History is a dynamic, contested, evidence-based discipline that involves an exciting engagement with the past. It is a rigorous intellectual discipline, focused around key historical concepts such as change, causation and significance.  

History is an exploratory subject that fosters a sense of inquiry. It is also an interpretive discipline, allowing opportunity for engagement with multiple perspectives and a plurality of opinions. Studying history develops an understanding of the past, which leads to a deeper understanding of the nature of humans and of the world today. 

The IB Diploma Programme (DP) history course is a world history course based on a comparative and multiperspective approach to history. It involves the study of a variety of types of history, including political, economic, social and cultural, and provides a balance of structure and flexibility. The course emphasizes the importance of encouraging students to think historically and to develop historical skills as well as gaining factual knowledge. It puts a premium on developing the skills of critical thinking, and on developing an understanding of multiple interpretations of history. In this way, the course involves a challenging and demanding critical exploration of the past. 

There are six key concepts that have particular prominence throughout the DP history course. 

Distinction between SL and HL 

Students at standard level (SL) and higher level (HL) are presented with a syllabus that has a common core consisting of prescribed subjects and topics in world history. In addition, students at HL are also required to undertake an in-depth study of three sections from one of the HL regional options. While many of the skills of studying history are common to both SL and HL, the difference in recommended teaching hours at SL and HL signals a clear distinction between the demands made on students, with the greater depth of study required for HL.  

The difference between the history course at SL and the course at HL can be summarized as follows. 

 

SL 

HL 

Syllabus 

The study of one prescribed subject from a choice of five The study of two world history topics from a choice of twelve 

A historical investigation 

The study of one prescribed subject from a choice of five The study of two world history topics from a choice of twelve 

The study of three sections from one HL regional option 

A historical investigation 

Assessment 

Paper 1: A source-based paper set on the prescribed subjects 

Paper 2: An essay paper based on the world history topics Internal assessment (IA): A historical investigation 

Paper 1: A source-based paper set on the prescribed subjects 

Paper 2: An essay paper based on the world history topics 

Paper 3: An essay paper on one of the four HL regional options 

Internal assessment (IA): A historical investigation 

Business management is a rigorous, challenging and dynamic discipline in the individuals and societies subject group. The role of businesses, as distinct from other organizations and actors in a society, is to produce and sell goods and services that meet human needs and wants by organizing resources. Profitmaking, risk-taking and operating in a competitive environment characterize most business organizations.  

Although business management shares many skills and areas of knowledge with other humanities and social sciences, it is distinct in a number of ways. For example business management is the study of decisionmaking within an organization, whereas economics is the study of scarcity and resource allocation, both on micro and macro levels. Business management examines the use of information technology in business contexts, whereas information technology in a global society (ITGS) critically examines its impact on other fields, such as health and government.  

Business management studies business functions, management processes and decision-making in contemporary contexts of strategic uncertainty. It examines how business decisions are influenced by factors internal and external to an organization, and how these decisions impact upon its stakeholders, both internally and externally. Business management also explores how individuals and groups interact within an organization, how they may be successfully managed and how they can ethically optimize the use of resources in a world with increasing scarcity and concern for sustainability. Business management is, therefore, perfectly placed within the individuals and societies subject area: aiming to develop in students an appreciation both for our individuality and our collective purposes.  

The Diploma Programme business management course is designed to develop students’ knowledge and understanding of business management theories, as well as their ability to apply a range of tools and techniques. Students learn to analyse, discuss and evaluate business activities at local, national and international levels. The course covers a range of organizations from all sectors, as well as the socio-cultural and economic contexts in which those organizations operate. 

Emphasis is placed on strategic decision-making and the operational business functions of human resource management, finance and accounts, marketing and operations management. Links between the topics are central to the course, as this integration promotes a holistic overview of business management. Through the exploration of six concepts underpinning the subject (change, culture, ethics, globalization, innovation and strategy), the business management course allows students to develop their understanding of interdisciplinary concepts from a business management perspective.  

