Personalize your education based on your interests.
About a quarter of students at International High School choose to continue their studies in French and prepare for the French Baccalauréat (Le Bac). After preparatory courses in Grade 9 (Classe de 3ème) and Grade 10 (Classe de 2nde), students pursuing Le Bac compose a personalized schedule that combines required core courses and selected in-depth specialty courses. This customization reflects individual strengths, future college aspirations, and passions.
At International, all students in the French Track prepare for the Baccalauréat Général. Students take a required 7 shared core courses and select 5 specialty courses over the two-year period of Grade 11 and Grade 12. They all have the opportunity to choose to take the Option Internationale du Baccalauréat (OIB) section Américaine, which emphasizes their French-American bilingualism.
- A Shared Core
- Travaux Personnels Encadrés (TPE)
- Specialty: Mathématiques
- Specialty: Sciences économiques et sociales
- Specialty: Sciences de la vie et de la Terre
- Specialty: Histoire-géographie, géopolitique et sciences politiques
- Specialty: Physique/Chimie
- Specialty: Humanités, littérature et philosophie
The Travaux Personnels Encadrés (TPE) is an independent research project where groups of two to three students choose a topic to investigate and prepare a portfolio on the topic that they later defend orally in front of an external jury of educators.
Topics chosen by our students have ranged from "What are the socio-economic and political influences of Chinatown in San Francisco?" to "Can we mathematically model and physically reproduce snow flakes by mimicking the way they are naturally formed? " to "How can the properties of mycélium be used to promote a sustainable environment?"
These projects showcase the creative ways in which our students apply the knowledge they learn in Le Bac classes and give an edge to our students in their college application process.
The Mathematics speciality allows students to explore and use math as a tool across a number of fields, such as: algebra, geometry, analysis, statistics, algorithms, and programming. The course also includes the history of mathematics, providing a lens through which to identify the evolution of core mathematical theories, enabling students to have a broader understanding of the material.
In the course, the use of software, modeling tools, and simulation programs encourages experimentation and practical use. The class promotes cross-curriculum interactions with other subjects such as chemistry, physics, engineering, biology, social studies, and economics.
The Economics and Social Sciences specialty deepens students' mastery of the concepts of economics, sociology and political science by analyzing the major issues in today’s societies. This course contributes to improving students’ economic and sociological understanding through the study of microeconomics and fundamentals of economy, and by proposing a multidisciplinary approach that relies notably on the social sciences.
The Earth and Life Sciences (or Biology) specialty explores the themes of the Earth and its environment, the human body and health, and natural evolution. The program helps students develop skills of observation, experimentation, model-building, analysis and debating - all of which are indispensable to pursue a higher education or career in these fields of study. This specialty explores the following scientific themes: Life on Earth, biodiversity, evolution, ecosystems, ecology, and the history of the Earth. It also provides students with a better understanding of the functioning of their own body, combining scientific concepts with a reflexion on one’s personal health, as well as an ethical and civic reflection of public health and the environment. This specialty draws from and builds upon previously acquired knowledge in physics, chemistry, math, and computer science.
The History-Geography, Geopolitics and Political Science specialty examines the contemporary world through the study of major political, social and economic issues. Students will build upon their historical and geographical knowledge to observe the contemporary world. Through critical thinking, and a wide array of methods, knowledge and disciplines, they will measure the influences and developments of major political issues and reflect on past and current international relations .
The Physics-Chemistry specialty offers students the opportunity to explore the real world, from microscopic to macroscopic, by studying the organization and transformations of matter, movement, energy, waves and signals. Students will use the two founding aspects of the discipline, experimentation and modeling, leading to the mathematical formulation of validated physical laws. The many fields of application in both everyday life and related to major societal issues (energy, environment) give students a concrete, living and current picture of physics and chemistry.
The Humanities, Literature and Philosophy specialty offers the study of literature and philosophy from all eras through a variety of texts in order to refine students thought process, culture and knowledge. It is based on several major philosophical themes that have accompanied humanity, from ancient Greece to the modern world. This class develops the students’ ability to analyze points of view, to formulate a reasoned personal reflection, and to debate issues that are relevant to the major issues of humanity.
The French Baccalauréat speaks volumes to the sheer excellence of the education in our French Track—and also the camaraderie and sense of belonging—that many of our highest performing students in the French Track come from families where French is not spoken at home.
Just Ask Our Students:
"Being in the French Bac, I have been able to travel all over the world without having to worry about readjusting to new programs. Since the program is set by the French government, it is the same everywhere in the world. Thanks to this, last year I was able to take a whole semester abroad in Madrid with a smooth scholastic transition."
- Max '19
Meet our students.