High School Class lesson

IB Diploma Programme (IBDP)

IBDP Ages 16 to 18

A premium entrance qualification

IB Diploma students gain competitive offers for further study from prestigious universities around the world. Higher education institutions in more than 90 countries admit students based on their IB credentials, and many US public and private colleges and universities offer credit or accelerated courses of study for successful DP examination results.  

A growing body of evidence documents higher rates of college-going, the wide range of institutions to which IB students gain admission, their preparedness for university-level study, and their successful adjustment to university life.

The IB Diploma Programme is an academically challenging programme of education, with final examinations, that prepares students aged 16 to 19 for success at university and in life beyond. It addresses students’ intellectual, social, emotional and physical well-being. 

We have offered the highly sought-after, two-year IB Diploma since 1986 – making us one of the most experienced IB schools in the UK.
Shreya Testimonial Image
The IB diploma programme encourages you to think and work independently, but also provides numerous opportunities to work in collaboration with your peers and develop your teamwork and leadership skills. These are essential at university where there is an expectation to work independently and be responsible for your own learning.
Shreya Gupta, ACS Cobham Alumna, Class of 2017
2018 Graduation Pupil

DP students take responsibility for their own learning. They develop skills across wide-ranging approaches to learning for critical and creative thinking, collaboration, independent research, self-management and communication.

High School Science Class

The IB Programme at ACS

High School Art Class

IB Programme requirements and model


  • Studies in Language and Literature
  • Language Acquisition
  • Individuals and Societies
  • Experimental Sciences
  • Mathematics
  • The Arts/Electives

Students study six courses – usually three at Higher Level (HL) and three at Standard Level (SL). Students must choose one subject from each of groups 1 to 5 – ensuring breadth of experience in languages, social studies, sciences and mathematics. The sixth subject may be an arts subject chosen from group 6, or the student may choose another subject from groups 1 to 4. Knowledge depth is ensured by requiring three or four subjects at Higher Level.

IB Diploma Grades & Assessment

Each examined subject is graded on a scale of 1 (minimum) to 7 (maximum). The award of the IB Diploma requires a minimum total score of 24, based on the principle that a grade 4 represents a passing level in each of the six subjects. Excellent performance in the six subjects results in a grade 7 for each, or a total score of 42 points. Students can earn an additional 3 points for superior work on the Extended Essay and Theory Of Knowledge. 

  • Theory of Knowledge (TOK) is focused on developing interdisciplinary and critical-thinking skills. TOK explores the interdisciplinary nature among subject disciplines and encourages critical reflection and analysis.
  • The Extended Essay requires students to select, research, and write an in-depth, independent research work of 4000 words in one of their six subjects areas. The Extended Essay requirement offers IB Diploma candidates the opportunity to become familiar with the independent research and writing skills expected at university.
  • All IB Diploma students get involved in Creativity, Action, Service (CAS) work. CAS is a fundamental part of the Diploma experience (and one that sets it apart), helping students to grasp the importance of extracurricular activities as an integral part of life, and as a healthy counterbalance to the world of pure scholarship and study. These initiatives and activities are a key part of our student’s education, and include:
  1. local and global community outreach projects
  2. charity drives
  3. supporting the Shituwa School in Namibia
  4. Model United Nations
  5. Sports
  6. And many, many more.
Group 1 - Studies in Language and Literature Group 2 - Language Acquisition Group 3 - Individuals and Societies
English Literature (HL/SL) English B (HL/SL) Business and Management (HL/SL)
English Language & Literature (HL/SL) French B (HL/SL) Economics (HL/SL)
Japanese Literature (HL/SL)* German B (HL/SL) Environmental Systems & Societies (SL)
Norwegian Language & Literature (HL/SL)* Spanish B (HL/SL) Geography (HL/SL)
Russian Literature (HL/SL)* German Ab Initio (SL) History (HL/SL)
Swedish Language & Literature (HL/SL)* Japanese Ab Initio (SL) Psychology (HL/SL)
Mandarin Ab Initio (SL)
Danish B (SL)*
Dutch B (HL/SL)*
Russian B (HL/SL)*
Swedish B (SL)*
* varies from year to year, subject to demand * varies from year to year, subject to demand
Group 4 - Experimental Sciences Group 5 - Mathematics Group 6 - The Arts
Biology (HL/SL) Mathematics: Applications and interpretation (HL/SL) Music (HL/SL)
Chemistry (HL/SL) Mathematics: Analysis and approaches (HL/SL) Theatre (HL/SL)
Computer Science (HL/SL) Visual Arts (HL/SL) or a further subject from groups 1-4
Environmental Systems & Societies (SL)
Physics (HL/SL)
Sports, Exercise and Health Sciences (SL)