IB World School

IB, how to apply

Criteria for IB student admission and Entrance Exam

  • The application to the IB-section takes place through the Finnish joint application system
  • The application deadline is 23 March, 2021.
  • Contact guidance counsellor Jukka Valtanen if you want to visit the high school (jukka.valtanen@utu.fi)
  • The admission of new IB students is based on the basic education final report
  • high school presentation event will be held online on Wednesday 13 January 2021 at 18.30. For additional information, contact jukka.valtanen@utu.fi, tel. +358 50-5660932.
  • Applicants with an international status are advised to apply with the Turku International School online application. Please contact the principal Mirjam Virtanen (mirvir@utu.fi) before applying.

Applying from abroad

If the applicant does not have a Finnish basic education certificate, please contact the principal Katrina Vartiainen (katrina.vartiainen@utu.fi) before applying.

Admission results

The admission results are published on 17 June 2021 at the earliest.

IB basic information

IB in Turun normaalikoulu

Additional information on IB Programme

International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme is a highly respected international matriculation/A-level examination programme which is in operation in more than 140 countries and in over 3000 schools. In Finland we have 16 IB schools and all of them have English as the language of instruction. The diploma gives an extensive university and higher education qualification both in Finland and abroad. The highlight of the pre-year is an excursion to London in the spring term.

The IB Diploma Programme aims at achieving more than ordinary curricula by developing inquiring, knowledgeable and caring students with high motivation to succeed. We strive to develop students who respect others, possess intercultural understanding and genuinely want to build a better world. The IB Diploma Programme encourages

  • students to think critically and logically, and challenge ideas constructively
  • teachers to utilize the latest research in education and evaluation that enhances learning
  • students to consider both local and global perspectives, and work for others too
  • teachers to enhance students’ metacognition, study skills and to apply modern methods and technology in class

In Finland the actual two-year IB programme is preceeded by a preparatory year (pre-year) for many reasons.

The pre-year

  • is obligatory since by law the senior high school is (with minor exceptions) supposed to last for 3 years before the final examinations.
  • gives the students time to improve their English proficiency and expand their general knowledge by studying subjects which will not be part of their IB programme.
  • offer a chance for the students to get acquainted with their own style of learning and modern teaching methodology; at the same time the students learn time management and skills needed in IB studies.
  • allows the students one more year to think about their future and subject choices.
  • is a slightly modified version of the Finnish senior high school 1st-year curriculum.

IB diploma is widely regarded as a demanding programme that guarantees excellent study skills for universities and further education. Turku IB Section was established in 1991 as the 3rd school in Finland. Thus we have more than 25 years of experience in teaching the IB programme. The quality of teachers and teaching is excellent and our students gain very high final grades thanks to our careful follow-up and guiding systems.

Our ex-IB students receive excellent offers from Finnish universities as well as from top-ranking foreign universities. Our students have got into Oxford and Cambridge Universities, London School of Economics, Imperial College, Harvard and many uviversities in Central Europe.


The IB programme includes fewer subjects than the Finnish senior high school but more than British A-levels, for example. Still, there is enough width and breath in the programme to make sure the transition to higher education and universities is a smooth and pleasant one. All six subjects, EE, TOK and CAS are compulsory in the programme.

The subjects to be includes in the IB programme are chosen at the end of the pre-year. The students have to choose 6 subjects from 5 Subject Groups: 3 subjects at Higher level (HL) and 3 subjects at Standard level (SL). The sixth subjects is chosen from Groups 2-4. Maximum number of HL subjects is 4 and occasionally some students choose a 7th subject which is not included in the Diploma.

HL corresponds to 9 courses on the national side (240 h) and SL 5,5 courses (15o h).

If the student is planning the career of a medical doctor, for example, and needs 3 science subjects, he/she can apply for a ‘non-regular diploma’. If the permission is granted by the IBO, he/she will drop Group 3 subject.

There is more information on subject choices and additional requirements in the ‘Pre-year page’. The subject choices always have to be approved by the careers counsellor and the IB coordinator.


