The Anglo European School was the first state school in the UK to offer the International Baccalaureate IB Career Programme (IBCP) and is now one of 214 schools in 23 countries offering this unique programme. The IB is responding to a worldwide trend of developing courses that combine academic skills with practical skills and IBCP has been developed as a result of listening to what employers and universities want from students. Major industries have been involved in the planning of the curriculum.
What is the IBCP?
The IBCP is a relatively new initiative that aims to work with, and support, schools and colleges that wish to add an international dimension to their vocational programme. The IBCP incorporates the educational principles, vision and learner profile of the IB into local school and college vocational programmes and specifically addresses the needs of students engaged in career-related education. The IB’s involvement allows these students to be exposed to elements of an IB education, through a selection of Diploma Programme subjects and a unique IBCP core.
Whilst it has a vocational focus, the IBCP is not a vocational qualification. It has been designed to provide ‘value added’ to schools and other educational institutions that are offering vocational courses to their students.
Since 2010 Anglo European School has been offering this qualification as part of a pilot group of schools. We were the first state school in the UK to offer it. A total of eleven schools from around the world, including schools from Finland, Canada, Hong Kong, Dubai, USA, Australia and Mauritius were also part of the pilot. The IBCP was accredited by OFQUAL in 2011 which allowed the school to offer another fully UK accredited IB programme. The IBCP provides an exciting opportunity for schools and colleges to be involved in the provision of a certificate that focuses on the mix of practical and academic skills needed by students in the 21st century.
In order to study on the IBCP route, students must first meet our general matriculation requirement of 5 GCSEs grades 9-5 including a grade 5 or above in English. The majority of the A Levels that we offer require that the student has obtained a grade 6, or above, in the subject at GCSE in order to study it at A Level (or grade 5 for Vocational A Level Equivalents) and a grade 5, or above, for any subject that they wish to study at IB Standard Level.
Students following this course study two A Levels from the existing A Level provision. One or both must be Vocational A Level Equivalents in: Business Studies, Creative Digital Media or Financial Studies.
In addition students will study two IB Standard subjects. There will also be the opportunity to study GCSE English or Mathematics if needed.
Students will be required to study a foreign language at some level if one is not taken within their A Levels and IB Standard subjects.
They will produce a portfolio of work which demonstrates how their skills in this language have developed over the course.
They are also exclusively allowed to undertake Work Experience during the March of their first year that relates to their Applied A Level.
As well as the course described above students also complete the study of the Core, which is made up of:
- Service Learning – (50 hours) Similar to CAS
- Personal and Professional Skills (90 hours per year) – skills based course. Critical thinking, personal and interpersonal skills (This is a timetabled class)
- Reflective project (40 hours) of 3,000 words. This will be an academic piece of work, linked to an ethical dimension of the Vocational course. This is equivalent to half an AS Level course.
- Language Development – plus a portfolio of work in a foreign language
Students on this course also are potentially also entered for the EPQ (Extended Project Qualification)
Universities see this as a broad course, one that will be accepted as entry into over 40 universities (a number that grows annually), and this is supported by evidence from our previous cohorts, who have all been successfully placed at UK universities. The University of Southampton is the first Russell Group University to formally recognise the CP, and this year Cambridge accepted a CP student to read Education – real recognition not just for the student but the programme too.