AP vs. IB: what’s the difference?

Advertisement

Hang on for a minute...we're trying to find some more stories you might like.


Email This Story






Many wonder what the difference is between the International Baccalaureate (IB) and the Advanced Placement (AP) program. Some may think that both of the programs are the same, while others may think one is better than the other. IB and AP classes are both college-level classes that are taught in high schools. Both give students the chance and convenience to receive college credit while still attending high school.
AP was created by the College Board in the United States so students can take a college-level courses in high school. Students that are enrolled in an AP class will be able to take the AP exam for that particular subject and will be able to get earn college credit from it. Students get the choice to take however many AP classes they prefer, whether they chose to take one or eight is all up to the student. Although, their counselor might recommend them to some classes.
IB was founded by John Goormaghtigh and is headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland. IB is a worldwide diploma so many countries have it and recognize it. Students get to develop, interact, and prepare for an international education instead of just college. For students to earn an IB diploma, they will have to take certain classes for each subject like English, Math, Science and Social Studies. IB is offered at specific schools and is not offered to all schools.
There are eight main differences between IB and AP classes.
One is that AP is more popular in the United States. AP has been around more in the United States than IB, so most colleges in the United States already know about it and use it to give students college credits. Colleges do also recognize IB classes credits as well.
IB is also more expensive than AP. Being a student makes it difficult to get money if they don’t have a job or if their parents aren’t able to provide the money. Paying for the test is worth it at the end of the day as it gives you credit for college and saves you money for college courses that you will be exempt from. AP exams don’t require a registration fee, while the fee for each IB test is around $120.
IB exams are also harder than AP exams that are mostly all multiple-choice except for a few writing sections, while IB exams are predominantly and primarily all writing. Most students feel rushed when taking IB exams as they have to finish before the time runs out.
Students must be enrolled in an IB class to take the exams. If a student isn’t enrolled in the class they won’t be able to take the exam and receive college credit. For AP, anyone can take the exam even if they have not taken the class.
All AP courses are available online for anyone. For IB, only some courses can be taken online and students can not earn the diploma completely online. IB requires students to be present and to come to class, while AP is more laid back and lets students decide how they want to learn.
IB and AP have different curriculums. AP focuses less on writing and critical thinking. IB on the other hand, is all about writing and critical thinking. IB pushes students so that they can use the skills they achieved in school for other purposes in life. IB requires students to take a second language, extracurricular courses, and write an extended essay as well.
IB diploma program has a set series of courses. IB requires its students to take classes in six different areas: History, Science, Math, Foreign Languages, English and an IB-approved elective. AP, on the other hand, does not require any of that and it is up to the student to decide what subject they want to do.
The last difference is that AP exam is scored by a U.S. organization,while the IB exam is scored by instructors and teachers around the world.
Although it may seem as if both IB and AP are completely different they are still similar in some ways.
They are both college-level classes. So whether your school is an IB or AP school, you will still get the college credit somehow.
They are both also a boost to your GPA. IB and AP will both give you a 1.0 boost.
Whether your school is an IB or AP school, both are accepted by colleges and universities in the US. But IB is a tad harder than AP because of their curriculum and exams. IB diploma will not only be accepted in the US, but also in other countries in the world.