Cambridge responds to IGCSE consultation

01 February 2007

International GCSE (IGCSE) could help UK Government achieve its aims, says Cambridge International Examinations.

In its formal response to the Government's consultation on IGCSE, international exam board Cambridge International Examinations today noted that the Prime Minister and the Secretary of State had both made strong statements in support of enabling students to study for a range qualifications. The exam board believes that, in line with that policy, IGCSE should be available for teaching in state schools.

Basing its response on the desirability of extending choice and flexibility for teachers and students, Cambridge International Examinations drew on its experience worldwide: "This use of Cambridge IGCSE - as a complement to National Curriculum assessment - is well established in many countries around the world. Its similar adoption in the UK would make a positive and significant contribution to the achievement of National assessment objectives while remaining within established international norms."

Cambridge International Examination points out that 'Distinctiveness within a Common Framework' explains the differences between IGCSE and GCSE. Since their near simultaneous development in 1988, the UK and the international sectors have made different, some subtle, choices in each syllabus. For example, IGCSE has split Language and Literature while the UK takes both in one qualification.

Cambridge International Examinations states that these differences should be used to stimulate students - through allowing IGCSE to be taken in state schools. The alternative is a 'one size fits all' exam regime - the exact opposite of much of the Government's rhetoric.

The full response can be found on the Cambridge International Examinations website.