IB Middle Years Programme

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The International Baccalaureate Middle Years Programme (IBMYP) is an educational program part of the International Baccalaureate continuum, intended for students aged approximately 11 to 16 (grades 6–10 in International Schools, the United States, Canada, New Zealand, Switzerland and Australia). The program can only be officially offered by schools authorized by the IB. In the United States the program is often taught throughout the middle school years and the first two years of high school. Typically, middle schools and high schools work in coordination with each other when the program can not be entirely hosted within one combined school. The full program lasts 5 years although shorter programs, lasting 2, 3 or 4 years, can be adopted with permission from the International Baccalaureate (IB).[1] Official MYP documentation is available from the IB in English, French, Spanish, Russian and Chinese.[citation needed]

In 2014 the next chapter, a revision to the MYP, was introduced. eAssessments will be the new form of moderation in 2016 and will be required to gain the MYP certificate.[1]

Curricula framework[edit]

Subject groups[edit]

The subjects taught in the MYP are divided into eight subject groups.[2]

  • Language and Literature ("Language A" before 2014)
  • Language Acquisition ("Language B" before 2014)
  • Individuals and Societies ("Humanities" before 2014)
  • Sciences
  • Mathematics
  • Arts
  • Physical and Health Education ("Physical Education" before 2014)
  • Design ("Technology" before 2014)

Schools can choose the subjects they teach within each subject group and how many. However, each subject group must receive a minimum of 50 hours of curriculum time each academic year. In year 4 & 5 however students are only required to take six 50-hour courses under certain conditions.[3] A student could take another "Language and Literature" course if they have sufficient proficiency in both (In MYP4&5 this could replace the Language Acquisition course). Schools are given much flexibility to allow them to introduce subjects which they consider important, and to organize their own student assessment and reporting procedures. However, the MYP gives clear criteria for each subject group. The criteria get progressively harder with the first year of MYP using the MYP1 criteria, then the second and third year using the MYP3 criteria and finally the last two years using the MYP5 criteria.[citation needed] Each year MYP students participate in one interdisciplinary that combines at least 2 of the subject groups; there is a separate criterion for interdisciplinary learning.

The program is based around five "Areas of Interaction": approaches to learning (related to study skills), community and service, human ingenuity, environments, and health and social education. The areas of interaction are considered a key feature of the MYP. They are not generally taught as separate courses, but rather as themes that are reflected in all subjects through unit questions.[citation needed] The community and service area requires students to study and perform community studies and service throughout the program.

In addition to the eight subject groups, in MYP 5, students complete a long-term project (The personal Project) on a topic of their choice, with teacher supervision (this is also graded with its own separate criteria). Students in MYP3-4 complete the community project.

IB MYP Certificate[edit]

The MYP Certificate is the highest award available in MYP. In 2016 the MYP eAssessments will be the new form of the optional external moderation.[4] To receive the MYP Certificate each candidate must complete at least one eAssesment in:

  • Language and literature
  • Individuals and societies
  • Sciences
  • Mathematics
  • Interdisciplinary learning
  • Language acquisition (or second Language and literature)
  • Physical and health education, Arts, or Design
  • The MYP Personal project

The subject with the highest level, within each bullet point above, will be put on the certificate, to be added to create a total out of 56. The pass requirements is that, each group must have a subject with at least a level 3, the total must add to 28 and the candidate must meet the Service and Actions requirements set by the school.[5]

eAssessment in 2016
How it will be marked Type of Assessment Group Offering
Individually, externally marked On Screen Examination Subjects Language and Literature Arabic
Individuals and Societies Geography*
Integrated Humanities*
Sciences Biology*
Integrated Sciences
Mathematics Mathematics
Extended Mathematics*
Interdisciplinary Interdisciplinary learning**
Internally marked, externally moderated with Dynamic sampling Course Work ePortfolio Language Acquisition Arabic
Chinese (Mandarin)
Arts[6][7] Visual art
Integrated Visual Arts
Integrated Performing Arts
Physical and Health Education -
Design[7] Digital Design
Product Design
Combined Design
MYP Personal Project N/A Moderation in Arabic
Moderation in Chinese (Mandarin)
Moderation in English
Moderation in French
Moderation in Japanese
Moderation in Russian
Moderation in Spanish
Moderation in Swedish
Moderation in Turkish

Subjects may be added after the 2016 examinations.

*May not be offered in French or Spanish (all other subjects are)

**Spanish only has interdisciplinary examination in sciences[8]

Assessment criteria[edit]

In MYP, there are different assessment criteria in different subject groups. At the end of the year, the subject teacher will have to give a final score (not average but 'best fit') on each criteria based on the performance throughout the whole year and the criteria will be added up to have a score that will converted to be out of 7. From that, it is inferred that the final year exam does not take up a portion larger than the rest of the tasks and tests and will not affect greatly on the decision of the final grade.

