Allan Walker, Darren Bryant and Moosung Lee—Hong Kong Institute of Education
The purpose of this study is to explore and document the impact of the International Baccalaureate continuum on students, teachers and schools in five Southeast Asian countries: Cambodia, Indonesia, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam. The authors used surveys, student examination results, interviews and document analysis to address the research questions. The study found no significant differences between the examination results of continuum students compared with those of students who only participated in the Diploma Programme (DP). The sample students (both continuum and non-continuum) showed moderately positive perceptions of their capacity on the learner profile attributes. Although there were no significant differences between student self-ratings of the attributes “knowledgeable”, “inquirers” and “open-minded”, non-continuum students rated themselves significantly higher on “caring”. In the qualitative portion of the study, both students and teachers reported a narrowing of the curriculum as students progressed through the continuum. Both case study schools suggested, however, that a set of core skills developed in the Primary Years Programme and the Middle Years Programme helped to prepare students for facets of the DP pertaining to: organization and time management, inquiry-based learning, problem solving and criterion-referenced assessment. Lastly, the continuum provides some clear benefits for in-school professional development and teacher collaboration.