Subject Group Subject Number of courses
Group 1 Finnish A HL 5  SL 3
Swedish A SL 3
English A HL 5  SL 3
Group 2 English B HL 5  SL 3
French B SL 3
German B SL 3
Finnish B HL 5 SL 3
Group 3 Business management SL 3
Economics HL 5  SL 3
History HL 5  SL 3
Psychology HL 5  SL 3
Group 4 Biology HL 5  SL 3
Chemistry HL 5  SL 3
Physics HL 5  SL 3
Group 5 Mathematics HL 5  SL 3
Other requirements Theory of knowledge (TOK) 100 hours
CAS programme

Extended Essay (EE)

18 months

DP1, DP2

There are 3 more requirements in the IB diploma in addition to the 6 subjects.

1 Theory of Knowledge (TOK), which is a versatile forum for learning critical thinking and studies on the relationships between the nature and sources of knowledge in various fields of science. The course lasts for 100 hours and at the end the students give an oral presentation on a TOK topic of their own choice. They also have to write a TOK essay on one of the topics prescribed by the IBO.

2) Towards the end of DP1 year every student get started with their Extended Essay (EE) supervised by one of our IB teachers. The EE has to be finished during the final year, DP2. The EE and TOK results are combined and they give the students maximum 3 bonus points.

3)The 3rd entity is called the CAS-programme, (Creativity, Action, Social service). It means that the students finish a minimum 150-hour programme over 18 months. It has to include creative activities, sports or other forms of physical action and voluntary social service without pay. The aim of the CAS activities is to encorage the students to develop their personality and skills in non-academic ways, to get involved in arts and physical exercice as well as to help others in need. In brief, the students learn to take care of themselves and to become responsible members of society.

The conditions for moving on to the final year are to be found on the ‘IB evaluation’ page.

Pre-diploma year

Pre-diploma year

  • The IB Diploma Program (DP) lasts for two years and is preceded by a pre-diploma year aiming at developing the students’ general knowledge as well as study and language skills.
  • The pre-DP year curriculum is a modified version of the national curriculum and the language of instruction is English.
  • Students complete 25-30 courses in the pre-DP year.
  • All students study either German or French. Students with no previous studies in these languages study 4 courses and advanced students study 2 courses. The courses are compulsory.
  • Other language studies must be approved by the DP coordinator.
  • If a student intends to take some other  Language A than  Finnish, Swedish or English, he/she has to study it with a private teacher during the pre-DP year at his/her own cost.
  • Ms. Rauni Kaskenviita can be consulted on questions regarding  other Language A arrangements.

Subjects and Number of Courses

Languages: Language A 3,
Language B (advanced): German or French 2
Language B (beginners): German or French 4
Mathematics 3 or 5
Natural Sciences: Biology 1, Physics 1-2,  Chemistry 1, Integrated sciences 1
Humanities: History 2, Psychology 1, Social Studies 1, Theory of knowledge (TOK) 1
Other subjects: Art or Music 1, Physical Education 1,

Independent studies

  • Due to family or medical reasons a student may have to be absent from school and work independently for some time.
  • The school should be informed of such a case and preferably in advance, if possible.
  • The permission application for absence is made in Wilma.
  • The principal grants permissions to do the required course work independently.

Pre-DP year evaluation

  • Students are assessed  five times a year at the end of each study period. The grade reports are available in Wilma.
  • The courses are evaluated on a scale of 10 (excellent) to 4 (fail).
  • If all course work is not submitted the student is awarded the grade T (= unfinished work). Grade T is automatically replaced by a 4 (fail) after the next study period.
  • Teachers are not required to accept work which is turned in late.
  • Students can try to raise a course grade by signing up for a retake exam via Wilma.
  • A retake exam can be taken only once per course.
  • The dates for the retake exams can be found on the school’s website.


  • All students are expected to attend school regularly. Absences from school must have a legitimate excuse and teachers should be informed of them in advance, if possible.
  • All absences must be cleared by a parent/guardian or a medical professional (doctor, dentist etc).
  • If a student has three to four absences the teacher will determine whether he/she can evaluate the course.
  • More than four absences results in the incompletion of the course and the student must study the course independently.
  • The last retake exam is arranged in mid-June.
  • The pre-DP year cannot be repeated.

