Many national and state systems, as well as individual universities, have their own equivalencies for DP performance. These include the UK’s UCAS conversion, the Australian ATAR conversion, and India’s AIU conversion, among others.
What does international research suggest?
Over the last 10 years several qualification bodies and research institutions have compared elements of DP course curriculums and assessments with others courses of study.
Overall findings from the research have been very favourable for the DP.
The Education Policy Improvement Center undertook a four-year project to create a set of academic-content standards in eight DP subject areas and determined the degree to which these standards aligned with accepted college-readiness standards.
In 2012, the UK’s Ofqual compared A levels to 19 other curriculums/examinations, including the IB Diploma Programme. The DP material was highly regarded in a number of areas.
In the US, a comparison of four DP standard level (SL) courses (biology, mathematics, language A and world history) and similar Advanced Placement (AP) courses assigned the DP SL courses equal or higher grades than the AP courses.
The University of Delhi’s comparative analysis of course materials and assessments from the DP, the Indian Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) and the Council for the Indian School Certificate Examination (CISCE) found that, in comparison, DP courses were often more comprehensive and exhaustive than other courses; that they encouraged multiple perspectives; and that they developed analytical, critical and evaluative abilities.
What has IB research shown so far?
The IB's own research shows that IB students are well-prepared for higher education.
• Research on DP students in Canada, the UK and the USA found that the DP’s extended essay, a 4,000-word piece of self-directed research, improves students’ approach to learning in higher education.
• A 2014 study on the IB Diploma Programme (DP) in the USA suggested that students who participated in the DP during high school are more academically adjusted to the expectations of higher education providers.
Read about IB research.