Bedford offers the globally recognised and highly regarded International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma as an alternative to A-Levels.

By requiring the study of six subjects, the IB allows students to achieve depth of knowledge within their specialist areas while preserving breadth; it also recognises the importance of continuing, at some level, the study of the student’s mother tongue, a foreign language, mathematics and science up to the end of formal secondary education.

In addition to this, all IB students follow a course in Theory of Knowledge, write an extended essay on a topic that holds particular interest for them and follow an extra-curricular programme of Creativity, Activity and Service. All of these additional components are hugely beneficial for our boys when applying for places at university.

Bedford School has recorded outstanding results in each of the 15 years in which it has presented candidates for the IB Diploma examinations. We believe that it gives our students an edge as they seek a place on particularly competitive university courses and that it is an asset to those who recognise that their future career may include an international dimension.

The IB at Bedford School – Booklet

The subjects we offer within the Diploma programme are shown below; if you require further information, please contact the Director of IB, Mr Adrian Finch, on tel. +44 (0)1234 362200, or email him at You are more than welcome to visit us and see the Diploma Programme in action.

Group 1 – studies in language and literature (language A)

English LiteratureSL
English BHLSL
English Language & LiteratureHLSL


Mandarin (native)SL
Mandarin (ab initio)SL
German (native)HLSL
Spanish (ab initio)SL

*N.B. Language options are subject to demand, and some options may not be possible depending on numbers choosing each option.

Group 3 – Individuals and Societies


Group 4 – Sciences


Group 5 – Mathematics

Maths Analysis & ApproachesHLSL
Maths Applications & InterpretationsSL

Group 6 – The Arts / Elective

Visual ArtsHLSL


Theory of Knowledge (ToK)
Extended Essay
Creativity, Activity & Service (CAS)

For full curriculum information on each subject please refer to our Sixth Form Options Booklet.

Sixth Form Options Booklet

*Ab initio – means ‘from the start’, no prior knowledge of the language required

**Performance (solo or group) option

Please visit the Director of IB at the school to discuss your particular subject choices.

Whilst the school endeavours to meet the requests of all boys, this is subject to timetabling feasibility and sufficient numbers opting for subjects. We reserve the right to remove subjects subsequently from options blocks and may request boys to alter their options subsequently too.