The IB Site < CAS >
If you don't fullfill the IB's CAS requirements, you FAIL.
That's the hard truth. Since the CAS is such an important part of the program it seems reasonable to know a little bit about it. This page aims to give you the general idea behind CAS and also try to supply you with ideas for projects that might make the whole thing a lot more fun.
What is CAS?
CAS stands for Creativity, Action and Service and is a required component of the International Baccalaureate (IB) program for all Diploma students. The current requirement for Diploma students is a minimum of 150 hours of CAS activities divided equally among the three categories. It is the IB framework to involve students in new roles in their community. The emphasis is on learning by doing activities that have real consequence in everyday life and reflecting on these experiences over time. This allows students to extend what they have learned in the classroom and apply that knowledge to service activities for other people, such as applying science to the environment, or applying technology to the design of devices to help people who are disabled and generally improve the living conditions for a person or an entire community.
The activities should be done gradually, be appropriately adapted to the circumstances, and take into account the students’ aptitudes and preferences. When well carried out, CAS projects should build self-esteem, self- confidence, autonomy and self-reliance.
What CAS is Not
CAS is a system for personal development and self-growth while pursuing a rigorous academic career. It is an interesting variety of activities that the student finds intrinsically worthwhile and rewarding, and which is mutually beneficial to the student and his/her community. If CAS becomes a game of "points," a way to show off, or simply another task in order to complete the IB diploma requirements, then its purpose is lost. The spirit of CAS must be remembered at all times.
The following are examples of inappropriate CAS activities:
• An activity for which the student is rewarded financially or in another material fashion.
• Doing simple repetitive work.
• All forms of duty within the family.
• Work experience that benefits only the student.
• Fund-raising attempts with not clearly defined purpose.
• Any activity where there is no leader to evaluate and confirm student performance.
If a student is uncertain whether an activity qualifies as CAS, he/she may ask the following questions:
• Is it a real task that I am going to undertake?
• Does it have real consequences for other people and for me?
• What do I hope to learn from doing this project?
• How can this activity benefit other people?