Help!!! Should i do cie or edexcel a level maths??

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cad.ence
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#1
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I currently take Edexcel for most of my GCSEs and I've found that the number of resources available online have been unbelievably helpful. I'm moving abroad in a few months to continue A Levels, except literally every school there only does CIE. I've heard lots of stuff about CIE maths being harder than edexcel because of the further maths topics in P3 and stats as well as the lack of resources. Please can someone who has done CIE maths confirm whether this is the case? How easy is it to get an A/A* depending on this as well as the grade boundaries?

If I want to do edexcel I will need to self study and then travel abroad to sit the exams - this is obviously more complex than just doing CIE but if it's going to make a big difference, I'm considering doing it. Take into consideration that I'm predicted a 9 in GCSE maths, but needed to work really hard for it. However, I enjoy the subject and am still willing to work for it. Any help would be greatly appreciated because I'm totally lost and need to decide what to do really soon. Thanks xx
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FarahFadi
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(Original post by cad.ence)
I currently take Edexcel for most of my GCSEs and I've found that the number of resources available online have been unbelievably helpful. I'm moving abroad in a few months to continue A Levels, except literally every school there only does CIE. I've heard lots of stuff about CIE maths being harder than edexcel because of the further maths topics in P3 and stats as well as the lack of resources. Please can someone who has done CIE maths confirm whether this is the case? How easy is it to get an A/A* depending on this as well as the grade boundaries?

