The A+ Signature Program
Our A+ Signature Program sets our school apart. Specially designed to give students a deeper understanding of your curriculum, our unique curriculum allows you to link your classroom learning with real world experiences. Key components of the Signature Program include our field studies, volunteer experiences, the A+ seminar, guest lectures and the preparation of an extended essay submitted before graduation.
A+ Field Studies:
In visiting 20 ports each academic year, you get to experience what other students only read about. The curriculum comes alive through exceptional, hands-on lessons in each port of call. You spend around 30% of your time engaged in field studies, and you will also participate in some volunteer and community service along the way.
Research shows that a person’s learning ability decrease rapidly after 90 days of starting a new program. To counter this, we developed a unique two-week seminar that is designed to give you the tools you need to retain knowledge and stay motivated to learn new things. The program takes place on land and is divided in to seven different modules. The seminar takes place approximately 90 days in to a new academic year.
A+ Lecture Series:
Our A+ Lecture Series brings leading professionals and political figures from around the world to inspire you with their experience and knowledge.
A+ Extended Essay:
You will prepare a 4000-word essay on a topic of global significance. In researching and writing this extended piece of independent work, you will practice applying approved research methods from your chosen field, and learn to craft persuasive arguments.
A+ Field Studies
An A+ education offers 20+ ports-of-call each year full of opportunities for experiential education. Academic Field Studies refers to these organized learning opportunities that are undertaken as a full school while in port.
In each field-studies program, students delve deeper into significant aspects of each place’s geography, history, culture, science, politics, current issues etc. Learning comes alive as students witness and experience these topics for themselves, first hand, in a way that can’t be replicated in a classroom.
How better to understand the impact of the religious and societal influences on Easter Island then to be there? To engage in discussion with a guest speaker who has lived and worked on the island all their life, to walk the paths of the indigenous peoples and stand under the same Moai that inspired such human ingenuity, to discuss with other students and teachers the issues introduced in our academic courses and in the field studies course, and then, to reflect and journal about the experience.
Field studies takes learning beyond the classroom and places students into real life experiences that provoke critical thinking, inquiry, and engagement, not only in academic studies but in the world at large. The A+ Academic field studies program fosters active, engaged and passionate global citizens for life.
Field Studies Course
The field studies course that is incorporated into the timetable is an opportunity to prepare for, and reflect upon the field-studies activities completed in port.
It is important to introduce topics so that students are better able to process and appreciate the programs in Port. It is also important to de-brief programs because while some experiences can speak for themselves, most often we learn best by reflecting upon our experiences. And so the field studies course allows time for discussing, reflecting and assimilating the experiences had in port to ensure the most holistic learning experience.
Two Field Studies Examples
Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam (2016)
Activity: Students will visit the Reunification Palace, one of the most important buildings in the city. Here on April 30th 1975 the ‘American War’ officially ended when tank number 843 of the North Vietnamese Army crashed through the gates of what was, at the time the residence of the President of the Republic of Vietnam.
Goal and learning objective: In Comparative Government and Politics, students will analyze how the functions and institutions of governments have changed over time, assess how and why internal conflicts, such as revolts and revolutions, have influenced the process of state building, expansion, and dissolution. They will also assess how and why external conflicts and alliances have influenced the process of state building, expansion, and dissolution and assess how and why commercial exchanges have influenced the process of state building, expansion, and dissolution.
Activity: Students will visit the Seria Oilfields . Seria is at the epicenter of Brunei’s wealth from oil and gas. It was not until 1931 that the first commercial well delivered oil, and now Seria remains the centre for onshore as well as off shore drilling.
This tour will introduce you to Brunei’s significant natural resource. The gas and oil that underpins the country’s financial stability, as well as the forest resources that are so carefully managed.
Goal and learning objective: In Environmental Science, students will enhance their understanding of land and water in agriculture, forestry and rangelands as wellas energy consumption and fossil fuels resources.
Guest Lecture Series
Travelling around the world allows us to utilize a wide arrange of tools in order to help our students develop academically. Here follows a few examples of guest lecturers that we have met on our way, and who have shared their knowledge and experience with ouru students.
In Lisbon, Commander Pedro Mendes of the Portuguese Navy spoke at length about his naval career and his voyage aboard the Portuguese tall ship Sagres, which, like Sørlandet, not only sails the world, but proudly represents its home country.
Easter Island and Pitcairn Island
On Easter Island we met Mr. Johan Kloster, a crew member crew member of Thor Heyerdahls expedition to Rapa Nui in 1955/56 and the first to discover the Bounty shipwreck outside of Pitcairn Island in 1956. He shared his stories and experiences with our students.
In Hong Kong His Excellency the Norwegian Ambassador/Consul to Hong Kong, SAR gave a key note adrees sharing his experiences in diplomacy and business.
Our students select a topic of global significance, and prepare a 4000-word essay that will teach them how to use approved research methods and develop persuasive arguments.
Writing an essay based on a topic of global significance is an important signature programme fixture. Students will learn to formulate their research topic and will engage in the personal exploration of the topic across each of the 20 to 25 international destinations visited.
Through guided inquiry and qualitative research methods, the students will learn to communicate ideas and concepts while building or developing convincing arguments.
Learning Optimisation Seminar
Research shows that a person’s learning ability decreases rapidly after 90 days. To counter this, A+ World Academy has developed a unique two week seminar that focuses on the students’ self-reflection. The program takes place on land and is divided in to seven different modules. Our goal is to give A+ students the tools they need to uphold the motivation, endurance and accomplishments in their learning.
There are six steps used to move from ‘experience saturation’ and a ‘learning numbness’ to heightened awareness and renewed focus or plan:
- The data dump: what I have felt, seen, heard and tasted
- Reflection: Describe, Feel, Evaluate, Analyse, Conclude & Plan (The Gibbs Reflective Cycle)
- Extracting what is important to me
- Assimilating my experience and linking it to my behaviour inventory
- Transferring my learning to a new and expanded set of skills
- Creating an action plan…the path ahead