Evaluation of International Baccalaureate Programs in Texas Schools (2010)
State of Texas Education Research Center—Texas A&M University
This study examines the impact of the PYP and MYP in Texas classrooms. No significant differences were found between IB schools and their comparison schools in math and reading achievement as measured by the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills. However, structured classroom observations indicated that favorable instructional practices and student behaviors and activities occurred more frequently in IB classrooms than in non-IB Texas classrooms. Researchers concluded that while this is suggestive that the overall quality of instruction is higher at IB schools, implementation varied from school to school, and some of the favorable instructional practices are used more often in some IB schools than in others. Positive outcomes of the IB as identified by teachers and administrators in case studies included increased teacher collaboration, authentic assessment, increased student motivation for learning, development of critical thinking skills, and increased student global and cultural awareness. Challenges identified by teachers and administrators included staff recruitment and retention, balancing the IB with state and district requirements, the additional time needed for collaborative lesson planning and paperwork, the difficulty and workload for students, student mobility, and lack of support from districts parents or teachers.