Conditions for moving on to DP1

  • To choose a higher level (HL) subject the student has to have at least a minimum average grade of 8,0.
  • For a standard level (SL) subject the minimum grade average is 7,0.
  • Students must meet the requirements below to select six DP year subjects (see section below for eligibility).
  • Students have to choose 3 higher level (HL) subjects (max. 4) and 3 standard level (SL) subjects from DP subject groups 1 – 5.
  • The sixth subject is chosen from groups 2 – 4.
  • Students must have completed all pre-DP year courses with a grade 6 or above by the end of the school year.

Subject Group 1
Finnish A (HL/SL), Swedish A (HL/SL), English A (HL/SL)

Subject Group 2
Finnish B (HL/SL), French B  (SL), French B ab initio (SL), German B (SL), German B ab initio (SL)

Subject Group 3  History (HL/SL), Psychology (HL/SL), Economics (HL/SL), Business Management (SL),

  • To choose Business Management students must have at least grade 7,0 in psychology. Final exam will be taken as an anticipated subject in the spring of DP1.
  • To choose Economics HL students must have at least grade 8,0 in history and 7,0 in physics, for Economics SL grade 7,0 in both is sufficient.

Subject group 4
Biology (HL/SL), Chemistry (HL/SL), Physics (HL/SL)

*To select physics a student must have studied both physics courses offered in the pre-DP year.

Subject Group 5

  • Math courses for DP are chosen after course 2. Those with an average grade of 6,0 – 6,9 for math courses 1 and 2 will have to take SL Math Applications and Interpretation course during DP1. These students take 3 courses of maths in the pre-DP year. Math grades below 6,0 are not acceptable.
  • Those with an average grade of 7,0 or more in courses 1 and 2 may choose Math Analysis and Approaches SL or HL course in DP1. To do so they have to study 5 courses of advanced mathematics in the pre-DP year.

N.B. Due to timetable reasons some subjects have to be taught at the same time. In the academic year 2019-2020 the overlapping subjects are physics and history / chemistry and psychology  / biology HL and economics HL  / biology and business management

IB DP1, Diploma Year 1, subjects and evaluation

DP subject briefs

The link above will take you to the official IBO Dipoloma Programme web pages where you can study the content, syllabus and evaluation of each of the IB subjects. TOK, CAS and EE information is there as well.

Evaluation in DP1 and DP2

  • IB grades range from 7 (highest) to 1 (lowest).
  • Thus 6 subjects give maximum 42 points, TOK and EE max 3 bonus points. So the maximum points in the IB Diploma is 45.
  • Students are given grades after each of the five study periods as a course ends. In DP1, there are 5 HL courses and 3 SL courses and DP2 4 HL courses and 3 SL courses.
  • In DP2 the students have two mock weeks (mid-term exam weeks) to practise time management and test their knowledge and skills.
  • If a student is absent from a mock exam, he/she must present a doctor’s certificate to the form teacher and DP coordinator. This is a requirement for rescheduling the exam.
  • Failure to submit all course work can result in the grade T (= unfinished work). A numerical grade will be awarded once the work has been completed.
  • Teachers are not required to accept or assess work turned in late.

Absence control in the DP

  • All students are expected to attend school regularly. Absences from school must have a legitimate excuse and teachers should be informed in advance, if possible.
  • All absences must be cleared by a parent/guardian or a medical professional (doctor, dentist etc).
  • If a student is absent from a mock exam, he/she must present a doctor’s certificate to the form teacher and DP coordinator. This is a requirement for rescheduling the exam.


IB DP2, ABI-info, Final examinations

IB final examinations schedules May 2020 and Nov 2020

The link above will take you to the following two exam sessions. The exams of one subject is usually divided between two days. Sometimes the students have two different subjects tested on the same day.

