The focus of the curriculum will be the offering of courses as prescribed by the framework pictured to the right.
The curriculum contains six subject groups together with a compulsory core made up of three separate parts that are central to the philosophy of the diploma program. Full diploma students must take three courses at the Higher Level (HL, two-year courses representing 240 teaching hours) and three courses at the Standard Level (SL, one or two year courses representing 150 teaching hours). Students are thus able to explore some subjects in depth and others more broadly. The science-oriented student is challenged to learn a foreign language and the natural linguist becomes familiar with laboratory procedures. Active citizenship and global perspectives are encouraged in each area of the curriculum.
Students not wishing to fulfill all of the requirements of the IB diploma are strongly encouraged to take individual courses in the IB curriculum to help them prepare for future education. These subjects are referred to as "Diploma Program (DP) courses" (formerly known as "Certificate Courses") and the students who study them are referred to as "Diploma Program (DP) course students" (formerly known as "Certificate Students").
At Washington-Lee High School we offer the following courses in the six curricular IB groups (2012-2013 SY):
Group 1: English Literature A and Spanish Language and Literature A (for fluent speakers)
Group 2: Spanish B HL/SL, French B HL/SL, Classical Language (Latin) HL/SL
Group 3: History of the Americas HL, Economics SL, Geography SL, Information Technology in a Global Society SL, Psychology SL/HL, Philosophy SL, Social Anthropology HL/SL
Group 4: Biology HL, Chemistry HL, Computer Science HL, Design Technology SL, Environmental Systems and Societies SL, Physics SL, Sports, Exercise and Health Science SL
Group 5: Math Studies SL and Mathematics SL