Back to School – 5 Steps to Smash the IB

Summer’s over. Get ahead before you get behind!

The IB is back with a bang, whether you like it or not. Check out these 5 steps that top IB graduates wish they knew before coming back to school. 


The IB is infamously known for the sheer amount of classes that you’re expected to juggle while attempting to still have a life outside of school. As such, your time management may be the most important skill you need in order to ace your IB while remaining a sane human being. The simplest tool for most effective time management is writing it down. Having an online or physical calendar, diary, or wall planner is a fool-proof way to get on top of your tasks. When planning out your study days, make sure to give yourself some free time, and a chance to breathe between study sessions. The human brain can only truly stay focused for 45 minutes at a time!


Even with optimal time management, it’s key to make your study time count. Do you work best alone or in group? At home or at school? Are you a note-taker or an auditory learner? Understanding what works best for you is the biggest change you can make to set yourself up for success in this coming IB school year.


There’s a reason that TOK, CAS and the Extended Essay are known as the core of the IB, it’s because if you don’t complete them – you fail the IB! Getting an overview of what you’ll have to do for these three components is a valuable use of time. Flick through our TOK and EE guide to get a taste of what’s to come and even more tips to tackle them. Equally, finishing off your CAS reflections, final EE submission and TOK essay before Christmas is a sure-fire way to boost your IB score by allowing you to focus on your other subjects. You don’t want to be thinking about any other areas of knowledge apart from what you need to revise!


With 6 subjects to deal with on top of the core, it can be difficult to remember exactly what ultimately counts for each subject. ‘How many points does the IA count for? Will failing my Individual Oral Commentary really affect my grade? How many papers will my Maths exam have?’

Take the time to go through the subject briefs for each of your courses so that you know precisely what to prioritize and what to expect going into the new school year! 


We all know the IB expects us to know so much. Imagine then, spending hours of study time on content you’re not even expected to know! Using your subject syllabus can be a road map to figuring out what information you’ve already gathered and what you’re yet to visit. If you’re just starting your IB journey then the syllabus can act as a way of compartmentalising new information. If you’re entering your second year of the IB, going through the syllabus – perhaps using the traffic light method – can help you identify any gaps in your knowledge. You can then use a variety of study tips to fill these holes. If you still can’t get your head around a topic you can get tailored online tutoring from specialist IB graduates. Remember, if it’s not in the syllabus, you won’t be tested on it!

So there you have it, five concrete tips to immediately improve your IB potential! Can you think of any more? Slide in to our Instagram DMs and let us know!×131.jpg

Share article links