MAX ITGS [Information Technology in a Global Society] Course

IB Information technology in a global society guide 2012
Online curriculum centre (OCC)

Courses offered for MAX ITGS course

All candidates study the following topics.

MAXITGS01 – Strand 1: Social and ethical significance
MAXITGS02 – Strand 2: Application to specified scenarios
MAXITGS03 – Strand 3: IT systems
MAXITGS04 – Internal Assessment – Project
MAXITGS05 – External Assessment – Paper 1
MAXITGS06 – External Assessment – Paper 2
MAXITGS07 – External Assessment – Paper 3

MAXITGS08 – ITGS Teaching, learning and examination resources

“Sometimes having the technology is not enough.”

Social and ethical responsibility are equally important.

IB ITGS course is different from other IT and computer courses. It is the study and evaluation of the impacts of information technology on individuals and society [IB ITGS subject guide].

ITGS activities in the Academic Calendar for Grade 11

IB Year 1

  • ITGS HL/SL project – choice of topic, 17 March 2017
  • ITGS SL/HL project criteria A & B completed, 9 May 2017
  • ITGS SL/HL project criteria C completed, 2 June 2017

IB Year 2

  • ITGS SL/HL project criteria D[documentation outline, first draft & Product design] completed, 19 September 2017
  • ITGS SL/HL project criteria E [Product development] completed, 6 November 2017
  • ITGS SL/HL project criteria F & G [Product evaluation, future product development & Required elements] completed, 5 January 2018
  • ITGS SL/HL Project Final Draft, 19 January 2018

Orienting students about IB, Group 3 subjects and ITGS:

IB’s Mission Statement

The International Baccalaureate aims to develop inquiring, knowledgeable and caring young people who help to create a better and more peaceful world through intercultural understanding and respect.

The IB Diploma Programme

The Diploma Programme is a rigorous pre-university course of study designed for students in the 16 to 19 age range. It is a broad-based two-year course that aims to encourage students to be knowledgeable and inquiring, but also caring and compassionate. There is a strong emphasis on encouraging students to develop intercultural understanding, open-mindedness, and the attitudes necessary for them to respect and evaluate a range of points of view.

The IB Diploma Programme Model

ICT Stock Photos (2303)

How does the Diploma Programme Model link to ITGS?

Learners Profile > ATL > The Core (EE,TOK, CAS) > The Six Groups.

What is meant by ‘concurrency of learning’? / IB CoL

  • Students deal with a balanced curriculum each year in which the required subjects are studied simultaneously.
  • The “interconnectedness” of learning throughout the curriculum.
  • Curriculum is created to be two years’ length for each subject area, and inter-related (interdisciplinary)
  • CAS to connect experiential learning with intellectual learning.
  • TOK to make connections of knowledge issues with subjects throughout the course.

“The teaching of minds well informed rather than minds well stuffed.”

(Alec Peterson Former Director General)

What is meant by ‘holistic learning’? / Holistic Curriculum

Holistic education involves the whole self and therefore includes the following parts of the person:

  • Whole-Brain Learning / Mental
  • Multiple Intelligences
  • Cooperative Learning
  • Physical
  • Emotional
  • Spiritual and
  • Relationships between people and groups

The core of the Diploma Programme Model – TOK

The theory of knowledge course encourages students to think about the nature of knowledge, to reflect on the process of learning in all the subjects they study as part of their Diploma Programme course, and to make connections across the academic areas.

The core of the Diploma Programme Model – EE

The extended essay, a substantial piece of writing of up to 4,000 words, enables students to investigate a topic of special interest that they have chosen themselves. It also encourages them to develop the skills of independent research that will be expected at university.

The core of the Diploma Programme Model – CAS

Creativity, action, service involves students in experiential learning through a range of artistic, sporting, physical and service activities.

The IB Learner Profile

“The learner profile provides a long-term vision of education. It is a set of ideals that can inspire, motivate and focus the work of schools and teachers, uniting them in a common purpose.”

IB Information technology in a global society guide

The IB learner profile represents 10 attributes which help individuals and groups become responsible members of local, national and global communities. IB learners are internationally minded individuals that strive to create a better world through understanding the world’s global interconnectedness and humanity.

[1] Inquirers

Students develop a natural curiosity that allows them to become lifelong learners.

We nurture our curiosity, developing skills for inquiry and research. We know how to learn independently and with others. We learn with enthusiasm and sustain our love of learning throughout life.

[2] Knowledgeable

Students explore ideas of importance and dig deep into its meaning creating a balance of their learning.

We develop and use conceptual understanding, exploring knowledge across a range of disciplines. We engage with issues and ideas that have local and global significance.

[3] Thinkers

Students apply thinking skills that allow them to tackle complex problems in creative ways.

We use critical and creative thinking skills to analyse and take responsible action on complex problems. We exercise initiative in making reasoned, ethical decisions.

[4] Communicators

Students understand and can articulate information in confident, creative ways, including a second language.

We express ourselves confidently and creatively in more than one language and in many ways. We collaborate effectively, listening carefully to the perspectives of other individuals and groups.

[5] Principled

Students are honest, fair, just and full of integrity. They strive to solve their own problems and to take responsibility for their own actions.

We act with integrity and honesty, with a strong sense of fairness and justice, and with respect for the dignity and rights of people everywhere. We take responsibility for our actions and their consequences.

[6] Open-minded

Students understand and embrace other cultures. They recognize and celebrate their own backgrounds and learn tolerance for others.

We critically appreciate our own cultures and personal histories, as well as the values and traditions of others. We seek and evaluate a range of points of view, and we are willing to grow from the experience.

[7] Caring

Students actively care about others and participate in active service.

