The DP Curriculum

The DP curriculum is made up of three mandatory core components – a theory of knowledge (TOK) course, an extended essay (EE) based on independent research, and participation in creativity, action, service (CAS) – along with six subject groups. 

Theory of Knowledge (TOK) is a mandatory part of the IB Diploma Programme core that requires students to reflect on the nature of knowledge to understand how we know what we claim to know.

The TOK course takes up 100 teaching hours over the period of two years. It is assessed through an oral presentation and a 1600 word essay. The presentation is based on the application of TOK thinking to a real-life situation while the essay encompasses conceptual elements.

The Extended Essay (EE) is another component of the IB Diploma Programme core that is mandatory. The students are required to submit a 4000 word paper based on an independent, self-directed piece of research.

Students may choose to either investigate a topic of special interest to them, also related to their six DP subjects, or they may undertake an essay in world studies where they carry out an in-depth interdisciplinary study of an issue that has global significance.

Creativity, Activity, Service (CAS) is another one of the three mandatory core elements of the IB Diploma Programme. Students are required to be involved in a range of activities alongside their academic studies involving creativity, sports and community service. 

CAS is not formally assessed but students reflect upon their experiences as a part of the DP curriculum providing evidence of the CAS learning outcomes.

Over the course of the two-year IB Diploma Programme, students are required to successfully complete all three DP core components and study six subjects chosen from the six subject groups:

Group 1

Studies in Language and Literature

Group 2

Language Acquisition

Group 3

Individuals and Societies

Group 4


Group 5


Group 6

The Arts

English  SL/ HL

French Ab Initio

Business Management SL/ HL

Biology SL/ HL

Mathematics SL

Visual Arts SL/ HL

Urdu SL/ HL


Psychology SL/ HL

Chemistry SL/ HL

Mathematics HL

 Music SL/ HL 



Global Politics SL/ HL

Physics SL/ HL

Mathematical Studies SL









Generally students are required to choose one course from each subject group. However, there are other possible streams: 

- Students also have the choice to study an additional sciences, individuals and societies, or languages course, instead of a course in the arts.  

- Medical students may opt for three sciences from group 4.
- A Bilingual Diploma can be done in which students opt for 2 languages from group 1.

Subjects are offered at higher level (HL) and standard level (SL). Although the HL and SL courses differ in scope, they are measured according to the same grade descriptors. 

Each student is required to opt for three subjects at higher level, and three at standard level. SL subjects take up 150 teaching hours over the two year programme while HL subject take up 240 teaching hours.