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Language B: Taken by fluent students

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So for some reason, my school allows fluent students to take Language B, instead of giving them a different language option. We had practice orals last week, and of course the fluent kids scored a near perfect on their interactive oral. Their parents only speak Spanish at home.

I just dont see how this is ethical. The schools get a false reputation for language B curriculum, and the students taking the classes while fluent earn an easy grade. The language B is specifically designed for students who don't speak the language, not those who wish to earn an "easy 7".

whats your school policy and take on this?

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It is like that at my school too. Not so much with Spanish/French/German/Swedish (which are the only B languages offered apart from English), but a tonne of people take English B at HL just to get an easy grade.

I think it's crap; seeing as they're doing the whole Diploma programme in English, they're definitely fluent enough to take English at A2 level. It feels really weird that I'm doing French B HL and taking the "same" tests as they do, except... oh. They've studied English at least twice the time I have studied French. I guess I'm in a prejudiced position because I'm something of a language snob, but I really don't think it's very fair. Also, several of the people taking English B HL take French B SL in my French group, which is just... random.

On the other hand, there are circumstances when I think it's fine. For example, somebody who is fluent in French might take their six other subjects, do the IAs in French B and sit those extra exams without taking the whole class. They could get to have six subjects -and- get recognised credit for their skills. But it's an unfair advantage if they're allowed to take "only" five other subjects and breeze through their second language. Since the rest of us have to work our butts of actually learning things.

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I feel concerned, since I'm fluent in frencch and am considering moving down to B HL, so that the workload from my 4 other highs is doable(Math HL, Physics HL, Bio HL, His HL[i still have to see if 5 highs are allowed by the IBO])

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I take English B HL, even though I'm nearly fluent. I love it, since I don't have to put the slightest effort into it in order to earn a 7. Of course, English A2 is better in the sense that it gives you the bilingual diploma, but I really don't care. I'd rather take English B, which for me is like taking one subject less, and study nothing than take A2, which would perhaps reduce my overall grade, which isn't at all beneficial if I want to go to university in Sweden.

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I probably take the easiest courses you possibly can. :D

English B - very easy.

Math Studies - very easy, though I suck at math. :)

ESS - easy; 50% social / 50% science subject.

Spanish Ab Initio - easy!!!

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Yeah, stylys your the paragon of the whole issue. Especially the reasoning behind your choices. There is no reason you shouldn't get a 45 on your diploma. Which is another issue. A 45 means nothing if your classes are easy. Not trying to be mean, but just saying, your a good example of what I mean :D

I think IBO should monitor this crap.

I heard something along the lines, if u sound perfect and show a ridiculous capacity for linguistics on B language, there is an inquiry done on your background. Should your parents origin be of the country you study, then you are not awarded the diploma. Anyways, something I only heard. but there is plenty of kids who have the case with French at my school, and take it at B level, because they were not taught the language.

Edited by biochem

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Well that is the case in sweden, they will accepted you based on the points you have not considering what subjects you take.

(except for engineering where you probebly need math SL) Which is one of the basic reasons that the swedish school system fails

to provide students with what they need for further studies. The problem in holland is not to get into the university but to get out.

Passing university is not as easy as most people seem to think. Sure you might be able to get in, but you better make it as well.

Otherwise you have just wasted several years of you life trying something that you were not up to.

My school did not allow me to take Dutch B HL as a seventh subject due to the fact that I speak it fluent.

It would have been self taught and very easy, and I would have gotten a 7 but then what? Yeah maybe i get 2 more points on my diploma

(I am predicted a 5 on english A2 SL) and i would have studied 7 subjects, but really i would not have been smarter at all.

Universitiet might like it, but i hope that they will be satisfied with the fact that i speak dutch fluently instead.

Because saying that you speak it fluently is of more value then being able to say you took the B language exam.

One requirement of taking a B language is that you should not have studied the language for more then 5 years previously to starting the diploma programe according to my IB-cordinator.

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A 45 means nothing if your classes are easy.

Well,a 45 would still be hard to achieve, even with easy classes... And in some countries they don't care about the classes you are taking (the UK cares about having SL Math).

What they do in my school is that if you have ever gone to a school where the courses are taught in a language, you are not allowed to take that language at B. (I went to an Italian school in Middle School, so I can't take Italian B). They don't care if you speak the language at home or anything.

I think that, while it might be easier for the native speakers, some of them don't know any grammar. (for example, in my Spanish B HL class I'm doing better than the native speakers, because they can speak well, and they'll get almost perfect scores on their orals, but they will struggle almost as much as any other kid when writing the final part of the exam, because their spelling is atrocious.)

[edit: I added a bracket in, it was bugging me]

Edited by Chesire_Cat

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I lived in France from age 9-11 and take French B standard, Although I'm not what I would call fluent I definitely have and advantage when it comes to comprehension. However, I never learned the basics of French grammar and spelling, therefore if I can't hear a difference I won't know there is one. Languages are not my strong point and although I am pleased I don't have to take German at IB (which I'd studied for five years), I do not regard French as my "easy" subject.