We show empathy, compassion and respect. We have a commitment to service, and we act to make a positive difference in the lives of others and in the world around us.

[8] Risk-Takers

Students are brave in the face of new challenges. They strive to take on new roles and to defend their own beliefs.

We approach uncertainty with forethought and determination; we work independently and cooperatively to explore new ideas and innovative strategies. We are resourceful and resilient in the face of challenges and change.

[9] Balanced

Students understand the need to be emotionally, physically and mentally balanced. They strive for this in themselves and others.

We understand the importance of balancing different aspects of our lives -intellectual, physical, and emotional – to achieve well-being for ourselves and others. We recognize our interdependence with other people and with the world in which we live.

[10] Reflective

Students reflect on their own learning. They are able to adjust for weaknesses and strengths.

We thoughtfully consider the world and our own ideas and experience. We work to understand our strengths and weaknesses in order to support our learning and personal development.

What are the links between The IB mission statement and the IB learner profile?

  • The Diploma Programme aims to develop in students the knowledge, skills and attitudes they will need to fulfill the aims of the IB, as expressed in the organization’s mission statement and the learner profile.
  • Teaching and learning in the Diploma Programme represent the reality in daily practice of the organization’s educational philosophy.

Group 3 Subjects – Individual and Societies

Students of group 3 subjects study individuals and societies. This means that they explore the interactions between humans and their environment in time and place. As a result, these subjects are often known collectively as the human sciences or social sciences.

  • Business and management
  • Economics
  • Geography
  • History
  • Information Technology in a Global Society (ITGS)

Group 3 Subjects Aims – Individual and Societies

  • encourage the systematic and critical study of: human experience and behaviour; physical, economic and social environments; and the history and development of social and cultural institutions
  • develop in the student the capacity to identify, to analyse critically and to evaluate theories, concepts and arguments about the nature and activities of the individual and society
  • enable the student to collect, describe and analyse data used in studies of society, to test hypotheses, and to interpret complex data and source material
  • promote the appreciation of the way in which learning is relevant both to the culture in which the student lives, and the culture of other societies
  • develop an awareness in the student that human attitudes and beliefs are widely diverse and that the study of society requires an appreciation of such diversity
  • enable the student to recognize that the content and methodologies of the subjects in group 3 are contestable and that their study requires the toleration of uncertainty.

What is the IB ITGS course? What is the rationale behind the ITGS course? 

IB ITGS is the study and evaluation of the impacts of information technology on individuals and society. It explores the advantages and disadvantages of the access and use of digitized information at the local and global level. ITGS provides a framework for us to make informed judgments and decisions about the use of IT within social contexts.

ITGS was first taught in August 2010 and uses an integrated approach, encouraging students to make informed judgements and decisions about the role of information and communication technologies in contemporary society. The ITGS framework is modelled on a ‘triangle’. ( 

Students entering ITGS often think that this will be “another” IT/ICT course where they learn to use IT tools and applications. However, IT systems is just one of the components out of the four in the ITGS Triangle.

This innovative course is one of the subjects in Group 3: Individuals and societies and is aligned to the aims and objectives common to all Group 3 subjects. ITGS is as rigorous as other group 3 subjects. However, ITGS has major differences from typical IT courses.

Although ITGS may appear on the surface to be a relatively easy subject as the subject matter is not as obviously demanding (“low content”) as that in subjects such as Computer Science, it does involves the considerable use of higher order thinking skills such as application, analysis, synthesis and evaluation (“high context”).

All teaching and learning resources to implement the ITGS course should be in place and there should be a system to update them.

How is the proposed course outline for ITGS developed?

The proposed outline for ITGS is developed by the ITGS teacher and approved by the IB. The course outline includes all topics, sections taught, internal and external assessment schedule for a two years programme. Lesson time for both HL and SL is accurately allocated and is in conjunction with the School’s academic calendar. The course outline also displays a realistic time span to meet requirements. It reflects “the individual nature of the subject in class-room”.

How to Approach ITGS?
ITGS teachers and students in today’s world must keep abreast of the constantly evolving nature of ITGS and be able to apply the ITGS concepts that they have learned to new situations. This can be done by following:

  • current new articles
  • podcasts
  • radio and television broadcasts
  • videos
  • special events (i.e. listen to keynote speakers, follow TED events)

Personal investigations and hands-on experiences must be integrated into learning the topics in the ITGS Guide. TOK goes hand-in-hand with ITGS. We cannot simply accept what we see or read. Is it true? We need to analyze, question and verify the details relating to situations and scenarios we encounter.

How does the ITGS course outline incorporate the IB Learner profile?

In what ways is the proposed programme for ITGS build upon students previous knowledge?

Fundamental ITGS terms

The nature of this subject is defined by the use of fundamental ITGS terms. For the purpose of the ITGS syllabus the following definitions apply.

  • Social and ethical significance
  • An information system / Application to specified scenarios
  • Information technology (IT)

(a) Information technology (IT)

Information technology (IT) is the study, design, development, implementation, support or maintenance of computer-based information systems.

(b) Social and ethical significance

Social and ethical significance refers to the effects that the development, implementation and use of information technology has on individuals and societies. Social impacts and ethical considerations are not mutually exclusive and are therefore categorized as a single entity.

However, in general: social impacts tend to refer to the effects of IT on human life. Ethical considerations tend to refer to the responsibility and accountability involved in the design and implementation of IT.

(c) An information system

An information system is a collection of people, information technologies, data, processes and policies organized to accomplish specific functions and solve specific problems.

ITGS & IB Learner Profile

The ITGS syllabus is closely linked to the IB learner profile, which strives to develop internationally minded people who recognize their common humanity and whose aim is to create a better world. By following the ITGS syllabus, students will have fulfilled the attributes of the IB learner profile.

