Diploma Programme background and principles

The IB Diploma Programme has over a period of 50 years grown into the leading international qualification of upper secondary education, respected and recognized all over the world.

Established in the late 1960s, the programme was originally designed to cater for the educational needs of globally mobile students in international schools. The objective of the programme was to provide students with a rigorous, well-balanced upper secondary education, unbiased towards any particular national system.
Incorporating the best elements of many national systems, the Diploma Programme has over the years become the leading international pre-university qualification. Today, it is offered in more than 2,000 upper secondary schools worldwide and is recognized as a symbol of academic excellence by universities on all continents.
The Diploma Programme is based on three fundamental principles:

  •    The need for a broad, comprehensive upper secondary education, building the knowledge substance and critical thinking skills necessary for further study at university level.
  •    The need for flexibility in subject choice so that students’ choices correspond as well as possible to their particular interests and capacities.
  •    The importance of developing international orientation so as to contribute to a better, global future.

The Diploma Programme is demanding, but its rewards are many: readiness to enter top-quality higher education anywhere in the world, life-long love of learning and good friendships are qualities often attached to their International Baccalaureate experience by former students.

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