What is the DP?

The International Baccalaureate® (IB) Diploma Programme (DP) is an assessed programme for students aged 16 to 19. It is respected by leading universities across the globe.

Find out how to become an IB World School, in order to implement the DP, and read about the benefits and objectives of the DP curriculum below.

What the DP offers students

Through the DP, schools are able to develop students who:

  • have excellent breadth and depth of knowledge
  • flourish physically, intellectually, emotionally and ethically
  • study at least two languages
  • excel in traditional academic subjects
  • explore the nature of knowledge through the programme’s unique theory of knowledge course.

Why offer the DP?

International research shows that there are many benefits to choosing the DP over other 16-19 curricula. For example:

  • DP students are better able than their peers to cope with demanding workloads, manage their time and meet the expectations placed on them, according to one study
  • Analysis of DP students in Canada, the UK and the USA found that the DP’s extended essay improves students’ approach to learning in higher education
  • 72% of students taking the DP in China attend one of the world’s top 500 universities, according to a 2013 study.

You can read more key facts about the DP on our website.

Linking the DP to other IB programmes

The DP is preceded by the IB’s Primary Years Programme (PYP) and Middle Years Programme (MYP). The three programmes are philosophically aligned, each centred on developing attributes of the IB learner profile. The programmes are consistent in their pedagogical approach.

Students who have taken the PYP and MYP will therefore be well prepared for the challenges of the DP. Find out more about the IB’s other education programmes.

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