The ITGS syllabus is closely linked to the IB learner profile, which strives to develop internationally minded people who recognize their common humanity and whose aim is to create a better world. By following the ITGS syllabus, students will have fulfilled the attributes of the IB learner profile. For each attribute of the learner profile, a number of examples selected from the ITGS syllabus are given in the next slide.

ITGS Syllabus & IB Learner Profile attributes

[1] Inquirers

Content: SL/HL core, HL extension, case study.
Project: Initial investigation.

[2] Knowledgeable

Content: SL/HL core, HL extension.
Project: Research, process, justify appropriate IT techniques. Use software to develop an original product.

[3] Thinkers

Content: The ITGS triangle for analysis, HL extension, formulate strategic plans in case study.
Project: Research, process, interpret and evaluate data based on a real-life situation.

[4] Communicators

Content: SL/HL core; make links to theory of knowledge.
Project: Produce materials in a range of formats (including extended responses, reports and investigations) based on a series of consultations with a client.

[5] Principled

Content: SL/HL core, HL extension, case study.
Project: Research, process and interpret data and information; identify opinions, values and perceptions; make and justify decisions. Test the original product to ensure that it is error-free and secure, protecting any sensitive data.

[6] Open-minded

Content: SL/HL core, HL extension, case study. Respecting differing cultures and the opinions of others.
Project: Evaluate sources of information in terms of reliability, bias, relevance and accuracy.

[7] Caring

Content: SL/HL core, HL extension, case study.
Project: Liaise with client, reach consensus in the development of an IT solution.

[8] Risk-takers

Content: Case study, formulate strategic plans.
Project: Make and justify decisions to use complex techniques to develop best possible product.

[9] Balanced

Content: SL/HL core, HL extension in analysis and judgment type questions.
Project: Collection of data and the subsequent analysis and synthesis of the information.

[10] Reflective

Content: Case study, reflecting on possible decisions related to a strategic decision.
Project: Evaluate methodology, develop clear and logical arguments and draw conclusions where appropriate.

IB ITGS & ATL: Approaches to the Teaching of ITGS

Teaching ITGS: An integrated approach –  The ITGS Triangle

  • ITGS is based on the Triangle and this is the driving force underpinning the teaching and learning of ITGS.
    • Strand 1: Social and ethical significance
    • Strand 2: Application to specified scenarios
    • Strand 3: IT systems
  • The Triangle presents a non-linear structure with any one of the areas as a starting point that can be used to create varied approaches for teaching ITGS.
  • The three different strands of the syllabus are interconnected with the role of the stakeholder(s), which is central to the course.
  • They suggest how teachers can take an integrated approach when they teach the syllabus, using any of the three strands as a starting point.
  • The ITGS triangle illustrates this integrated approach.

ICT Stock Photos (2022) ICT Stock Photos (2023)

Approaches to teaching require learning outcomes to be included in all three strands. The following statements should be considered throughout the teaching of the course.

  • The strands are not designed to be presented or studied in isolation. Teachers should adopt an integrated approach to the subject.
  • The strands are not designed to be studied in any particular order.
  • The constituent parts form a whole.
  • The stakeholders remain the central focus of the course.
  • A balanced approach to both positive and negative impacts of IT developments must be adopted.
  • Teaching and learning activities should weave the parts of the syllabus together using the ITGS triangle, and should focus on their interrelationships so that, by the end of the course, students are able to appreciate the connections between all the different strands of the syllabus.
  • The way in which the strands can be approached is flexible and any starting point is acceptable, but the study of real-life scenarios based on current events must be used as a support for teaching.
  • It is possible to use an iterative process. For example, a strand, or parts of it, may need to be addressed more than once in the delivery of a particular topic.
  • It is essential that examples are drawn from the local, national and global level.


How is TOK integrated with ITGS?

During the course in ITGS a number of issues will arise that highlight the relationships between theory of knowledge and ITGS. Some of the questions that could be considered during the course are identified in the following list.

  • What is the difference between data, information, knowledge and wisdom? Are there technologies specifically designed to store and impart data, information, knowledge and wisdom?
  • What did Sydney Harris mean when he said that “The real danger is not that computers will begin to think like men, but that men will begin to think like computers”? Was he right, or was it based on a misunderstanding of either men or computers?
  • What do we mean by “holistic” and “reductionist” approaches to knowledge? What are the strengths and weaknesses of each approach?
  • Is it possible to capture the richness of concepts such as “intelligence” or “judgment” via a reductionist approach? How can we know?
  • If we attach a camera or microphone to a computer, it can receive data from the world. Does this mean that a computer can “perceive the world”? In what senses might human perception be a similar or different process?
  • On what basis can we trust “knowledge” acquired from a range of sources?
  • What role does ethics play in ITGS, science, mathematics and other areas of knowledge?
  • A chess machine can beat the top human chess players. Does a machine therefore “know” how to play chess?
  • In what ways does the concept of “fuzzy logic” challenge the conventional concepts of reasoning?
  • How do we know if other humans feel emotions? Can a machine ever feel an emotion? How would we know?
  • To what extent does IT influence the way in which we think about the world? To what extent do these technologies determine what we regard as valuable or important? Could it be argued that the increasing global dominance of a particular form of IT gives rise to an increasing uniformity of thinking?
  • In what ways has technology expanded knowledge? In what ways has it affected how much we value the different ways of knowing and areas of knowledge? What fields of study have been founded on technological developments?
  • Can it be said that every new technology affects the beliefs of individuals and societies in both positive and negative ways? How can the impact of new technologies be predicted? How reliable are these predictions?
  • In what ways does IT influence the accessibility of information and the reasons for believing such information to be true? What are the effects of such control?
  • Was Akio Morita correct when he claimed that “You can be totally rational with a machine. But if you work with people, sometimes logic has to take a back seat to understanding”?
  • Does IT, like deduction, simply allow the knower to arrange existing knowledge in a different way, without adding anything, or does this arrangement itself represent knowledge in some sense?
  • “In expanding the field of knowledge we but increase the horizon of ignorance” (Henry Miller). Is this true of the recent developments in IT?

