International Baccalaureate or A-Levels?

  • 2 votes

I'm soon applying to Sixth Form and I really don't know which route to choose. I'm very academic, in all subjects, especially Biology, Chemistry, German ad Maths. Well to be quite honest I like all subjects, so therefore the IB sounds perfect. But....I've bee told it is alot harder to obtain a good score of points on the IB, than to get good grades I A-Level subjects. But I am very interested in the IB Diploma, any advice? (: x

Posted Mon 16th July, 2012 @ 21:10 by Elysia Northall

7 Answers

  • 2 votes

It really depends what career path you want to take

-If you want to get into a certain field in university/career i.e Getting into Chemistry at Degree/career in chemistry level then its best you opt for A-levels doing what field you want to get into, as Alevels are intensive and concentrate about the subjects more than IB

However, if you are uncertain, then taker the IB route as your options are left open. IB has a reputation  of being tougher than Alevels since its International standard. Its extremely useful if you want to study abroad i.e Going to Yale Uni in the US. 

I would talk to students/teachers/those who have taken the IB route and Alevel route and they are able to say whether if it was really worth taking up IB/Alevels and give you a true insight into the courses. 

Answered Sun 30th September, 2012 @ 18:32 by ELectrica!
  • 1 vote

This is from a college near me, my friend wants to do the IB here and it really excited about it. Hope this helps

Why should you take this programme rather than doing traditional A Levels?

The Financial Times describes the qualification as, "The best exam route to university". The Independent calls it, "the multidisciplinary diploma that is fast becoming a favoured option for academically gifted students". Finally the Guardian believes that, "this course should be compulsory in all schools in the world". The qualification is accepted by every single UK University and is very highly regarded by higher education institutions and companies around the world.

So why is there so much excitement about this qualification which started in Switzerland 40 years ago and is now studied in more countries than any other qualification in the world?

The students on the International Baccalaureate Diploma programme believe that the future lies in a global world where a range of skills are required to fully understand our surroundings and hey are committed to studying 6 subjects instead of the usual 4. They see that the future is international and their hopes and dreams for the future are not limited to our small island. All teachers are specialists in their field of expertise and also teach on the AS and A level programme but they have opted for the extra challenge of the IB because they believe in this future too.

Answered Thu 19th July, 2012 @ 20:11 by Kelleigh
  • 1 vote

The IB is good for someone who isn't very sure about what courses they'd like to take after year 11, so if you wouldn't want to specialise your subjects so soon, then IB is probably the best path for you.

However, if you do have a good idea of what you'd like to do, I'd suggest A Levels. Too many times I've heard Oxbridge scrutinizing the IB, and A Levels is the most traditional path there is really. IB is also really risky, unless you'd like to go abroad, perhaps the States, then maybe you should choose it, but I recommend A Levels. You need good grades in both of you'd like to go far.

Answered Wed 1st May, 2013 @ 19:32 by Bander
  • 0 votes

personally, i am going to do a levels, because i feel that i know where i am going and i know my strong subjects, but one of my freinds doesnt really know what she wants to do later on so she is thinking hard about the IB because it covers a lot of things more generally,

i think it depends if you know 3 or 4 subjects that you really like and want to do or if you want a general qualification :)

hope it helps :D

Answered Sun 30th September, 2012 @ 16:23 by lexi
  • 0 votes

If you like all those IB sounds good for you

You need relatively low marks to get a pass in IB - the pass point mark isn't so high

it is however alot more work that A level as there is so many more subjects - you have to do more hours a wekk

universities like it as it covers the wide range

you can't retake unfortunately

And you have to do CAS aswell as your acedemic studies and an essay

i think you need to ask more people in your school doing it for their advice:)

Answered Sun 30th September, 2012 @ 18:18 by Alex
  • 0 votes

/my friends are going into medicine and Vetinary doing IB so you don't need to take A levels to make sure you do a specific subject, true A level does go into more depth, but the amount of subjects and extra parts that go with IB make it stand out often in comparison to A levels 

Answered Sun 30th September, 2012 @ 18:42 by Alex
  • 0 votes

The IB sounds good for somone who wants to take a wide variety of courses- such as yourself- but I think you need to look at which sixth forms your applying to aswell. I have a local college who always gets their students strong IB points whereas my local sixth form didn't teach it well and several students left without a single qualification so I think it's important to consider that too. Also, if you want to apply for a specific university course that asks for A-Levels in specific subjects the A-Levels might give you the extra detail to get a good background for that course.

Answered Sun 18th November, 2012 @ 17:47 by Hannah