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International Baccalaureate Programme » IB Diploma & IB Courses

IB Diploma & IB Courses

Del Mar High School offers a number of International Baccalaureate (IB) Programme courses*.  

IB Courses are offered in Standard Level (SL) or Higher Level (HL), and follow the IBO's six groups of subject areas.  HL courses are two-year courses; SL courses are either two-year or one-year courses.

IB Diploma Programme Candidates must successfully complete and pass the three Diploma Core Courses** (TOK, CAS & Extended Essay,) as well as complete and pass:

  • Three (3) Higher Level exams and three (3) Standard Level exams OR
  • Four (4) Higher Level exams and two (2) Standard Level exams
 

The IB Courses offered at Del Mar include:

GROUP 1 - LANGUAGE A
Language & Literature HL +
Grade 11 & 12; A-G Requirement - English; UC/CSU Designation - Language (b)
This is a two-year course consisting of four parts: Language and Mass Communication, Literature and Critical Study, Language in the Cultural Context and Literature in Context. Students will study and analyze a variety of texts from historical speeches and contemporary mass media to canonical texts with an international focus, such as George Orwell’s 1984 (England), Albert Camus’ The Stranger in translation (French-Algerian), Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale (Canada) and Chinua Achebe’s Things Fall Apart (Nigeria).  The course will prepare students for the oral and written IB exams and serve as excellent preparation for rigorous college study. Students who take IB Language and Literature HL and pass the exam with a score of 5 or higher (on a 7 point scale) can earn college credits at UC, CSU, and many private colleges and universities.
 
+ UC/CSU Honors (Weighted) - Year 1 & 2
 
Prerequisite: English I and II; Students must demonstrate proficiency in English II or ICAP English II.
 
GROUP 2 - LANGUAGE B
Spanish HL +
Grade 11-12; A-G Requirement - World Language; UC/CSU Designation - LOTE (e), Elective (g)

This is a two-year course.  The objective of the course is to master the receptive, productive and interactive skills through the use of daily interaction and authentic texts in Spanish. Students will develop the skills necessary to analyze and synthesize a variety of written texts as well as audios and communicate their ideas in Spanish through discussion and in writing based on the text types learned in class. Conversational skills are practiced daily while discussing assigned readings, current events, and in general classroom interactions.

This course is designed to develop English-Spanish bilingualism and to prepare students for success on the IB Spanish HL Language B examination and is conducted entirely in Spanish. An extensive study of different text types (e.g. blogs, brochures, formal and informal letter writing, etc) is also included. It is assumed that students have previously been exposed to advanced language structures in the courses leading up to the IB HL Spanish Language course; however, review of the mechanics is done within the contextual framework of each unit as needed.  

+ UC/CSU Honors (Weighted) - Year 1 & 2

Prerequisite: Students must demonstrate proficiency through the equivalent of Spanish III.

 
Spanish SL +
Grade 11-12; A-G Requirement - World Language; UC/CSU Designation - LOTE (e), Elective (g)

This is a one-year course whose purpose is to foster the language acquisition process necessary for students to become proficient in the target language by improving the four languages skills: listening, speaking, reading and writing. Students will be able to use the language effectively and respond spontaneously according to the cultural context of a situation. They will also be able to analyze and respond critically in the target language to the topics developed in class. Students will also develop an objective appreciation of the different views of people from other cultures and their cultural legacy. The course will help students become citizens of the world.  

+ UC/CSU Honors (Weighted)

Prerequisite: Students must demonstrate proficiency through the equivalent of Spanish III.

 
French SL +
Grade 11-12; A-G Requirement - World Language; UC/CSU Designation - LOTE (e), Elective (g)
This is a one-year course that emphasizes advanced communication in all areas of the language through debates, discussions, essays, and authentic texts and situations. Emphasis is placed on connections language skills will be developed through the study and use of a range of written and spoken material. Such material will extend from everyday oral exchanges to literary texts, and be related to the culture(s) concerned.  The material chosen will enable students to develop mastery of language skills and intercultural understanding.  
 
+ UC/CSU Honors (Weighted)

 

Prerequisite: Students must demonstrate proficiency through the equivalent of French III.

 
GROUP 3 - INDIVIDUALS & SOCIETIES
IB History SL +
Grade 11-12; A-G Requirement - History/Soc Science; UC/CSU Designation - History (a) Elective (g)
This course is currently under review and a description will be available soon.  Please speak with your Guidance Counselor for information.
 
