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The International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma Program - how to get into !

Deal Addict
Oct 12, 2006
1516 posts
178 upvotes
Alberta
IB certificate here, and UC Engineering.

Did full Pre-IB in Gr10, but the plan was always to drop to partial.
Completed Math, Chem (HL), Bio and Phy IB.
All in all, I'm glad I didn't do full. Not much benefit for additional work.
No complaints about the IB courses I did do. Better teachers (for the most part), better classmates, harder tests, but workload was "less". I found they left the daily homework as "optional", so you did as much as you needed to learn. Tests were WAY harder, but we got curved based on our performance on the "Regular" midterm.
HL courses good for Uni credits. Again, not needed, but I wouldn't write it off either.
Deal Addict
Mar 11, 2016
1446 posts
387 upvotes
talk to guidance teacher at your sons school..they will tell you which schools offer it and if your son qualifies...he just needs OK from guidance and administration
[OP]
Newbie
Mar 3, 2016
57 posts
4 upvotes
Dear neverless, KingAli, coolspot

I greatly appreciate your time and all the useful info that you guys have shared. I am pretty clear on the subject now. God bless
Deal Expert
Oct 6, 2005
16463 posts
2108 upvotes
Fjr2005 wrote:
Jun 23rd, 2016 9:01 pm
talk to guidance teacher at your sons school..they will tell you which schools offer it and if your son qualifies...he just needs OK from guidance and administration
Depends on the area - in York Region and Toronto you need to put together an application package and write an exam, the administration cannot just "ok" an applicant.
Deal Addict
Feb 18, 2016
1540 posts
414 upvotes
I went through engineering at Waterloo and I didn't go through IB. To be honest, I came from small town and didn't even know it existed when I was in high school, furthermore I doubt it was even available where I was. My understanding of IB is that it can open doors outside of Canada as it is recognized internationally. If the plan is to go to an engineering university in Ontario or elsewhere in Canada, I would say it is not necessary.
Sr. Member
Oct 25, 2007
674 posts
70 upvotes
Mississauga
My son got into IB in two schools in Mississauga.
One (St. Francis Xavier) offering Pre-IB for 9th, 10th Grades with no fees,
where as the other (Glenforest) offering MYP for 9th, 10th with $250/year.

I am not able to conclude which one of these two programs are best value when my child wants to move to Non-IB later (11th, 12th) to breeze thru regular program and gain better marks and scholderships.
PS: he is interested in medical field instead of Engineering and both the schools does include mandatory Math/Physics/Chemistry/Bio..
Appreciate any one of you have insights towards these two particular schools and program.
Member
Feb 5, 2007
387 posts
87 upvotes
Mississauga
I did IB certificate @ Glenforest, wow you have to pay to get into it now.

The teachers there ( when I took) were very good, especially for chemistry and economics. Honestly, the IB program is a very easy conversion program offering 10%+ bell curve if you do decently.

The IB Program just teaches the same general stream stuff with some additional first year university level topics. If you do well in these, you should pass first year very well. There is also some offer of class credits for 1st year university
Deal Addict
Dec 27, 2013
1719 posts
442 upvotes
Woodbridge
The idea that AP or IB will help youget in to schools is just wrong, assuming we're talking about Canadian schools (and even American schools won't care if you have the GPA and SAT). Yes, a good program will expose you to content that might better prepare you for the type of work you're going to see in university. Yes, some AP programs are recognized by some universities as some sort of university-credit equivalent (American schools in particular). Having said that, if you have the work ethic to do well in an IB or AP program, you'll be fine in university even if you just go through the regular U/M courses. But AP or IB will not help you get in to Canadian schools. Your average is what gets you in, and the increased workload and stress of an IB or AP program might actually harm grades, even with normalization.

Before deciding that you need an AP or IB program, look really, really hard at what it's actually going to provide you and if it's worth it. In most cases, I'd say it's not.
Sr. Member
Oct 25, 2007
674 posts
70 upvotes
Mississauga
leeoku wrote:
Feb 5th, 2018 3:22 pm
I did IB certificate @ Glenforest, wow you have to pay to get into it now.

The teachers there ( when I took) were very good, especially for chemistry and economics. Honestly, the IB program is a very easy conversion program offering 10%+ bell curve if you do decently.
The IB Program just teaches the same general stream stuff with some additional first year university level topics. If you do well in these, you should pass first year very well. There is also some offer of class credits for 1st year university
Thanks for the feedback Leeoku,
Yes, now across the boards IB charges fees. Surprisingly both schools have two different fee structures though.
I am under the impression that IB fee should be same across all the schools.
Now, Glenforest states first two years (9th, 10th) as MYP (Mid Year program) and charges $260/Year and 11th &12th is full DP (Diploma Program) and charges $1350/Year.
Whereas St.Francis Xavier states first 2 years (9th, 10th) Pre-IB (enhanced regular program) with mandatory religious subject and No fees and 11th, 12th IB DP program charges are $1200/year.

