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 Post subject: Thoughts about the IB
PostPosted: Thu Oct 24, 2013 10:17 pm 
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So anyone with experience of the IB? What are your thoughts? In particular for future Uni choices and employment etc.

Thanks


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 03, 2013 1:06 pm 
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I have just posted about this on the A level preference thread, my experience is based on my dd applying to do economics at some top uni's and that all the ib students we met where really annoyed that the uni's (according to them) give IB offers that are lots harder than the a level offers. In particular for economics oxford durham ucl want HL maths level 6/7 which is apparently alot harder than A* at A2 (i don't know if that is true but they seemed convinced) an they also felt that the overal offers are not comparable. It is difficult to tell the right or wrong with this but certainly we found lots of IB students who said they felt unhappy and wished they were doing a levels but not visa versa.

I am suspicious it is a bit of trick from private schools who did not want such a obvious comparison to be made with themselves and state schools (bit like the iGCSE's)


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 03, 2013 7:17 pm 
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How very interesting. A local girls grammar school will this year only be offering the IB and is dropping A levels. We went to look around and it didn't appeal to my son at all.
A huge gamble for the school, I wonder if they will lose students this year. feedback like yours suggest it will not help their cause.


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 03, 2013 8:19 pm 
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I am not surprised!! You son at the local girls grammar school!! :lol: :lol:


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 03, 2013 8:24 pm 
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My nephews both go to a top 10 (league table) private school who did not offer an A level option only did the IB but have this year offered A levels as well . not sure if this means anything but is interesting


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 30, 2013 6:22 pm 
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This was my nephews school it was obviously a few years ago:

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/education/ed ... rhaul.html

Although they report in this article it was because of increasing faith in the a level system talking to my brother over the christmas there was a feeling that his ds's school were disadvantaging some kids who would have thrived with less subjects and apparently some of the top uni's for maths, physics and engineering complained to the school that the kids taking the IB were struggling at uni with maths and physics compared with kids who had done maths and further maths often because the alevel students had voluntarily taken more maths units than required in the relevant modules and had a real head start over IB students.


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 30, 2013 7:37 pm 
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sbarnes wrote:
I am not surprised!! You son at the local girls grammar school!! :lol: :lol:


I would hazard a guess that your area's single-sex schools remain single-sex for sixth form?

All of the sixth forms in ours are co-ed (in fact, DS1 has been a "Southend Girl" since September :lol: ), so the idea of a lad considering "girls'" schools for sixth form (or vice versa) doesn't seem at all odd here, as I assume it doesn't in Kent?

Back to the original question, I think that the IB must sound very tempting as a means of maintaining breadth for longer, but would also be very wary if universities demand disproportionately high grades compared to their offers to A level candidates. As far as I am aware, no local schools here offer the IB; however, DS1's school at least certainly permits a pretty mixed selection of A levels.

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 01, 2014 10:59 pm 
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No, all of our single sex schools are co-ed in the sixth form so its common for pupils to join a different school if they offer courses they prefer.
Pupils from non grammar schools are welcome to apply to many of the grammar schools sixth forms - they are given guidance of what grades (usually B's at GCSE) are required.


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 03, 2014 12:30 am 
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The IB is not for the faint-hearted; have a look at the UCAS points for 42 (654) versus A*AA (380), which is the standard Cambridge offer for both. Standard level is beyond an AS (certainly in maths and MFL) and higher level is not far off further maths; I'm not sure where it lies with other subjects.

Students can take easier options: environmental science, maths studies, ab ignitio language, etc. all make it easier, but only if they are offered by the school. Universities would appear to make offers based on students choosing the easy options. On average 8%(ish) of students gain A* at A level vs 2% gaining a 7 at IB. Universities stipulate overall points and often 766 in the higher subjects, which is much harder to achieve than A*AA and the IB includes the standard level subjects and the core element.

I really like the IB but A level is a walk in the park in comparison and this isn't reflected in some university offers. The small amount of research that I conducted was to compare the offers for history from 10 Russell group universities, the A level offers were fairly consistently either A*AA or AAA whereas the IB offers ranged from 32 to 42.


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 03, 2014 10:33 am 
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The only other thing to add is that i think the IB results come out sooner than the A levels and certainly for my nephew he was accepted for his uni place immediatly after the IB result came out so before the A level results even though he had a 32 and his offer was 36 (this was for architecture so maybe a special case as i think the offer is made more on the portfolio rather than your a levels Ib etc ) so although the offers are considered higher 42 is much harder than A*AA maybe more places are given for IB if you don't get the grades required does anyone know if this is true and so therefore may to some extent compensate for the unfairness?


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