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Edexcel vs Cambridge (OCR/CIE), which one is tougher?

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    Is it true that Edexcel is a lot easier than Cambridge(OCR)? I know in terms of examination method Edexcel is easier but in terms of syllabus and exam questions? I'm currently taking Physics, Chemistry, Maths and Further Maths under Edexcel but my peers are strongly recommending Cambridge because of it's 'higher standard' and 'tougher syllabus'.
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    I don't think it makes a difference to be honest. Nobody will care what exam board you do so just go with the board that is the most popular/is the one your school does.
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    I do not know for sure whether the Unis care whether you did CIE/AQA/OCR/Edexcel/CCEA/WJEC or any other board, as long as it's an A level it counts, but to answer your question, I am an international student and I do both Cambridge (CIE) and Edexcel papers. I've done the CIE A level Maths, and I just did the Edexcel A level Maths and AS Further Maths this Jan. Now having taken both exam boards, I have come to the conclusion that CIE is DEFINATELY harder than Edexcel, at least in the Mathematics Subject.

    I mean, contentwise, there are some differences but not a HUGE difference, but with regards to level, the CIE A level P3 unit contains 1/2 of FP1 in Edexcel as well as C3 and C4, and CIE Mechanics M1 unit has all of M1 in Edexcel and 2/3 of M2. Mechanics 2 in CIE has the 1/4 from M2 of Edexcel and the whole of M3. So from what you can see in CIE you have to do 4 units to get an A level, P1, P3 M1, and M2 would be an example, that would be the equivalent in Edexcel for C1-C4, 1/2 of FP1 and M1-M3. So I'd say /YES with regards to Maths definately harder.

    And as for Physics/Chemistry I am not in a position to comment since I am only doing CIE Physics and Chemistry and have never actually thought of switching to Edexcel, but possibly CIE's is tougher.

    Btw you've got exactly the same subjects as I have Physics Chemistry Maths and Further Maths, only I also have Spanish and a few more A levels on my list

    And also why would you want to change... I switched over after doing the CIE AS maths, because I found CIE too difficult, I did Edexcel this Jan, and got 578/600
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    HI Xinolis

    Wow You seem to know a lot about Alevels.
    I could switch to Edexcel for the June exam but the exam dates
    are the same as for OCR so its either one or the other.
    Could u send me pastpapers from Edexcel please?
    I ought to have a look before making a decision.

    The only reason I am asking this is that I think OCR is a
    bit hard. I need to do statistics.

    Do u think it is worth switching? I am an international student.
    Do OCR books cover the Edexcel material? How many papers are there
    for a full A level Mathematics Edexcel?

    EllE
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    All of the British boards follow the same number of modules, you don't have to be an expert to know any of this just some experience... All british boards A levels consists of 6 Modules and 3 Modules for an AS. So Edexcel Mathematics as well as any other subject is still 6 modules. If you take a look at the specification that's on their website you will find some specimen past papers and the modules that are compulsory and those which aren't. So basically it's the same as OCR C1-C4 plus 2 application Units in your case S1 and S2 maybe... If you want my opinion in your case, stick with OCR, it's no harder than Edexcel, CIE is the hard board, I was trying to do Further Maths CIE and it nearly drove me crazy. Trust me, OCR is NOT as bad as CIE, it's the English version of CIE and it doesn't allow international centres to sit exams with them, (our school actually phoned them to ask because we found their physics exam to be much easier than CIE's and they told us to do CIE)... .

