Creativity, Activity and Service (CAS), as a part of the Core alongside TOK and the Extended Essay, is at the heart of the IB Diploma programme and an integral part of life here at Renaissance College. The Core strives to make a difference to the lives of students and provides opportunities for students to think about their own values and actions, to understand their place in the world, and to shape their identity. It is driven by the IB’s mission “to develop inquiring, knowledgeable and caring young people who help to create a better and more peaceful world through intercultural understanding and respect” and “encourage students across the world to become active, compassionate and lifelong learners who understand that other people, with their differences, can also be right” (IB mission statement).
By choosing to undertake the IB Diploma, students are committing to developing themselves as a whole person and contributing to their community. Students are expected to have a range of different experiences, keep a record of them and reflect on how these experiences have helped to clarify and shape their own values.
The CAS programme aims to develop students who are:
- • Reflective thinkers – they understand their own strengths and limitations, identify goals and devise strategies for personal growth
- • Willing to accept new challenges and new roles
- • Aware of themselves as members of communities with responsibilities towards each other and the environment
- • Active participants in sustained, collaborative projects
- • Balanced—they enjoy and find significance in a range of activities involving intellectual, physical, creative and emotional experiences.
A student’s CAS programme should be designed to be both challenging and enjoyable, a personal journey of self-discovery. For many students, CAS activities provide experiences that are profound and life-changing. The level of challenge of CAS is in relation to the student themselves, rather than to an external standard.
CAS does not receive a grade apart from pass/fail and students must satisfactorily pass CAS in order to obtain their Diploma.
CAS is organised around the three strands of creativity, activity and service defined as follows:
The CAS programme formally begins at the start of the Diploma Programme and continues regularly, ideally on a weekly basis, for at least 18 months with a reasonable balance between creativity, activity, and service. Students use the CAS Stages (investigation, preparation, action, reflection and demonstration) as a framework for CAS experiences and the CAS project.
Students are supported through both informal meetings and regular interviews with their Advisor, CAS Counsellor or the CAS Coordinator. Progress is reported upon twice in year 12 and twice in year 13.