What University Students Say

Jesse, U. of Ottawa
· The IB program had a big impact on me.  It helped me develop a good work ethic, and it taught me all kinds of things that I didn’t know I had learned until years later.
· [IB English] taught us to think critically …and I apply it directly to management consulting today.
Jessica, Laurentian U., Psychology
· It’s not the content, it’s the skills.
· Knowing how to take the notes and how to read that level of material critically is really helpful. That’s something you don’t learn in other classes.
· Being responsible for your own work in high school is good training.
· I am not feeling pressured by the fact that some university exams are worth 50% … that doesn’t scare me. (Coordinator’s Note:  Jessica’s IB History exam was worth 80%).
Jackie, U. of Guelph, Sciences
· We are still reviewing IB chemistry in second year.
· Even though I’m a science student, I helped third year history students who are doing “purpose, origin, limitation value” for the first time – we started that in grade 11.
Coordinator’s note: Jackie earned the top mark in first year Analytical Chemistry and an award for her performance in second year Chemistry.
Coordinator’s further note:  Jackie is now in the second year of U of T School of Dentistry.

Jamie, U. of Western Ontario, Math
I only got a “4” in IB Math but at university that has translated to 90% in Calculus (class avg. 65%), 90% in Stats (class avg. 75%) and 85% in Linear Algebra (class avg. 65%)… Everything that we learned for the Probability and Statistics units in IB Math is more than we need to know for the whole course in university… and we learned it in a month with IB!
· Even though I only managed a 4 in IB Math it doesn’t matter; it gets you so well prepared it’s ridiculous.

Keith, U. of Ottawa, Bio-Med
· In Bio-Med, the workload is great, and IB sure helped prepare me for the increased workload. In my program, I estimate that 25 students either quit or switched programs in first year, but all the IB students I know are all still here!

Aidan, U. of Waterloo, School of Architecture
· I’m in Australia now for a co-op term, working for a small architecture firm.
· The most valuable skill I learned in IB was how to time manage. It helped me manage extra-curricular activities, all the while achieving my goals in class. At university, time management is arguably the most crucial skill to have. Through all classes, in all levels of study, it is important to understand how to prioritize in order to use time most effectively. IB provided me with the opportunity to develop my time management skills, while providing a stimulating learning environment.
· IB provides a great opportunity to create, explore, and discover how to accomplish your goals.
Coordinator’s note:  1200 students applied to this program.  500 students were selected to do interviews. 72 students were accepted.  Aidan was one of them.

Megan, U. of Ottawa, Criminology
· IB made my transition from high school to university very easy. The course load here is much lighter than my course load while in IB. My experience in IB helped me to become very organized and to know how to manage my time effectively.
· There are more readings at university than in high school. Going through IB, I alreadyhad experience with independent learning and I don’t find this a difficult adjustment.
· Through the seemingly endless assignments and essays of IB, I developed a strongwriting style and perfected my grammar. Mentors at the Writing Centre have told me that my writing abilities are far above those of most first year university students.
· The other obvious benefit of doing IB would be the transfer credits!!! I have the equivalent of six courses for my 3 HLs. Meaning I will be done university in three and a
half years since I have over a term worth of transfer credits already.

David, U. of King’s College, Nova Scotia
· IB has assisted me greatly in my studies here at King’s College. My university program is supposedly one of the hardest first year programs in North America…well, guess what, so far it’s easier than IB.
· While my contemporaries are freaking out over the amount of work they have to do, I often reply “this is easier than high school!”
· I have an oral exam that virtually mirrors my IB oral exam. Everyone is shaking over the idea of talking into a tape recorder for fifteen minutes. I’m excited for it!
· IB is where you develop all your habits that dictate how you work in your post secondary environment. Aristotle said that habit actualizes moral virtue. Well, I say that habit actualizes academic virtue (which is probably the same as moral virtue…).

Meg, U. of Ottawa, International Development and Globalization
· Written assignments – the ability to form a thesis and cohesive argument is a great ability to have and IB helped shape that ability
· High-stress situations – it is undeniable that IB exams are very stressful. At university, midterms and finals are similar, but because of being through that situation already, I know the best ways to study and prepare myself as well as how to keep calm before, during and after the exams.
· Core French – Given that I am in the French immersion program here, IB’s French program was great at preparing me for that here. Even SL French was better than any other core program at preparing students for French.
Coordinator’s note: Meg was a core French student (FSF) at Weldon, who gained entry to the Ottawa’s University’s French immersion program through her success at IB French SL.

Lynn, Queen’s University, Concurrent Education
Cool things about IB kids and university life:
· Other kids are used to 15-20% exams; we’re used to 50-80%, so at exams, we don’t flip out as much.
· In French and English classes, some students are scared to raise their hand. After doing IOCs and class discussion, we’re more likely to answer questions in class… which means that the prof starts to know who you are.
· After SL History: in my first history seminar, I answered one of the professor’s questions by comparing the primary sources that she had given us and then giving my own opinion. Surprised, she said: “That’s very good. Are you in second year?”

– Math SL kids have already studied derivatives, integrals, matrices, and vectors. This is awesome for when you take first-year math. Other students haven’t necessarily studied all four subjects.
· HL courses = free credits. Yay!
· You’re used to teachers who have very high expectations.
· When your English Lit (or French Lit) professor tells you your exam is a commentary, and everyone else flips out, you’re like, “Just a commentary? Sweet.”
· Your response to everything challenging is: “This is NOTHING compared to writing a 4000-word essay.” Seriously, it actually gives you so much extra confidence.

Graeme, Ryerson
· Our English exam required two essays in two hours. Others were freaking out, but I said “I’ve already done three essays in two and a half hours” for History Paper three.

Kim, Universitat zu Lubeck, Germany, Medicine
· In chemistry and bio I already know or have at least heard of most of the material for the first year…which makes the learning process much easier!
· We don’t get homework here which is also great…but of course they expect us to learn on our own (nothing really new).

 Steve, U. of Ottawa
· I got the equivalent of 15 first year credit’s (two and a half courses). I got 3 in English, 6 in French, and 6 elective credits.
· Right now I’m taking ENG 1121, Literature and Composition II: Drama and Poetry, and compared to IB English, it’s really easy.

Cashlyn, Ryerson, Journalism
· Something that made me glad that I took IB is that when I came to university I figured I was ready for just about anything after it. I’ve found the workload pretty light comparatively.
· In English, my TA has to go over things like annotated bibliographies and comparative essays, but I’ve been doing that since I can remember.
· I hope this helps; tell the kids sometimes it’s tough but they’ll be really, really proud of themselves once they’re done!

Mitch, Trent U., Concurrent Ed
-The content of IB was a huge help! Both my math classes were review until Christmas and really only covered new content for the last quarter of the year.
-I’ve come across one other IB student in my con ed class, and he agrees that university is not nearly as hard once you’ve written essays and done labs on the same deadlines. IB definitely helped in regards to time management. I had three professors that loved to pick identical due dates throughout the year, and without a good sense of time management I really don’t know how I would have made it through. This also meant that I didn’t have to give up extra curriculars or too much sleep, something very few of my friends were able to achieve this year.
Thais, Federal University of Ceará, Brazil, Medicine
I’m in Medicine (here we do a 6-year long program beginning in first year) and loving it. I suppose IB helped me get in… I mean, I probably wouldn’t have got into the program had I not been forced to study hard in those 2 years. 🙂

Coordinator’s note:  Thais came to Weldon (from Brazil) for two years in her grade 11 and 12 years to do the IB programme.  Although Portuguese is her first language, she completed the diploma in English with flying colours.