DP (Diploma programme)

After completing the Middle Years Programme (MYP) students enter Grade 11, where they can pursue all or various combinations of three certifications: the International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma Programme (DP);  the U.S. High School Diploma (HS); and the Bachillerato en Educación Media Diploma from the Costa Rican Ministerio de Educación Pública (MEP). 

The Diploma Program (DP) aims to develop students who have excellent breadth and depth of knowledge – students who flourish physically, intellectually, emotionally and ethically.  

The DP is made up of six subject groups and the DP core, comprising theory of knowledge (TOK), creativity, activity, service (CAS) and the extended essay.


DP Core

Through the Diploma Program (DP) core, students reflect on the nature of knowledge, complete independent research and undertake a project that often involves community service.  There are 3 components to the core:

  • Theory of knowledge: students reflect on the nature of knowledge and on how we know what we claim to know.
  • The extended essay: is an independent, self-directed piece of research, finishing with a 4,000-word paper.
  • Creativity, activity, service: students complete a project related to those three concepts.


6 subject areas

The DP allows students to select subjects according to the academic profile of each student, and in relation to this, Pan American School, has been characterized by offering one of the widest subject menus in the country, allowing students to select subjects according to their profile or professional interests. In the 2021-2022 academic year we offer the following subject options:


Group 1

Group 2

Spanish: Language & Literature HL

Spanish: Language Acquisition

English Language & Literature HL

English B HL

Group 3

Group 4 

History SL/HL

Business & Management SL/HL

Information Technology in a Global Society  (ITGS) SL/HL

Economics SL/HL


Biology SL/HL

Chemistry SL/HL

Physics SL/HL

Sports, exercise and health science SL/HL


Group 5 

Group 6 


Mathematics: Applications and interpretation SL

Mathematics: Analysis and approaches  SL/HL


Visual Arts SL/HL

Music SL/HL



Core Components from the Diploma Program

  1. Theory of Knowledge
  2. Extended Essay
  3. CAS

Pamoja Courses offered

  1. Spanish B: Language acquisition
  2. Spanish Ab: Language acquisition
  3. French Ab: Language acquisition
  4. Psychology SL/HL


Through a broad offering, we provide the preparation and opportunities to develop abilities and attitudes that will support students to become responsible citizens who find creative solutions to life’s challenges. Theory is combined with practice through research skills, state-of-the-art technology, reflection, critical reading and thinking skills, and oral and written communication – essential to students’ future success in academic, professional, and personal spheres. 

Diploma Programme students start the day with our unique Sports & Fitness Program, in which students choose the activity that best suits their interests and needs. A pillar of our program is Service Learning, where we emphasize the value of direct involvement in developing social awareness through hands-on experiences,  giving time, effort, and passion to improve the lives of others who are less fortunate.

Our student life is varied and encourages student input in the school’s decision-making processes. We encourage involvement in the Student Government and National Honor Society; both organizations carry out activities that encourage service, leadership, and school spirit, and contribute to integration within generations. 

Today’s world requires international-mindedness to understand other societies and cultures. This is accomplished through the ongoing development of the IB Learner Profile as well as through specific activities such as summer programs with reputable colleges, Model United Nations, and the opportunities available through the Association of American Schools of Central America (AASCA) and other international organizations.

For more information about our curriculum, course requirements, and policies, please write to info@panam.ed.cr.