CAMBRIDGE IGCSE PROGRAM

What is Cambridge IGCSE Program?

IGCSE stands for ‘International General Certificate of Secondary Education’

  • It is an international system of courses and examinations developed and run by The University of Cambridge, UK.
  • It is designed as a two year programme leading to an internationally recognized certificate.
  • It fosters high academic standards together with the ability to put knowledge into practice.
  • It provides the basis for further study (e.g. for the International Baccalaureate course) Cambridge International Examination prepares school students for life, helping them develop an informed curiosity and a lasting for learning. We are part of the Cambridge Assessment, a department of the University of Cambridge.

Cambridge Learner

Cambridge programmes and qualifications develop not only content but also skills. We help learners to bridge the gap to the next stage of education and the world of work. We encourage Cambridge learners to be:

  • Confident in working with information and ideas their own and those of others.
  • Responsible for themselves, responsive to and respectful to others.
  • Reflective as learners, developing their ability to learn.
  • Innovative and quipped for new and future challenges.
  • Engaged intellectually and socially ready to make a difference



The IGCSE curriculum

At SIS, we offer the following choice of subjects. In IGCSE, there are 5 groups of subjects. To qualify for an ICE award, a student has to choose at least 7 subjects.

They must choose 2 subjects from Group I and at least one from group II, III, IV and V.

Subject Group Subjects
Group I Language • First Language English
• English as Second Language
• Hindi as Second Language
• French as Foreign Language
• Spanish as Foreign Language
Group II Humanities and Social Sciences • Economics
• History
Group III Sciences • Physics
• Chemistry
• Biology
Group IV Mathematics [Compulsory] • International Mathematics
Group V Creative, Technical and Vocational • Computer Science
• Information & Communication Technology
• Business Studies
• Drama

Subject restrictions: Only ONE of the following can be chosen

  • FLE/ ESL
  • French/Spanish/Hindi (if studied the language for at least 3 years in lower secondary as a second Lang.)
  • Physics/BS
  • ICT/CS

Subject restrictions: Only ONE of the following can be chosen

  1. Physical Education
  2. CCA - To choose any one from:
    • Sports - Soccer, Basket Ball, Table tennis
    • Dance - Western Dance
    • Music - Guitar, Keyboard, Drums, Vocals

General Outline of IGCSE Programme at SIS

What are the examinations like?

IGCSE uses a wide range of testing methods appropriate to different skills and subject areas.

Written papers may contain short answer questions, multiple choice questions, longer structured questions or full essays. Listening tests, speaking tests and practical tests are also used.

All of these are set by Cambridge and are sent overseas to be marked. The timetable for these exams is also set by Cambridge and as an examination centre we must adhere to their rules and regulations during the examination period. Written exams usually start in May and continue in to June of IGCSE Yr.2.

Does everyone do the same level of examination?

In some subjects the examination can be taken at either of the two levels: Core or Extended. The decision as to which level is best for you will be taken by your teachers in consultation with you and your parents during IGCSE Yr.2. It will depend on how well you have done in the course up to that point, however, it is the school policy to enter everyone for Extended unless there are clear indications this would undermine the student‘s chances of passing.

The final examination of IGCSE Yr.1 is designed to set the classes in Core and Extended level. Once these classes are set, the delivery of the curriculum differs in the two groups as the curriculum content demands separate classes. This will be implemented from the start of IGCSE Yr.2.

What grades can I achieve?

IGCSE grades are awarded for each individual subject; A* to G. A* is the top grade while G indicates the minimum satisfactory grade. All UK universities require a Grade C or above.

If you take the core paper you will be eligible for Grades C to G. If you take the extended papers you will be eligible for Grades A* to G. (up to E for Math)

What is coursework?

In some subjects there is the option of submitting work that is completed during the course. These pieces are set and marked by your teacher in accordance with strict criteria laid down by Cambridge. Samples of this work are sent to chief Examiners in Cambridge so that they can ensure that the criteria are being met and all instructions are precisely followed. All teachers involved in setting and marking coursework have to undergo special training and get an accreditation from CIE. However, coursework is adopted in only a few subjects worldwide and can be done only with prior permission from CIE.

The ICE Award

The International Certificate of Education (ICE) is awarded to students who take and pass at least seven subjects which form a balanced programme i.e. the programme must include English and another language, a Humanities subject, a Science subject, a Creative subject and Mathematics, i.e. at least one subject from each group.

The ICE may be awarded at one of the three levels:

  • Distinction Five Grade A’s/A*’s and 2 Grade C’s or better.
  • Merit Five Grade C’s and two Grade F’s or better.
  • Pass Grade G or better in seven subjects.

Grade Key of IGCSE

A* - 90 – 100 D - 50 – 59
A - 80 – 89 E - 40 – 49
B - 70 – 79 F - 30 – 39
C - 60 – 69 G - 20 – 29

GROUP 1 - LANGUAGES

GROUP 2 - HUMANITIES AND SOCIAL SCIENCES

GROUP 3 - SCIENCES

GROUP 4 - MATHEMATICS

GROUP 5 - CREATIVE, TECHNICAL AND VOCATIONAL