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About the Co-Curricular Experience

Photo by Joan Bessem, UWCA'22

Co-curricular Experience

What makes up our co-curricular programme? 

Our co-curricular programme is made up of three main elements: Service, Creative and Physical Activities (CAS in IB terminology); Project Week and Conferences.

What is CAS?

One of the three core elements of the IB is the co-curricular experience called CAS. CAS stands for Creative, Activity and Service:

  • Creative - exploring and extending ideas leading to an original or interpretive product or performance 
  • Activity - physical exertion contributing to a healthy lifestyle
  • Service - collaborative and reciprocal engagement with the community in response to an authentic need

It has always been a mandatory core component of the IB Diploma Programme, providing a ‘counterbalance’ to the academic rigour of the programme. As part of the curriculum, students are expected to undertake a minimum of two hours of community service, two hours of physical activity and a further two hours of creative activity each week. These sessions take place in the afternoon, evenings and weekends. 

UWC Atlantic gives co-curricular as much importance as the academic element of the IB Diploma Programme, with successful completion of CAS being a requirement for the IB Diploma to be awarded. At UWC Atlantic, our CAS programme is much broader and far-reaching than a typical IB school. We believe this is important so that students can develop their specific passions and interests, work with new groups of people, build on their potential to challenge themselves and move beyond their comfort zone by taking their experiential learning to a new level. We want this to help shape each student’s ambitions and priorities so that when they graduate and go onto university or the world of work, their choices can be informed by their social conscience and underpinned by the UWC values. 

Students reflect on their experiences and provide evidence of achieving each of the 7 Learning Outcomes for CAS as a requirement of the Diploma Programme. Some outcomes are achieved many times, though others may be achieved less frequently. In the CAS portfolio, students provide evidence of having achieved each of the learning outcomes at least once through their CAS programme. The learning outcomes are; 

  • Identify own strengths and develop areas for growth.
  • Demonstrate that challenges have been undertaken, developing new skills in the process.
  • Demonstrate how to plan a CAS experience.
  • Show commitment to, and perseverance in, CAS experiences.
  • Demonstrate the skills and recognise the benefits of working collaboratively.
  • Demonstrate engagement with issues of global significance.
  • Recognise and consider the ethics of choice and actions.

What is Project Week?

Every year students have the opportunity to immerse themselves in a project for a week - one of the major events in our co-curricular calendar. Projects are either service related or expedition based. Projects are proposed by students and staff and embrace collaborative planning and teamwork. First and second years work together and learn to embrace and value each others' knowledge, skills and experience. Project Week is filled with lots of fun and opportunities to make new friends. Click here to learn about some of the adventures and activities that happened in previous Project Weeks. 

What are Conferences?

Conferences are held on a quarterly basis at UWC Atlantic. They are student led (supported/guided by a member of staff) and give them the opportunity to manage the event, from submitting proposals for headline themes to be covered, to sourcing and booking the venue and speakers, developing workshops, producing the marketing materials, inviting participants and running the show from start to finish. To learn about some of the Conferences that have been held recently, click here

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Conferences Conferences
Project Week Project Week