• International Baccalaureate


    Grade 11 to Grade 12

    (Age 16-19)


Fostering academic excellence

The International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme (IB DP)  is an academically challenging two-year pre-university curriculum and highly regarded qualification with final external examinations that prepare students aged 16 to 19 for success at university and life beyond. It has been designed to address the intellectual, social, emotional and physical well-being of students. The programme has gained recognition and respect from the world’s leading universities.


Outstanding IB results

Congratulations to the GEMS World Academy Singapore Class of 2020!  Our students have demonstrated remarkable resilience and fortitude by completing an outstanding academic journey and exceeding international benchmarks. 


Developing Confident Leaders

The broad and balanced curriculum of the IB DP creates a strong pathway to university. It develops students that top universities want: students with expert subject knowledge and the ability to undertake independent research, write essays and give confident presentations.

The IB DP combines breadth in Standard Level subjects with depth in academically rigorous Higher Level subjects and each subject combination can tailor-made for the individual student. 

Beyond academic rigour, our curriculum nurtures lifelong learners by putting personal development at its core. It equips students with essential skills and prepares them for the demands and rigours of further study and employment in the 21st century.

Key facts about the IB Diploma Programme 


The International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme (IBDP), the curriculum consists of six subject groups and the DP Core, comprising Theory of Knowledge (TOK), Creativity, Activity, Service (CAS) and the Extended Essay.

Through the DP Core, students reflect on the nature of knowledge, complete independent research and undertake a project that often involves community service.

Through the DP, GEMS (Singapore) aims to develop students who:

  • have excellent breadth and depth of knowledge
  • flourish physically, intellectually, emotionally and ethically
  • study at least two languages
  • excel in traditional academic subjects
  • explore the nature of knowledge through the programme’s unique theory of knowledge course

The DP focuses on rigorous academic study, within a broad and balanced curriculum, which can prepare students well for employment. Students in the DP also have the opportunity to apply their knowledge and skills to community service, gaining valuable experience outside the academic world. 

You may also be interested in the IB Career-related Programme (CP), a unique programme specifically tailored for students who wish to engage in career-related learning. Our unique partnerships with Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University and the Savannah College of Arts & Design provide university freshman courses and credits, accelerating progress towards your child’s career in anything from Fine Arts, Business Management and Cybersecurity to User Experience, Aeronautics and Aeronautical Engineering. 

Course overview

Grade LevelSubject groupsMethod of delivery Max  student:teacher ratioCourse duration

Grade 11-12

Students must select six subjects by choosing
one from each of the six subject groups:

Group 1 - Language A
Group 2 - Language Acquisition
Group 3 - Individuals and Societies
Group 4 - Experimental Sciences
Group 5 - Mathematics
Group 6 - Arts and Electives  

  • Face-to-face
  • 8:45 am - 3:30 pm


9.3 months

Students must select three subjects at a higher level (HL / 240 teaching hours) and three subjects at standard level (SL / 150 teaching hours). 

The sixth subject may be an arts subject chosen from group 6 or the student may choose another subject from groups 1 to 5.  



GEMS (Singapore) DP students select courses from the following subject groups to fulfil IB DP requirements and GEMS (Singapore) graduation requirements.

DP students must choose one course from each of five subject groups delivering a breadth of knowledge and understanding in their best language, additional language(s), individuals and societies, the sciences and mathematics. Furthermore, students must also choose either an art course from the arts group or a second course from one of the other subject groups.

Group 1 - Language A
Group 2 - Language Acquisition
Group 3 - Individuals & Societies
  • English Literature (SL/HL)
  • English Language and Literature (SL/HL)
  • Language A Self taught (SL)1
  • Chinese Literature (SL/HL)
  • French Literature (SL/HL)
  • Japanese A (SL/HL)
  • Spanish Ab Initio (SL)
  • French Ab Initio (SL)
  • Spanish B (SL/HL)
  • French B (SL/HL)
  • Chinese B (SL/HL)
  • English B (SL/HL)
  • History (SL/HL)
  • Economics (SL/HL)
  • Environmental Systems and Societies (SL, Group 3 or 4)
  • Business Management (SL/HL)
  • Psychology (SL/HL)
Group 4 - Experimental Sciences
Group 5 - Mathematics
Group 6 - Arts and Electives
  • Biology (SL/HL)
  • Chemistry (SL/HL)
  • Physics (SL/HL)
  • Environmental Systems and Societies (SL, Group 3 or 4)
  • Sports, exercise and health science (SL/HL)
  • Design Technology (SL/HL)
  • Mathematics: analysis and approaches (SL/HL)
  • Mathematics: applications and interpretation (SL)
  • Visual Arts (SL/HL)
  • Theatre (SL/HL)