+ UC/CSU Honors (Weighted)
 
History of the Americas HL +
Grade 11-12; A-G Requirement - History/Soc Science; UC/CSU Designation - History (a) Elective (g)

This is a two-year course that aims to promote an understanding of history as a discipline, including the nature and diversity of sources, methods and interpretations. Students are encouraged to comprehend the present by reflecting critically on the past. The first year of the course will focus on the causes, course, and effects of six distinct periods and events prior to the 20th century in the Americas. This means that in addition to US history, the events and periods studied will also include the experiences and histories of Canada, Mexico, Central America, the Caribbean and South America.

The second year of the course will focus on three 20th century topics—Causes, practices, and effects of War, The Great Depression, The Cold War, and Civil Rights Movements—Post 1945. These topics will be explored from a variety of perspectives from the Western Hemisphere, as well as from two additional regions of the world (Africa, Asia, Europe, or the Middle East).  

+ UC/CSU Honors (Weighted) - Year 2 

Psychology SL +
Grade 11-12; A-G Requirement - History/Soc Science; UC/CSU Designation - Elective (g)
This is a one-year course that asks the fundamental questions of “Why do people behave the way that they do in certain situations?” and “How can people change their behaviors?” The course emphasizes historically significant research and research methodology. Students are expected to develop their critical thinking and research skills throughout the course. Each student will be required to complete an “Internal Assessment.” The Internal Assessment includes researching background information, planning, and conducting a research experiment.  UC/CSU Weighted.
 
Part 1: Levels of Analysis—Biological, Cognitive, Socio-cultural. Students focus on understanding the biological, cognitive and socio-cultural influences on human behavior and explore alternative explanations of behavior.

Part 2: Option (but not optional)—Developmental Psychology: To what extent do Biological, Cognitive, and Socio-cultural factors influence development? Evaluate psychological research relevant to developmental psychology.

Part 3: Research Methodology—Methodology is a significant part of the course. The internal assessment is based on these topics: Introduction to research methods, ethics, and quantitative research methods. Research methodology will be ingrained and significant to each of the segments of IB Psychology, with a focus on ethics and ethical treatment of research participants.

Part 4: Simple experimental study—knowledge of research methods will be applied in the study and ethics and the use of quantitative research methods are required elements. Students will design and replicate a significant psychology research experiment.

+ UC/CSU Honors (Weighted)

GROUP 4 - EXPERIMENTAL SCIENCES
Biology HL +
Grade 11 & 12; A-G Requirement - Bio Science; UC/CSU Designation - Lab Science (d)
This is a two-year course that is designed to be the equivalent of a two-semester college introductory biology course. The goals of IB Biology HL are to help students develop a conceptual framework for modern biology and an appreciation of science as a process. Students will learn about biology in an internationally relevant context. Through hands-on experiences, students will develop the skills of a scientist.
 
A student’s IB score for this course is based on three external assessments and one internal assessment. The external assessments are written exams comprised of multiple-choice and free-response questions; these tests are taken at the end of the second year. The internal assessment requires each student to design their own experiment related to biology concepts and report their results and conclusions in a report similar to a paper published in a scientific journal.
 
+ UC/CSU Honors (Weighted) - Year 2

 

Prerequisite: Proficiency in Chemistry or Chemistry Honors with Teacher Recommendation.

 

Environmental Systems & Society SL
Grade 11-12; A-G Requirement - Bio Science; UC/CSU Designation - Lab Science (d)
This is a one-year course that gives students an understanding of the relationship between the environment and society. The goal of the course is to allow students to learn about the wide range of environmental issues affecting Earth. This course will explore the scientific, ethical and political aspects of environmental issues. The course covers concepts such as human population and Earth’s resources, Earth’s carrying capacity (how much life can Earth support), conservation of wild life and natural ecosystems, pollution management, climate change, environmental values and cultures, and sustainability. This course is both lab-based and field-based, students will collect data inside and outside to make informed decisions to propose solutions to problems related to the environment.  UC/CSU Weighted.
 

Prerequisite: Students must have completed and demonstrated proficiency in the two years of science required under the ‘D’ category of the A-G college eligibility requirements.