    I have no idea whatsoever about the OCR board, so I can't comment on that unfortunately, but if you need papers there are some on internet if you look for them on the Edexcel website... There is this logo that says "free past papers" click on that and if you need a centre number PM me...
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    (Original post by xinolisss)
    I mean, contentwise, there are some differences but not a HUGE difference, but with regards to level, the CIE A level P3 unit contains 1/2 of FP1 in Edexcel as well as C3 and C4, and CIE Mechanics M1 unit has all of M1 in Edexcel and 2/3 of M2. Mechanics 2 in CIE has the 1/4 from M2 of Edexcel and the whole of M3. So from what you can see in CIE you have to do 4 units to get an A level, P1, P3 M1, and M2 would be an example, that would be the equivalent in Edexcel for C1-C4, 1/2 of FP1 and M1-M3. So I'd say /YES with regards to Maths definately harder.
    So what you mean is CIE Maths IS HARDER but not MUCH HARDER right? I don't get it though..you're still taking Further Maths under CIE. Wouldn't that be even tougher than Maths?

    The thing is with Maths and Further Maths in Edexcel I have to do C1-C4, FP1-FP3 and M1-M2, S1-S2 and either M3 or S3.
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    Wait, yes CIE Maths compared to Edexcel/AQA/OCR.... blah blah blah mathematics is harder, and CIE Further Maths compared to again Edexcel/AQA/OCR.... is also harder, but I am NOT sitting Further Maths with CIE, that would be crazy... I could never do the Stats that yo HAVE to do for CIE Further Maths. (In CIE Further Maths you don't get a choice of doing either Stats or Mech, you HAVE to do both) So I'm doing it with Edexcel, I did FP1, M3, S1 this Jan, and FP2, FP3, M4, M5 this summer.
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    Xinolis

    Thank you for your reply. I was planning to take CIE but found out
    that OCR is easier and since I am in the UK OCR was easier to take. I am a kind of transnational person who lives in two country at the same time.

    you should try to do english boards then. I am an EU billy myself and in
    my country back home we can take any alevel exam through british council.
    . The board will send the paper there the day before the exam and they are
    respected centre. You do it just like a language exam. If it is that much easier you
    should do it. And the exam dates are different with CIE and english boards, so you can do both in one season.
    You need to call them asap the deadline is within a month for entries.
    http://www.britishcouncil.org/spain-...s-services.htm

    Use your disadvantage to your advantage.

    I have a question in the book here which is in the curved defined implicitly chapter.
    The curve is y^3=(x-1)^2
    By making the substitution x=1+X and examining the resulting equation between y and X, show that the curve is symmetrical about the line x=1. Please help me.


    We should start a thread for EU candidates to help each other as Asians do.
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    Firstly I have no idea whatsoever about that question you're asking me about, probably because we've never done such a thing before, or maybe it's just that I can't seem to understand the question, or maybe because I just can't think right now , but will get back to you as soon as I can.

    With regards to the other stuff you said, I'm not quite sure what you mean. I can take any exam from any board I want to, i.e. AQA/Edexcel/CIE... but the only thing is as OCR and CIE are essentially the same board under diferrent names for different customers, I was told I couldn't do OCR that's all, but it doesn't make a difference at all, I think most of us are used to doing the hard stuff anyways... but thanks anyways

    And I very much doubt that questions has got much to do with curves defined implicitly. Normally in that chapter what they ask you to do differentiate implicitly, find this or find that, I've never seen a question like the one you've just posted above.
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    Any ideas about the difficulty of other subjects besides maths?
    I'm an international student from Asia. Here we only have a choice between CIE and Edexcel.

    Btw, if Edexcel is easier than CIE, then wouldn't the final outcome be very unfair since an A in CIE is harder than an A in Edexcel? Do universities take this into consideration during admission? If they do, wouldn't Edexcel candidates be seriously disadvantaged?
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    I don't think it matters that much to them, you have to remember, the admissions tutors have piles and piles of applicants to read through each day, they ain't going to give a damn about your exam board, they'll be most interested in your subject and grades and UMS if you provide them with it...
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    Quite a few people at oxford harp on that OCR is harder than Edexcel, but why would any school knowingly choose to do an exam board where their own pupils were going to get a lower grade than if they did another one? And anyway, how many people actually choose what exam board they do, it's the teachers that do that!
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    No university gives a crap what exam board you choose. End of.
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    (Original post by sebbie)
    Quite a few people at oxford harp on that OCR is harder than Edexcel, but why would any school knowingly choose to do an exam board where their own pupils were going to get a lower grade than if they did another one? And anyway, how many people actually choose what exam board they do, it's the teachers that do that!
    Here in Malaysia A-levels is not offered as part of the national education system. We have our own optional 'Year 12' called STPM instead and it is generally perceived to be tougher than most pre-university courses. It is recognised worldwide too but unfortunately too time-consuming and extremely difficult.