Conditions for the award of the IB Diploma

  • all six IB subjects are compulsory and have to be taken in the final examinations
  • the students have 3 opportunities to take the examinations, this does not have to take place in consecutive sessions
  • most subjects can be taken in May or November sessions
  • a minimum total of 24 points in six diploma subjects
  • a minimum average grade of 4 in HL subjects (note: 3 is sufficient if have grade 5, 6, or 7 in another HL subject)
  • a minimum average grade of 3 in SL subjects (note: 2 is sufficient if have grade 5, 6, or 7 in another SL subject)
  • a minimum of 12 points altogether in 3 HL subjects
  • a minimum of 9 points in 3 SL subjects
  • completion of all IA work,  done at home or at school and is part of the final grade being 25-50 % of the final grade.
  • completion of all TOK components, no grade E
  • completion of all CAS components
  • completion of the Extended Essay, no grade E
  • all pending fees must have been paid, the final exam cost about 600 euros
  • Failing to meet one or more of the criteria above means no diploma awarded.

Textbooks and materials

Teachers (IB)

first name.surname@utu.fi

Study support and guidance

Student welfare team

Key persons

Principal Katrina Vartiainen 040 0831009
School office Anna Elenius 050 3297783
Guidance counsellor Jukka Valtanen 050 5660932
IB DP coordinator Marianna Vanhatalo 040 5773395
Social worker Jatta Auremaa 050 5924685
Educational psychologist Petri Tiitta 040 5181955
Special education teacher Jaana Hyvärinen 050 5327080
School nurse Vilma Alcenius 040 1498500

e-mails: first name.surname@utu.fi

Students’ welfare work is the responsibility of everyone working in the school and it is carried out in co-operation with homes. The key persons in the welfare team are listed above.

The main goal of the team is to take care of the students’ physical, mental and social welfare. The team also promotes the safety and welfare of the whole school community.

Careers guidance

The careers counsellor for senior high school is Mr Jukka Valtanen, whose office is on the 3rd floor.    tel. 050 5660932,  e-mail jukka.valtanen@utu.fi

The study consellor advises students in matters such as general studies, career choices, further education and work life. The guidance is given in lessons as well as at personal and group meetings. The work is carried out in co-operation with other teachers and the student welfare team. The guidance also includes visits to colleges, universties and further education open days.

School curator

Our school curator, Ms Jatta Auremaa, works for all levels of students in the school. Her office is on the 1st lorr in A-wing.  Tel. 050 5924 685  e-mail:  jatta.auremaa@utu.fi

The school curator is a school social worker who aims at solving the students’ problems in studying. She also works in co-operation with guardians, teachers, the school welfare team and external experts. If needed she also guides familieshow  to contact specialists outside school. Both guardians and students are welcome to discuss even personal matters with the curator.  All discussions with the curator are confidential.

The curator helps and supports the students in matters such as:

  • problematic situations in studies (absences, lack of study motivation and disability to concentrate on work in class)
  • challenges in social relationships (conflicts at home or elsewhere)
  • clearing bullying cases
  • matters related to life control
  • guidance and advice on study benefits

School psychologist

Our school psychologist Petri Tiitta’s office is on the 1st floor in A-Wing. Make an appointment for consultation.                   tel. 040 5181955     e-mail: petri.tiitta@utu.fi.

The school psychologist aims at helping you in matters related to mental welfare, study motivation and coping with stress in particular.

The responsibilities of the school psychologist:

  • psychological investigations and evaluations related to the students’ study habits and welfare
  • offering consultation for teachers and other staff
  • guiding and advising guardians
  • guiding and advising students
  • analysis of the activities and harmony of student groups and classes
  • co-operation with the principals and other staff; plans for crisis situations, for instance

Special teacher

Special teacher’s job is to support the students in their studies and when they have learning difficulties at times when the students’ ability to work is decreased abrubtly, temporarily or extensively. The situation may be caused by a physical or mental illness or particularly difficult curcumstances in life.

On the other hand, the development of a student’s study skills, time management, feeling of responsibility, mastery of life skills or motivation may require special support and guidance.

