As one of the three natural sciences in the IB Diploma Programme, biology is primarily concerned with the study of life and living systems. Biologists attempt to make sense of the world through a variety of approaches and techniques, controlled experimentation and collaboration between scientists. At a time of global introspection on human activities and their impact on the world around us, developing and communicating a clear understanding of the living world has never been of greater importance than it is today. Through the study of DP biology, students are empowered to make sense of living systems through unifying themes. By providing opportunities for students to explore conceptual frameworks, they are
better able to develop understanding and awareness of the living world around them. This is carried further through a study of interactions at different levels of biological organization, from molecules and cells to ecosystems and the biosphere. Integral to the student experience of the DP biology course is the
learning that takes place through scientific inquiry. With an emphasis on experimental work, teachers provide students with opportunities to ask questions, design experiments, collect and analyse data, collaborate with peers, and reflect, evaluate and communicate their findings.
DP biology enables students to constructively engage with topical scientific issues. Students examine scientific knowledge claims in a real-world context, fostering interest and curiosity. By exploring the subject, they develop understandings, skills and techniques which can be applied across their studies and beyond.
Through the overarching theme of the nature of science, the course aims to enable students to:
1. develop conceptual understanding that allows connections to be made between different areas of
the subject, and to other DP sciences subjects
2. acquire and apply a body of knowledge, methods, tools and techniques that characterize science
3. develop the ability to analyse, evaluate and synthesize scientific information and claims
4. develop the ability to approach unfamiliar situations with creativity and resilience
5. design and model solutions to local and global problems in a scientific context
6. develop an appreciation of the possibilities and limitations of science
7. develop technology skills in a scientific context
8. develop the ability to communicate and collaborate effectively
9. develop awareness of the ethical, environmental, economic, cultural and social impact of science.