Choosing Your Pathway
Here at Wilmington Post 16, we offer a wide range of vocational and academic courses to suit all level 3 learners. We have purposely kept a multitude of study pathway options, to give our students choice in what they study. Our current pathway options are:
Pathway Choice 1 – The International Baccalaureate Careers-Related Programme (IBCP) Pathway
This pathway will see you study a vocational based subject (either as a single or double award), which is linked to your future career aspirations. You will then supplement this by studying two IB Diploma courses, and also the IB Careers-Related Core Programme, which includes language development, personal and professional skills, reflective project and service learning. The minimum entry requirements for this pathway are 5 A*-C (9-4), including English Language and Maths.
Pathway Choice 2 – The Vocational Pathway
This pathway will see you choose to study three vocational based subjects. Vocational based subjects include level 3 BTEC courses, as well as Applied A Levels, such as Applied Science. The minimum entry requirements for this pathway are 5 A*-C (9-4), including English Language and Maths.
Pathway Choice 3 – The Blended Pathway
This pathway will give you the choice of studying a mixture of IB Diploma and vocational based subjects. The difference between this pathway and the IBCP pathway is that you will choose two vocational based subjects (single award) and then one IB Diploma course. The minimum entry requirements for this pathway are 5 A*-C (9-4), including English Language and Maths.
Pathway Choice 4 – The Common Academic Pathway
This pathway will see you study three IB Diploma courses. The minimum entry requirements for this pathway are 5 A*-B (9-6), including English Language and Maths.
The International Baccalaureate programme develops its candidate students into principled, balanced, open-minded young adults. Students are explicitly taught organisation, reflection, and communication skills, and lessons are grounded in developing thinking, caring, and principled thinking.
In addition to your regular academic and vocational subjects, students complete the IB Core subjects. These are the elements that develop students beyond their academics; together with their academic and career studies, they make students internationally minded, caring, socially aware, creative and critical thinkers.
The core is what makes up the heart of IBCP studies and consists of FOUR elements:
- Personal and Professional Skills
- Language Development
- Service Learning
- Reflective Project
What does “Personal and Professional Skills” actually mean?
Personal and Professional Skills (PPS) are the series of abilities needed in order to be most successful after secondary school, whether it’s at university, apprenticeship, or employment.
PPS focuses on five key areas:
- Personal Development– to develop your ability to reflect, organise, collaborate, and lead
- Intercultural Understanding– to give insight into personal context, language and customs, multiple perspectives, and how to impact and change intercultural contexts
- Effective Communication– to develop social awareness, literacies, and self-expression
- Thinking Processes– to practice and reflect upon when, why and how we use critical and creative thinking
- Applied Ethics- to introduce ethical dilemmas in the contexts of business, the environment, and professional life
You will explore, develop, and reflect upon these skills both in a discrete lesson and in bespoke career-related study groups.
Do I really have to learn a language?
Language Development is an incredibly exciting opportunity to discover a new culture through exploring its art, history, government, architecture, food, sport, values, behaviours, and yes, language. Language Development is not examined, and so focuses on asking questions and learning about a new culture, charted through a portfolio. This is a required course, as it explicitly focuses on the “international mindedness” element of the IB philosophy. You will watch the films and read the stories of this country, make and taste their food, study their history and art, watch their sports- all to gain a thorough insight into a new culture, to gain a better understanding of what makes us similar and how our differences can enrich us.
Service Learning? That’s like volunteering, right?
While Service Learning is similar to volunteering in that it’s unpaid, it is, in fact, a much more structured way of making a positive, systematic, contribution to your community by recognising a real need. You will indeed give your time, but you will also learn teamwork, problem solving skills, effective communication, leadership and social responsibility. You will learn organisation and balance through managing your time, and you will reflect on your contributions to evaluate how you excelled, and how you can perform better in your next opportunity. You will be supported every step of the way, but you will also develop independence and confidence in yourself. This element is not graded, but will be assessed regularly through your portfolio and through meetings with your Service Learning Advisor.
What will I be reflecting on in my Reflective Project?
The Reflective Project is the culmination of all you’ve learned in the IBCP. It builds on the skills of the Personal and Professional Skills (ethical debate, effective organisation), the experiences of Service Learning (real job scenarios, applied ethics) with the cultural sensitivity learned in Language Development. The ethical question that frames your project is directly derivative of your Career-based study (your BTEC/ Applied course), and is actually created with the skills learned in your academic subjects (research, analysis, independent questioning). The RP is the only graded element of the Core, and is worth UCAS points.
What does this have to do with the IB Learner Profile?
As the IB is a programme of study, rather than just individual qualifications, all your learning is interconnected. The Learner Profile underpins the programme, as it identifies the elements of yourself that your studies will develop during your time on the IBCP. You will develop skills of enquiry, thinking, communication and reflection, while living a mind-set of being principled, open-minded, caring, and balanced. Your experiences will allow you to become knowledgeable, and your confidence gained across the program will allow you take calculated risk for well-thought-out gain. Your time on the IBCP will make you an ideal candidate for whatever pathway you choose to follow after Sixth Form.