There are two native French speakers in my French class both taking B high, the reason they are allowed to take it is they have never been to a French school. So far they both scored lower than me on comprehension (a case des petits fauts d'inattention), and they are in the same boat as me when it comes to spelling. I do agree that it is unfair, but if it weren't for the lax rules there would only be three people in my French class. I feel that I do better because of them, we speak to each other in French which gives me practice, and the tasks we do are harder than they might otherwise be.

On more global scale; the better people do on the IB test, the stricter the marking. Aka, the more people who are fluent B languagers, the lower the average persons grades will be.

(edited due to bad English)

Edited by clare.is.rice

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Guest Philippe Arni
I feel concerned, since I'm fluent in frencch and am considering moving down to B HL, so that the workload from my 4 other highs is doable(Math HL, Physics HL, Bio HL, His HL[i still have to see if 5 highs are allowed by the IBO])

why would you be stupid enough to take 5 HIGHER LEVELS!! Snap back to reality, anyone who takes 4 as well is dumb, since universities dnt care and you are suffering for no reasons...

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At my school they make it mandatory for students to take english HL. This is an advantage for me because french is my native language which makes it extremely easy for me to get a 7. Also my mom tutors french at home. The problem with french students is that they learn to be good at grammer but not to understand the text as well because the ideas in the novel are communicated for people who have a higher understanding of french. There is nothing wrong with taking a course you know really well.

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Actually I speak Serbian, English and Chinese.

FLuently. I am orginally from Serbia, so I had to learn english and chinese.

now I am learning Spanish.

So I broke the language barrier 3 times. your comment was very insulting.

and very good point on the global issue. I thinks its highly unethical.

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why would you be stupid enough to take 5 HIGHER LEVELS!! Snap back to reality, anyone who takes 4 as well is dumb, since universities dnt care and you are suffering for no reasons...

Well French B HL would definitely be less work then French A SL, and as for my other subjects, ill decide at the beginning of grade 12 to see if it is too much work and maybe drop a subject like Bio or History to standard.

Anyway in my school most people(the ones that actually work) do 4 HL and some even do 6 with a total of 7 subjects, even if in the end they aren't allowed to pass all the tests at the corresponding level(4 HL max).

Coming back to the subject I must say that in the actual French B HL class more than half are completely fluent.

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ye we have a student at our school who does this. both his parents are dutch and he speaks dutch fluently but he still takes Dutch B standard, which ofc is just an easy 7. but my friend who is half dutch takes dutch b HL as he speaks more english than dutch at home and he doesnt want to do more literature hehe.

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Yes, in our school we have Mother tongue kids taking languages at B.

However, sometimes it is because the language is difficult. Other times it is because they are aiming for an "easy 7" as you say. But why not? A lot of people in Maths Methods or Standard could be taking Maths HL but don't because they don't want to stress themselves. Would that be unethical as well?

I don't think so.

  • Like 1

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We can't take English B, but the only A2 languages offered are Swedish and English, so a lot of people wanting to take French/Spanish/German A2 have to study B instead. And there's also a bunch of Swedish B students that definitely would pass A2.

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Don't shoot me for saying this

but I just WISH I had taken Arabic B instead of French B. I would have gotten an easy 7 but French I'm suffering and I only got a 5, plus the teacher sort of always has problems with me (tells me and another classmate to get a tutor cause she can't teach us french... and there's only 5 of us in class). I didn't do it though cause it would look bad to unis an Arab studying Arabic B, and that way I have a better chance in getting in cause then I speak or well studied 3 of the world's official languages...

But then again, my school offers only 3 languages besides English so.....

But then again Arabic in IB isn't the arabic I speak so it's not THAT easy.....

Edited by Leen

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What is the aim of the IB program to have group 1 and group 2 subjects? So that the candidate becomes an all rounder and knows at least another language apart from their native language. It was created to encourage those people who only speak one language to step out of their comfort zone. Personally, I do not think it was created so that people have to be fluent in two languages, otherwise they would make 2 A1s compulsory.

I know what you are trying to say is that if a person can do two A1s, why not do 2?

why would you be stupid enough to take 5 HIGHER LEVELS!! Snap back to reality, anyone who takes 4 as well is dumb, since universities dnt care and you are suffering for no reasons... < ---That is true. And that is also why people do not take A1 and A2 when they can take A1 and B.

From your reasoning, if a person has the potential to do well in a higher level, they shouldn't be allowed to take it at a lower level?

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Well in my school, most of us take English B SL since English is not our first language. It may be pretty easy for some people but most of us end up with band 6. But, recently the school did offer English B SL and English A1 to some students with good English.

I think that it doesn't matter if fluent student took Language B subject for I think that they have the right to chose thelanguage that they understand. If they were force to take a language that they do not familiar with, they may end up with lower band.

In language, it is not about what we learn, it is about what we get from what we learnt.

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