    Students can opt to continue their pre-u studies (A-levels, Canadian ICPU, AUSMAT, SAM) at private institutions/colleges if they wish to. As for A-levels, some colleges offer the CIE A-levels while some are doing Edexcel. A-levels courses here usually last only 1.5 years instead of 2 years. We're free to choose which college we want to enter and in other words, which exam board we want. CIE is generally more popular here but Edexcel is catching up. Most people here are biased against Edexcel as it is deemed as "lower standard" or "a lot easier" or even "not well recognised by top universities" compared to CIE.
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    That last bit is simply a lot of bullcrap... not your bullcrap maybe, but people who say that clearly don't know what they're talking about. If that were to be true, then Edexcel will soon cease to exist. If Edexcel were not up to the standard required by regulatory bodies like QCA then, it probably wouldn't be a big a exam board as it is today. It is that big because people keep believing in them and they keep doing their exams. Edexcel Exams are aimed mainly at UK national standards. CIE on the other hand aims at international standards which obviously as you may imagine should be higher than the other one. Thus CIE exams are tougher, but still within the acceptable limits. If Edexcel exams were "not well recognised by top universities" then that means that anybody who sits edexcel and wants to go to the so-called "top universities" which is basically another word for oxbridge will have not a chance in the world, and that's probably very untrue... There are many many students at the "top universities" who do AQA/Edexcel/OCR/WJEC/CCEA....

    So no worries, just as Aksan said, Unis don't give a damn about which exam board you sat, simply what you sat and what grade you got... and stop worrying about it, an A level is an A level no matter which board you're taking it with.
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    Yup, CIE is tougher than Edexcel...which is quite bad actually because no one will actually care which exam board you do as long as you get good grades. And Edexcel is quite popular...so I'd rather go for the easier exam board. Honestly, no one cares. If there was an unknown gcse exam board named EQA or whatever and it was the easiest I would go for that too. People usually ask you, "How were your GCSE grades?" not... "What were you GCSE grades and which exam board did you do?" Unless they stalk you or sth haha.
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    please any body tell me which one is easier 4 medical students edexcel(gce) or (gcse) or cambridge (igcse)
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    (Original post by beautiful girl)
    please any body tell me which one is easier 4 medical students edexcel(gce) or (gcse) or cambridge (igcse)
    the easier one would be edexcel
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    I have done both examboards and here's what I can say.
    CIE is slightly tougher for maths but has less papers.
    In terms of science, edexcel old syllabus might be easier but the 2008 and beyond syllabus is much tougher. Also cie repeats many high mark (15 mark essay qs) questions and has ridiculously low a-grades of around 60+ % compared to edexcels 80%. For biology I can almost say that if you do all the past papers twice over(about 16 of them) and read the textbook once, you can get an A easily. Thats because cie only focuses on some things in their papers with an obvious trend, coupled with repeated questions and low A grades, its a piece of cake. outside UK mostly take edexcel qualifications. I am not saying cie is really easy, no actually the questions can be really tough. But to score an A in cie is definitely easier due to low a grades, gross amount of repeated questions and only testing on specific stuff. Also, there ismuch less to learn for cie then edexcel in physics if you look at whats covered for both.

    Anyway, they are both well recognised.
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    I agree that Cie is harder than edexcel in mathematics but for science edexcel is harder.

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