IB Careers Programme
Senior Phase Learning
Academic success is very important, and we challenge students to achieve the best that they possibly can, through a rich and broad range of experiences. However, life and education at Island School are so much more than just their academic lessons.
Our students take on all sorts of roles in and out of school. They lead in proposing, organising and managing events that range from the humanitarian and the environmental to the artistic and the sporting. It is the opportunity and the responsibility of our students in the Senior Phase years to set the agenda for the whole school. These opportunities come from taking on established roles; in our Student Council, being a House Prefect, a school Ambassador or representing the school as part of a sports team, organising and leading the school fair or cultural events and celebrations in school.
Senior Phase students are the leaders of our school, looked up to as role models by the younger students and relied upon for their independence and responsibility by staff.
IB Careers Programme
Island School offers the International Baccalaureate (IB) Career Programme. The IBCP offers students who want to focus their education on preparing for their career a specialist pathway. Students on the globally expanding IBCP choose a mixture of IB Diploma Courses and BTEC subjects. The 3 BTEC Courses they choose are as ‘applied’ as possible, this means that when studying the Business course they will be running a business and the TV and Film course sees students doing a lot of filming and editing. They are vocational and are only recognized globally as university entrance but Island School has an exceptional record of placing students from this pathway.
Students also pick 2 IB courses. This allows for specialization of knowledge and skills in their favorite subject area. Examples of this would be taking BTEC with DP Food or Sport Science. Students seeking more portfolio time in Drama or Art can double up the BTEC and Diploma Programme courses. Hospitality students could also acquire a new language, vital for a global hospitality career.
All students have two periods per week dedicated to the Personal and Professional Skills course looking at Personal Development, Intercultural Understanding issues, Thinking Processes and Communication skills. As IB students they will also be carrying out Service Learning and studying a self initiated Language course. Finally they will also be researching and producing an academic piece of extended writing as a Reflective Project. Click on the links below to see course descriptions.
|BTEC Courses||IB Diploma subjects|
|Physics SLSports Exercise and Health
Who is the IBCP for?
If you have a passion for Art, Drama, Film and Media, Sport, Culinary Arts, Business and Hotel Management then you should choose the IBCP. In you want to work in business, sports management, hospitality, events and marketing and the media industry you should choose the IBCP.
Do you recognise yourself in these sentences?
“I have many things I enjoy doing outside of school, and the parts of school I really enjoy are not always related to my school subjects.”
“I am really good with people and enjoy working with others.”
“I am creative but do not like exams.“
“I am more practical…I enjoy projects and creating things.”
“I do well when I am working on something I love, but struggle when asked to learn something I don’t enjoy.”
“I need to have some more space and support to experience successful learning, build up my self confidence before taking on future studies.”
Senior Phase Team
|Ms Beth Hall||Senior Phase Vice Principal|
|Ms Pippa Peters||Deputy Senior Phase Leader|
|Mr Paul Cooper||CAS Co-ordinator|
|Mr Cameron Otto||Extended Essay Co-ordinator|
|Mr Roger Wilkinson||IBCP Co-ordinator|
|Ms Claudia Yung||Higher Education Counsellor|
|Ms Rimma Tyan||Higher Education Counsellor|
|Mr Chris Whitehead||Higher Education Counsellor|
|Ms Kate Yu||Counsellor|
|Ms Flora Ho||Administrator|
Choosing Courses for Years 12 and 13 at Island School
Click here to view the 2021 Options Presentation to Students
Click here to read the IBDP and IBCP FAQs
What are the broad aims for all students in these two years?
We aim for students to have a balance of depth, in subjects they choose to study intensively, and breadth of understanding in a wide range of learning areas. During these two years, students should discover their strengths and build on them. They should find out what their passions and interests are and find paths to pursue them. They should be able to try a wide range of different areas of study. In Year 11, students should be well placed to make informed choices for the next phase of their education based on their strengths, skills, interests, passions and learning styles. We aim for students to enjoy the experience of school for its own sake and because students perform better in a climate of enjoyment.
How and when are choices made?
Options Week takes place in late October and will include a Zoom Parent Information Evening. Students’ first option choices are made in early November. In the preceding weeks, these choices are reviewed and Tutors, Heads of House, Higher Education Counsellors, Subject teachers and the Senior Phase team will review these choices and offer guidance about the choices that have been made. Each student will have an individual appointment with the Higher Education department as well as a Tutor for Learning session before the Final Round of options takes place later in the year.
Preliminary round options are not final. They do inform timetabling and staffing therefore a lack of interest in a certain course could lead to it not running. Any change requests made after the final round will be subject to availability.
What is the difference between the IB Diploma and the IB Careers Programme?
Students following the IB Diploma must choose 6 subjects. Those following the IB Careers Programme chose the equivalent of three BTEC qualifications as well as one or two IB subjects. It is possible to study different combinations of BTEC and IB subjects but these will need to be discussed on an individual basis.
Both the IB Diploma and the IB Careers Programme have a compulsory core element to them. The IB students complete an Extended Essay, study the Theory of Knowledge and complete CAS commitments (Creativity, Activity, Service). IB Careers Programme students complete an Extended Project, Work Experience as well as the same CAS as all other Year 12 and 13 students.
