Frequently Asked Questions

1. Is the IB an elite program for top students only?
A: No. The IB is not an elite program. However, it is a rigorous and demanding curriculum that requires students to be well-disciplined and all-rounded academically. It also requires that students show traits of the Learner Profile.

2. Is the IB only for students who want to study overseas?
A: No. The IBDP is highly recognized by Hong Kong universities. In fact, a high number of our graduates have opted to stay in Hong Kong even after receiving multiple offers from top overseas universities.

3. What are some similarities and differences between NSS and IB streams?

  • Both the NSS and IB streams offer an excellent pathway into University
  • Both offer breadth and depth (IB: 2 Languages, Maths, Humanities, Science, Elective; NSS: 2 Languages, Maths, + 3 electives)
  • Both require critical thinking and pursuit of knowledge (IB: TOK ; NSS: LS)
  • Both have a focus on the non-academic side (IB: CAS; NSS: OLE)
  • Languages in the IB focuses on literary analysis
  • IB has the Extended Essay (4000 word research paper)
  • In the IB, students must choose from all subject groups meaning possibly less flexibility in subject choices compared with NSS.
  • The IB typically has smaller class sizes.
  • The delivery in the IB focuses on international mindedness
  • The IB uses multiple varied forms of internal and external assessments

4. I’m not good at Chinese. Is IB better for me?
A: That depends. The Chinese A course is literature based. Chinese B is for second-language learners who have not studied Chinese for most of their lives. For example, students who have taken Chinese from Primary school in local schools in Hong Kong will not be considered to take Chinese B.

5. What kind of students is DBS IB looking for?
A: We are looking for students who:

  • Have the potential to complete with program with an IBDP.
  • Benefit from the course.
  • Academically all-rounded.
  • Are highly self-motivated.
  • Possess traits of the IB Learner Profile.

6. What do we study in English and Chinese courses?
A: Language A (English or Chinese) is literature based and requires the students to:

  • Read 10 books at SL and 13 books at HL
  • Analyze, interpret, comment on structure
  • Write essays
  • Do oral presentations

7. Do you offer other languages?
A: We offer French B. If students wish to take another language, it may be possible if it is offered online or if an approved tutor can be arranged by the student at the student’s expense. However this must be approved by the IB Coordinator.

8. Am I suited for the IB?
A: Several ways to find out are to:

  • Do some research about the IB. Search online, talk to current students and teachers, and ask many questions.
  • Ask yourself what you want out of the program.
  • Compare the IB with other available curriculums.
  • Think about your own strengths and weaknesses.
  • Go listen to the Admissions talk in February.

9. What can I do to prepare myself for the admissions process?

  • Carefully read the Admissions section on our website
  • Read the answers to “Am I suited for the IB?”
  • Be yourself

10. Can I take a subject in G11 that I didn’t take in G10?
A : All subjects choices must be approved by the subject teacher and IB Coordinator who will assess their suitability and chances of overall success in the course.