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Dhaka Tribune

Are our students preparing correctly for university admission?

 What is the right curriculum for a compelling student profile?

Update : 14 Oct 2022, 02:25 AM

The university application and admissions process is an exciting and important event in the final year of a high school student’s secondary school career. The university a student chooses to attend should provide them with a strong academic background and important networks to propel them to a bright future. 

However, what classes should a student take in high school to best prepare themselves for university admission and successful achievement of a post-secondary degree? How do extracurriculars and standardized tests fit into the picture? In what ways can a student build their individual profile to stand out in an international university admission application? 

For university-bound high school students, it is crucial to gather information about potential university destinations and programs of study to develop a student profile that will stand out to admissions representatives. 

Most universities are interested in knowing whether students can balance the demands of a rigorous course load with an active calendar that includes leadership roles, service, sports, internships, and other extracurriculars. 

Students must perform at a high level in a curriculum that provides a comprehensive educational experience while also helping them evolve into quality, high-character human beings who make a positive impact on the local and global communities. 

Education systems need to concentrate on a curriculum that will ensure creativity and imagination while inspiring young people to think outside the box. 

Top companies around the world are seeking employees who are problem solvers, critical thinkers, and capable of collaborating with diverse teams of individuals, and secondary schools and universities are rising to meet this demand. The International Baccalaureate (IB) curriculum is one such framework of learning that is built to develop creative and critical thinkers. 

IB curriculum specializes in inquiry-based learning that emphasizes how students learn rather than what they learn. It enables students to develop the skills and confidence required to solve problems for which there is no obvious answer. 

The IB curriculum can be separated into three segments -- IB Primary Years Program (PYP), IB Middle Years Program (MYP), and IB Diploma Program (IBDP). The programs encourage both personal development and academic achievement, challenging students to think critically, ask the right questions, and think across disciplines. 

An IB education truly fosters diversity, curiosity, and a healthy appetite for learning, allowing students to build an exceptional student profile that will lead them to a great university.

Most importantly, IB enables students to direct their own learning pathway and values student voice and choice in their education. In Bangladesh, International School Dhaka, an International Baccalaureate World School, offers this well-established and internationally recognized curriculum. Under this curriculum, the school utilizes a differentiated learning approach that empowers students and instills them with future-ready skills, eventually helping students enrich themselves into better, more understanding human beings. 

Since its establishment, this school has made significant records with the IB curriculum. The school’s pass rate for IBDP is 92%, with 48% of the candidates receiving a bilingual diploma. Additionally, 8% of diploma candidates from this school receive a score over 40 on average. Apart from that, ISD’s innovative learning method, coupled with the broad IB curriculum, has allowed students to get into globally high-ranked universities, including Ivy League universities in the United States of America.

A carefully designed and well-executed curriculum plays a significant role in students’ lives. The strong curricular alignment ensures that students can achieve the appropriate learning outcomes and develop the approaches to learning that will serve them for their entire lives. 

IB curriculum is a great example of a curriculum that provides students with world-class preparation for university and life in general. With the current challenges facing the globe, curriculums such as this are more relevant and essential than ever. In this type of curriculum, teachers and educators facilitate rigorous learning opportunities while providing students the freedom and responsibility to become lifelong learners.

Chris Boyle is Secondary Principal, International School Dhaka (ISD).


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