The course encourages the appreciation of ethical concerns, as well as issues of corporate social responsibility (CSR), at both a local and global level. Through the study of topics such as human resource management, organizational growth and business strategy, the course aims to develop transferable skills relevant to today’s students. These include the ability to: think critically; make ethically sound and well-informed decisions; appreciate the pace, nature and significance of change; think strategically; and undertake long term planning, analysis and evaluation. The course also develops subject-specific skills, such as financial analysis. 

Distinction between SL & HL 

The HL course in business management differs from the SL course in business management in terms of the:  

  • recommended hours devoted to teaching (240 hours for HL compared to 150 hours for SL) 
  • extra depth and breadth required (extension units for HL)  
  • nature of the internal assessment task  
  • nature of the examination questions. 
Aims
  1. encourage a holistic view of the world of business

  2. empower students to think critically and strategically about individual and organizational behaviour

  3. promote the importance of exploring business issues from different cultural perspectives 

  4. enable the student to appreciate the nature and significance of change in a local, regional and global context

  5. promote awareness of the importance of environmental, social and ethical factors in the actions of individuals and organizations

  6. develop an understanding of the importance of innovation in a business environment 

 

Assessment

Standard Level 

Higher Level 

 

Syllabus

Psychology is the rigorous and systematic study of mental processes and behaviour. It is a complex subject which draws on concepts, methods and understandings from a number of different disciplines. There is no single approach that would describe or explain mental processes and behaviour on its own as human beings are complex animals, with highly developed frontal lobes, cognitive abilities, involved social structures and cultures. The study of behaviour and mental processes requires a multidisciplinary approach and the use of a variety of research techniques whilst recognising that behaviour is not a static phenomenon, it is adaptive, and as the world, societies and challenges facing societies change, so does behaviour. 

Aims
  1. develop an understanding of the biological, cognitive and sociocultural factors affecting mental processes and behaviour
  2. apply an understanding of the biological, cognitive and sociocultural factors affecting mental processes and behaviour to at least one applied area of study
  3. understand diverse methods of inquiry
  4. understand the importance of ethical practice in psychological research in general and observe ethical practice in their own inquiries
  5. ensure that ethical practices are upheld in all psychological inquiry and discussion
  6. develop an awareness of how psychological research can be applied to address real-world problems and promote positive change. 

Assessment

Standard Level 

External assessment (3 hours) 

Paper 1 (2 hours) 

Section A: Three short-answer questions on the core approaches to psychology (27 marks) 

Section B: One essay from a choice of three on the biological, cognitive and sociocultural approaches to behaviour (22 marks) 

(Total 49 marks) 

50% 

Paper 2 (1 hour) 

One question from a choice of three on one option (22marks) 

25% 

Internal assessment (20 hours) 

This component is internally assessed by the teacher and externally moderated by the IB at the end of the course. 

Experimental study 

A report on an experimental study undertaken by the student (22marks) 

25% 

Higher Level 

External assessment (3 hours) 

Paper 1 (2 hours) 

Section A: Three short-answer questions on the core approaches to psychology (27 marks) 

Section B: One essay from a choice of three on the biological, cognitive and sociocultural approaches to behaviour.One, two or allof the essays will reference the additional HL topic (22 marks) 

(Total 49marks) 

40% 

Paper 2 (2 hours) 

Two questions; one from a choice of three on each of two options 

(Total 44 marks) 

20% 

Paper 3 (1 hour) 

Three short-answer questions from a list of six static questions (published in this guide) on approaches to research (24 marks) 

20% 

Internal assessment (20 hours) 

This component is internally assessed by the teacher and externally moderated by the IB at the end of the course. 

Experimental study 

A report on an experimental study undertaken by the student (22marks) 

25% 

Syllabus

Syllabus component 

Teaching hours 

 
 

SL 

HL 

Core 

  • Biological approach to understanding behaviour 
  • Cognitive approach to understanding behaviour 
  • Sociocultural approach to understanding behaviour 

90 

120 

Approaches to researching behaviour 

20 

60 

Options 

  • Abnormal psychology 
  • Developmental psychology 
  • Health psychology 
  • Psychology of human relationships 

20 

40 

Internal assessment 

  • Experimental study 

20 

20 

Total teaching hours 

150 

240