ITGS and the international dimension / International mindedness

How is international mindedness incorporated into ITGS?

How are the concepts of local and global contexts integrated into ITGS?

An ever-increasing number of people worldwide come into contact with IT on a daily basis. This increasingly widespread use of IT and the ease of access to information have led to the development of a “global village”.

It has also had unforeseen social impacts and raised new ethical issues. ITGS seeks to develop international understanding and cooperation, as well as fostering a concern for global issues pertaining to the use, misuse and disposal of IT hardware and unwanted digital information.

The ITGS course embodies global and international awareness in several distinct ways. It explores the advantages and disadvantages of the access to, and use of, digitized information at both the local and global level. ITGS provides a framework for the IB student to make informed judgments and decisions about the use of IT within a social context. Inherent in the syllabus is a consideration of different perspectives and economic circumstances, in addition to social and cultural diversity.

What are the BIG Ideas for ITGS?

BIG ideas identify the major elements that contribute to the successful teaching and learning in ITGS.

The following “BIG” ideas can be used as a checklist for creating ITGS lessons. As you read consider what others you would add.

  • ITGS TRIANGLE is a part of every lesson and is a reference point for approaching ITGS.
  • Students must understand and communicate by using ITGS terminology and concepts.
  • ‘Process’ is an important word in the course. Students need to follow step-by-step development processes for the Project, In preparing for Paper 2 and Paper 1 examinations, questions requiring the description of step-by-step IT concepts. Also specific processes are involved in conducting research for the Case Study in preparation for Paper 3 and in research for the Extended Essay.
  • Research and investigation are important aspects of ITGS (i.e. current news articles in preparation for Paper 2 and also Paper 1 to some extent, Case study and HL Paper 3, and the Extended Essay).
  • Audio and visual material materials provide valuable means for “experiencing” ITGS.
  • Students understand best the use of IT through hands-on activities wherever possible. All aspects of ITGS must be placed in real contexts.
  • Command terms (i.e. organized according to Bloom’s Taxonomy) need to be used for discussions, assignments, in-class tests, internal assessment and external assessments.
  • Discussion and analysis of current news items relevant to ITGS need to be regularly included into ITGS lessons.
  • Students need to be given adequate opportunity to write structured responses to ITGS exam-type questions and receive teacher feedback.
  • Students need to be actively engaged in their own learning and collaborate with other students.
  • Digital and/or non-digital means for note-taking need to be considered so that students have a way of recording important outcomes that can be reviewed for examinations.
  • Teachers need to integrate “International mindedness”, the Learner Profile and TOK into ITGS activities.

ITGS Assessment objectives

ITGS aims at SL and HL

  • enable the student to evaluate social and ethical considerations arising from the widespread use of IT by individuals, families, communities, organizations and societies at the local and global level
  • develop the student’s understanding of the capabilities of current and emerging IT systems and to evaluate their impact on a range of stakeholders
  • enable students to apply their knowledge of existing IT systems to various scenarios and to make informed judgments about the effects of IT developments on them
  • encourage students to use their knowledge of IT systems and practical IT skills to justify IT solutions for a specified client or end-user.

There are four assessment objectives for the SL and HL Diploma Programme ITGS course. Having followed the course at SL or HL, students will be expected to demonstrate the following.

  • Assessment objective 1: Knowledge and understanding of specified content
  • Assessment objective 2: Application and analysis
  • Assessment objective 3: Synthesis and evaluation
  • Assessment objective 4: Use of ITGS skills

Assessment objective 1: Knowledge and understanding of specified content

  • Demonstrate an awareness of IT applications and developments in specified scenarios
  • Demonstrate an awareness of the social and ethical significance of specified IT applications and developments
  • Demonstrate technical knowledge of ITGS terminology, concepts and tools
  • Demonstrate technical knowledge of IT systems
  • Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of topics related to the annually issued case study (HL paper 3 only)

Assessment objective 2: Application and analysis

  • Explain the impacts of IT applications and developments in specified scenarios
  • Analyse the social and ethical significance of specified IT applications and developments
  • Transfer IT knowledge and make connections between specific scenarios
  • Apply technical knowledge of IT systems acquired through independent research to provide supporting evidence in possible decisions relating to future courses of action related to the annually issued case study (HL paper 3 only)

Assessment objective 3: Synthesis and evaluation

  • Evaluate local and global impacts of specified IT developments through individually researched studies
  • Evaluate a solution involving IT to a specified problem using knowledge of IT systems
  • Discuss the social and ethical implications of specified IT policies and developments
  • Evaluate, formulate and justify possible strategic courses of action related to the annually issued case study (HL paper 3 only)
  • Demonstrate evidence of project management in the development of a well-organized product to resolve a specific issue
  • Use IT tools and the product development life cycle (PDLC) to create an original product in consultation with a client
  • Demonstrate evidence of the use of appropriate techniques to develop an original IT product

ITGS Command Terms

Assessment objective 1: Knowledge and understanding of specified content

A list of the different command terms used in the external assessment of the four Assessment Objectives are given below.

