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Sixth Form education is the gateway to university and life beyond. The transition from school to the sixth form is an important, challenging, yet exciting time as for the first time in your education you can choose where and what to study.
We at Dubai Scholars, strive for academic excellence whilst providing a supportive, holistic, motivational learning environment where every young person’s experience is unique & fulfilling. We know how important it is to excel at this stage of your education. That’s why everything we do is geared towards helping you succeed- In short, we prepare you for a world beyond education.
Entering the Sixth Form at Dubai Scholars students require at least a B grade in the compulsory and optional subjects studied at the culmination of Key Stage 4.
The Sixth Form at Dubai Scholars Private School aims to bridge the gap between the levels of academic and social maturity of students finishing Year 11 and the levels required by top universities worldwide. Historically students from DS have attended US universities including Ivy League universities in the US and Oxford and Cambridge in the UK and top engineering schools in India.
Pearson Ed Excel International Advanced Level (IAL) is typically for learners aged 16 to 19 years who need advanced study to prepare for university and higher education.
We at Dubai Scholars follow the Edexcel Board for all our subjects except for Information Technology (IT) & Media Studies – CAIE
- CAIE – Cambridge Assessment International Education
- EDEXCEL is offered by a subsidiary of the Pearson publishing company.
- Both examinations are highly respected and have equal value regarding further studies or employment.
Students can choose any of the combinations or Independent subjects stated below.
A minimum of 3 or 4 Subjects can be selected:
- Media Studies or Economics
- Chemistry or Accounts
- Biology or Business
- Physics or Psychology
- Information Technology
The Sixth Form at Dubai Scholars provides opportunities for enabling leadership.
The Sixth Form Executive Committee comprises of high caliber students, they form an integral part of the student council.
Sixth Formers are expected to be effective ambassadors for the school and to help with a range of activities, from charity week to prefect duties. Our experience shows that Sixth Formers respond well to these expectations and fulfill their tasks with good humor and consideration for others.
The Sixth Form Executive Committee comprises a President, Vice President & Executive Members who are supported by the other student council members. Students apply for positions and are interviewed by the Head of Secondary & Sixth Form Co-ordinators
Students are given opportunities to participate in several projects both inside and outside of school.
The students participate in several activities, including Parent Forums, Student-Led Conferences, the DS Internship Programme, School Tours & School Clubs etc. Participating in such programs/activities creates many opportunities for our students to gain valuable experiences in preparation for university, apprenticeships, or employment.
Sixth Form students are encouraged to support & teach the younger year groups. Eg: (Academic Boosters/ Girl Up Club)
A-level means Advanced level and refers to the overall qualification.
The International A-level consists of two stages called AS and A2. AS stands for Advanced Subsidiary level. Students who complete the correct pattern of AS level units (usually 2 or 3 units at this level, depending on the subject) will be awarded an AS-level certificate or can continue the subject at A2.
A2 refers to the final stage of International A-levels. Students who have completed AS units in a subject move on to do A2 units, which are of a higher standard. Completing the correct sequence of units at both AS and A2 level means you have finished a full International A-level in a subject. University entrance is at the discretion of the university based on your AS and A2 grades.
In Year 12, students typically study four Advanced Subsidiary (AS Level) subjects. In Year 13, students typically take three of their AS Level subjects forward to a higher level, known as A2. Some students also broaden their studies by taking an additional AS Level subject in Year 13. AS and A2 unit examinations are held in May or June.
Compatible AS units may be combined (a process known as cashing in) to complete certifiable AS Level qualifications. Compatible AS plus A2 units may be cashed in to complete certifiable Advanced Level (A-Level) qualifications.
Statements of provisional examination results are released in August. Certificates of final qualification results are issued in October.
Edexcel, a Pearson company, is the UK’s largest awarding body offering academic and vocational qualifications and testing to schools, colleges, employers, and other places of learning in the UK and internationally. Edexcel was formed in 1996 by the merger of the Business & Technology Education Council (BTEC), the UK’s leading provider of vocational qualifications, and the University of London Examinations & Assessment Council (ULEAC), one of the major exam boards for GCSEs and A-levels.
Edexcel and CAIE are both examples of UK exam boards. They both provide a range of internationally recognized qualifications.
GCSE and IGCSE are qualifications that are at the same level. The IGCSE has been developed to be more relevant to students learning in an ‘international’ or non-UK context. The ‘I’ stands for international. These qualifications have become so popular that several independent schools in the UK are now moving away from the GCSE and adopting the IGCSE. However, in terms of entrance into post-secondary and other courses, the qualifications are seen as equivalent.
What is the difference between Edexcel and CAIE /IGCSE’s
There is no difference in the level or degree of difficulty between the IGCSEs offered by Edexcel and CAIE. The differences are only in the way questions are asked and the format of the exams.
The IGCSE is an internationally recognized qualification.
IGCSE exams are offered twice a year – in May/June and in January.
The results are generally released in August (for the May/June exam session) or March (for the January session).
The GCE A-level is a linear qualification taken over two years by students at school in the UK. International students can still take it but they should note they will take regional versions and will sit papers at slightly different times. The examinations take place in June.
The International A-level is especially for students studying outside of the UK. It follows a modular structure so you can build the qualification over time. Examinations take place in January and June.
This depends on the reasons for which you are taking A-levels. If you are taking them as a stepping stone to a UK university, then the number you take will depend on what the university requires or the number of UCAS points you need to get into your course. The most common combinations call for three full A-levels. For entry to universities in other countries, you will need to research their specific requirements. While A-levels are useful for some other reasons such as high school completion, employment, or career development, there are no requirements in terms of the number of subjects for these uses.
