The International Baccalaureate Continuum: Student, Teacher and School Outcomes

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Principal Investigator
Professor Allan Walker
Director of APCLC,
The Education University of Hong Kong
Professor Philip Hallinger
Professor Wang Wen Chung Professor Lee Moosung
Dr. Darren Bryant
Dr. Chen Junjun
Funding Source
International Baccalaureate Organization (IBO)


The International Baccalaureate (IB) is a global leader in international education, encouraging students to be active learners, well-rounded individuals, and engaged world citizens. Having grown dramatically in recent years in response to the burgeoning demand for high quality international curriculum, there is a need to document school practices associated with successful programme implementation and positive student outcomes that result from the IB curriculum. 

The purpose of this study is to explore and document the impact of the IB continuum on students, teachers and schools in full-continuum IB schools in five Southeast Asia societies. The project will explore the impact that studying continuously in a full-continuum school has on DP students’ academic and affective learning outcomes.   It will also explore changes longer term engagement with the full-continuum has had on individual, group and school-wide practices such as pedagogical practice, teacher collaboration, curriculum planning, school structures, leadership, school culture and cross level (PYP, MYP and DP) collaboration.

The project focuses on international schools in Southeast Asia that have offered the full continuum of IB programmes for at least ten years. The study will include the following components.
  1. Comparative analysis of student academic outcome data from full-continuum and ‘DP’ only schools in order to gain insights into the differential impact of the full-continuum on students over time;
  2. Development and testing of an instrument aimed assessing the Learner Profile attributes of student studying in IB schools;
  3. Application of the Learner Profile Scale to understand the impact of IB programmes on student affective development in full-continuum schools;
  4. Case-studies of two (2) full-continuum schools located in different countries in Southeast Asia.  The case studies will seek to uncover and describe patterns of best practice in leading the implementation of the full continuum of IB programmes to achieve maximum impact on the quality of teaching and learning.
  5. A detailed story line of the impact of the full continuum on student outcomes and schools processes drawn from the combination of quantitative and qualitative data.


Book Chapter

Lee. M., Wright, E., Walker, A. & Leung, L. (2015). Leading International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme schools in developing countries: A review of issues and challenges. In G. Jean-Marie, S. Sider, & C. Desir (Eds.), Comparative international perspectives on education and social change in developing countries and indigenous peoples in developed countries, pp. 253-274.Charlotte, North Carolina: Information Age Publishing.

Journal Articles

  1. Bryant, D. A., Walker, A., & Lee, M. (in press). The impact of the IB continuum on student achievement. International Journal of Educational Research.
  2. Bryant, D. A., Walker, A., & Lee, M. (2016). A review of the linkage between student participation in the International Baccalaureate Continuum and student learning attributes. Journal of Research in International Education, 15(2), 87-105.

Refereed Conference Papers

  1. Bryant, D. A. (2016, September 23). Approaches to Leadership Practices in IB Schools. Keynote address at the Hong Kong International Baccalaureate Educator Workshops, Hong Kong.
  2. Bryant, D. A. (2016, June 10). Approaches to Leadership Practices in IB Schools. Keynote address at the Understand Leadership IB Continuum Workshop, Singapore
  3. Bryant, D. A., Walker, A., & Lee. M. (2016, May 22). How does participation in the IB continuum relate to student learning outcomes? Invited paper presentation at IB Educator Certificate University Conference 2016, Kent, USA.
  4. Bryant, D. A., Walker, A., & Lee, M. (2016, April 8-12). Exploring the link between student participation in the International Baccalaureate Continuum and student learning outcomes. Paper presented at American Educational Research Association Annual Meeting 2016, Washington, USA.
  5. Lee, M., Wright, E., & Walker, A. (2014, November 26-28). The emergence of elite International Baccalaureate Diploma Program (IBDP) schools in China: A skyboxification perspective. Paper prepared for presentation at The 42nd Annual Conference of the Australian and New Zealand Comparative and International Education Society, Brisbane, Australia.