Design & Technology SL
Grade 11-12; A-G Requirement - Phys Science; UC/CSU Designation - Lab Science (d), Elective (g)
This is a one-year course that will introduce students to the techniques of design as practiced by engineers. The course will include a mixture of societal-focused topics, such as sustainable production and product life cycles, and technical engineering work, such as 2D and 3D modeling and production techniques. Through hands-on projects, students will develop the habits and skills of an engineer.
 
A students IB score for this course is based on two external assessments and one internal assessment. The external assessments are written exams comprised of multiple-choice and free-response questions taken at the end of the year. The internal assessment requires each student to complete a design project in which they identify a problem leading to a design opportunity, generate and evaluate potential solutions to the problem, develop a detailed product design proposal, and create and test a product prototype.
 
Prerequisite: Students must have completed and demonstrated proficiency in the two years of science required under the ‘D’ category of the A-G college eligibility requirements.
 
GROUP 5 - MATHEMATICS & COMPUTER SCIENCE
Mathematics HL +
Grade 11 & 12; A-G Requirement - Math; UC/CSU Designation - Math (c)
This is a two-year course that focuses on developing important mathematical concepts in a comprehensible, coherent and rigorous way, achieved by a carefully balanced approach. Students are encouraged to apply their mathematical knowledge to solve problems set in a variety of meaningful contexts. Development of each topic should feature justification and proof of results. Students should expect to develop insight into mathematical form and structure, and should be intellectually equipped to appreciate the links between concepts in different topic areas. They are also encouraged to develop the skills needed to continue their mathematical growth in other learning environments.

 

The internally assessed exploration allows students to develop independence in mathematical learning. Students are encouraged to take a considered approach to various mathematical activities and to explore different mathematical ideas. The exploration also allows students to work without the time constraints of a written examination and to develop the skills they need for communicating mathematical ideas.

+ UC/CSU Honors (Weighted) - Year 2

Prerequisite:  Proficiency in Integrated Math II

Mathematics SL
Grade 11 & 12; A-G Requirement - English; UC/CSU Designation - Language (b)

This is a two-year course, the most advanced math class offered at Del Mar, and the best option for students interested in Science or Math related fields. At the end of the second year, all students will be ready for both the IB Mathematics SL external exam and the AP Calculus AB exam. The first year will include all of the material traditionally taught in a Trigonometry/Pre- Calculus class along with an introduction to Statistics.

In the second year the material develops a deeper understanding of Statistics and teaches the most of the AP Calculus AB curriculum. Students who complete this course will gain a meaningful mathematics education that is rooted in deep conceptual understanding and real life applications. Through their Internal Assessment, students will show this understanding while conducting research and writing a paper on the topic of their choice. IB Mathematics SL is a fantastic course that will prepare all students for College-Level Mathematics.

Prerequisite: Proficiency in Integrated Math III with teacher recommendation or proficiency in Integrated Math III STEM

 
Mathematical Studies SL
Grade 11 & 12; A-G Requirement - Math; UC/CSU Designation - Math (c)

This is a two-year course with an emphasis on applications of mathematics in which the largest section is on statistical techniques. The students most likely to select this course are those whose main interests lie outside the field of mathematics. Students taking this course are well prepared for a career in social sciences, humanities, languages or arts. More emphasis is placed on student understanding of fundamental concepts than on complex manipulative skills. 

Students will solve mathematical problems embedded in a wide range of contexts while using the calculator effectively. In the second year each student completes an extensive project based on their own research involving the collection, analysis and evaluation of data. The project provides an opportunity for students to carry out a mathematical study of their choice using their own experience, knowledge and skills acquired during the course.

Prerequisite:  Proficiency in Integrated Math II

 
GROUP 6 - THE ARTS ***
Art HL +
Grade 11 & 12; A-G Requirement - Applied Arts; UC/CSU Designation - VAPA (f)
This is a two-year course that challenges a student’s cultural awareness, analytical problem-solving, creative thinking and application, while expanding and building upon their technical skills. The students will be exploring and comparing different artists from various cultural backgrounds and time periods through comparative studies creating 13-20 screens.
 
They will also explore 3 different medias and various practices experimenting, creating and reflecting upon their work through a process portfolio creating 13-25 screens. 8-11 works that demonstrate a thematic concentration will be displayed through their own curative practices which will require them to be selective through self-reflection, well written curatorial rationales, and awareness to how viewers will engage with their themed work. The course is designed to help foster a foundation for further studies at the college level or for those seeking lifelong enrichment through visual arts.
 
