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IB, GCSE, Indian..? Which Curriculum is Right?

IB, GCSE, Indian..? Which Curriculum is Right?

When moving to the Emirates and finding a suitable school for your child, there are probably more options for types of schools than you would normally be used to. When we say ‘types’ of schools, we are referring to the choices of educational curriculums, which are far broader than in most countries. Naturally the multi-national demographic of the country has created a demand for a wide mix of educational curriculum, allowing transient families to continue with the same system wherever they are in the world, thus avoiding disruption to their child’s education.

Schools in the Emirates cater for many different education systems:

UK – GCSE/A-level
India – CBSE/ICSE
European, Global – International Baccalaureate (IB)
America
Australia
France
Germany
Pakistan
Philippines
Russia

The question is, do you stick with your country’s National Curriculum or, now that you have the opportunity, do you explore and research a new educational system that may be better for your child’s needs and your future plans for your family?

Here is a rundown of top three most popular school education systems in the Emirates.

 

UK National Curriculum (GCSE, A-Level)
The most well-known and established educational system, with a generally high standard of teaching, the British National Curriculum covers learning for children aged 5-16.

Divided into four Key Stages, students are continually assessed in their learning and throughout Key Stages 1 and 2, children are routinely tested in SATS. At GCSE level, students must take English, Maths and Science, and can choose up to seven more examinations depending on their areas of strength and their plans for university and a future career. Specialising in specific subjects is expected from a very young age and the British curriculum is often criticised for its lack of breadth and in-depth studying of one or two subjects rather than continued learning across all subjects.

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At the age of 16, students have the option of remaining in education and specializing in three key areas for a higher level certification (A-level) that will be required for university entry.

Examples of some British National Curriculum schools in the UAE are:

– Dubai College
– Jumeirah English Speaking School
– Repton School Dubai
– The British School, Abu Dhabi

 

International Baccalaureate (IB – EYP, MYP, DP)
Often considered to be the most ‘well-rounded’ of education systems, IB takes the students from age 3 to 19 years with its Early Years, Middle Years and Diploma Programmes and focuses on providing a good framework of academic challenges and life skills to students, going above and beyond traditional school subjects. In short, IB has been formulated to provide a standard of education that ‘prepares students for modern day life’.

Many schools in Dubai offer the IB system and for long term expatriates this is often a good option, as their children will be more likely to go on to study overseas and remain global expatriates themselves.

For students in higher education, IB can be an alternative to A-levels, where they can choose six subjects to study instead of three. Most worldwide universities openly accept the IB Diploma as a recognized qualification.

Some schools that offer IB Early Years, Middle Years and Diploma Programmes in the UAE include:

– American International School – Abu Dhabi
– Raha International School – Abu Dhabi
– Dubai International Academy – Dubai
– GEMS World Academy – Dubai

 

Indian Curriculum (CBSE, ICSE)
This would normally be the ideal option for Indian nationals who want to continue their children’s education internationally, but expect to settle back in India. The Indian system is widely offered in the UAE and educates students to CBSE and ICSE level to the end of Year 12. It has been developed to accommodate students of varying abilities, and acts as a platform for developing every child’s potential. Mixing traditional Maths and English with more progressive subjects such as business studies and modern languages, the Indian education system is highly respected for its celebration of Indian values and strong focus on academics.

There are many choices for Indian schools in the Emirates, a few of which are:

– Abu Dhabi Indian School
– The Indian High School – Dubai
– Sharjah Indian School
– Our Own Indian High School – Dubai
– Global Indian International School – Dubai

 

Further reading
www.ibo.org
www.education.gov.uk

 

4 Comments

Leave A Reply
  1. mat says
    September 23, 2013, 4:12 pm

    that was quick ! many other places also has the same mistake. pls check

    Reply
    • Bill says
      September 23, 2013, 5:13 pm

      We will do, but don’t hesitate to point them out. 🙂 You can email us at: editor@edu2021.com. Thanks Mat.

      Reply
  2. mat says
    September 23, 2013, 3:41 pm

    Nice summary.
    It should be ICSE(Indian Certificate of Secondary Education) under indian curriculum. Its wrongly mentioned thrice.

    Reply
    • Bill says
      September 23, 2013, 3:47 pm

      Many thanks – corrected 🙂

      Reply

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