School Year: 2020-2021  /  Number of Courses: 0

Department Overview

The International Baccalaureate Organization’s Diploma Program, created in 1968, is a demanding preuniversity course of study that is designed for highly motivated students. The IB Diploma Program is recognized worldwide for its rigorous coursework, assessments, and international emphasis, giving IB diploma holders access to the world’s leading universities. In recognition of the excellent academic preparation IB students receive in high school, the University of California awards 30 quarter (20 semester) units to any UCbound IB Diploma student earning a composite score of at least 30 (out of a range of 2445) in all six IB subjects. Students can also be granted 8 quarter (5.3 semester) units for scores of a 57 on individual subject exams.

The course offerings designated at Kennedy that comprise the six academic subjects of the IB Diploma Program include:
Group 1: Language A1 English
Group 2: Language B French, Korean or Spanish
Group 3: Individuals and Societies History of the Americas, Psychology
Group 4: Experimental Sciences Biology, Physics, Environmental Systems and Societies
Group 5: Mathematics Math Studies SL, Mathematics SL or Mathematics HL
Group 6: Arts and Electives* Psychology or Film
* Another science may be substituted for Group 6

At least three, but not more than four of these subjects are taken at higher level (HL), while the others are standard level (SL). Students are thus able to explore some subjects in depth and others more broadly. Three important features of the IB Diploma Program that separate it from traditional honors programs form the core of the IB program. Theory of Knowledge, a course taken during the junior and senior year, is an interdisciplinary requirement intended to stimulate critical reflection on knowledge and experience gained inside and outside the classroom. Student selected participation in a minimum of 150 hours of Creativity, Action, and Service (CAS) activities reflects the IBO’s goal to educate the whole person and foster responsible, compassionate citizens. In addition, each IB student has the opportunity to investigate a topic of special interest through an Extended Essay, a 4000 word, independent research project.

Classroom teachers and IB examiners work in partnership to ensure that student grades in IB subjects reflect attainment of knowledge and skills relative to set standards applied equally to all IB schools. Kennedy is one of approximately 70 IB world schools in California, 803 in the U.S., and 2,145 IB schools worldwide. More than 573,000 students were assessed by the IBO last year. Preparation for participation in Kennedy’s IB Diploma Program begins in junior high. Incoming 9th graders should have completed at least one year of a second language and/or one year of college preparatory mathematics and have a record of academic success in honors courses. In order to satisfy all AUHSD graduation requirements as well as IB requirements, preIB students in grades 9 and 10 are scheduled into at least five academic courses during the school year, in preparation for the twoyear Diploma Program taken during the junior and senior years.

AG Course list is available at




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