Next Chapter Grade Boundaries
Total Criteria Levels Grade
1-5 1
6-9 2
10-14 3
15-18 4
19-23 5
24-27 6
28-32 7

Unlike other international programmes such as iGCSE, MYP puts greater emphasis on different types of assessments comparatively.

Next Chapter Criteria[edit]

Since 2014 each criteria is out of 8 and each group has 4 criteria (A, B, C, D). The criteria you command words defined by the IB (these words are also used in IBDP questions). Theses are the titles of each of those criteria.

Language and Literature[9]

  • A: Analysing
  • B: Organizing
  • C: Producing Text
  • D: Using Language

Language Acquisition[10]

  • A: Comprehending spoken and visual text
  • B: Comprehending written and visual text
  • C: Communicating in response to spoken and/or written and/or visual text
  • D: Using language in spoken and/or written form

Individuals and Societies[11]

  • A: Knowing and Understanding
  • B: Investigating
  • C: Communicating
  • D: Thinking Critically


  • A: Knowing and Understanding
  • B: Inquiring and Designing
  • C: Processing and Evaluating
  • D: Reflecting on the Impacts of Science


  • A: Knowing and Understanding
  • B: Investigating Patterns
  • C: Communicating
  • D: Applying Mathematics in Real-Life Contexts

The Arts[14]

  • A: Knowing and Understanding
  • B: Developing Skills
  • C: Thinking Creatively
  • D: Responding

Physical and Health Education[15]

  • A: Knowing and Understanding
  • B: Planning for Performance
  • C: Applying and Performing
  • D: Reflecting and Improving Performance

Design [16]

  • A: Inquiring and Analysing
  • B: Developing Ideas
  • C: Creating the Solution
  • D: Evaluating

Interdisciplinary learning[17]

  • A: Disciplinary Grounding
  • B: Synthesizing
  • C: Communicating
  • D: Reflecting

Personal Project[18]

  • A: Investigating
  • B: Planning
  • C: Taking action
  • D: Reflecting

Learner profile[edit]

At the center of the MYP is the IB Learner Profile, which defines the type of students all the IB programmes (PYP, MYP, and DP) are intended to develop.[19]

  • Caring
  • Balanced
  • Open-minded
  • Knowledgeable
  • Communicators
  • Risk-takers
  • Principled
  • Reflective
  • Inquirers
  • Thinkers

Areas of Interaction[edit]

There are five Areas of Interaction (AOIs) which are applied to every course the student takes. They are designed to help students recognize the connection between what they learn in the classroom and the world around them, to tie the various subject areas together, and eventually to help students "see knowledge as an interrelated, coherent whole."[20]

The AOIs should be linked to every topic they learned in class and every assessment they do.

The Areas of Interaction are as follows:

  1. Approaches to Learning – The learning skills that will developed and applied
  2. Community and Service – Understanding your place in the community and how to contribute
  3. Human Ingenuity – What people create and how, and its effect
  4. Environments – relationships with and responsibility to the world around us
  5. Health and Social Education – physical, social, and emotional well-being

Personal Project[edit]

The "Personal Project" a culmination of student learning and a focus of the areas of interaction. Just as with the extended essay in the IB Diploma Programme, students are required to choose an academic or non-academic topic or subject for their project, which they are expected to complete over the course of the school year. Students are required to keep a personal journal while working on the process, and schedule regular meetings with an MYP teacher who will serve as their advisor throughout the year; in addition, a final reflection must be written upon the completion of the project which explains how it ties in with at least one of the Global Contexts.[21][22] To get the MYP certificate, the candidate must get at least 3 out of 7 in the final score.


In order to officially participate in an official IB Middle Years Program, students must attend an authorised IB World School.[23]



The application process, taking 1.5 to 3+ years, to become an IB World School with the MYP can total as much as US$23,000, with additional costs for teacher training, annual fees, and test fees.[24]

The IB publishes candidate fees of US$9500 per year, and US$8920 per year once authorized.[25] Schools are also required to involve their teachers in IB-sponsored professional development, which can cost as much as US$729 per course.[26]


Within the United States, the IB curriculum has been criticized as "non-American" and "non-Judeo-Christian", and for promoting international declarations not endorsed by the U.S. government, such as the Kyoto Protocol and the Earth Charter. In an interview published in IB World magazine, IB was praised for converting students from "national citizens" to "global citizens".[24] The Ambrose School, a Christian academy in Idaho, stated: "classical education bases itself in the traditional Western Christian ideal of Truth, Goodness, and Beauty. The IB pursues a postmodern view of tolerance and relativism."[27] In 2012, the New Hampshire Republican Party stated in its platform that it would "oppose laws and programs contrary to our founding principles such as Sharia Law, the International Baccalaureate Program, UN Agenda 21 or other 'sustainable development' programs."[28]