+ UC/CSU Honors (Weighted) - Year 2
 
Prerequisite: One year of any visual art class (Art I, 3D I, or Digital Photo I.)  It is recommended that students enroll in an art class the year prior to enrolling in an IB Art class.
 
Art SL +
Grade 11-12; A-G Requirement - Applied Arts; UC/CSU Designation - VAPA (f)
This is a one-year class that challenges a student’s cultural awareness, analytical problem-solving, creative thinking and application, while expanding and building upon their technical skills. The students will be exploring and comparing different artists from various cultural backgrounds and time periods through comparative studies creating 10-15 screens.
 
They will also explore 2 different medias and various practices experimenting, creating and reflecting upon their work through a process portfolio creating 9-18 screens. 4-7 works that demonstrate a thematic concentration will be displayed through their own curative practices which will require them to be selective through self-reflection, well written curatorial rationales, and awareness to how viewers will engage with their themed work. The course is designed to help foster a foundation for further studies at the college level or for those seeking lifelong enrichment through visual arts.
 
+ UC/CSU Honors (Weighted)
 
Prerequisite: One year of any visual art class (Art I, 3D I, or Digital Photo I.)  It is recommended that students enroll in an art class the year prior to enrolling in an IB Art class.
 
Music SL +
Grade 10-12; A-G Requirement - VAPA; UC/CSU Designation - VAPA (f), Elective (g)

This one-year course is embedded in the existing Symphonic Band and Concert Choir courses as part of the overall curriculum. In addition to the existing course of study, the IB students will be analyzing and creating written responses based on the Medium, Melody, Harmony, Meter, Form, Style and Context of a wide variety of music from western and non-western cultures and genres. 

Students will also be prepared to analyze and respond to directed questions on the exam related to at least one major work over a two year period. Lastly, the students will hone their listening and critical thinking skills by listening and crafting written responses to examples of music from a wide variety of cultures and genres.

+ UC/CSU Honors (Weighted)

Prerequisite: Students must demonstrate proficiency in Choir, Guitar, or Band.

 
DIPLOMA CORE COURSES **
Theory of Knowledge +
Grade 11 & 12; A-G Requirement - General Elective; UC/CSU Designation - Elective (g)
This is a two-year course about critical thinking and inquiring into the process of knowing, rather than about learning a specific body of knowledge. The TOK course examines how we know what we claim to know. It does this by encouraging students to analyze knowledge claims and explore knowledge questions. There are two assessment tasks in the TOK course: an essay and a presentation. The essay is externally assessed by the IB, and must be on any one of the six prescribed titles by the IB for each examination session. The presentation, done individually or in a group, is internally assessed by the teacher.
 
+ UC/CSU Honors (Weighted) - Year 1 & 2
 
Notes: TOK is a compulsory requirement towards earning the IB Diploma; priority registration will be given to IB Diploma Programme Candidates.
 
Creativity, Activity & Service (CAS)
Studied throughout the Diploma Programme, CAS involves students in a range of activities alongside their academic studies.  Students are required to undertake a CAS Project, one which challenges them to show initiative, demonstrate perseverance, develop skills such as collaboration, problem solving and decision making.  Note: CAS is a compulsory requirement towards earning the IB Diploma.  A-G requirements and UC/CSU credits do not apply to this course.
 
Prerequisite:  None
Helpful Documents: CAS Handbook & CAS Project Form
 
Extended Essay
The Extended Essay is an independent, self-directed piece of research, finishing with a 4,000-word paper.  A practical preparation for undergraduate research, the essay is an opportunity for students to investigate a topic of special interest to them, which is also related to one of the student's six Diploma Programme subjects.  Note: This is a compulsory requirement towards earning the IB Diploma.  A-G requirements and UC/CSU credits do not apply to this course.
 
Prerequisite:  None
 
 
* For course numbers, specific curriculum details, A-G credits, and UC/CSU designations, please refer to pages 80-85 of the 2018-19 CUHSD Course Catalog.
 
** Please see our Pathways of Study Brochure for more information on how to earn an IB Diploma:

Del Mar IB Pathways of Study / Programa del Diploma IB Rutas de Estudio de Del Mar 

 

*** Students may choose not to take an exam from Group 6 and take a second exam in one of the other groups instead.

 

Should you require additional information, please speak with Del Mar's IB Coordinator, Ms Olamit, or your Guidance Counselor.