1 Students are able to take this subject offering in lieu of any Language A subjects should GEMS World Academy (Singapore) not offer the language of your choice


The DP core elements are Theory of Knowledge, Extended Essay and Creativity, Activity and Service. These are compulsory if you wish to receive the full IB Diploma.

Theory of Knowledge

The Theory of Knowledge (TOK) course invites students to reflect on their learning experience by considering ways of knowing and how we use them in the different areas of knowledge so that they can address fundamental questions about themselves as knowers. The fundamental question of the Theory of Knowledge (TOK) is ‘how do we know what we know’. The TOK course looks at the ways in which we acquire knowledge and the knowledge problems involved in the IBDP subject areas, as well as in areas such as ethics, law, politics and religion. It also focuses on other influences on our understanding of the world such as the media or our different cultural backgrounds. The TOK is assessed through an oral presentation and a 1600-word essay on one of the six prescribed titles for the examination session. Full IB Diploma students are required to have at least 100 hours of TOK course time by the end of Grade 12.

Extended Essay

The Extended Essay (EE) is an in-depth study of a focused topic of the student’s choice. This is normally one of the student's six chosen subjects for those taking the full IB Diploma or a subject that a Diploma Course student has a background in. It is intended to promote academic research and writing skills, providing students with an opportunity to engage in personal research in a topic of their own choice, under the guidance of a supervisor (an appropriately qualified member of staff within the school). The EE is presented as a formal piece of sustained academic writing containing no more than 4000 words, accompanied by a reflection form of no more than 500 words. It is the result of approximately 40 hours of work by the student.

To find out more about the Extended Essay, please refer to the GEMS World Academy (Singapore) Extended Essay Handbook and Guide.

Creativity, Activity & Service

To be awarded the IB Diploma, students are required to complete a substantial commitment to each of the three Creativity, Activity & Service (CAS) components. CAS is at the heart of the IBDP, involving students in a range of activities that take place alongside their academic studies. Students are involved in a range of activities beyond the academic classroom and encouraged to develop your own projects:

  • Creative - exploring and extending ideas leading to an original or interpretive product or performance. This may include visual and performing arts, digital design, writing, film, culinary arts and crafts.
  • Active - physical exertion contributing to a healthy lifestyle. Pursuits may include individual and team sports, dance, outdoor recreation, fitness training, and any other form of physical exertion that purposefully contributes to a healthy lifestyle.
  • Service - community and social service activities.

The CAS programme formally begins at the start of the Diploma Programme and continues regularly (ideally on a weekly basis) for at least 18 months with a reasonable balance between creativity, activity, and service.


Students take written examinations at the end of the programme which are marked by external IB examiners. Students also complete assessment tasks in the school which are either initially marked by teachers and then moderated by external moderators or sent directly to external examiners.

The marks awarded for each course range from 1 (lowest) to 7 (highest). Students can also be awarded up to three additional points for their combined results on the theory of knowledge and the extended essay.

The student will be awarded a diploma if they gain at least 21 points, subject to certain minimum levels of performance, including successful completion of the three essential elements of the DP core. 

In order to attain the IB Diploma, a candidate must fulfil a number of requirements, including:

  • gain at least 21 points in total
  • a grade A-D in TOK and the EE
  • 12 points or more on HL subjects
  • 9 points or more on SL subjects
  • CAS requirements have been met

All students who successfully complete requirements for graduation will also receive GEMS (Singapore) High School Diploma, which is accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC).

A typical day at GEMS (Singapore) is filled with engaging, hands-on, experiential learning, developing students’ academic outcomes, nurturing core human values and building real-life skills.

Students are active participants in their own learning and they are inspired to question, experiment and engage with global challenges through inquiry, action and reflection. Click here to review a sample timetable and daily activities.

How to find out more