Ab initio is for a beginner who has little or no previous experience of the language. The student must have had no formal instruction in the language nor have lived in a Spanish speaking country.

Standard Level Only

The main focus of the course is on language acquisition and development in the four primary language skills of reading, listening, writing and speaking. The aim is to develop all four skills to a similar level of communicative competence. The course focuses on everyday situations and aspects of the culture related to the language.

Students develop the ability to communicate in the target language through the study of language, themes and texts. In doing so, they also develop conceptual understandings of how language works. Communication is evidenced through receptive, productive and interactive skills across a range of contexts and purposes that are appropriate to the level of the course.

The Spanish ab initio syllabus is organized into five prescribed themes: identities, experiences, human ingenuity, social organization and sharing the planet.

Internal Assessment: Oral Component (25%)
A final oral examination over the second year of the course assessed by the classroom teacher and externally moderated by the IB.

Individual Oral (10 minutes) (25%)
15 minutes’ preparation of a visual stimulus. A 1-2 minute presentation of the stimulus, a 3-4 follow-up discussion with the teacher and a 3-4 minute general discussion that addresses at least one additional theme.

External Assessment: Written Component (75%)

Paper 1: Productive Skills (1 hour) (25%)

Two written tasks of 70-150 words from a choice of three tasks, choosing a text type from each task from those
listed in the instructions.

Paper 2: Receptive Skills (1 hour 45 minutes, 50%)

a) Listening Comprehension (25%)
Comprehension questions based on three audio texts

b) Reading Comprehension (25%)
Comprehension tasks based on three written texts
The texts will be drawn from all five themes.

Please contact Catherine Campbell, Head of Languages, for additional Languages information.