Special teacher also organizes dyslexia tests to identify reading and writing difficulties. She is also responsible for writing a document needed in special arrangements in examinations. Students are advised to be active in getting suitable assistance from her and the school.

Health care

Health care

School nurse Vilma Alcenius  (tel. 040 149 8500)

The school nurse’s room is located on the 1st floor next to Lounge A in the elementary school section.

  • at 8 – 9 reception  without pre-booking
  • at 9 –  reception with advance booking

The aim of school healthcare is

  • to enhance the students’ health and ability to study effectively, and to support life control and the process toward adulthood
  • to recognize the need for special support and to guide the student to make use of our welfare team and the suppotive measures
  • to observe and promote the health, welfare and safety of the whole school community and environment.

Health inspections of the senior high students

School health care is mostly taken care of by the school nurses and school doctor. They will contact other health services such as hospital inspections, treatment or rehabilitation if needed. All 1st-year senior high students are called to the health inspection carried out by the school nurse. 2nd-year students are inspected by the school nurse and doctor together but it is possible to meet the doctore earlier on request.

The aim of the health inspections is to get an overall view of the students’ health and welfare situation and to guide the students to make choices that promote their health. Special attention is paid to the students’ life situation, study motivation and health risks.

The students’ health situation is evaluated from the point of view how well they are able to do well in their studies. The doctor’s inspection in the 2nd year includes the inspection for the army as a pre-measure to the official army inspection.

It is vital that new students inform the school nurse, form or subject teacher about any underlying diseases or other conditions or symptoms that may affect the future studies.

Accidents and sudden illnesses that require medical doctor’s treatment are taken care of in the local health centre or on-duty hospital (TYKS, T-hospital, Savitehtaankatu 1, Turku; telephone advice 02-313800). First aid is given by the school nurses. The treatment in cases of school accident is free for the students. See for more information in Wilma.

Dental treatments

Dental treatment of the students is carried out in the student’s own dental clinic in his/her postal area. The students must book the time themselves and the treatment is free for anyone under 18. Turku central dental clinic tel. 02-2660 644. Those who are not permanent residents of Turku are obliged to book a time in their own community.

Working days and holidays, exam weeks



Autumn term: Wed 12.8. – Sat 19.12.2020

  • Holiday week: Mo 12.10. –  Sun 18.10.2020
  • Christmas break: Sun 20.12.2020 – Wed 6.1.2021

Spring term: Thu 7.1. – Sat 5.6.2021

  • Talviloma: ma 22.2. –  su 28.2.2021


  1. period 12.8.2020 – 5.10.2020, exam week 28.9.2020 – 5.10.2020
  2. period 6.10.2020 – 2.12.2020, exam week 25.11.2020 – 2.12.2020
  3. period 3.122020. – 9.2.2021, exam week 2.2.2021 – 9.2.2021
  4. period 10.2.2021 – 12.4.2021, exam week 6.4.2021 – 12.4.2021
  5. period 13.4.2021 – 5.6.2021, information will come later

RETAKE EXAMS (Senior high)

  1. Thu 5.11.2020 at 16 – 19
  2. Thu 14.1.2021 at 16 – 19
  3. Thu 11.3.2021 at 16 – 19
  4. in June, information will come later.

Meetings with guardians in Zoom

3IB + 3IBkv (DP2) Tue 8.9.2020 at 18.00

PreIB + preIBkv Thu 10.9.2020 at18.00

2IB + 2IBkv (DP1) Tue 27.10.2021 at18.00

  • Abishow Thu 11.2.2021
  • Vanhojen päivä/Old dances pe 12.2.2021

Daily lessons in grades

1. oppitunti  08.30-09.45
2. oppitunti  10.00-11.15
3. oppitunti  11.30-12.45
4. oppitunti  13.15-14.30
5. oppitunti  14.45-16.00

Timetable formula

Time Mon Tu Wed Thu Fri
1 8.30- 1 6 7 1 6
2 10.00- 3 4 5 2 3
3 11.30- 2 2 3 4 5
4 13.15- 6 8 4 5 8
5 14.45- 7 1 7 8