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Film – International Baccalaureate

Course Description:

Film is both a powerful communication medium and an art form. The Diploma Programme film course aims to develop students’ skills so that they become adept in both interpreting and making film texts.

Through the study and analysis of film texts and exercises in film-making, the Diploma Programme film course explores film history, theory and socio-economic background. The course develops students’ critical abilities, enabling them to appreciate the multiplicity of cultural and historical perspectives in film. To achieve an international understanding within the world of film, students are taught to consider film texts, theories and ideas from the points of view of different individuals, nations and cultures.

The IB film course emphasizes the importance of working individually and as a member of a group. Students are encouraged to develop the professional and technical skills (including organizational skills) needed to express themselves creatively in film.

Prior knowledge:

The IB film course recognizes that all students come to the course with previously acquired knowledge and experience in a wide range of areas. Indeed, the integration of this “personal backpack” into the two-year learning journey is a fundamental element considered in the construction of an IB film course.

However, access to the course does not depend upon prior learning in film. Since the course is designed to enable a student personally to experience film, growth in the discipline is reflected in how that student develops, extends and refines the knowledge, skills and attitudes necessary for the pursuance of the art form. This individual perspective is reflected in the criterion-based approach to assessment that allows students to calibrate their own personal development over the two years.

Students’ individual ability to be creative, imaginative and to communicate in film form is challenged and extended through the theoretical and practical content of the course.

Course Contents:

Part 1: Textual analysis

The detailed study of film sequences.

Part 2: Film theory and history

The study of films and film-making traditions from more than one country.

^ Part 3: Creative process—techniques and organization of production

The development of creative, analytical and production skills within film-making.

Assessment: ( Standard/Higher Level)

External assessment 50%

  • Independent study 25% Rationale, script and list of sources for a short documentary on an aspect of film theory and/or film history, based on a study of a minimum of two films. The chosen films must originate from more than one country.
  • ^

    Presentation 25% An oral presentation of a critical analysis of an extract from a prescribed film.

Internal assessment 50% This component is internally assessed by the teacher and externally moderated by the IBO at the end of the course.

  • ^

    Production portfolio 50%

One completed film project, with accompanying written documentation.

While the film project may be undertaken as a group project, all accompanying documentation must be individually produced.


A range of films of prescribed and recommended films will be available at the start of the course; as will useful books from the Media department.


Theory of Knowledge-International Baccalaureate

Course description

TOK is a compulsory component of the Diploma and is at the centre of the educational philosophy of the IB. It invites the candidates and their teachers to critically reflect on both the ways of knowing and the areas of knowledge and through that to examine the role that the knowledge plays in the global society.

Perhaps the most intriguing component of the course is the fact that it is composed almost entirely of questions the most central of which are: ‘What do I know?’ and ‘How do I know, or how do we know that a given assertion is true?’ Together with all the other probing questions, this course will aim to critically examine candidates’ knowledge and its implication and thus allow them to reflect and draw connections between the ways of knowing and the areas of knowledge.


The candidates will focus on different Ways of Knowing (Perception, Emotion, Language and Reason) and their relevance to the different Areas of Knowledge (Human Sciences, natural Sciences, Mathematics, History, The Arts and Ethics.)


The candidates will be assessed both internally and externally. While there is no examination, each candidate will be expected to submit an externally assessed essay (1200-1600 words) on a title from a list of 10 titles prescribed by the IBO worth 40 points. The other 20 points will be awarded to an internally assessed 10 minutes presentation and self-evaluation report.

Grade boundaries for TOK:




IB points





























www.occ.org ‘Subject Report’

A maximum of 3 other points can be awarded for candidate’s combined performance in theory of Knowledge and Extended Essay.


The nature of the course requires the teacher to use a variety of resources ranging from recommended textbooks to journals, magazines, newspapers, and even television programmes and films. Some of the more prominent titles that will be used are:

Alchin, N. (2003) The Theory of Knowledge, John Murray

Alchin, N. (2003) The Theory of Knowledge Teacher’s Book, John Murray

Dombrowski, E.; Rotenberg, L.; Bick, M. (2007) Theory of Knowledge Course Companion, Oxford

Stuart, T. (2000) Regarding the World: A Primer of ToK, Tony Stewart

Tomkinson, J.I. (1996) The Enterprise of Knowledge, Leader Books

Van de Lagemaat, R. (2005) Theory of Knowledge for the IB Diploma, Cambridge

Woolman, M. (2000) Ways of Knowing: An Introduction to Theory of Knowledge, IBID Press Victoria

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