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Choosing The Right Pre-University Programme: IB Diploma

by on January 11, 2018 | Top Stories, Pre-University Programmes & Foundation Studies

Choosing The Right Pre-University Programme: IB Diploma -

If you have an SPM qualification and you are planning to pursue a bachelor degree, you would most likely need a pre-U qualification to gain admission to a university or college. So which pre-U programme should you choose?

The International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma Programme

The IB diploma has gained popularity for setting high standards and emphasising creative and critical thinking, so if it’s a challenge you’re looking for, this could be the course for you. If you’re independent and like to be responsible for your own learning, you will enjoy this programme. Students are encouraged to learn from their peers and actively critique each other’s work. The curriculum will develop you physically, intellectually, emotionally and ethically; and prepare you with a positive attitude towards learning.

Students study six subjects at higher level (HL) or standard level (SL). They must choose one subject from each of five groups (1 to 5), ensuring breadth of knowledge and understanding in their best language, additional language(s), the social sciences, the experimental sciences and mathematics. Student may choose either an arts subject from group 6, or a second subject from groups 1 to 5.

  • Group 1: studies in language and literature
  • Group 2: language acquisition
  • Group 3: individuals and societies
  • Group 4: sciences
  • Group 5: mathematics
  • Group 6: the arts

The IB boasts of a holistic approach that prepares students well for university. Students need to write an extended essay - an independent, self-directed piece of research culminating in a 4000-word paper. In addition, they study Theory of Knowledge - a subject devoted to encouraging students to critically think about knowledge itself and the ways in which we learn – and participate in Creativity-Action-Service - a programme which enables students to share their creative talents, to engage in energetic activities and to develop an awareness and concern for their community and beyond.


  • Studies show that IB students are better prepared for university in areas such as researching for essays, managing time, meeting expectations and being more confident in their ability to use critical thinking skills.


  • Takes two years to complete and is one of the more expensive pre-university programmes to pursue at private institutions.

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