Upper School (Grade 6 – 12)
Grade 6-10: Middle Years Programmes
Grade 11 & 12: Diploma Programmes
We are a 3-Programme IB World School with a successful IB Diploma Programme in Grades 11 and 12, and IB Middle Years Programme for Grades 6-10. As such, the IB mission statement and the IB Learner Profile pervades everything we do in the Upper School – developing students who will make the world a better and more peaceful place is not something we take lightly!
We recognize that the tremendous academic success of our student body would not be possible if we did not work so hard to make sure they were available for learning. We do this by focusing on approaches to teaching with our staff and approaches to learning with our students. Whether students leave us to go to pursue their post-secondary dreams or move with their families to other schools around the world, we try to make sure we provide them with a toolbox of learning and life skills – what we sometimes refer to as “learning to learn” and “knowing how to know”. These include skills in communication, thinking, self-management, research and social skills, including the so-called ‘soft-skills’ that we know to be some of the hardest for students to acquire – resilience, perseverance, self-motivation, and mindfulness.
Our core program in Grades 6-10 consists of Language & Literature, Language Acquisition (a choice of Mandarin, Spanish or French), Sciences, Individuals and Societies, Health and Physical Education, Mathematics, Design and the Arts (a choice of Music, Drama, Media and Visual Arts). These are delivered with the big picture in mind, purposefully contextualized to ensure students can see connections between their learning and the world around them, with some space to inquire and pursue their own interests, and with timely and actionable feedback built in to the process to ensure continuous growth. In addition, students have thirty minutes a day in Dragon Time – a fantastic opportunity to work in small groups with an advisor in a number of key areas including, social-emotional well-being, learning skills development, career-counselling as well as school and community spirit initiatives.
Our Diploma Programme caters to students in Grades 11-12 and is recognized as the gold standard in preparing students for the rigors of University and beyond into their future careers. We work closely with students to select appropriate courses that will lead to successful placement in the eventual programs of their choice in the University of their choice.
SCIS is not just about what happens in the classroom and we have a thriving and successful athletics program, a vibrant performing arts scene with performances in drama, music, and dance happening regularly as well a burgeoning service culture with students working in our community and taking meaningful action.
Middle Years Programme (MYP)
Grade 6 – Grade 10
Distinctive Features of the MYP
- Key and related concepts are big ideas, which form the basis of teaching and learning in the MYP. They ensure breadth and depth in the curriculum and promote learning within and across traditional disciplines.
- Global contexts provide shared starting points for inquiry into what it means to be internationally minded, framing a curriculum that promotes multilingualism, inter-cultural understanding and global engagement.
- Approaches to teaching and learning, a unifying thread throughout all MYP subject groups, are skills which help students manage their own learning. They provide a foundation for success in further education and the world beyond the classroom.
- Action and service, essential components of the MYP, set out clear learning outcomes that grow from students’ participation in local and global communities. MYP projects are informed by respected models of service learning and provide stepping stones toward the Diploma Programme’s core requirements for Creativity, Action and Service (CAS).
- The personal project, for students completing the programme in year 5, is a culminating experience in which students apply their approaches to learning skills to complete an extended, self-directed piece of work. This required component provides opportunities for creative and truly personal demonstrations of learning.
10 reasons why the IB Middle Years Programme (MYP) encourages you to become a creative, critical and reflective learner
MYP Course Requirements
The grid below lists all of the courses available to SCIS MYP students according to the subject group and year level. Important details to note are:
- Unless indicated, all courses below are year-long courses.
- Each student is required to take eight courses, usually one per subject group. Grade 9-10 students have additional flexibility and may choose additional language or arts courses in lieu of courses in Groups 6 or 7.
- Korean and Mandarin Language and Literature courses are only open to native speakers of the language.
- In Grades 6-8, Design and Visual Arts are required semester courses that split the year with students taking Design in the first semester and Visual Arts in the second semester or vice versa.
- Language Acquisition (second language), students may study Mandarin, French, or Spanish. Students identified for EAL may also take English B. Students will be placed in the Phase that best corresponds with their language levels, language acquisition abilities, attitude and effort.
You can find out more information about our MYP programmes in these brochures:
SCIS Middle Years Programme Video
Diploma Programme (DP)
Grade 11 & Grade 12
Distinctive Features of the DP
- The IB Diploma Programme (IBDP) is widely recognized as one of the most prestigious and challenging pre-university courses, being accepted in 3,300 universities from 90 countries
- The benefits of an IB education are especially strong when it comes to
higher education. Top universities from around the world have shown how they value the IB’s credentials by building special pathways for IB students; by granting credit or advanced standing for performance on IB exams; or even by providing scholarships for IB students.
- DP students tend to complete their undergraduate degrees at higher rates than their peers, and often in less time.
- IB students can tend to make more contributions to campus life by participating in activities such as community service, tutoring, assisting faculty in research, study abroad, internships, and joining clubs and other student groups.