  • Calculate
  • Define
  • Describe
  • Identify
  • Outline
  • State

Assessment objective 2: Application and analysis– Command Terms

A list of the different command terms used in the external assessment of the four Assessment Objectives are given below.

  • Analyse
  • Compare
  • Construct
  • Contrast
  • Distinguish
  • Explain

Assessment objective 3: Synthesis and evaluation– Command Terms

A list of the different command terms used in the external assessment of the four Assessment Objectives are given below.

  • Discuss
  • Evaluate
  • Justify
  • To what extent
  • Formulate (HL paper 3 only)
Command term Assessment
Objective [AO]
Analyse AO2 Break down in order to bring out the essential elements or structure.
Calculate AO1 Obtain a numerical answer showing the relevant stages in the working.
Compare AO2 Give an account of the similarities between two (or more) items or scenarios, referring to both (all) of them throughout.
Construct AO2 Display information in a diagrammatic or logical form.
Contrast AO2 Give an account of the differences between two (or more) items or situations, referring to both (all) of them throughout.
Define AO1 Give the precise meaning of a word, phrase, concept or physical quantity.
Describe AO1 Give a detailed account.
Discuss AO3 Offer a considered and balanced review that includes a range of arguments, factors or hypotheses. Opinions or conclusions should be presented clearly and supported by appropriate evidence.
Distinguish AO2 Make clear the differences between two or more concepts or items.
Evaluate AO3 Make an appraisal by weighing up the strengths and limitations.
Explain AO2 Give a detailed account including reasons or causes.
Formulate AO3 Express precisely and systematically the relevant concept(s) or argument(s)
Identify AO1 Provide an answer from a number of possibilities.
Justify AO3 Give valid reasons or evidence to support an answer or conclusion.
Outline AO1 Give a brief account or summary.
State AO1 Give a specific name, value or other brief answer without explanation or calculation.
To what extent AO3 Consider the merits or otherwise of an argument or concept. Opinions and conclusions should be presented clearly and supported with appropriate evidence and sound argument.

ITGS Assessment objectives in practice

ITGS Internal Assessment – SL & HL

Differences between the way the internal assessment is approached in ITGS and computer science

  • ITGS is concerned with the development of IT systems, with particular emphasis on the effects on clients and end users.
  • Computer science is concerned with algorithmic thinking and the ways in which a real-world problem can be decomposed in order to construct a working, computable solution.

What is IB ITGS SL? Standard Level

Students at standard level (SL) and higher level (HL) in ITGS are presented with a syllabus that has a common core consisting of three strands:

1.Social and ethical significance

2.Application to specified scenarios, and

3.IT systems.

The following tables show the percentage weighting for each of the assessment objectives across each of the components. This may differ from the allocation of time devoted to each of the assessment objectives in class.

Assessment objective Paper 1 Paper 2 Internal


1. Knowledge and

understanding of specified content

20 10 8 38
2. Application and analysis  14 10 5 29
3. Synthesis and evaluation 6 10 4 20
4. Use of ITGS skills N/A N/A 13 13
Component weighting 40% 30% 30% 100%

What is IB ITGS HL?  Higher Level

The Higher Level (HL) ITGS course is a rigorous pre-university course that provides students with many of the study skills that are required in higher education.

The new HL extension material (topics 3.10 and 3.11) requires a significantly more in-depth treatment of the subject matter than was expected with the previous HL course and teachers should be aware of this when delivering these topics. This should also be considered in the preparation of students for HL Paper 3.

Assessment objective Paper 1 Paper 2 Paper 3 Internal


1. Knowledge and

understanding of specified content

18 7 10 5 40
2. Application and analysis 12 7 8 3 30
3. Synthesis and evaluation 5 6 7 3 21
4. Use of ITGS skills N/A N/A N/A 9 9
Component weighting 35% 20% 25% 20% 100%

ITGS Assessment outline—SL

Assessment component Weighting
External assessment (3 hours)

Paper 1 (1 hour 30 minutes)

Five structured questions that assess in an integrated way the three strands of the syllabus.

  • Social and ethical significance
  • Application to specific scenarios
  • IT systems

Students answer two of four structured questions on any of the SL/HL core topics.

(60 marks)

Paper 2 (1 hour 15 minutes)

This paper consists of one unseen article.

Students are required to write a response to this article.

(26 marks)





Assessment component Weighting
Internal assessment

This component is internally assessed by the teacher and externally moderated by the

IB at the end of the course.

Project (30 hours)

The development of an original IT product for a specified client. Students must produce:

  • a cover page using prescribed format
  • an original IT product
  • documentation supporting the product (word limit 2,000 words).

(30 marks)


ITGS Assessment outline—HL

Assessment component Weighting
External assessment (4 hours 45 minutes) 80%

Paper 1 (2 hours 15 minutes)

Seven structured questions in three sections that assess in an integrated way the three

strands of the syllabus.

  • Social and ethical significance
  • Application to specific scenarios
  • IT systems

Section A

Students answer two of three structured questions on any of the SL/HL core topics.

Section B

Students answer one of two structured questions based on topic 3.10, “IT systems in

organizations” and 3.11, “Robotics,

artificial intelligence and expert systems”.

(80 marks)




Assessment component Weighting
Paper 2 (1 hour 15 minutes)

This paper consists of one unseen article.

Students are required to write a response to this article.

(26 marks)

Paper 3 (1 hour 15 minutes)

Four questions based on a pre-seen case study.

(30 marks)




Assessment component Weighting
Internal assessment

This component is internally assessed by the teacher and externally moderated by the

IB at the end of the course.

Project (30 hours)

The development of an original IT product for a specified client. Students must produce:

  • a cover page using prescribed format
  • an original IT product
  • documentation supporting the product (word limit 2,000 words).

