursue international studies, especially in francophone countries
- Allows IB diploma holders to be accepted into highly competitive post secondary programs and institutions
Interestingly enough, even though the alumni appreciated the role IB had played for them in terms of their university career; few ideas were expressed opposing the need to pursue the IB programme. Though the critique of the IB programme was not necessarily reflective of the generalized opinion of the programme, it was eye opening to discuss two opposite points of the spectrum.
The alumni genuinely provided the future IB students with tips and advice they personally used during their high school days. Overall, the information session was very beneficial and engaging. One particular student said, “even though the IB programme was certainly challenging, it does not stack up to the hardships that I have yet to endure in life.”
Laurier IB Writing Team