- the IB goes to great lengths to ensure the validity and reliability of our assessments. IB assessments have been demonstrated as strong predictors of university performance.
- IBDP students have been cited as demonstrating the following skills:
– Interest and experience in research
– Time management and organizational skills
– Critical thinking, inquiry and problem solving
– Strong language and writing skills
– International-mindedness and a sense of responsibility for the community.
DP Course Selection:
In the Spring of their Grade 10 year, or on enrollment in Grades 11-12, all students will have an individual course selection conference with the DP Coordinator, the College Counselor, and at least one of their parents. Course selection is intended to allow students to pursue their current interests, and prepare them for their chosen pathways to higher education and beyond.
For IB Diploma students, course selections must meet the following requirements:
- At least one Language & Literature class (Language A).
- At least one Language Acquisition class (Language B). This requirement is waived for students enrolled in two Language A classes.
- At least one Individuals & Societies class
- At least one Science class*
- Exactly one Math class
- The Core Block, which includes TOK (Theory Of Knowledge), Research Skills, and coordination of EE (Extended Essay) and CAS (Creativity, Activity, Service), is required for all students in Grades 11and Grade 12.
- Course selection must allow for three Higher Level and three Standard Level courses.
SCIS Diploma candidates who choose not to pursue the full IB Diploma will work with the College Counselor and DP coordinator to develop an individualized program which meets all graduation requirements.
Standard Level (SL) classes meet for a minimum of 150 hours over the two years of the program while Higher Level (HL) classes meet for 240 hours. The extended meeting times for HL classes reflect the greater depth and complexity of the content studied. Most SCIS classes are taught with the levels combined. SL students are normally released for self-study during while HL content is being covered.
- Completion of six IB-DP courses meeting subject group requirements, with at least three taken at a Higher Level.
- All assessment components for each of the six subjects and the core Diploma requirements must be completed in order to qualify for the award of the IB Diploma.
- The IB Diploma will be awarded to a candidate provided all the following requirements have been met.
- CAS requirements have been met.
- The candidate’s total points are 24 or more.
- There is no “N” awarded for theory of knowledge, the extended essay or for a contributing subject.
- There is no grade E awarded for theory of knowledge and/or the extended essay.
- There is no grade 1 awarded in a subject/level.
- There are no more than two grade 2s awarded (HL or SL).
- There are no more than three grade 3s or below awarded (HL or SL).
- The candidate has gained 12 points or more on HL subjects (for candidates who register for four HL subjects, the three highest grades count).
- The candidate has gained 9 points or more on SL subjects (candidates who register for two SL subjects must gain at least 5 points at SL).
- The candidate has not received a penalty for academic misconduct from the Final Award Committee.
- A maximum of three examination sessions is allowed in which to satisfy the requirements for the award of the IB Diploma. The examination sessions need not be consecutive.
You can find out more information about our DP programmes in this brochure:
Upper School Academic Handbook
SCIS Diploma Programme Video
SCIS High School Diploma Requirements
Students who opt out of the full IB Diploma will work toward the WASC accredited SCIS High School Diploma. SCIS Diploma students must complete a minimum of 25 year-long course credits during grades 9-12, and meet core requirements.
SCIS courses earn 1 credit per year, or 0.5 credits per semester. Students are expected to maintain a full courseload during every year of enrollment.
Students with ILPs under the Learning Support program, may work towards modified expectations, as appropriate.
Extended Essay: An individually researched scholarly essay connected to one of the subject groups, supervised by the EE Coordinator and internally assessed.
Creativity, Activity, Service: Engagement in a range of experiences leading to progress toward the CAS Learning outcomes.
Theory of Knowledge: Internally assessed completion of Theory of Knowledge requirements.
|Language and Literature||4|
|Individuals & Societies||3|
|Arts & Design||2|
|Physical and Health Education||2|
|Total Credits Required||25|
Highlights of Upper School
While classes, friends, sports, and the arts form the backbone of high school, there are a few special events that happen throughout the year. Click through below to see some of the highlights High Schoolers experience at SCIS.
MYP Personal Project
Job Shadow Program
- Grade 6 China Trip: Nanbeihu.
- Grade 7 China Trip: Yaolin.
- Grade 8 China Trip: Chengdu and Sichuan Province.
- Grade 9 China Trip: Fuijin, Xiamen.
- Grade 10 China Trip: Inner Mongolia.
- Grade 11 China Trip: Guizhou Province.
- Grade 12 China Trip: Hainan Island.
Disneyland Field Trip
Task #1: to calculate the height of the tallest tower of the Disney castle using trigonometric methods.
Task #2: to investigate circular motion using acceleration data and Calculus to write vector equations for acceleration, velocity, and displacement.
Task #3: to record and analyze examples of how Shanghai Disney manages physical evidence in an innovative and/or culturally appropriate way.