The Diploma Programme at Citadel High School - Parent and Student Information Page  

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We are excited to offer this internationally recognized curriculum to our community and to our students through the support of the Halifax Regional School Board and the Nova Scotia Department of Education.

May 2013 Exam Schedule

Please Read - Conduct of Examinations

 Dalhousie Campus Map

University of King's College Extended Essay Workshop 

April 19th, 2013

The Duke of Edinburgh Award


"We have inherited a large house, a great 'world house' in which we have to live together - black, white, Easterner and Westerner, Gentile and Jew, Catholic and Protestant, Moslem and Hindu - a family unduly separated in ideas, culture and interest, who, because we can never again live apart, must learn somehow to live with each other in peace. ... The large house in which we live demands that we transform this world-wide neighbourhood into a world-wide brotherhood"

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., The World House essay , published in 1967

The IB Diploma Programme provides a rigorous academic experience for students in their grade 11 and 12 years that prepares them for success in university and beyond. This comprehensive and challenging program teaches students critical thinking, writing and research skills and requires that the students develop a community mindedness and value for others.



If you are self motivated, organized, interested in being challenged and have a commitment to succeed then the Diploma Programme could be for you. Hard work, diligence and time management are important skills to have when working on the IB Diploma. The course work requires that you are a competent reader and an effective communicator. You will be asked to problem solve and to think critically and to become involved in the community. Here is the Learner Profile that the IBO suggests fits the typical IB student - it is a list of attributes that may describe you only partially, but these descriptors are things we want our students to grow towards.

Academic Honesty and Malpractice.- please read! We always assume the best of our students and want to assist them in any way so that they can be successful. The preceding hyperlink takes you to an IBO document that outlines the scope of malpractice and how we can all help students honestly achieve their academic goals.



What courses do I take?


To receive an IB Diploma you must complete 1 course from each of the following subject groups*


1.      Languages (English Literature, offered at two levels)

2.      Second Language (French, offered at two levels or Spanish ab initio)

3.      Individuals and Society (Economics or History offered at two levels. History SL is also offered in French)

4.      Experimental Sciences (Biology, Chemistry, Physics)

5.      Mathematics (offered at three levels)

6.      The Arts (Music, Theatre, or Visual Art)

(please see the Course Selection Book for more detailed descriptions of each course)


Three of the six must be taken at the Higher Level and three are taken at the Standard Level. Higher Level courses require 240 hours of study and will be completed over 3 semesters (grade 11 and 12) while the Standard Level courses are 150 hours in length and will be completed over 2 semesters. You should note that a regular Academic course at Citadel will require 110 hours of study.


* students may replace a group 6 subject (The Arts - Music, Theatre, Visual Art) with a second group 4 course.


Do I write exams in these courses?


Yes. You will write one exam at the end of grade 11 in one of the Standard Level courses (either French or Economics. French Immersion students are encouraged to take SL History in French) and then you will write exams in the remaining courses at the end of grade 12. The exams are all marked externally by examiners from all over the world. This is what makes the IB Diploma so unique and so valuable students from around the world are measured against the same criteria which provide a clear bench mark of success. IB exams are written in May.


Tell me more about assessment and evaluation.


Each of the IB courses is evaluated on a scale from 1 7 (7 being excellent). To receive the IB Diploma you must achieve a total score of 24 points over the six courses you take in other words an average of 4 in each of the courses. In addition, you must complete requirements of the CAS program, TOK course and Extended Essay (see below). The maximum number of points available to a student is 45 which includes a possible 3 bonus point from the Extended Essay and TOK course.


While most of the mark you achieve is derived from externally marked exams, the teachers also mark you on lab work, oral commentaries, major essays, portfolios and day to day course work. These internal assessments are designed to meet criteria established by the IBO, so you are prepared to write the exams. They are also assessed by external examiners.


Does the Diploma require anything else?


Yes. There are three central elements to the IB Diploma Programme. They are -


  1. The Creativity, Action and Service Program (CAS). Students are expected to complete a total of 150 hours of extra-curricular service hours. These activities help students develop self-confidence, initiative, responsibility, concern for others and the ability to work cooperatively with other people. They also provide an important balance to the academic requirements of the programme.  What is CAS?
  2. Theory of Knowledge (TOK). This course requires 100 hours of study an will be taken over two years 50 hours at the end of grade 11 and the remaining hours at the beginning of grade 12. It is a course designed to teach students to think critically about what they are learning and to appreciate other cultural perspectives.
  3. The Extended Essay. Students will write this formal research paper on a topic of their choosing from within the areas of study in their course work. The 4000 word paper, like the examinations will be externally moderated.


Is there an opportunity to take only one of the IB courses?


Please note that these Certificate courses will only be made available if there is room in the class. Students who receive a certificate do not complete the Extended Essay, TOK or CAS requirements. Students who are interested in the Arts may take an IB credit in Music, Theatre or Visual Art.


What would my course selection look like over my 3 years at Citadel?


            As one example if you are a math/ science student


Grade 10


Grade 11


Grade 12


Math 10 pre IB

(2 semesters)

French 10 pre IB

History 10 pre IB

English 10

Science 10

2 electives  


French SL*

Math SL

History SL

Chemistry HL

Physics HL

English HL



Math SL

History SL

Chemistry HL

Physics HL

English HL


* an official IB exam is written in grade 11


What are the benefits of the IB Diploma?


The IB Programme is a comprehensive international curriculum with an emphasis on critical thinking, intercultural understanding, citizenry and extracurricular activities. Students are exposed to a broad range of subjects, but study several subjects in great depth. The ultimate benefit of this program is that IB graduates are literate, articulate, adaptable, confident young adults with expertise in at least two languages and a global understanding of issues.You may be interested to read an essay composed by John Messenger about the intrinsic values of this programme. In addition to just wanting to participate in this excellent program, many students take the IB Diploma to improve their chances of university admission and scholarship. Graduates of the IB Diploma Programme consistently perform well at university. Because of this, the IB Diploma is recognized by a growing number of universities in Canada, the United States, and further abroad. At some universities, graduates with an IB Diploma may receive preferred entrance status, scholarships and possibly advanced credit or transfer credits for IB courses in which sufficiently high results were achieved. Many Canadian universities have entrance scholarships created specifically to attract IB Diploma graduates. More Information for students.