This depends on the caliber of the university you are targeting or the course you are hoping to get into. Some subjects are not seen as sufficiently ‘academic’ to be accepted by some universities. Many universities don’t give credit for marks achieved in General Studies, for example. Check with your chosen universities to see if they have a subject or two they won’t recognize.
There is no difference in the level or standard of the A-level offered by different exam boards. There are differences in emphasis and also some differences in the format of the papers. The Joint Committee on Qualifications (JCQ) ensures that all the boards offering A-levels offer them at the same standard.
International A-levels are offered in January, June, and October. However, not every module in every subject is offered in all sessions. Check with your exam officer for details.
Most universities in the USA will require an entrance exam such as SAT or ACT. It is up to each school to decide on your entrance requirements so make sure to ask each school that you apply to what you need to submit. It is unlikely that you can apply successfully with A-levels alone.
All degree courses require students to have not less than three A-levels or other equivalent qualifications. Some students opt to take additional AS-Levels, A-Levels, or other qualifications such as the EPQ. Additional qualifications can be one way of demonstrating the academic abilities that will be required for degree study. You can also demonstrate your abilities by exploring your subject beyond your exam syllabus. Universities may prefer a student who has read around their subject, and who shows a great passion for, and engagement with, their subject, over a student who may have taken more qualifications or more subjects, but who is unable to discuss their interests with any enthusiasm or in any depth.
If you cannot decide what subjects/courses to take, these are some key factors which you should take into account.
Your interest in the subject
Where your strengths lie
Your future career plans
The ability to get a high Grade. Remember, you will be studying these subjects over the course of two years. It is essential that you do your research before selecting your A Level subjects to make sure you have made the right choice for yourself. Do not just follow subjects your friends/peers pick so as to stay in the same group, be adventurous and grab the chance to meet new people.
A Science degree not only prepares you for a great diversity of careers within the field of science but also within the world of business and management such as:
Aeronautics, Engineering, Astronomy, Optometry Medical/Health Services, Geophysics, Telecommunications.
By studying two or more Science A-Levels you will be open to hundreds of different Science degree courses at any one of the main UK universities, often with A-Level entry requirements considerably lower than many other degree courses.
Physics is a science, fundamental to the understanding of many other fields. Physics graduate employment may include: Aeronautics, Engineering, Medical/Health Services, Geophysics, Optometry, Tele-communications, Actuarial Science, and Accounting. Mathematics is a must.
Chemistry is the central science, combining as it does with Biology, Physics, and Mathematics.
Biology offers a wide range of careers including Medicine, Veterinary Science, Pharmacy, Physiotherapy, Environmental Science, Physiology, as well as careers in more broadly related areas such as the food industry.
A Level Mathematics is considered to be a good evidence of problem-solving abilities. Many courses in higher education require a competence in Mathematics but in areas such as Engineering, Economics and the Sciences, a qualification in Mathematics is a must.
Courses in Finance and Business Management are simply helped by a good A Levels in Mathematics.
Careers in Business (Marketing, Operations, Finance or Human Resources) and the opportunity to set up your own small private enterprise.
This challenging course contains the underlying skills and knowledge needed for professional accounting qualifications, so you will know if your planned career is the one for you. There is a very good reason why accountants are well-paid – they work and study hard. The units involve financial and management accounting so you gain an excellent core understanding of the concepts and techniques of accounting. We start with double-entry bookkeeping and build up the skill level until you can complete financial statements for sole traders, partnerships, limited companies, and manufacturing organisations. Management topics include break-even analysis, budgeting, and various costing methods. We also explore the impact of IT on accounting and the social impacts which link in with A-Levels Business
Economics is also concerned with the study of people and society. In any workplace, having good communications skills is essential and by studying economics, you will learn how to communicate with people in business. Economics at GCSE and A-Level, will help you improve your written and verbal communication skills.
As a subject, Economics lends itself to a wide variety of careers and not necessarily those in finance. Some of the career options you will have include:
- Chartered account
- Investment analyst
- Financial risk analyst
- Management consultant
- Government officer
At university level, Economics can be studied as a subject on its own or as part of a joint degree with another subject. Typically, Economics is studied in conjunction with subjects like Business Management, Accounting and Finance and Statistics.
Most Economics courses at university will require you to have studied Math at GCSE and A-Level. Similarly, Business Studies, Management Science and Economics will also help you secure a place at university.
IT professionals use Information Technology to build connections toward success.
The Information Technology (IT) programme strives to educate students to assume leadership roles where the application of information technology is concerned with the ultimate goal of connecting people, organisations, and communities to enhance their ability to succeed. The broad cluster of occupations that fall within the IT arena include:
Psychology is an interesting, challenging and exceptionally useful subject which is advantageous to a wide variety of different careers. Psychology will provide you with a scientific understanding of human behaviour and help to develop the critical thinking and research methodology skills necessary for many degrees courses.
Many students go on to study Psychology in higher education. Psychology can be useful in any job which involves dealing with people. Those intending to work in the caring professions, like the police force and other services, as well as those aiming to work in media, sports psychology, personnel, marketing, sales and market research will find something of relevance and interest when studying Psychology.
IAL-levels are a lot tougher than IGCSEs
The reason you take a particular subject at A-levels will come down to one (or more) of these three scenarios (usually): you need it to pursue a particular career; it’s a subject you enjoy and are good at, or it’s a subject you’ve not studied before but you think will suit you.
Either way, be prepared for a big jump in the level of difficulty when you transition from IGCSE to IAS-level (or any other Advanced level qualification for that matter). You’ll also see differences in the way you’re taught and in what is expected of you.
Making the jump from IGCSEs to A-levels