ACT News


There's no looking back with a baccalaureate

As well as studying six subjects in year 12, Narrabundah College student Max Milosevic started a futsal team, did extra French lessons and volunteered for the National Folk Festival.

But the 17-year-old isn't a glutton for punishment.

The extra-curricular activities were a requirement for completion of his International Baccalaureate (IB).

"There is definitely extra work to do and not many people studying for a standard ATAR will do six subjects," he said.

"But I think it was worth it in the end."

Max was awarded the ACT's highest IB mark of 41 out of 45 when students received their results for the internationally marked diploma yesterday.


His score translates to an ATAR of 99.45 and will guarantee him entry on a scholarship to a law and commerce degree at the University of New South Wales.

Fifty students at Canberra College, Narrabundah College, Melba Copland Secondary School and Canberra Girls Grammar School completed the IB last year.

Students completing the diploma must study English, science, maths and a foreign language, as well as undertake community service, a philosophy course, play sport and write an extended essay on a subject of their choice.

At Narrabundah College, 30 students completed the diploma and the average result for the cohort converts to an ATAR of 92.

"Many students who choose to do the baccalaureate are very capable students because it is really a lot of work," principal Kerrie Grundy said.

"IB is looking at well-rounded students, they do well academically and they make a contribution to their world. What it does, for all of them, is it will give them the opportunity to take up a place at an overseas university."

At Canberra College, four year 12 students completed the full diploma, while a further four chose to study parts of the course and receive a certificate for those areas of work.

"This is only our third year and it's been a learning curve not just for the students but also the teachers, because it is very different to studying year 12," principal John Stenhouse said. "We're very happy that the students that sat it were successful."

Max said the baccalaureate had given him greater appreciation for subjects in the maths and sciences, as well as foreign languages, which he might not have chosen had he taken the standard path of study for year 12.

"More than anything, the opportunity to study a lot of subjects from a lot of disciplines has helped me make choices later about what I want to do," he said.