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PostPosted: Tue Sep 17, 2013 8:43 am 
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Joined: Mon Feb 13, 2012 5:19 pm
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Hi

My DS has just started year 11 & is thinking about options for the 6th form. His school offers both IB & A levels but encourages the boys towards IB saying that because it is a more rounded qualification it is more well thought of by universities & employers alike. Can anyone offer any advice on this? My DS could do the IB as he does well enough in the subjects required but essentially he is a maths/science specialist at heart & would prefer to go down that route ( & give up English which is his main bugbear!) He is thinking of Maths, Further Maths, Physics & either Chemistry or Product Design at A level with a possible AS in Mandarin. He is also considering trying for a university in the US. A very long shot but would IB be better for this or does it entirely depend on the entrance exams anyway?

Your advice would be very much appreciated!

estelle


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 17, 2013 8:48 am 
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US universities look at SAT tests and school record. The SATS are general papers and subject specific papers

Each uni decides what they want in the way of number and subject. A few accept A levels in place of subject SATS but not sure if they do the same for IB.


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 18, 2013 9:04 pm 
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There seems to be split opinions about the IB.
Oxbridge still focus on A level grades for entry so I don't think the A level route can be dismissed so easily.
If he is a scientist then concentrating on those subjects isn't going to harm his applications.
As far as employers are concerned he can easily undertake extra curricular activities that demonstrate many of the skills required eg. team work, leadership, problem solving, time management.....


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 20, 2013 8:14 am 
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Location: Solihull, West Midlands
Anecdotally universities make relatively higher offers for IB.

DS2 who is a mathematician would not have really suited IB - although he kept Music as one of his A Levels along with Chemistry, the IB would have needed continuing with more humanities and not enough Maths, Further Maths, Additional Further Maths etc etc...


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 22, 2013 7:36 pm 
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Location: Harrow
One slight aside (although connected a bit to the previous message).
comparing the entry requirments of IB to A level for Mechatronics at Newcastle.

for A level wants AAA
for IB wants 37 Points

37 Points is 545 ucas points

545 ucas points is just over 3A* and 1 A at A level


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 22, 2013 7:41 pm 
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SteveDH wrote:
One slight aside (although connected a bit to the previous message).
comparing the entry requirments of IB to A level for Mechatronics at Newcastle.

for A level wants AAA
for IB wants 37 Points

37 Points is 545 ucas points

545 ucas points is just over 3A* and 1 A at A level


Why is there such an enormous discrepancy between universities' expectations of A-level and IB students? Is there some kind of implied assumption about the "type" of school offering IB? Or is it simply that the points equivalence is considered to be inaccurate by the universities? :?

_________________
Marylou


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 22, 2013 8:02 pm 
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Location: Chelmsford and pleased
Having looked at university offers comparing A*AA/AAA with IB came up with scores varying from 34 to 42 and I only looked at about 10!


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 23, 2013 1:28 pm 
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Thank you for your comments. I too am confused by the difference in levels quoted. At my DS's school 37 points is the 'average' for those who take the IB. I can't believe there are many who would achieve 3 A* & an A at A level to match this so the UCAS points score does not seem right to me. As moved points out the difference in IB points required for university places is also confusing. Is there anyone there with a DC who is taking the IB who could offer further insights please? I think I may ring a few admissions tutors to see if they can clarify!

estelle


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 23, 2013 7:39 pm 
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Friends daughter was quoted 38 plus in IB for studying law at Oxbridge, that's was by her school Oxbridge advisor.


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 07, 2013 8:57 pm 
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Location: Bexley
I have a daughter who is in the final year of 6th form doing IB.
She is a well rounded student getting all A/A* s at GCSE, the IB suits her perfectly.

The students take 6 subjects, 3 at standard level, 3 at higher level.
All are equally weighted, and a maximum of 7 is awarded in each subject.
So 6 x 7 = 42 points. Then there are the 3 core points for other bits that they do like extended essays.
This takes the maximum score to 45.

Still with me :lol:

She never intended to take the IB, she wanted to do A levels but the blocking system could not accommodate her choices.
She has excelled at the IB and now thinks it was clearly a better choice for her. It is tough but do-able as long as you are well organised.

Having looked at unis, she is looking mainly at the Russell Group, and the indication is that she will require between 34 and 37 points. She does not wish to apply to Oxbridge (39 points normally) as they don't do the course she's interested in.

Within the points required, there are individual subject points for some subjects.
In some cases they want 6,6,5 in the higher subjects. In my dd's case some unis want a 6 in the mfl.

My daughter's predictions are a minimum of 40 points and there are others expecting similar results.

We would say is that the IB is not suited for those who are not all rounders or who cannot contemplate carrying on with subjects they don't like. If you are not well organised it's not for you.

Another major consideration is that there are no major exams until the final year, unlike A levels.


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