My minor IB problems

<p>Hi, currently I am a sophomore in high school. I've decided to join my schools IB Program and go for the full diploma. But I'm unsure whether or not I can get the Diploma because of the foreign language. I also have some problems with the IB science my school offers. I attend John F. Kennedy High School, we are new to the IB world, so at the moment we only have IB Biology. I've talked to the coordinator and my counsoler and they're both uncertain whether or not we'll get IB Physics/IB Chemistry.</p>

<p>Here's my last year schedule and this years':</p>

<p>Freshman year:
English 9
United States History
Physical Education
Spanish 1
Algebra 1
Matter and Energy
Foundation of Technology</p>

<p>Sophomore year (right now):
Pre-IB English 10
AP United States Politics and Government
Honors Health
Spanish 2
Honors Geometry
Honors Biology
Introduction to Engineering Design</p>

<p>Junior year:
IB English
IB History of the Americas
IB Film Studies
IB Theory of Knowledge
IB Mathematics SL
Spanish 3 (IB Spanish 4 by second semester If I can prove I'm good)
IB Biology (Really don't want it...)</p>

<p>Senior year:
The corresponding year 2 classes of the IB program. Not sure what happens after one year of ToK, and either IB Spanish 4, 5, or with ANY luck 6...</p>

<p>As you can see, I want to show improvement from my crappy grades in Middle School and on level courses in Freshman year. I have plans to take Algebra 2 over the summer (I've already started with the materials) so that I'll be nearly on track. Current in Spanish 2 I have near perfect As on each test/quiz. I've heard from an IB upper classmate that he was in French 3 his Junior year, showed well skills in the language, and his teacher sent him to IB French 4 in the second semester. I feel my Spanish is good for a level 2 student, and my teacher agrees. On another note, I REALLY hate Biology, not because its hard, cause it really isn't. I have a near perfect A in Honors Biology right now, and every quarter. But I have goals of going to college and majoring in fields like Astrophysics, Cosmology, Physics, Chemical engineering, and Aerospace engineering. So I'd love to know if I could NOT take IB Biology, and instead take AP Physics and AP Chemistry, while still getting my IB Diploma. From what I'm trying to do in my 2.5 remaining years of high school, do Universities favor this kind of self-improvement and academic growth, or do they expect people to have had a good start right off the bat?</p>

<p>And if you all could give me some information about any chance I could have at getting into Universities like these that'd be great (I have an overall GPA of 3+ ):
-University of Arizona
-University of Alabama
-University of Berkley California
-University of Maryland
and my personal favorite
-University of Cambridge, England</p>

<p>If anyone knows some other Universities with Astrophysics, Physics, Cosmology, and Aerospace Engineering Undergrad/Grad programs please inform me!</p>

<p>Thank for taking the time to read this.</p>

<p>I'm currently an IB Junior at a US school, where we, fortunately, don't have the same problem of being new to the IB world. Scheduling can still be an issue for IB kids everywhere, though!</p>

<p>You asked,
I'd love to know if I could NOT take IB Biology, and instead take AP Physics and AP Chemistry, while still getting my IB Diploma."</p>

<p>I don't know how much research you've done on the IB... but you /must/ take all six subjects IB to get a diploma. I've never heard of an exception being made. That means your language A1, language 2, science, math, everything - as well as doing CAS, the EE, and passing your TOK finals. The IB offers a program called the IB Certificate of Merit that eliminates the center of the hexagon - CAS, EE, etc - and allows you to take five IB classes. Colleges will still look at that as being a very competitive program, especially if you explain why you chose to take AP Physics/Chem.</p>

<p>As for your other questions, I'm heavily humanities-biased myself, so I can't talk about engineering at all. If you have any questions about the IB, feel free to let me know and I'll tell you everything I can.</p>

<p>Well, in the weeks after I wrote this, my school has decided to offer IB Chemistry. Still, I have no idea if we're offering IB Physics. I've asked both the AP Physics teacher and IB Coordinator, but they're both unsure as to "Did enough people sign up for the course".</p>

<p>bumpbumpbump</p>

<p>For the IB Diploma, you need to take a science as your Group 4 subject. That means that you have to take what is generally Biology, Physics, or Chemistry. My school also offers Environmental and Ecological Systems and Societies which might be a more popular alternative to Physics or Chem at your school, were it to offer it because it is an SL course.
IB</a> Diploma Programme curriculum overview</p>

<p>Since you may be unfamiliar with the Diploma structure, I'll try to summarize. You must take 6 IB exams (either 3 Standard Level (SL) with 3 Higher Level (HL) or 4 HL with 2 SLfor a Diploma, complete Community, Action, and Service hours, write a 4000 word Extended Essay, and take ToK your senior year (this has no exam, but has an essay). A good grade in ToK and your Extended Essay score can give added points to your diploma (24 points (with a max of 7 points per exam) are need for a diploma).</p>

<p>You MUST take a foreign language exam for a diploma. Its called International Baccalaureate for a reason.</p>

<p>Only one science could count as your Group 5, and the other could count as an elective, but Film Studies is that for you. You can take more than 6 exams but only 6 count towards the diploma.</p>

<p>If you have a 3+ GPA, apply to schools in England as long as you are getting the IB Diploma. They don't care about GPA's I don't really know from the OP, but you need to have at least 3 Higher Levels and 3 Standard Levels.
University of Cambridge has a score cutoff to even be considered for an interview of 40, with a requirement of 7,7,7 in your IBH subjects.
Oxford has a cutoff of 39, with a requirement of 7,7,6 in your IBH subjects.
You need to have those predicted scores by the time you begin applying to even consider getting into those schools. There are, of course, schools with lower cutoffs, but I am just trying to give you the gist of the work you have to do. </p>

<p>Let's say you take IBH English, History and Film Studies, and SL Spanish, Math, and Chemistry or Biology, if you can do well enough to get into top English schools, then go for it.</p>

<p>Good Luck.</p>

<p>As for the AP vs IB Physics/Calc, some schools put IB students in AP classes and just have them do the IB assessments and some supplemental work on top of the AP work. This is idiotic. AP classes will not teach you the material you need to know to pass the IB exams.</p>

<p>Those applying to domestic schools don't need to actually get their IB Diploma, as your admissions decision is not conditional on receiving it. I know plenty of people who applied to colleges as IB Diploma Candidates, failed their Diploma, and were still allowed to enroll.</p>

<p>
[quote]
The IB offers a program called the IB Certificate of Merit that eliminates the center of the hexagon - CAS, EE, etc - and allows you to take five IB classes. Colleges will still look at that as being a very competitive program, especially if you explain why you chose to take AP Physics/Chem.

[/quote]
</p>

<p>The Certificate program is downright awful. The IB would be far more respected if it stuck to what makes it such a great program - the Diploma. Either take the Diploma or don't take IB. The Certificates are not respected and will usually fail to get you college credit (as most schools only award IB exam credit if you also received your Diploma).</p>