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It was developed in the early to mid-1960s in Geneva, Switzerland, by a group of international educators.After a six-year pilot programme that ended in 1975, a bilingual diploma was established.Students may instead choose to register for one or more individual IB subjects, without the core requirements. Environmental Systems and Societies SL is an interdisciplinary course designed to meet the diploma requirements for groups 3 and 4, while Literature and Performance SL meets the requirements of Groups 1 and 6.
In 1974, bilingual diplomas were introduced that allowed students to take one or more of their humanities or science subjects in a language other than their first.The first official guide to the programme containing its syllabus and official assessment information was published in 1970 and included the theory of knowledge course.The extended essay was introduced in 1978, but creativity, action, service (CAS), although mentioned in guides beforehand, was not specifically identified in the guide until 1989.Alec Peterson became IBO's first director general, and in 1968, twelve schools in twelve countries participated in the IBDP, including UWC Atlantic College and UNIS of New York.The aim was to "provide an internationally acceptable university admissions qualification suitable for the growing mobile population of young people whose parents were part of the world of diplomacy, international and multi-national organizations." The experimental period ended in 1975, and in that year, the International Baccalaureate North America (IBNA) was established as a separate entity, allowing the funding for implementation of the IBDP to remain in the country rather than being sent to Geneva.British students who take the IB with its six subjects, Extended Essay (EE), Theory of Knowledge (TOK), and Creativity, Action and Service (CAS) receive differently structured university offers to those who sit three A-levels, with universities working to carefully construct appropriate equivalent offer conditions.When he became director of Ecolint's English division, Desmond Cole-Baker began to develop the idea, and in 1962, his colleague Robert Leach organised a conference in Geneva, at which the term "International Baccalaureate" was first mentioned.By 1964, international educators such as Alec Peterson (director of the Department of Education at Oxford University), Harlan Hanson (director of the College Board Advanced Placement Program), Desmond Cole (director of United Nations International School in New York) and Desmond Cole-Baker (head of the International School of Geneva) founded the International Schools Examination Syndicate (ISES).According to Peterson, "the breakthrough in the history of the IB" came in 1965 with a grant from the Twentieth Century Fund, which commissioned Martin Mayer, author of The Schools, to produce a report on the feasibility of establishing a common curriculum and examination for international schools that would be acceptable for entry to universities worldwide.The International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme (IBDP) is a two-year educational programme primarily aimed at 16 to 19 year olds.The programme provides an internationally accepted qualification for entry into higher education and is recognized by many universities worldwide.