IB Perspectives: Student Stories from around the World – part 4

Curious to know how other students are getting through the IB Diploma Program? In this blog series we’re taking a look at the experiences of different IB students around the world. Our fourth student perspective comes from Singapore, in the words of Georgia Moody, a native Australian who’s grown up in Japan and Singapore. You can read part 3 of the series here.


My name is Georgia Moody and I am currently in my last year of the IDP. I am a native Australian, however raised as an Asian baby from living in Japan and Singapore for the past 12 years.

I have been attending the United World College of South East Asia in Singapore since Grade 2. I didn’t really expect to make 10 years out of it but I have succeeded  in doing so! For me, the choice to do IB had already been made for me from when I first started attending UWCSEA. It is the only option offered for Grade 11 and  12 so it was an easy decision.
My IB package:

 HL History
 HL Economics
 HL English Literature A
 SL Mathematical Studies
 SL Biology
 SL French B

My favourite subject is English because I love to read, particularly amongst the thriller and mystery genre. My teacher is also brilliant and she has chosen some superb novels for us to study this year. The subject I found most challenging at first was Economics since I had never studied it before. I was always intrigued by the concepts and its relevance to current affairs, which stemmed from my weekly readings of The Economist and Harvard Business Review. The challenging part resulted from how to apply these concepts to exams and the proper answering-technique. However, after past paper practice and extra reading from the subject, I gradually adapted to the subject’s demands and grasped a better understanding of the material.

A typical week for me consists of five things:

  1. Study
  2. Family
  3. Sport
  4. Friends and social activities
  5. Music

As I am a busy individual, I am able to manage my work balance and stayed organised since there is not a lot of free-time to do anything else. I find that playing sport practically teaches me the personal skills such as resilience, leadership and collaboration, which is also relevant in the classroom and everyday life. My main sports are Netball, Touch Rugby, Cross Country and Basketball. From playing the cello, I am also able to escape the academic pressures and stress from work and focus on my passion for music and performance. From just two hours each week of ensemble rehearsals, I always feel better afterwards and more motivated when I get home to start my homework.

There is no denying that IB is difficult. The work load is extensive and there is always something to do! Once you hand in an IA, there is another waiting on your doorstep. A lot of the staff at my school encourage a good work-life balance to ensure our well-being is maintained. Now this is certainly easier said than done, but it does go a long way when one is able to manage their work balance well. They reap the IB benefits of long-term knowledge and education, rather than stress and bare survival.

So, here are my top tips to being a happy IB student:

  1. When choosing which IB subjects to study, make sure they are the ones you enjoy and are interested in learning about! There is nothing worse than having to spend a lot of time on something that seems utterly boring and dull to you. The same rule applies for selecting your Extended Essay topic. Love it and you will do well!
  2. Organization is key. It’s as simple as that. If you do your homework and make a start on your IAs as soon as you receive them, you will be a less stressed student and will have more free-time later on! Less stress = happiness
  3. Don’t be afraid to ask your teachers and peers for help. I found that my shyness negated my ability to ask my teacher questions and so I would end up being lost in confusion and frustration thereafter. If you don’t understand something, ask someone! It’s your teacher’s vocation to educate and clarify things with you in order for you to achieve your best. They want you to do well and, majority of the time, they really appreciate questions and will be happy to help.
  4. Do your homework. Teachers set it for a reason and it is not for the extra marking.
  5. Enjoy life outside of study because the world is actually a really nice place! Whether it is a creative, sporty or social activity, doing something other than studying is very healthy and will keep up the motivation for your studies.

The IB is a good experience and I have appreciated the rigorous academic journey so far. Yes, it is hard work and you do push yourself. There is no denying that it can be mentally tiring and stressful at times, but the pros outweigh the cons. I love the feeling of accomplishment after handing in one of the many IAs you do, each one making you closer to completing your diploma. I love the ethos of the IB and how it encourages the development of critical thinking. By developing this mindset earlier on, university is made just a little bit easier for most IB students because they are used to thinking in that certain way and being assessed accordingly. Furthermore, I appreciate the independence that the IB offers. This helps me to drive my own learning and establish a good work ethic. In addition, I am fortunate enough to attend a diverse and dynamic school which has made me more culturally aware as well as through my studies, particularly by taking a foreign language. This has also enabled me to engage and interact within an increasingly globalised, rapidly changing world.

What have you learnt since starting the IB?

I have learnt how to excel off challenges and become more resilient whilst pushing oneself academically. What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.

Read Part 5: IB Student Stories

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