What Is IGCSE And Is It The Right Choice For My Child?
The final years of schooling are both the most challenging that a child has experienced so far and also, if the right course of study is chosen, possibly the most rewarding. One secondary diploma that is gaining popularity is the International General Certificate of Secondary Education (IGCSE). The curriculum is based on the British GCSE but has been modified to make it understandable, accessible, and achievable for students in almost all parts of the world.
The Course: There are more than 70 subjects available for study which includes 30 languages to make it easier for students who are more comfortable learning in their mother tongues. The availability of both Core and Extended curriculum papers allows for students to have varying levels of ability to do well. IGCSE is primarily an examination based which makes it a comfortable choice for Indian students who have grown up in examination dominated systems of learning. Practical tests and examinations do exist in the IGCSE curriculum, but they are optional. This has been done to accommodate the varying levels of learning support for practical studies because some schools may not have the resources or access to the advanced levels of practical experiments and/or fieldwork.
The Examination Boards: IGCSE is offered through 2 boards – Cambridge Assessment International and Edexcel. The content is basically similar in both boards, but the examination format can vary. As an example, Edexcel has one 3 hour examination for geography while Cambridge has 4 separate papers. It is up to the school to decide which board they want to use. Universities do not differentiate between the two boards and there is no bias for or against either one.
The Path To Further Studies: The IGCSE curriculum is designed to prepare students for further studies such as the IB diploma. It is a preparation for admission into international universities. The fact that assessment is examination-based is another advantage as it prepares students to work under both pressure and time constraints.
Is It For Your Child?
While IGCSE is rapidly growing in popularity, there are other courses available that may suit some children more. The importance of knowing which course of study and examination is right for your child cannot be overstated. In the case of IGCSE:
• The examination is accessible to nearly all levels of ability. The questions asked often have different levels of difficulty to cater to students who are comfortable in a specific subject as well as those who may find it more challenging.
• Since assessment occurs only at the end of the course, students have more time to grasp complex concepts and overcome any obstacles they face. This also allows students who less comfortable with the language of instruction time to understand the material they need to prepare for the examination.
• IGCSE grades are thought to provide college admission departments with a well-rounded picture of a student’s abilities and level of knowledge. The grades are highly regarded by British, European, and North American universities and are treated as being on par with other internationally accepted secondary examinations.
If you are looking for detailed information on IGCSE and have questions you want to be answered before you make a decision, the right thing to do is to contact reputed online tutoring that prepares students of IGCSE and other international curricula. You may fix an appointment with an academic counselor to choose and plan a program suited for your child. This is where you will be able to discuss your child’s academic strengths and weaknesses and know if IGCSE or another course is the best choice. Once a decision is made, access to the tutoring that is essential for success is available.
- Feb 22, 2021