(30 marks)


IB Diploma ‘Non-negotiables’

  • Engaged in international-mindedness…programs must strive for vision and action ‘outside themselves’
  • Governance of school must abide…buy-in must be clearly present
  • Participation in full diploma…programs must be designed to foster successful diploma recipients
  • Concurrency…curriculum is created to be two years’ length for each subject area, and inter-related (interdisciplinary)
  • Resources provided…financial support, as well as labs, learning, and research opportunities must be provided
  • Teachers trained/present for each subject…qualified, IB knowledgeable staff must be developed and maintained
  • Access to Online Curriculum Centre…ongoing professional development is enhanced by frequent consultation
  • IB Co-ordinator trained and on the job…commitment to proper compliance and articulation
  • Schedule reflects IB principles…concurrency and a constructivist educational philosophy is promoted
  • Exams are secure…the strictest principles to academic honesty must be created and solidified
  • Collaborative planning…IB staff must be given regular opportunity to meet, dialog and plan for learner success
  • Central elements are articulated…the elements of Creativity-Action-Service (CAS), Extended Essay (EE), and, Theory of Knowledge (TOK) must be, at all times, at the core of the programme

FAQs for ITGS teachers

What IT equipment is required for implementing and teaching ITGS?

Recommended hardware include Desktops / laptops with high memory and high processing speed. This will be required to upload student’s work on ManageBac.

What resources are required for teaching ITGS? Why have you chosen the texts, textbooks and resources you have?

The teaching resources are required to be sufficient to offer the programme, and the school should improve them as needed. Teachers should fully understand that textbooks are but one resource and teaching to a textbook is not acceptable.

  • DP ITGS Information Technology in a Global Society Text Book 978-1468023619
  • DP ITGS Information Technology in a Global Society Solution Book 978-1482567762
  • GN0D4R6  Tan, Honghua; Zhou, Mark: Advances in Information Technology and Education Proceedings – Springer-Verlag Berlin and Heidelberg GmbH & Co. KG, 2011 ( PAP)
  • GJH7GL0  Zeng, Dehuai: Advances in Information Technology and Industry Applications – Springer-Verlag Berlin and Heidelberg GmbH & Co. KG, 2012 (HRD)
  • GLGK1J1  Tzafestas, Spyros G.: Advances in Manufacturing Decision, Control and Information Technology – Springer London Ltd, 2011 (PAP)
  • GR4F0J4  Ho, Yo-Sung (Gwangju Institute of Science and Technology); Sang, Jitao; Ro, Yong Man; Kim, Junmo; Wu, Fei: Advances in Multimedia Information Processing – PCM 2015 16th Pacific-Rim Conference on Multimedia, Gwangju, South Korea, September 16-18, 2015, Proceedings – Springer International Publishing AG, 2015
  • 2ECUU06 : Advances in security information management : perceptions and outcomes (005.8) HRD
  • 3LBNR0X : Age, gender, and work : small information technology firms in the new economy – UBC Press, c2011. (331.11) HRD
  • 2AFPF89  Venkata Ramana, P: Application of information technology in libraries – Ess Publications, 2013. (025.00285)
  • GMFZZV1  Bramer, Max: Artificial Intelligence in Theory and Practice – Springer-Verlag Berlin and Heidelberg GmbH & Co. KG, 2010

What is the budget allocation for ITGS texts and resources?

Grade 11: USD 3000

Grade 12: USD 4000

What support IB gives to students with special needs?

A child is deemed to require Special Educational Needs education if:

  • For whatever reason, they have problems with learning at the same pace as their peers.
  • Have problems with speech and/or hand eye coordination – or this combined with potentially any number of additional issues.
  • The  child has outstanding talent  and attitude in a particular academic (or sporting) area,  but weak in virtually every other subject or topic.

With regards to students with a recognised difficulty in accessing the programme in its entirety, school adheres to the guidelines set out in IBO (2013) Candidates with assessment access requirements: Cardiff.  It is the responsibility of the Diploma Programme Coordinator (DPC) and Principal to acquaint themselves with this Special Needs policy.  The DPC shall ensure that all relevant information is disseminated to the relevant members of faculty, support staff, parents and students. According to the IBO (2013, p. 2-3), “Candidates who require inclusive assessment arrangements may have learning support requirements due to one or more of the following:

  • Autism spectrum/Asperger’s syndrome
  • Learning disabilities
  • Medical conditions
  • Mental health issues
  • Multiple disabilities
  • Physical and/or sensory challenges
  • Social, emotional and behavioural difficulties
  • Specific learning difficulties
  • Speech and/or communication difficulties”.

Some subjects in the DP may pose an insurmountable difficulty for certain students depending on their needs. Admission to such subjects shall therefore be made in preponderance of all relevant circumstances with DPC and the Principal.

In accordance to the school’s Admissions Policy, parents are required to declare any educational special needs at admissions. If such a declaration is made, all relevant documentation is to be forwarded to the DPC who will review the case.

As part of the DP Induction process, the DPC will interview the candidate and parents before acceptance into the Diploma Programme.  If it is felt that the school can provide sufficient support to the student, they will be offered a provisional place on either the IB Diploma Programme. The DPC retains the right to offer what Diploma subjects and/or Core Components are appropriate for the student.

What is the link between ITGS and the school’s SEN policy?

Special assessment arrangements are provided for candidates with special assessment needs. These arrangements enable candidates with diverse needs to access the examinations and demonstrate their knowledge and understanding of the constructs being assessed. For candidates who use sign language to access the examination, translations or transcriptions would be justified for assessment. Some candidates with writing difficulties are allowed to use laptops / word-processor in answering exam questions and not script or lined papers.