The IB Diploma and the IB Careers Programme both have clear routes into Higher Education. The key is choosing the pathway that is most appropriate for the individual student. It is important to research carefully during the Options process to ensure students have full knowledge of the options available to them.
It is a requirement for all students entering the IB Diploma in Year 12 to have achieved five GCSEs at grade C / level 5 or above. Equivalent qualifications will be considered for students joining Island School in Year 12.
How will the choices made impact upon the future choices at Higher Education?
The IB Diploma has gained extensive recognition and respect from leading universities across the world. The BTEC courses are also widely recognized and accepted across the world. If you follow our pages on the IB Diploma and IB Careers Programme as well as the Higher Education website you will find detailed information on where IB and IB Careers Programme students are progressing.
Different universities in different countries will have a range of requirements in terms. For IB Careers Programme students BTEC subjects are a UK-based qualification so naturally, routes into UK universities are more established. We are however finding students increasingly progressing from the BTEC courses to universities in a range of different countries. Some of the highest performing universities may also be unwilling to offer students taking BTEC courses. It is however worth noting that those universities are also likely to only offer places to IBDP students with significantly high predicted grades.
In terms of IB subject choices, there may well be certain requirements to access specific courses at certain universities. For example, typically to study medicine students should be taking two sciences at IB and at least one of them at Higher Level. The Island School Higher Education department will provide further advice and information on this area.
Curriculum choices for languages other than English
In Year 12-13 students studying the IB Diploma must study at least two languages including one first language (language A). Most students study one first language (Language A) and one foreign language (Language B). Students may also opt to take two Language A courses or to take one Langauge A course and more than one Language B course. Students studying the IBCP may opt for an optional IB Certificate in either a Langauge A or Langauge B course. The following courses are offered at Island School and please note that these options may change year on year depending on the numbers of students taking the courses:
- English A Literature, English A Langauge and Literature, Chinese Language A Literature and Language Higher/Standard level (for native speakers, leading to the award of a Bilingual IB Diploma, which may be advantageous for entry into further studies or employment in Hong Kong and China)
- Chinese Language B (foreign language) Higher/Standard Level
- French/Spanish/Japanese Language B (foreign language) Higher/Standard Level and Ab Initio (for beginner/near-beginners)
- School-Supported Self-Taught Language is offered as part of the IB Diploma. This is run by the EAL department in conjunction with the ESF Languages Centre and private tutors. All Literature A standard level languages can be catered for with advance notice. These courses will lead to the award of a Bilingual IB Diploma, which may be advantageous for entry into further studies or employment in the country.
It is a requirement for all students entering the IB Diploma in Year 12 to have achieved five GCSEs at grade C / level 5 or above. Equivalent qualifications will be considered for students joining Island School in Year 12
It is important to understand that a student’s language choices must represent the most appropriate level of challenge for the student. In order to meet this IB requirement, ESF schools have clear language pathways for students and in advance of next month’s options process, language teachers have begun one-to-one meetings with students about language pathways. In addition, we know that universities will consider the level of challenge in the programmes of study. It is important that our students are competitive in their applications and can demonstrate to universities that they have an appropriately challenging programme.
Below are the details of the pathways.
- For students currently taking the French, Spanish or Japanese GCSE course, the expectation is that they continue with the language at B level and at either SL (Standard level) or HL (Higher level) in Year 12.
- For students currently taking the Chinese as a Foreign Language GCSE course, the expectation is that they continue with Chinese B at either SL or HL level in Year 12. Or students may decide to take up a new language at Ab initio level.
- Students currently taking Chinese as a Second Language GCSE course and expected to achieve an A* or A grade/level are expected to take Chinese B at HL in Year 12. Students who are expected to achieve B or below or a C grade/level may choose to take Chinese B at either SL or HL in Year 12. Students achieving below a C may be advised to consider an Ab Initio course rather than continuing with Chinese B.
- Students currently taking Chinese as a First Language GCSE course and expected to achieve A* or A grade/level candidate are expected to take Chinese A at either SL or HL in Year 12. Students who are expected to achieve B or a C grade/level may choose either Chinese B at HL or Chinese A at either SL or HL in Year 12. Or students eligible for Chinese B may decide to take up a new langauge at Ab initio level in place of Chinese B.
For all students, we offer the fantastic Ab Initio courses in French, Spanish and Japanese. The Ab Initio course is designed to teach students the basics of the language and attain a level where they can competently speak, read, write and listen to specific topics at a good level. This course is welcomed by universities as they realise that the students who take it have challenged themselves to learn out of their comfort zones. The course, whilst rigorous, is designed to allow every student the opportunity of scoring the highest grades.
For any students whose mother tongue is not English or Chinese, we also offer the School Supported Self TaughtSSST course (School Supported Self Taught) programme. This is a rigorous literature-based course designed for fluent speakers and is supported by the LOTE department. This is only available as an SL Language A course and for more information please contact Mr Najman or Ms Hall.