IGCSE stands for the International General Certificate of Secondary Education. It is the international equivalent of the General Certificate of Secondary Education or GCSE, which is taken by all UK students at the end of their compulsory schooling at age 16.
IGCSE is not a general qualification like the International Baccalaureate or Australian High School Leaving Certificate but instead students take an individual IGCSE in each of their chosen subjects. It is therefore possible for students to gain high grades in those subjects in which they excel, without having an overall mark affected by other subjects in which they may do less well.
GCSEs were first introduced into the British Education System at the end of the 1980s to replace two existing qualifications, the GCE O level and the CSE. The qualification was designed to be taken by students of all levels of ability with a wide range of possible outcomes in terms of grading.
IGCSEs were introduced by Cambridge International Examinations shortly after the introduction of the GCSE in the UK. In nearly two decades since their inception, IGCSEs have become a widely recognised standard for education for 14 to 16 year olds in schools and colleges throughout the world.
The IGCSE offers students an entry into the world of international qualifications and each IGCSE provides an excellent platform from which to start the AS and A level course in each subject.
Most IGCSE courses are 2 years in duration. At SCIE, students start their IGCSE courses in G1 and continue until the final IGCSE examinations at the end of their G2 year.