What is the IB at Rancho Solano?

November 01, 2017

At Rancho Solano, students in Grades 11 and 12 have the opportunity to enroll in the International Baccalaureate Diploma Program. The IB Diploma Program is an internationally recognized college-preparatory program that is currently available in 136 countries and has proven exceptional outcomes in terms of challenging students of all ability levels, developing their knowledge, and enhancing their skills. In the United States, many top universities have commended the quality of the IB curriculum in terms of preparing students for undergraduate, and even postgraduate, study.

A major reason for the accolades the IB has received is its student-centric philosophy. The IB learner profile, which specifies the characteristics the IB curriculum strives to instill in all IB learners, is at the center of all teaching and learning, and IB courses are designed around this. Students who choose to enroll in the full diploma are required to study a range of courses from different disciplines which include Language and Literature, Social Sciences, Natural Sciences, Mathematics, Language Acquisition, and the Arts, and these courses are available at either Higher Level or Standard Level.

In addition, full diploma students have to complete certain core requirements, such as Theory of Knowledge (where students examine the nature and applications of knowledge from different disciplines), the Extended Essay (a university-level research dissertation), and CAS (or Creativity, Activity and Service- an experiential learning component). Fiercely determined to abide by its student-centered philosophy, the IB also allows students to select individual IB courses rather than the whole diploma. Currently, Rancho Solanos offers the following IB courses: English Literature, Mandarin, French, Spanish, History, Economics, Biology, Physics, Chemistry, Math, Music, and Art.

The truly remarkable nature of the IB curriculum is its ability to challenge and stretch students in both academic and personal aspects, while also being a comprehensive curriculum that supports their learning needs and nurtures the mindset necessary for further education and beyond. The progress that students make over the duration of their two-year IB studies is truly a thrilling sight to witness.

Richard Stilliard
IBDP Coordinator/12th Grade Dean
IB History and Economics Teacher


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