The IB Diploma Programme for Students Aged 16-19

The IB Diploma Programme is a challenging and balanced programme of education with final examinations that prepares students, aged 16 to 19, for success at university and life beyond. It has been designed to address the intellectual, social, emotional and physical wellbeing of students. The Programme has gained recognition and respect from the world’s leading universities.

Students must study one course from each of Groups 1 to 5. A sixth subject must be chosen either from Group 6, or a second subject from one of the other five groups. Three subjects must be taken at Higher Level (HL) and three at Standard Level (SL).


In addition to six subjects, students must successfully complete the three elements of "the core": an extended essay (EE) of around 4000 words, a course in Theory of Knowledge (ToK), and a programme of activities entitled Creativity, Action and Service (CAS)

Grades are awarded for each of the six subjects on a scale of 1 (lowest) to 7 (highest), up to three further points can be awarded for the combined results of ToK and EE. 

The maximum number of points that a students can be awarded is 45. The Diploma is awarded to those who achieve at least 24 points, subject to certain minimum level of performance across the whole programme and a satisfactory completion of CAS. 

Halcyon options for subject choices:

Group 1: Studies in Language and Literature

English or other Mother Tongue language focusing on Language and Literature study (HL and SL).

Group 2: Language Acquisition

French and Spanish B subjects (HL and SL)  are foreign language courses for students with a number of years of previous experience in those languages.  

Spanish and Mandarin Ab Initio are language courses for students with little experience of those languages. Ab initio course are available at SL only.

English B
Mother Tongue B

Group 3: Individuals and Societies

History (HL and SL)
Geography (HL and SL)
Environmental Systems & Societies (SL)
Online Business Management (HL and SL)
Online Economics (HL and SL)
Online Information Technology in a Global Society (ITGS) (HL and SL)
Online Psychology (HL and SL)
Online Philosophy (SL)

Group 4: Sciences

Biology (HL and SL)
Environmental Systems & Societies (SL)

Group 5: Mathematics

Mathematics (SL) 
Mathematical Studies (SL)
Online Mathematics (HL) 

Group 6: Electives / The Arts

Visual Arts (HL and SL) 
Theatre (HL and SL)
Online Film (SL)
or a second subject from one of the others Groups.