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Third HL course?

Hey, so I'm a sophomore and choosing IB Diploma courses for the fall. The following courses I'm sure of taking:

 

IB HL English A: Literature

IB HL 20th Century World History

IB SL Environmental Science

IB SL Mathematical Studies

 

Now, for my third HL course, I've decided on either two options:

 

IB HL Spanish B (and consequently IB SL Anthropology OR IB SL Geography)

IB HL Psychology (and consequently IB SL Spanish B)

 

I'm a straight A all honors student, and when I go to college I want to major in something liberal artsy (English or History) because I cannot stand the STEM field (no matter the A's I have in math and science).

 

Now, on deciding my third HL course the pros I see for taking HL Spanish is consequently taking Anthro/Geography, which I find very interesting, but the con is taking a higher-level language acquisition course. I find Spanish 3 very simple right now; although I'm dreadful in the speaking/listening aspect of the class (I got a C on my speaking assessment), I'm a pro at reading/writing (managed to bump my grade to a 98 despite the horrific speaking score). My question: is taking HL Spanish difficult for a non-Spanish speaker? How would I do on the IB exam? Is there a listening/speaking aspect to the IB exam?

 

If HL Spanish is deemed too challenging for a non-fluent speaker, I would then take it at standard level and have to take HL Psychology, the only other non-STEM related HL course*. I honestly wouldn't mind taking Psychology, although the new teacher our school is kind of bad (or so I've heard). Anyway, is HL Psychology challenging at all? For those who've taken it, what was your experience with it?

 

(*Actually, the other non-STEM related HL course is Business, but as I'm taking Economics right now at standard level and am currently struggling to maintain an A, I laugh at the prospect of taking anything economics/business related again [plus my Econ teacher teaches IB Business, and he's not that good at all].)

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Well based on what you've said, I am understanding that you'd rather take Spanish over Psychology but you're not sure if you'll do well.

 

In my opinion, the solution to your dilemma would be to expose yourself to Spanish more. Watch movies in Spanish, speak to classmates in Spanish (on occasion), find questions in Spanish and orally answer them yourself. Find activities to do that will allow you to speak more Spanish and correct yourself to improve your speaking. You could even talk to your teacher and ask him/her their opinion on what you should do to improve. You'd be surprised by how many opportunities they can provide you with. And you said that you are good at writing/reading so write out compositions and then read them out loud, or find Spanish novels and read them out loud to better your vocabulary and maybe that could improve your speaking.

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I'm going into liberal arts too (I want to major in history) :D. Hmm for Spanish, I think HL has oral exams as well. Practice makes perfect and understand that international languages is the type of class where you can't study everything the night before. If you have time out of your day, start practicing Spanish little by little. For the writing component (you probably won't have a problem if you're fantastic with this portion), be sure to include accents if you need to and also beware of the ñ because without the accents (I'm sure you already know this though), the word would be completely different or just in a different tense/conjugation. Idk about the orals in Spanish B HL too well, but I read on here that the orals are similar to that of SL, but you are marked a lot more harshly. Another thing: does your Spanish teacher offer tutorials? If yes, take advantage of that. And like IbTrojan said, watch Spanish movies so you can expose yourself to ways of conversing in Spanish. Have a solid understanding on how you pronounce the words with accents as well as how the letters in the Spanish alphabet are pronounced. 

 

Umm this may be too soon to determine how well you'd do on the IB exams, but if you're interested, here are some old IB exams for Spanish B HL: http://ibespanol.wikispaces.com/Practice+Exams

 

Overall, I suggest that you give Spanish B HL a shot. If you find it too difficult, you should be able to drop it. 

 

Hope I helped a bit. 

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