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Expat Education. A Levels or International Baccalaureate.?????

Expat Education. A Levels or International Baccalaureate.?????

Old Jun 12th 2007, 7:27 pm
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Default Re: Expat Education. A Levels or International Baccalaureate.?????

As I understand it, some (or many, even) private schools in the UK are switching to the IGCSE because they feel it provides a better preparation for a-level than the ordinary GCSE.

State run schools can't, because the IGCSE isn't an 'approved' exam and can't be counted in the league tables (of course, league tables are more important than preparing children for university).

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/e...on/6083198.stm
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Old Jun 12th 2007, 10:22 pm
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Default Re: Expat Education. A Levels or International Baccalaureate.?????

We had to make the decision when a school offering IB opened in Alicante. We chose to stay with igcse and are glad we did. Although I think IB is a broarder course, it is harder. I think you cut your options because if your child finds languages hard or is not very academic they can´t leave at 16 with any qualifications (as you can with some igcse´s) and take a btec diploma in uk. A friend had to bring her child back to an igcse/A level school as he was finding the course leading to International Baccalaureate too demanding.
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Old Jun 13th 2007, 6:29 am
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Default Re: Expat Education. A Levels or International Baccalaureate.?????

Originally Posted by rachelk
As I understand it, some (or many, even) private schools in the UK are switching to the IGCSE because they feel it provides a better preparation for a-level than the ordinary GCSE.

State run schools can't, because the IGCSE isn't an 'approved' exam and can't be counted in the league tables (of course, league tables are more important than preparing children for university).

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/e...on/6083198.stm
The article says that but in my experience, we offer the IGCSE in private schools because there is less course work to worry about and the syllabus is more world based. This makes it more suitable for all the students from abroad who return to their countries in the holidays. The Geography GCSE for example has a lot of issues about local planning, irrelevant to your average Hong Kong student, while the IGCSE contains more traditional physical geography.
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Old Jun 13th 2007, 7:41 am
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Default Re: Expat Education. A Levels or International Baccalaureate.?????

Originally Posted by searcher48
We had to make the decision when a school offering IB opened in Alicante. We chose to stay with igcse and are glad we did. Although I think IB is a broarder course, it is harder. I think you cut your options because if your child finds languages hard or is not very academic they can´t leave at 16 with any qualifications (as you can with some igcse´s) and take a btec diploma in uk. A friend had to bring her child back to an igcse/A level school as he was finding the course leading to International Baccalaureate too demanding.
I don't understand your post.

The IGCSEs and IB are not related. IGCSEs are at age 16 and the IB is at 18.

Of the two international schools near us one does IGCSEs/A Levels and the other IGCSEs/IB.

What did the school your friend's child went to do up to age 16?
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Old Jun 13th 2007, 8:47 am
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Default Re: Expat Education. A Levels or International Baccalaureate.?????

(I am led to believe) the european school in Alicante does not offer igcse as it is european based rather than uk. They offer first language courses in either German, English, Spanish, and French and second language in any other except Spanish. It is mainly Spanish students.
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Old Jun 13th 2007, 12:16 pm
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Default Re: Expat Education. A Levels or International Baccalaureate.?????

Originally Posted by searcher48
(I am led to believe) the european school in Alicante does not offer igcse as it is european based rather than uk. They offer first language courses in either German, English, Spanish, and French and second language in any other except Spanish. It is mainly Spanish students.
The Europen school in Alicante was only set up in 2002 as a primary/nursery. It took in a few secondary age students in 2003 or maybe even not until 2004 so hasn´t had time to build up a pupil base to be viable to offer any public exams. As you say, mainly Spanish children hoping to improve their English or expats on very temporary contracts attend. It´s really just a language school for children and has never claimed to be anything else though obviously its curriculum must have had government approval from somewhere.
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Old Jun 13th 2007, 1:35 pm
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Default Re: Expat Education. A Levels or International Baccalaureate.?????

Originally Posted by Lis48
..............the syllabus is more world based.
I agree there are some differences in content - eg in science, in the UK we would teach them about electrical safety - ie no plugs in bathrooms, how to wire a uk plug, standard fuses etc - these don't apply elsewhere.

Coming from teaching in scotland, I taught standard grade rather than GCSE before coming here, so can't compare the two from my own experience, but there must be a reason why UK indpt schools are changing.
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Old Jun 13th 2007, 8:17 pm
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Default Re: Expat Education. A Levels or International Baccalaureate.?????

There's an article in today's Independent about UK schools changing from GCSEs to IGCSEs. Although slightly inaccurate, as it says there is no coursework with IGCSEs. My daughter sat her IGCSEs in 2005 and there was loads of it!!

http://education.independent.co.uk/n...cle2643031.ece
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