Evidence of benefit[edit]

In 2011, Greenwich Public Schools reported that they were not able to indicate an improvement in test results at their IB school.[29]

A prospectus published in 2007 by Denver Public Schools (DPS) stated:

There is no available evidence that the IB will increase student achievement in DPS schools or that the IB has had a positive effect on student achievement in similar districts or schools. A thorough search of the literature has netted no empirical studies on the effects of IB on student achievement. The IB, itself, publishes no such results.[30]

On the other hand, the Chicago Tribune reported that in 1998 in that city's Beverly neighborhood, only 67 students in the 8th grade chose to attend the local public high school, which offered an IB program. After a cluster of Beverly schools began the IB Middle Years Program in the 1999–2000 school year, the number of neighborhood 8th graders who chose to attend the local high school increased to about 150. One student was quoted, "I had really good teachers in the IB program."[31][needs update]


  1. ^ a b "Middle Years Programme". International Baccalaureate. Retrieved 2016-01-08. 
  2. ^ "MYP curriculum | International Baccalaureate® - International Baccalaureate®". ibo.org. Retrieved 2016-07-27. 
  3. ^ "Curriculum". International Baccalaureate. Retrieved 2016-01-08. 
  4. ^ "Assessment from 2016". International Baccalaureate. Retrieved 2015-12-09. 
  5. ^ "Grading and awards - International Baccalaureate®". ibo.org. Retrieved 2016-07-27. 
  6. ^ "Arts". International Baccalaureate. Retrieved 2015-12-16. 
  7. ^ a b (PDF) http://www.globaljaya.net/secondary/MYP/Information%20about%20the%20MYP/MYP%20Next%20Chapter/PIP%20and%20other%20support/April%20E%20assessment%20report.pdf.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  8. ^ "Assessment from 2016". International Baccalaureate. Retrieved 2015-12-10. 
  9. ^ (PDF) http://www.ibo.org/globalassets/digital-tookit/brochures/myp-brief_language-literature_2015.pdf.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  10. ^ (PDF) http://www.ibo.org/globalassets/digital-tookit/brochures/myp-brief_language-acquisition_2015.pdf.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  11. ^ (PDF) http://www.ibo.org/globalassets/digital-tookit/brochures/myp-brief_individuals-societies_2015.pdf.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  12. ^ (PDF) http://www.ibo.org/globalassets/digital-tookit/brochures/myp-brief_sciences_-2015.pdf.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  13. ^ (PDF) http://www.ibo.org/globalassets/digital-tookit/brochures/myp-brief_mathematics_2015.pdf.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  14. ^ (PDF) http://www.ibo.org/globalassets/digital-tookit/brochures/myp-brief_arts_2015.pdf.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  15. ^ "International Baccalaureate Middle Years Subject Brief Physical and health education" (PDF). 
  16. ^ (PDF) http://www.ibo.org/globalassets/digital-tookit/brochures/myp-brief_design_2015.pdf.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  17. ^ (PDF) http://www.ibo.org/globalassets/digital-tookit/brochures/myp-brief-interdisciplinary-learning-2015-en.pdf.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  18. ^ (PDF) http://www.ibo.org/globalassets/digital-tookit/brochures/myp-brief_personal-project_2015.pdf.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  19. ^ (PDF) http://www.ibo.org/globalassets/publications/recognition/myprecognitionbrochurerevdec2013.pdf.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  20. ^ "IB MYP curriculum, Areas of Interaction". ibo.org. Retrieved 2010-04-21. 
  21. ^ "IB MYP curriculum, Personal Project". ibo.org. Retrieved 2010-04-21. 
  22. ^ "MYP: A closer look at the Personal Project". ibo.org. Retrieved 2010-04-21. 
  23. ^ "General FAQ". ibo.org. Retrieved 2009-07-31. 
  24. ^ a b McGroarty, Emmett (May 26, 2011). "International Baccalaureate Undermines U.S. Founding Principles". U.S. News & World Report. 
  25. ^ http://www.ibo.org/become/fees/index.cfm
  26. ^ "Professional Development, Workshops and Events". International Baccalaureate Organization. Retrieved December 2013. 
  27. ^ "A Perspective on the International Baccalaureate". Ambrose School. Retrieved October 2013. 
  28. ^ "Platform: Statement of Principles". New Hampshire Republican Party. September 29, 2012. 
  29. ^ Chamoff, Lisa (Feb 23, 2011). "To IB or Not to IB?". Greenwich Citizen. 
  30. ^ "Denver Public Schools: International Baccaulariate Prospectus" (PDF). Denver Public Schools. Jan 22, 2007. 
  31. ^ Olszewski, Lori (June 25, 2002). "World Class Education in Middle Schools Too". Chicago Tribune. 

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