Why is differentiation important in lessons?

Differentiation is the process by which curriculum objectives, teaching methods, assessment methods and learning activities are planned to meet the learning needs of the individual student. All students have learning opportunities matched to their particular needs and teaching will take into account the differences in learning styles.

What is the role of Language Policy in teaching ITGS? What support is given to students whose mother tongue is neither national/local nor English? (Linguistic support in general). What is the school’s Language Policy? How does the Language policy affect your subject?

The school provides support for students who are not proficient in the language of instruction. The school provides or encourages opportunities for maintaining mother tongues, if applicable. The school supports learning of host country language and culture, if applicable. The languages offered in the DP reflect the needs and interests of the student body. The process by which the language policy is reviewed / developed indicates the involvement of different stakeholders.

What are IB-specific elements in the school’s Academic honest policy? What is your understanding of Academic Honesty in school?

ITGS teachers need to understand that the responsibility to detect academic dishonesty lies with them and not with the IB. Academic Honesty Policy is intended to promote and teach the responsible and ethical use of information and ideas as a means of learning. It is the responsibility of all members of the school community to enforce and maintain a high level of academic integrity.

Academic misconduct includes a wide variety of behaviours such as:

  • cheating
  • plagiarism
  • altering academic documents or transcripts
  • gaining access to materials before they are intended to be available
  • and helping a friend or peer to gain an unfair academic advantage.

Parents and students will be asked to sign an agreement contract at the beginning of the IB Diploma programme in Year 11 that acknowledges that they have read and have understood these two documents and are aware of the consequences of academic misconduct.

[1] Procedures: the School

The relevant IB Coordinator provides each student, parent and staff involved with the School Diploma Assessment Calendar that clearly sets the various deadlines for work to be submitted throughout the two-year programme.

It is the responsibility of Diploma Programme teachers to support candidates in the preparation of their work for assessment and to ensure that all candidates’ work complies with the requirements of the relevant subject guide.

Ongoing support and guidance will help with the early detection of unintentional plagiarism and will dissuade candidates from deliberate plagiarism because they know their work is regularly subject to scrutiny.

It is the subject teachers who are in the best position to identify work that may not be the authentic work of a candidate.

Teachers are encouraged to cross-reference students’ written work in their subject with that of work completed in the students’ English class.

Teachers are encouraged to use on-line scanning software and search engines if they suspect academic misconduct has taken place.

Whilst School encourages the active involvement of students in checking their own work, the facilities of should NOT be used prior to submission of final draft as this will affect the final report generated by when the work is finally scanned. Teachers and students will be encouraged to use a ‘sandbox’ scanning system for formative drafts.

If the coordinator and/or a teacher has reason to believe that part or the whole of a candidate’s draft work submitted for discussion prior to final submission might be deemed to be in violation of the principles of academic honesty and constitutes a case of academic misconduct, they must draw the candidate’s attention to this risk and her/his duty to respect the policy and requirements of academic honesty.

The teacher or supervisor, if suspicious, may quiz the candidate on the content of the work to determine whether the work is in fact that of the candidate. This may take the form of an informal discussion, a formal interview or a ‘viva voce’. In the case of a formal ‘viva voce’, the student, parents and IB Coordinator must be advised of this no later than three days before the scheduled interview. ‘Viva voce’ interviews will be filmed for verification purposes that may be submitted to IB.

Once a candidate has officially submitted the final version of his or her work to a teacher (or the coordinator) for external or internal assessment, together with the signed coversheet, it cannot be retracted.

The teacher signs to the effect that, to the best of his or her knowledge, the work is the authentic work of the candidate. It is not acceptable to delete or alter this declaration, or to submit work for which the teacher has not signed the declaration because he or she believes the work may not be authentic.

The relevant IB Coordinator must report the case to the coordinator help desk at IBCA.

The relevant IB Coordinator (upon being informed by a teacher) informs IBCA that they suspect that a final work submitted for assessment may be affected by academic misconduct.

The relevant IB Coordinator informs IBCA that academic misconduct may have taken place during an assessment.

[2] Procedures – International Baccalaureate (IB)

IBO initiates an investigation into academic misconduct it will do so immediately after the evidence of academic misconduct is brought to the attention of the coordinator help desk at IBCA.

The relevant IB Coordinator will be asked to provide IBCA with a report after he or she has conducted an investigation. This report will include:

  • a statement from the teacher for the subject concerned (or supervisor in the case of an extended essay)
  • the coordinator’s own statement
  • a statement from the candidate that directly addresses the allegation that his or her work is not authentic
  • a summary of an interview with the candidate about the allegation of plagiarism. This may take the form of a video recording.

Once the report is received at IBCA the review panel may decide that it is a case of academic infringement and not academic misconduct.

If an academic infringement has been established, no marks will be awarded for the component or part(s) of the component. The candidate will still be eligible for a grade in the subject or diploma requirement concerned.

If a case of academic misconduct has been established, no grade will be awarded in the subject concerned. No diploma will be awarded to the candidate, but a certificate will be awarded for other subjects in which no academic misconduct has occurred.

If the academic misconduct is very serious, either because of its nature or because the candidate has already been found guilty of academic misconduct in a previous session, the final award committee is entitled to decide that the candidate will not be permitted to register for examinations in any future session.

An IB diploma, or a certificate, may be withdrawn from a candidate at any time if academic misconduct is subsequently established.

What are the requirements and expected conduct related to all forms of assessment?

ITGS teachers need to apply the rules of conduct to their assessment activities, as applicable. Teachers can provide examples of the range of assessment tools they use.

What is Formative and Summative assessment?