Now my dilemma is finding the real difference between these two programs (IB vs. MYP) for first 2 years (9th, 10th) and both schools claims their program is the best.
I am wondering if anyone has gone recently to both these programs for the first 2 years could shed some light.
PS: i am not discouraging to drop out after 11th but advise if he struggles a bit and use his pre-IB knowledge/discipline in the regular program which yields better marks..eventually will get him scholarships/desired universities.
Member
Feb 5, 2007
387 posts
87 upvotes
Mississauga
I can shed some light. I did drop out and do the certificate program and chose to take the courses I thought were relevant for my engineering degree. The IB math isn't necessary if you're not going into engineering IMO.

My gr9/10 years were different than say the academic and enhanced streams. Each stream did cover different books/topics and just had a different grading scale/requirements/expectations. I know for a fact gr10 math had a huge increase in difficulty and my marks dropped 20%. However, they did that on purpose to over prepare you and force you to grind practice and study hard.

As a word of caution, join IB if you are going to do well. Their testing/grading system is pretty lenient and has generous conversions, which is why so many people entering university have high marks due to more and more IB schools. If you do average, it doesn't convert well. I don't think IB has any advantage in school acceptances, it just prepares you well and teaches good study habits..

From what you wrote, it looks like xavier's 9/10 program is to just combine their academic/enhanced streams in one.
Sr. Member
Oct 25, 2007
674 posts
70 upvotes
Mississauga
UPDATE:
Thank you all for the feedback on this thread as well as via PM's
I accepted Glenforest MYP/IB program despite the fee ($500 for 9th, 10th) and long commute ($1500 for bus) due to the below points.
1>MYP for 9th, 10th is recognized by IB and will be provided by certification after completion of 10th (could be a souvenir :-) .
2>Automatic enrollment into STEM club (Science and Technology focused) which seems to be popular and won prime minister award it seems.
3>There is an additional subject on "Leadership" improvement/building which will be definitely an asset.
4>No need take Mandatory religious subject unlike St. Xavier.
5>Overall School ranking for Glenforest is better than St. Xavier (though its old ranking, but I believe it does not fall suddenly)
Hope I have taken the informed decision and rest is left to the student to exceed/excel in the program.
Newbie
Feb 15, 2018
6 posts
1 upvote
@mkannuri, I'm a little late to this discussion (as you have already accepted the offer) but just a couple of points. We looked at the Glenforest IB program when my older son was in grade 8 a few years ago. I was impressed with the school and the program. Ultimately my son made a different choice (regional AP), but he had some friends who chose to do the IB program at Glenforest. They like it but I will say that the workload is considerably higher than AP even though the IB HL credits transfer exactly the same as AP credits to university. IB is a whole program with a specific philosophy behind it which is fine if that's what you want. For us AP made more sense because of the location of the school where it is located (5 min drive vs 30+ minutes), cost ($250/yr all 4 years), and the flexibility of being able to choose which courses to take as AP vs a structured program. On the other hand, there are usually a couple of students every year that graduate from the IB program at Turner Fenton in Brampton with 100% averages because of the generous grade bump given to the IB courses. AP (at least at my son's school) doesn't work like that. The only thing I will warn you about is that given the distance to school you mentioned and that you are paying for busing, I am assuming that Glenforest is not your home school. If your son in grade 12 decides to no longer do the IB program, he will be sent back to his home school.
Sr. Member
Oct 25, 2007
674 posts
70 upvotes
Mississauga
gwnorth68 wrote:
Feb 16th, 2018 10:01 am
@mkannuri, I'm a little late to this discussion (as you have already accepted the offer) but just a couple of points. We looked at the Glenforest IB program when my older son was in grade 8 a few years ago
there are usually a couple of students every year that graduate from the IB program at Turner Fenton in Brampton with 100% averages because of the generous grade bump given to the IB courses. AP (at least at my son's school) doesn't work like that. The only thing I will warn you about is that given the distance to school you mentioned and that you are paying for busing, I am assuming that Glenforest is not your home school. If your son in grade 12 decides to no longer do the IB program, he will be sent back to his home school.
Thank you for the feedback, Yes our home school is Rick Hanson.
Also heard about the work load in IB program and its good to test my kid whether he can cope up with that work load or not as he is interested in medical after high school which comes with lot of hard work for sure.
I heard about this grade bump but did not understood the concept very well.
What does the grade bump means? if the student makes an average of 80% in IB program, do they bump to 95+% in regular program? is there any source for the calculation?
Its too early for that..but curious to know how this bumping works out.
Newbie
Feb 15, 2018
6 posts
1 upvote
IB marks on a 7 point scale. Those marks need to be converted to percentages for reporting on the Ontario report card and for submission to universities for application consideration (at least in Ontario). IB Ontario provides a conversion chart that indicates the corresponding OSSD grade for each IB level. You can see it here: http://schools.peelschools.org/sec/glen ... ECODES.pdf

A lot of it is at the discretion of the teacher who provides a "predicted grade" for the course work which is combined with the score on the final exam to come up with a final score. That score is then converted using the table. Since the grade 12 portion of the HL courses are roughly equivalent to first year university courses (in theory, every university has it's own policy with regards to awarding transfer credit and it can be major dependent) that means that the students are working at a level above the Ontario curriculum. That is in turn reflected by the teacher assigning a higher grade on their report card.

Hope your son enjoys the program. Glenforest seems to be a great school.

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