Osaka YMCA
International School

Creativity, Activity, Service (CAS) – Engagement, Value, Transformation

CAS Actvities
Studying, completing assessments, sitting the exams. Sometimes students may wonder if that is all there is to the IB Diploma Programme. This question can especially arise at the beginning of the DP, as the concept and focus of learning gradually moves away from the mostly inquiry, project-based MYP Programme.

Creativity, Activity, Service (CAS) – Engagement, Value, Transformation

As students choose the focus of their DP studies through selecting six subjects, they might not be able to explore all of their interests or be able to challenge themselves to the level they desire.With its aims and structure, CAS not only provides students with opportunities for accomplishment and enjoyment outside the academic curriculum, but also requires them to explore collaboration, self-determination and initiative.

Through CAS, students take part in a wide range of artistic, sporting, physical and service learning experiences that enrich their school life and help them make connections with the academic curriculum and the community. 

CAS consists of three strands:

  • Creativity – where students extend and explore their ideas leading to an original or interpretive product or performance. Through creativity students undertake experiences and projects such as: 
    • acting or supporting a drama performance
    • participating or supporting a dance or music performance
    • creating an artwork or a website
  • Activity – where students do physical exertion which contributes to a healthy lifestyle. Through activity students undertake projects and experiences such as:
    • playing on a team
    • completing a training program
    • undertaking an adventure sport or journey
  • Service – is a collaborative and reciprocal engagement with the community in response to an authentic need. Through Service students undertake projects and activities such as:
    • raising funds for an orphanage
    • helping at an animal shelter
    • volunteering at a retirement home or youth center
    • helping in school (e.g., student council)
    • speaking out about an injustice
    • finding out about the water quality

When undertaking their CAS experiences and projects students focus their aims and goals through targeting CAS Learning Outcomes.

LO 1Identify own strengths and develop areas for growth
LO 2Demonstrate that challenges have been undertaken, developing new skills in the process
LO 3Demonstrate how to initiate and plan a CAS experience.
LO 4Show commitment to and perseverance in CAS experiences.
LO 5Demonstrate the skills and recognize the benefits of working collaboratively
LO 6Demonstrate engagement with issues of global significance
LO 7Recognize and consider the ethics of choices and actions

Through targeting specific Learning Outcomes students learn how to:

  • identify goals
  • develop strategies
  • determine actions for personal goals
  • explore new possibilities
  • embrace new challenges and adapt to new roles

Experiencing and implementing the above can have a positive impact and long lasting effect on students beyond the DP program, as suggested in this IBO blog.

In order to successfully execute their ideas students use the IPARD, a 5-stage scaffolding framework that allows them to systematically and gradually plan and carry out their experiences.

The IPARD enables students to maximes their time management skills and develop realistic timelines. Moreover through its ongoing reflections it allows students to reconsider their approach and perspectives, and adapt and transform them when necessary.

Engagement in CAS can have a profound impact on students’ future as it allows them to learn through action, take risks and try a variety of experiences they have never tried before. In fact, for some students, CAS can be the best and most valued aspect of their DP journey, as suggested in this IBO blog. 

Perhaps the most important aspect of CAS is for students to understand they are members of local and global communities with responsibilities towards each other and the environment.

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