If I want to do edexcel I will need to self study and then travel abroad to sit the exams - this is obviously more complex than just doing CIE but if it's going to make a big difference, I'm considering doing it. Take into consideration that I'm predicted a 9 in GCSE maths, but needed to work really hard for it. However, I enjoy the subject and am still willing to work for it. Any help would be greatly appreciated because I'm totally lost and need to decide what to do really soon. Thanks xx
Hii, I’m currently doing edexcel AL and I have my P3 exam on Thursday..
Anyway my school teaches the edexcel board for A levels but I have a friend who does CIE. They are almost similar topic wise but they say that cie question style is much more complicated than edexcel, edexcel is straightforward. edexcel which has P1, P2,P3,P4,m1 and S1,The difference is that cie has P2 and P3 combined in a single paper and they don’t have P4.
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FarahFadi
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And M1 cie doesn’t have the chapter vectors they have a different chapter
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FarahFadi
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I don’t get why do u have to travel abroad to do the edexcel exams? U can just register in a test center like the British council or smth
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FarahFadi
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If ur planning to take edexcel Al maths I’m here anytime to help. I can send u some resources that might help you
Here’s my email:
[email protected]
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cad.ence
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(Original post by FarahFadi)
I don’t get why do u have to travel abroad to do the edexcel exams? U can just register in a test center like the British council or smth
hi! it's because the british council centre in the country i'm moving to doesn't offer facilities to sit igcse and a level exams. it's really weird and annoying, but i'll make sure to double check
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cad.ence
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(Original post by FarahFadi)
Hii, I’m currently doing edexcel AL and I have my P3 exam on Thursday..
Anyway my school teaches the edexcel board for A levels but I have a friend who does CIE. They are almost similar topic wise but they say that cie question style is much more complicated than edexcel, edexcel is straightforward. edexcel which has P1, P2,P3,P4,m1 and S1,The difference is that cie has P2 and P3 combined in a single paper and they don’t have P4.
I was just wondering if the difference in difficulty is so big that it could mean i get a grade lower? because like i said, i'm not naturally good at maths and i would prefer to keep things as simple as possible. is cie going to drastically lower my chances of getting an A? also keep in mind the lack of revision resources for cie. self study and travelling to sit exams is a lot of hassle and i'm only going to do it if it's really worth it, let me know what you think
Last edited by cad.ence; 1 month ago
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cad.ence
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(Original post by FarahFadi)
If ur planning to take edexcel Al maths I’m here anytime to help. I can send u some resources that might help you
Here’s my email:
[email protected]
thank you so much, this whole thing is really overwhelming and confusing and i really appreciate you offering to help! i'll make sure to reach out
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booklover1313
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(Original post by cad.ence)
thank you so much, this whole thing is really overwhelming and confusing and i really appreciate you offering to help! i'll make sure to reach out
Have you considered taking the International Baccalaureate? That might be a good option if you are moving around different countries?
But yes, the Edexcel one is quite a common exam board used for A level maths.
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cad.ence
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(Original post by booklover1313)
Have you considered taking the International Baccalaureate? That might be a good option if you are moving around different countries?
But yes, the Edexcel one is quite a common exam board used for A level maths.
yup i have considered IB but I've seen some absolute horror stories about the mental impact its had on students, i'd rather not completely sacrifice my sanity. besides, I know what I want to study and IB would make me take subjects like science and art that im not interested in or have any prior knowledge in - A levels just seems to be the best choice for me, so i'm trying to decide what would be the best way to go about it :/
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gdunne42
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(Original post by cad.ence)
I was just wondering if the difference in difficulty is so big that it could mean i get a grade lower? because like i said, i'm not naturally good at maths and i would prefer to keep things as simple as possible. is cie going to drastically lower my chances of getting an A? also keep in mind the lack of revision resources for cie. self study and travelling to sit exams is a lot of hassle and i'm only going to do it if it's really worth it, let me know what you think
The difference between them is minimal. I've tutored students doing both. If I had a straight choice I'd prefer Edexcel but the difference would have to be enormous for you to even consider self study for the Edexcel IAL rather than prepare for the CIE version with the support of your school. Don't do it.
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penguingirl18
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What about Edexcel international A levels? Could you take the exams at a school locally?
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cad.ence
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(Original post by gdunne42)
The difference between them is minimal. I've tutored students doing both. If I had a straight choice I'd prefer Edexcel but the difference would have to be enormous for you to even consider self study for the Edexcel IAL rather than prepare for the CIE version with the support of your school. Don't do it.
my main issue is the fact that there isnt much to work with when it comes to revision, I've seen so many CIE students complain about how they've got minimal resources compared to edexcel and even a quick google brings up seriously scanty stuff for CIE maths. I've heard the textbooks are pretty useless, too. Isn't this something that will make exam prep a lot harder? What do you suggest I do for practice apart from past papers??
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booklover1313
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(Original post by cad.ence)
my main issue is the fact that there isnt much to work with when it comes to revision, I've seen so many CIE students complain about how they've got minimal resources compared to edexcel and even a quick google brings up seriously scanty stuff for CIE maths. I've heard the textbooks are pretty useless, too. Isn't this something that will make exam prep a lot harder? What do you suggest I do for practice apart from past papers??
The core maths units will be very similar across the exam boards, so you could still practice e.g. differentiation using questions for Edexcel?
But also teachers at the school will have lots of resources, and you can trust them to prepare you well for the exam. If you are worried, you could always contact the head of maths at the schools you are looking at and talk to them?
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cad.ence
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(Original post by booklover1313)
The core maths units will be very similar across the exam boards, so you could still practice e.g. differentiation using questions for Edexcel?
But also teachers at the school will have lots of resources, and you can trust them to prepare you well for the exam. If you are worried, you could always contact the head of maths at the schools you are looking at and talk to them?
That's a good idea! I'll do that, thank you I just hope that doing cie won't completely screw me over, because literally everybody is saying that I should avoid it if I have the option... it just makes me really really anxious and i dont know if i can trust anybody, even teachers 😕 i know it's totally irrational but i hate jumping into things that don't seem 100% reliable
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gdunne42
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(Original post by cad.ence)
my main issue is the fact that there isnt much to work with when it comes to revision, I've seen so many CIE students complain about how they've got minimal resources compared to edexcel and even a quick google brings up seriously scanty stuff for CIE maths. I've heard the textbooks are pretty useless, too. Isn't this something that will make exam prep a lot harder? What do you suggest I do for practice apart from past papers??
Students have been preparing for maths A level exams with nothing more than a good teacher, an adequate textbook and loads of past papers for far longer than you have been alive. A good school with experience of preparing students for CIE exams has access to plenty of resources for teaching and exam practice. If you feel you can do a better job on your own with the Edexcel IAL resources you can find, then go for it. Keep in mind that resources produced for the current UK A level maths do not match the IAL requirements.
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cad.ence
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(Original post by gdunne42)
Students have been preparing for maths A level exams with nothing more than a good teacher, an adequate textbook and loads of past papers for far longer than you have been alive. A good school with experience of preparing students for CIE exams has access to plenty of resources for teaching and exam practice. If you feel you can do a better job on your own with the Edexcel IAL resources you can find, then go for it. Keep in mind that resources produced for the current UK A level maths do not match the IAL requirements.
do you think it would be a good idea to sit CIE exams and then if it doesn't go well, do Edexcel IAL? I know you say that experienced schools will prepare me well but that's exactly what I'm concerned about, A Levels is a fairly new concept in the country I'm moving to and there's no guarantee the quality of teaching is reliable.
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gdunne42
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(Original post by cad.ence)
do you think it would be a good idea to sit CIE exams and then if it doesn't go well, do Edexcel IAL? I know you say that experienced schools will prepare me well but that's exactly what I'm concerned about, A Levels is a fairly new concept in the country I'm moving to and there's no guarantee the quality of teaching is reliable.
Assuming you are planning to study over the regular 2 years, you could do the first year in school under CIE and cover very similar content to that in the AS for Edexcel IAL. Through the first year you could develop an opinion on how well prepared you think you are for CIE and maybe experiment with some Edexcel past papers for comparison. Then make an informed choice on whether to take the CIE exams or switch to IAL. The Pure maths content that makes up the bulk of both A levels is very very similar.
Last edited by gdunne42; 1 month ago
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cad.ence
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(Original post by gdunne42)
Assuming you are planning to study over the regular 2 years, you could do the first year in school under CIE and cover very similar content to that in the AS for Edexcel IAL. Through the first year you could develop an opinion on how well prepared you think you are for CIE and maybe experiment with some Edexcel past papers for comparison. Then make an informed choice on whether to take the CIE exams or switch to IAL. The Pure maths content that makes up the bulk of both A levels is very very similar.
This makes a lot of sense, thank you so so much! You seem to know what you're talking about, would you be okay if I PMed you if I have any more questions about this?
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gdunne42
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(Original post by cad.ence)
This makes a lot of sense, thank you so so much! You seem to know what you're talking about, would you be okay if I PMed you if I have any more questions about this?
Happy to help, though it's probably best to post your questions publicly rather than PM. It may help someone else with similar questions and you may get other useful opinions from other people.
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