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The IB’s Paul Teulon: Why top universities recognize IB students

We caught up with the IB’s Head of Global Recognition, Paul Teulon, to share insights from his conversations with universities on the admissions process as well as advice to students and parents on why universities continue to value the IB experience.

“Universities fundamentally want great quality students and the IB certainly has great quality students”

Can you tell us about your conversations with universities?

Our universities are experiencing unprecedented times themselves. They’re taking learning online, as many IB schools have, they’re grappling with delivering exams through either an online method or indeed using the effective equivalent of coursework or internal assessment. They’re also thinking forward to their next class who are starting in the fall in the autumn and thinking about what life will look like for them.

The vast majority of universities by far are saying we’re doing the right thing, we’re doing prudent measures, we’re making the right decisions, and we’re conveying that information clearly to universities. So, I’m really confident that universities are going to admit our students, award them credit and placement where appropriate, so that our students can transition into university in the autumn.

What advice do you have for students and parents concerned about the university admissions process?

I think students, and parents, and counselors need to remember that universities fundamentally want great quality students and the IB certainly has great quality students. I’ve been having conversations with universities from across the globe about how we’re going to work together during a slightly difficult period where the IB has thought really carefully about how we’re going to award grades in May 2020.

What is special about IB learners as they enter university?

So, what’s special about an IB learner? They work really hard, they’re disciplined and organized, and that makes them really well-prepared for college in the first year. I always say to parents, it’s not just about admissions, it’s about transition. And the IB is a great mechanism for supporting students for their transition into the first year of university or college.

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