The philosophy offered by the Middle Years Programme takes a holistic approach towards education which our students really enjoy. Teaching the idea of concepts gives an MYP student a much broader education compared to the national curriculum.

Ate Hemmes - MYP coordinator, International School of London, London

Middle Years Programme: Frequently asked questions

Find answers to frequently asked questions from schools and teachers in the UK about the International Baccalaureate® (IB) Middle Years Programme:

What is the International Baccalaureate’s Middle Years Programme?

The Middle Years Programme (MYP) is a curriculum framework designed for students aged 11 to 16 years. It is a five year framework of learning that encourages students to become creative, critical and reflective thinkers.

The MYP:

  • Addresses holistically students’ intellectual, social emotional and physical well-being
  • Provides students with opportunities to develop the knowledge, attitudes and skills they need in order to manage complexity and take responsible action for the future
  • Ensures breadth and depth of understanding through study in eight subject groups
  • Requires the study of at least two languages to support students in their own cultures and those of others
  • Empowers students to participate in service within the community
  • Helps to prepare students for further education, the workplace and a lifetime of learning. Students who complete the MYP are well prepared to undertake the International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma Programme (DP) and Career-related Programme (CP).

How does it work?

The MYP curriculum framework comprises eight subject groups, referred to as concepts, spanning several disciplines, to deliver both breadth and depth of learning. Concepts include:
  • Language acquisition
  • Language and literature
  • Individuals and societies
  • Sciences
  • Mathematics
  • Arts
  • Physical and health education
  • Design

The MYP requires at least 50 hours of teaching time for each subject group in each year of the programme. In years 4 and 5 (aged 14 to 16); students have the option to take courses from six of the eight subject groups with certain requirements, to provide greater flexibility in meeting local requirements and individual student learning. As well as studying the eight subject groups, students also participate in community service and complete a long-term project that allows them to demonstrate what they have learned in the MYP.

Community project The community project encourages students in MYP Year 3 or 4 to explore their right and responsibility to implement service and action in the community. Students may complete the community project individually or in small groups. Personal project Each MYP Year 5 student develops a personal project independently, producing a truly personal and creative piece of work that provides an excellent demonstration of their ability to conduct independent work. A unifying thread throughout all MYP subject groups is ‘approaches to learning’ which provide the foundation for independent learning and encourages the application of students’ knowledge and skills in unfamiliar contexts.

Are there external assessments in the MYP?

From 2016, IB has introduced an optional eAssessment model for the final year of the MYP. The eAssessment provides a balanced and age-appropriate strategy that schools can use to validate student achievement. Students demonstrate their understanding and skills through classroom performance, onscreen final examinations and a personal project conducted over a period of time. Students who undertake the eAssessment will receive IB Course Results and the IB MYP Certificate.

What are the advantages of an IB education?

IB World Schools are subject to a strict accreditation process monitored by IB, ensuring that schools provide a high quality education. Teaching methods and curriculums are research-based and draw from the best educational practices around the world. An IB education:

  • Focuses on learners
  • Develops effective approaches to teaching and learning
  • Works within global contexts
  • Explores significant content

Do MYP teachers receive special training?

All MYP teachers receive training and professional development in the IB’s approaches to teaching and learning from certified IB workshop leaders, to continually promote their awareness of current educational practices and new thinking. This is a requirement of IB World Schools implementing the MYP. All teachers who teach in MYP classrooms participate in collaborative planning and reflection to make their teaching practices consistent and to foster a holistic approach to education.

How to become an IB World School?

Schools interested in implementing the MYP must successfully complete an authorisation process. The requirements are the same for all schools and the authorisation process is designed to ensure that schools are well-prepared to implement the MYP successfully. All IB World Schools are required to participate in an ongoing process of review and development using the same programme standards and practices.


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