There are two basic types of assessment used during the IB Diploma programme; formative assessment and summative assessment. As defined in ‘Guidelines for Developing a school Assessment in the Diploma Programme’ (2010) “formative assessment represents the process of gathering, analysing, interpreting and using the evidence to improve student learning and to help students to achieve their potential.” “Summative assessment is concerned with measuring student performance against Diploma Programme assessment criteria to judge levels of attainment.” Therefore formative assessment and feedback is critical to the success in summative assessment.

Effective assessment is evident when learning and progress is measurable. Tasks will be designed in order to assess skills and knowledge using a wide range of assessment strategies and tools. In the DP, for example, this will be further evidenced when scores on formative assessments are predictive of the results on summative assessments. Additionally, a normal distribution should be observable across a large sample of results, ranging from high to low achievement.

Formative assessment

The school believes that formative assessment is an integral part of teaching learning process. To this end the school promotes and fosters the use of formative assessment as part of day to day teaching practice. The school recommends its teachers to divide the content to be covered in summative assessment and conduct regular formative assessment on the same.

Ongoing and regular assessment will be used during the teaching and learning process to inform teachers and children about how the learning is developing. Formative assessment and teaching are directly linked. A variety of methods will be used.

Formative assessment occurs frequently during the course of a unit, while students are still gaining knowledge and practicing skills. Formative assessment includes teacher’s’ feedback and guidance from the teacher). The information gathered is used by the teacher to monitor students progress toward achieving the overall and specific expectations, so that teachers can provide timely and specific feedback to students, scaffold next steps, differentiate instruction in response to student needs. Results of formative assessment are used by students to provide feedback to other students, monitor their own progress, make adjustments in their learning approaches, reflect on their learning (metacognition) and set individual goals.

Summative assessment

The school believes that summative assessments are essential for preparing students for the final examination at the end of two years in the case of DP. The final Semester exam will be based on the entire syllabus and not just parts of it. The school has allocated weightage for summative assessments with a purpose of giving students the exposure to final examination.

We believe that assessment is most effective when it is integrated in and generated from the on-going teaching activities that take place in the class.

Summative assessment occurs at the end of a period of learning (unit or lesson) and is planned for in advance. The assessment is designed so that students can show their understanding in authentic contexts and apply it in new and flexible ways. It is used to evaluate student’s progress and growth and to inform further instruction. Summative assessment is used by teachers to make judgments about the quality and quantity of student learning on the basis of established criteria, to assign a value to represent that quality and quantity, and to support the communication of information about achievement to students, parents, teachers and administrators.

What is the relationship between school assessment in general and DP assessment? How does your proposed programme incorporate the school’s assessment policy?

Standardised assessments are used as a part of the whole school assessment policy in an effort to gain as much information as possible about the student as a learner and about the programme. The types of assessment used in the school are many and varied and the information gained goes towards making up the whole picture.

Standardised assessments are specifically used for the following reasons:

  • To inform teaching
  • To provide information which shows growth over time
  • To provide comparison with a peer group
  • To inform decisions about programs
  • To determine those students whose basic skills fall outside the normal range expected for students of that particular age. This information is used alongside other assessment information to determine those students who will access additional support as available.
  • To form part of the process of reporting to parents
  • Teachers have information that helps them to form groups, plan the program and be aware of those with special needs.

All Secondary students sit an internal English Language Proficiency assessment ( the Oxford / Cambridge Placement Assessment ) at the start and end of each academic year to map their language acquisition growth.

When will ITGS teacher introduce written assignment and the Internal Assessment (IA)? How is the Internal Assessment introduced, monitored and assessed?

The ITGS Internal Assessment – Project will be introduced in March 2018.

All IBDP subjects have a ratio of externally assessed work like final examinations, written assignments and internally assessed work such as oral presentations. The latter form of assessment is called Internal Assessment (IA) and can amount to up to 60% of the total marks available in that subject.

It is very important to note that IB Diploma IA can take place throughout the programme and more than sufficient time is allocated to the various elements of IA to ensure that students can achieve very high marks if they wish to. The Diploma Assessment Calendar enables students to have sufficient time to prepare, draft and redraft their IA components – and students and parents are strongly advised that good time management and self-discipline in this invariably leads to higher level achievement. That being said, all IB IA must be proven to be 100% the student’s own work, the student must sign to this effect and students and parents are alerted to the fact that IB has very strict guidelines on Academic Honesty that will be applied at Maximus Plus without exception.

Given that students have had sufficient time to meet Internal Assessment deadlines, it is to be assumed that submission deadlines will be met without exception. In order to ensure that this happens, it is the subject leader’s responsibility to ensure that students meet the deadline. No exceptions or extensions may be granted; this constitutes ‘unfair advantage’ malpractice. Students are not allowed to retake a summative assessment such as a test.

Any exceptions to the above will only be granted by the IB Coordinator and will ensure that no ‘unfair advantage’ takes place.

Students who submit incomplete work will be marked according to IB guidelines. Students who do not submit an IA component will not be awarded a mark for that component.

What is the impact of IB workshops on the understanding of ITGS?

Why are planning meeting required for all DP Staff?

All IB Staff are required to have time allocated by the school for collaborative planning. Teachers are required to demonstrate the presence of vertical and horizontal articulation in the planning meetings. Teachers are also required to incorporate differentiation in their planning process.  Teachers should be able to prove that they have included topics to promote awareness of individual, local, national and world issues.

What sort of strategies ITGS teachers need to use in their lessons?

Teachers include different teaching strategies that promote independent thinking, inquiry, reflection, academic honesty, support to students with language needs.

How ITGS teachers record student’s progress?

Teachers are required to record student progress. Teachers need to have systems allowing them to report on student progress.