Over the next year, PHS will be transitioning from the International Baccalaureate Programme to a rigorous Advanced Placement and honors program that will offer students the opportunity to graduate as AP Scholars. Below are some frequently asked questions regarding the upcoming transition.
Why did Provo High and the Board of Education decide to discontinue IB at PHS?
IB Costs: The IB Programme requires a $10,400 annual fee that is paid by Provo High School as well as a $13,233 yearly IB North America registration fee that has been paid for by the District. Provo High budgets $5000 for travel and supplies for IB teachers and also budgets $14,048 to pay for our IB secretary. Additionally, PHS pays approximately $9000 to cover the prep period for the IB coordinator. The State provides an IB reimbursement that totaled $8000 this year. In sum, the IB Programme is costing approximately $48,000 to run.
Student Costs: Students pay a one-‐time fee of $151.00 to participate in the program and an additional $104.00 per test that they sign up to take.
Enrollment: In 2013, 29 students took IB exams (down from a high of 38 in 2010). We had 11 Diploma Candidate seniors in 2013 with 9 receiving certificates. There are 7 incoming seniors seeking diplomas in 2014. There were 194 student-‐ enrollments in the 21 IB class sections offered in 2012-‐13 (many of these involving the same students). The class-‐ size average of IB students per class was 9 in 2012-‐2013.
When will the IB Programme be discontinued?
The IB Programme will continue in its entirety for the 2013-‐2014 school year, giving seniors who have already completed their junior courses the opportunity to finish the programme and graduate with the diploma as intended.
Will AP courses offer the same rigor, depth, and breadth as IB courses?
Yes. Most of the AP courses will be taught by teachers who have previously taught IB courses, so they are already familiar with the type of questioning, thinking, and rigor that IB/AP students expect and deserve. In fact, of the 14 IB courses currently offered at PHS, 6 are also taught as AP courses. Of those 6 courses offered during the 2012-‐2013 school year, 348 students were enrolled: 270 were seeking AP credit and 78 were seeking IB credit.
What about the PUPs who were planning on continuing with IB courses?
PUPs will be able to continue with the honors cohort in 9th and 10th grade as originally planned and will actually be able to enroll in AP courses in these grades as well, unlike the IB Programme which allows only juniors and seniors to participate. With the opportunity of being able to choose from 20 AP courses as well as numerous honors courses, we are certain PUPs will find a full menu of rigorous coursework available.
Will you be offering any new AP courses?
Yes. Currently many of our IB courses are actually combined with AP courses for students who desire the AP credit rather than the IB credit. The same teachers will be teaching these courses, providing the same rigor, depth, and breadth of work. We will be offering three new AP classes this upcoming school year: AP Physics C-‐Mechanics, AP Human Geography, and AP Music Theory. We will also offer five new AP courses beginning in the 2014-‐2015 school year: AP Biology, AP Environmental Science, AP Computer Science, AP Spanish, and AP Chemistry, bringing our AP offerings to 20.
Will Concurrent Enrollment and Distance Learning also be options?
Absolutely! Provo High has incredible CE and DL programs. During the 2012-‐2013 school year, 399 students participated in Concurrent Enrollment or Distance Learning classes, and 699 courses were completed for a total of 2016 attempted college credits. As a result, students saved a total of $520,222 in tuition dollars.
How can a student become an AP Scholar?
The AP Program recognizes students who have demonstrated superior college-‐level achievement through AP courses and exams with the AP Scholar Awards. Each award-‐ winning student receives an award certificate, and their achievement is acknowledged on any AP score report that is sent to colleges. AP Scholar: Granted to students who receive scores of 3 or higher on three or more AP Exams AP Scholar with Honor: Granted to students who receive an average score of at least 3.25 on all AP Exams taken, and scores of 3 or higher on four or more of these exams AP Scholar with Distinction: Granted to students who receive an average score of at least 3.5 on all AP Exams taken and scores of 3 or higher on five or more of these exams State AP Scholar: Granted to the one male and one female student in each state with scores of 3 or higher on the greatest number of AP Exams and then the highest average score (at least 3.5) on all AP Exams taken National AP Scholar: Granted to students who receive an average score of at least 4 on all AP Exams taken and scores of 4 or higher on eight or more of these exams AP International Diploma (APID): The APID is a globally recognized certificate for students with an international outlook. The APID challenges a student to display exceptional achievement on AP Exams across several disciplines. For more information on the APID, please visit the College Board website at https://apstudent.collegeboard.org/exploreap/the-‐rewards/scholar-‐awards
How do IB and AP programs compare as far as universities are concerned?
According to college admissions officials nationwide (including officials from Harvard, Princeton, and MIT), both programs are considered equally demanding. Often it is more difficult to get college credit for IB courses than for AP courses. Usually IB students can get credits if they earn the full IB diploma, but for individual courses, colleges will often give credit for the AP version but not for the very similar IB version.