May 2021 DP Exam Results
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May 2021 DP Exam Results

The much-anticipated May 2021 DP results have recently been released across the world. We are extremely pleased to share that we have a 100% pass rate, 5 students scoring above 40 (out of 45) points, and 3 students scoring full core (TOK/EE) points.

By Olivia Ayes, Leader of the Diploma Programme

Incredibly, we had two students who scored 43 points. We are in awe of the resilience these students have shown, amidst uncertainties and unpredictable changes. For detailed information, please view the exam results page on our website.

Predicted Grade Process

This year was vastly different from every other year, including last year’s process and results, despite the continuation of the pandemic. In the past, predicted grades (PG) were not considered in awarding grades, but this year, the IB allocated PGs to schools based on historical data, in case the school would be unable to hold exams due to Covid-19 restrictions.

These allocations meant that for most subjects, we were “capped” at predicting how many 7s or 6s we could allocate to students. While schools were able to appeal these allocations, it required extra work from teachers to justify those changes (scanning previous assessments, for instance). Imagine asking a student, “Remember that unit exam I gave you last year—do you still have it? I need to scan it to appeal your overall predicted grade.”

“Uh, miss, no…wait, let me check the bottom of my bookbag.”

Of course, the IB did this to ensure that schools were not over-predicting and abiding by academic integrity guidelines and practices. In the end, we were an “exam” route school and stayed that way, which meant that PGs were not taken into account after all. Students submitted Internal Assessments (IAs) and sat all available exam papers for their subjects, making their scores a true representation of their abilities.

World Statistics

According to this IB webpage, “Out of 170,660 students, 104,275 were in the non-exam route and 65,576 in the exam route (and 809 split between both routes).” These numbers also include Careers Programme students—only 87,307 are Diploma Programme students.

While the world average diploma grade is up to 5.19 from 4.95 in May 2020, and the diploma pass rate is 88.96%, up from 85.18% in the adjusted May 2020 results. Before then, the pass rate ranged from 80.84 to 77.40 since 2015 (see IB DP Statistical Bulletins).

What we see, even if the pass rate increased since the pandemic started, is that IB students and teachers across the world and at ISUtrecht are learning how to thrive with unprecedented challenges. We are particularly proud of our community for supporting our students and each other.