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Conversion of IB grades into A-levels

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#1
Stereoisomer

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I accidentally stumbled onto this article:

http://www.timesonli...icle4321718.ece

regarding the comparison between the IB (hehe) and the British A levels.
Do you think the comparison is fair?

45 IB points = 6.4 A-level A grades

40 IB points = 5.4 A-level A grades

35 IB points = 4.5 A-level A grades

30 IB points = 3.5 A-level A grades

The typical A level offer for Oxbridge/Imperial is AAA. If that is the case, then why can't the candidates who obtained a score of 29 or 30 be admitted into those prestigious institutions?

Im just curious :D

Edited by MistyRose, Nov 24, 2008 - 00:52.


#2
Abu

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Because there are enough people who score 40+ to satisfy the appetites of Oxbridge.

“At another college one admissions tutor said he knew all about the IB but then asked me how many higher level subjects I was taking. I didn’t apply there because I felt that anyone who didn’t know the basic structure of the IB – that there are three subjects taken at a higher level and another three at a standard level – was not well informed about the exam.”


What a load of bullcrap, you can take 4 HLs and 2 SLs. The kid doesn't know enough about IB himself.

#3
Aquarius

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This would be a continuous debate as there are a number of differences between A-levels syllabi and IB syllabi. Also the strategies to achieve top marks are also different. To be honest, my life was more relaxed while doing A-levels and yes, I got aaac!

#4
Irene

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What a load of bullcrap, you can take 4 HLs and 2 SLs. The kid doesn't know enough about IB himself.

Yes, you can, but generally people don't. And as it's a news article, I don't see the point of including as much info as possible. It would only confuse those who are reading about IB for the first time.

#5
Abu

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Yes, you can, but generally people don't. And as it's a news article, I don't see the point of including as much info as possible. It would only confuse those who are reading about IB for the first time.


The student accused the interviewer of not knowing the IB while the question was completely plausible.

#6
Anonymouser

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Exactly, which I find pretty stupid lol.

But even if the question wasn't plausible, people make mistakes. I think he took it too seriously, I mean even if the tutor wasn't so knowledgeable concerning IB (even though apparently he is, more than the student himself) he shouldn't just decide not to apply because of that.

#7
deissi

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I didn't really see much point in that article. It put down the A Levels and praised the IB Diploma. It never even attempted to offer a two-sided view of the matter. A Levels are easier, sure, but not THAT much easier.

#8
Victor L

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Actually lots of people take 4 HLs. At my school at least.

There's even someone doing 5 HLs :dunno:

I think 40+ is appropriate for Oxbridge, but they should raise the A level requirement to at least 4 As or even 5.

Edited by Forester, Oct 05, 2008 - 07:57.


#9
laneolaneo1

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Unis are almost always clueless when it comes to IB points.

That's why I'm going on the offensive, and directly telling admissions tutors just how hard we have to work.

Maths HL level 7 is harder than AS-Level Maths, FFS.

#10
Scade

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I agree with Deissi, the article does give a rather biased view. First of all, the scores in the IB depend a lot on the subjects taken. Some combinations simply are harder than others. And to me it seems stupid to simply compare the IB-total points to AAA, since the IB is a combination of HL and SL subjects. It would be wiser to first see how getting a 7 in an HL subject compares to getting an A in an A-level subject and only after that add the SL subjects (which obviously do tilt the balance a bit). Just comparing the total points gives a very simplistic view of the matter.

#11
Stereoisomer

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Yes Scade, what you said is true, however, there are many err "easy" subjects in the A Level exams too.
Such as:
Drama and Theatre Studies
Religious Studies
Media Studies
Photography
Film Studies
Film and Video
History of the Arts

Yet, I do not think ANY subjects are EASY. It all depends on the person in question. I can't sing, I can't act and I can't paint. If I was forced to commit to say Theatre Arts, Visual Art, I would fail terribly.

I completely agree with Forester, I think the minimum requirement for the A Level Admission into Oxbridge should at least be 4As instead of 3As just to be fair.

But still. I do not regret my decision in choosing the IB over the A Level Exams.. If I was to do the A Levels, I would only choose the 3 sciences. The IB enabled me to choose English which I love, a language and maths in addition to the 3 sciences.

#12
Aquarius

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I think 40+ is appropriate for Oxbridge, but they should raise the A level requirement to at least 4 As or even 5.



But still. I do not regret my decision in choosing the IB over the A Level Exams.. If I was to do the A Levels, I would only choose the 3 sciences. The IB enabled me to choose English which I love, a language and maths in addition to the 3 sciences.



People who apply to Oxbridge know who they are themselves. Generally only students with four or more A-levels would apply to Oxbridge. Applicants are realistic and this is the reason why Cambridge interviews 9 out of 10 applicants (Oxford interviews less but it is about 5-6 out of 10.
Moreover, in A-levels, UMS is far more important because students in Year 12 have to take AS exams, top universities including Oxbridge are apparently not keen on applicants who only gain marginal A (commonly 80%) than ones with 90% or 95% in AS.
Also, until now the offers from Oxbridge were surprisingly kept at 3 A-levels to encourage students to drop 1-2 subjects so that they would become more specialised and they would have time to prepare for further exams (if required) such as LNAT, BMAT or STEP.
Therefore, there is nothing wrong about Oxbridge's decision of giving its offers.

#13
michaellwh

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I think A level in some way are harder, what makes people thinks that IB is hard is because loads of IA's, but we could do that in home, and discuss with other people. Also the syllabus for A-level is larger than ib (at least that is correct for economics), so it depends which way you see the things. Is the glass half empty or half full?

#14
Scade

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As I'm applying to Christ's college (mentioned in the article to have given a conditional of 43 points), they also make higher A-level offers sometimes demanding 5-6 A's at A-level. I guess this is to balance the fact that 1/3 of their offers only demand you to pass the exams. A bit off topic, but I guess someone might find this enlightening :(