What is CAS?
CAS is a mandatory part of the IB Diploma. For CAS, which stands for Creativity, Activity and Service, the student is required to fulfill 150 hours of volunteer work after school – 50 hours for each section (Creativity, Action, Service). Although it is not formally assessed, students are obliged to provide a reflection of their CAS activity and evidence of what has been achieved.
Personally, I have never heard about an education having a compulsory “volunteer work” section - and I admit, in the beginning, I did not know what the desired effect of this should be. However now, that I am in my last year of the Diploma Program, and I almost have completed my CAS I understand that it makes me get involved in various different activities alongside the academic studies I picked.
CAS gives you, as a student a feeling of how it is to work in real life. Moreover it makes you consider various issues in our living circumstances, which we normally just accept or take for granted.
For example my last CAS activity was helping an organization with refugees arriving in Flensburg by supplying them with food, blankets and clothes. Trying to communicate with the refugees and witnessing the situation in real life made me have another perspective on refugees than what I had seen on television up until that point.
When an activity is completed there are eight so-called learning outcomes, which you have to include in your reflection.
CAS is an opportunity for the individual student to include some of their own ‘personality’ into their education by being able to choose exactly what the student wants.
Clara Heil, IB3
CAS? What is that?
Creativity: Creativity can be anything that brings up the creative part of you. Be it, constructing something, learning a foreign language or simply learning how to play an instrument. Planning an activity is also considered creativity. For example, learning how to play the piano would be acceptable as long as it fits the criterions. Another example is, learning how to speak Spanish or German, etc. it could be any language what so ever.
Activity: This category is about being healthy, so basically being active. Again, it does not have to be a specific type of sport. For example, you could go out for a run and enjoy the nature in a park or you could train in a gym, you could participate in school activities etc. Anything works concidering the criterions that have to be meet and therefore, the approval from the supervisor.
Service: Service is all about your humanitarian side. Basically doing community service, it is very simple and open. For example gathering money for child-help organization or work as volunteer in elder care center or helping your neighbours etc. Only the imagination sets the boundaries.
Hussein Al Tai