Creativity Action Service (CAS)

  • What is CAS?

    CAS is a fundamental part of the Diploma Program experience. The CAS requirement takes seriously the importance of life outside the world of scholarship, providing a refreshing counterbalance to the academic self-absorption some may feel within a demanding school environment. The IB goal of educating the whole person and fostering a more compassionate and active citizenry comes alive in an immediate way when students reach beyond themselves and their books.

    The CAS requirement encourages students to share their energy and special talents with others: students may, for example, participate in theater or musical productions, and sports and community service activities. Students should, through these activities, develop greater awareness of themselves and concern for others, as well as the ability to work cooperatively with other people. Creativity is interpreted broadly to include a wide range of arts activities as well as the creativity students demonstrate in designing and implementing service projects. Action can include not only participation in individual and team sports but also taking part in expeditions and in local or international projects. Service encompasses a host of community and social service activities. Some examples include helping children with special needs, visiting hospitals and working with refugees or homeless people.

    Some of our HHS IB Art students participated in "The Memory Project" as a creative component to their CAS experience. Here is a clip that aired on CBS Evening news August 2, 2010. For more information check out The Memory Project's website!

    As a result of their CAS experience as a whole, including their reflections, there should be evidence that students have:

    • Increased their awareness of their own strengths and areas for growth

    They are able to see themselves as individuals with various skills and abilities, some more developed than others, and understand that they can make choices about how they wish to move forward.

    • Undertaken new challenges

    A new challenge may be an unfamiliar activity, or an extension to an existing one.

    • Planned and initiated activities

    Planning and initiation will often be in collaboration with others. It can be shown in activities that are part of larger projects, for example, ongoing school activities in the local community, as well as in small student‑led activities.

    • Worked collaboratively with others

    Collaboration can be shown in many different activities, such as team sports, playing music in a band, or helping in a kindergarten. At least one project, involving collaboration and the integration of at least two of creativity, action and service, is required.

    • Shown perseverance and commitment in their activities

    At a minimum, this implies attending regularly and accepting a share of the responsibility for dealing with problems that arise in the course of activities.

    • Engaged with issues of global importance

    Students may be involved in international projects but there are many global issues that can be acted upon locally or nationally (for example, environmental concerns, caring for the elderly).

    • Considered the ethical implications of their actions

    Ethical decisions arise in almost any CAS activity (for example, on the sports field, in musical composition, in relationships with others involved in service activities). Evidence of thinking about ethical issues can be shown in various ways, including journal entries and conversations with CAS advisers.

    • Developed new skills

    As with new challenges, new skills may be shown in activities that the student has not previously undertaken, or in increased expertise in an established area.


    HHS IB students enter their CAS activities and supporting documentation (journals, reflections, pictures, etc.) on the Humble ManageBac website at CAS documentation should be kept current and up-to-date!

    The focus of CAS is on the learning outcomes listed above. These outcomes help to emphasize that it is the quality of a CAS activity (its contribution to the student’s development) that is of most importance. The guideline for the minimum amount of CAS activity is approximately the equivalent of half a day per school week (three to four hours per week), or approximately 150 hours in total, with a reasonable balance between creativity, action and service. “Hour counting”, however, is not encouraged.

    Important links for help with CAS and Service-Learning

    Service Partner for TIBS - LIMBS International
    Visit our Links page for additional organizations that work well for CAS projects!