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International Baccalaureate

The IB Mission Statement

The International Baccalaureate® aims to develop inquiring, knowledgeable and caring young people who help to create a better and more peaceful world through intercultural understanding and respect.

To this end the organization works with schools, governments and international organizations to develop challenging programmes of international education and rigorous assessment.

These programmes encourage students across the world to become active, compassionate and lifelong learners who understand that other people, with their differences, can also be right.

The IB Learner profile is the IB mission statement translated into a set of learning outcomes for the 21st century. The profile describes the personal attributes the program aims to develop in learners.

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The International Baccalaureate (IB) was founded in Geneva, Switzerland in 1968. Today there are over 5,500 IB World Schools in 160 countries. Wausau East has been an IB school since 1978, being one of the earliest public schools to become an IB school in the United States.

The Diploma Programme is a balanced and challenging program for juniors and seniors. It is a holistic program that aims to develop student intellect, emotional and physical well-being, and a respect and appreciation for those with differing perspectives.  By studying in the IB Diploma Programme, students develop core skills for success at university and life beyond high school. Through the programme, students develop: 

  • an understanding of and appreciation for research
  • presentation and communication skills

  • critical thinking skills

  • report writing skills

  • a sense of international mindedness and cultural understanding

  • time management skills

It offers courses in six subject groups. Students may select specific IB classes according to their interests and abilities. They may also challenge themselves as full IB Diploma candidates. 

At Wausau East the following IB courses are offered:

  • Group 1: IB English A: Literature HL

  • Group 2: Language B (Global Language Acquisition) SL  (French, German, and Spanish)

  • Group 3: Cultural Anthropology SL, History HL, Psychology  HL

  • Group 4: Biology HL, Chemistry SL, Physics HL

  • Group 5: Mathematics: Applications & Interpretations SL, Mathematics: Analysis & Approaches SL

  • Group 6: Visual Arts SL, Visual Arts HL

  • The Core: Extended Essay, CAS, TOK

If you would like to see the course description and aims, subject topics, or the assessment format for any of these courses navigate to the course selection guidance provided by the IB.

Requirements for the IB Diploma

Students pursuing the IB Diploma must examine in each of the six subject groups over the junior and senior years. Students may substitute an additional group 3 or 4 class for group 6. The students must test in three Higher Level (HL) and three Standard Level (SL) courses or four HL and two SL courses.

In addition to their coursework, those seeking the IB Diploma must complete the Diploma Programme core:

  • The extended essay is a research paper done outside of their coursework. Students will answer an in-depth question related to at least one DP subject they are studying. This work is done with the guidance of the IB Coordinator and an advisor in the content area.

  • The Theory of Knowledge course is designed to help students integrate the viewpoints, ideas, content, and methods of the six subject groups. Students are encouraged to think critically on the nature of knowledge. 

Creativity, Activity, Service (CAS) provides students with the opportunity to create a portfolio documenting activities involving community service and self-improvement. Creativity encourages students to explore their own sense of original thinking and expression. The aim of activity is to promote lifelong healthy habits for physical well-being. Service to the community helps students to look outside themselves to help others in meaningful ways.


IB assessments fall into two categories: internal assessments and external assessments. In all IB courses both types of assessments have been designed by the IB.

Internal assessments are a significant work that is done under the guidance of the classroom teacher using IB criterion. This is a paper, research project, oral assessment, or experiment done in class, is graded by the classroom teacher, and sent to the IB for moderation.This component can be 20-40% of the final composite grade, depending on the subject area.

External assessments are the examinations that students may take upon completion of their IB coursework. These examinations are graded by IB examiners. Assessment is criterion based, meaning that student performance is measured against assessment criteria that are pre-determined and not against the performance of other students. This component can be 60-80% of the final composite grade, depending on the subject area.

Follow this link if you would like to read more on IB Assessment and Exams

Anyone who is enrolled in an IB class, has completed the Internal Assessment,  and is in good academic standing can take the IB exam in that subject. For all higher level (HL) and some standard level (SL) courses, both years of instruction need to be taken to be eligible to take the exam. 

The IB exam schedule is not flexible; there are no make-up dates for exams. Check your calendars to make sure that you are available on the dates of the exams you are considering taking.

Wausau East High School IB Exam Schedule 2024