Cambridge CIE IGCSE Curriculum and Subjects

By SchoolMyKids Counsellor|4 - 5 mins| February 24, 2020

The Cambridge International General Certificate of Secondary Education popularly known as IGCSE is the most popular program of the Cambridge CIE Curriculum. IGCSE is for students aged 14 to 16 years. The IGCSE is recognised among leading universities across the world. CIE has program for students aged between 3 to 19. Find out more about all CIE Programmes Cambridge Primary, Cambridge Secondary 1, IGCSE and Cambridge Advanced AS & A level. Read our other article to know about Approved CIE Schools in India,  List for Cambridge Primary Schools in India, Cambridge Secondary 1 Schools in India, IGCSE Schools in India and AS & A level schools in India. Continue to read this article to know more about Diploma Programme (IBDP).

IGCSE – International General Certificate of Secondary Education

The Cambridge International General Certificate of Secondary Education (IGCSE) is a two-year curriculum programme leading to a Certificate which is internationally recognized. IGCSE is equivalent in standard to the British GCSE and International GCE ‘O’ LEVEL Examinations. Cambridge IGCSE is taken in 145 countries.

More than 70 subjects are available (including more than 30 languages) and students can take them in any combination. The IGCSE syllabuses are international in outlook, but retain a local relevance.

IGCSE subjects are divided in 5 subject groups

Group Subjects
Group 1 Languages: English Language and Literature
  1. English – First Language
  2. English – Second Language
  3. English – Literature
  4. World Literature
Group 1 Languages: Languages

First language

  • Afrikaans
  • Arabic
  • Bahasa Indonesia
  • Chinese
  • Czech
  • Dutch
  • French
  • German
  • Japanese
  • Korean
  • Portuguese
  • Russian
  • Spanish
  • Thai
  • Turkish

Second language

  • Afrikaans
  • Chinese
  • Hindi
  • IsiZulu
  • Kazakh
  • Urdu
Foreign language

  • Arabic
  • Dutch
  • French
  • German
  • Greek
  • Indonesian
  • Italian
  • Japanese
  • Malay
  • Mandarin
  • Chinese
  • Portuguese
  • Spanish
  • Spanish – Literature
Group 2 Humanities and Social Sciences
  • Bangladesh Studies
  • Development Studies
  • Economics
  • Geography
  • Global Perspectives
  • History
  • India Studies
  • Islamiyat
  • Latin
  • Pakistan Studies
  • Religious Studies
  • Sociology
Group 3 Sciences
  • Agriculture
  • Biology
  • Chemistry
  • Environmental Management
  • Physical Science
  • Physics
  • Science – Combined
  • Science – Co-ordinated (Double award)
Group 4 Mathematics
  1. Mathematics
  2. Mathematics – Additional
  3. International Mathematics
Group 5 Creative and Professional
  • Accounting
  • Art & Design
  • Music
  • Business Studies
  • Child Development
  • Computer Science
  • Design & Technology
  • Drama
  • Enterprise
  • Food & Nutrition
  • Information &
  • Communication Technology
  • Physical Education
  • Travel & Tourism

Top 10 Cambridge IGCSE Subjects

Refer to the list below for the top ten Cambridge IGCSE subjects worldwide

  1. Mathematics (Without Coursework)
  2. English as a Second Language
  3. First Language English
  4. Biology
  5. Physics
  6. Chemistry
  7. Business Studies
  8. French / Hindi
  9. Economics
  10. Information and Communication Technology

Know about CIE Cambridge IGCSE Past Papers, Syllabus, Learner Guides

IGCSE Subject Selection

Students enrolled in the IGCSE curriculum have to take

  1. Two languages, and
  2. one subject from each of the other subject groups: Humanities and Social sciences, Sciences, Mathematics and Business, Creative, Technical & Vocational.
  3. The 7th subject may belong to any group from 2 to 5

Environmental Management can count as either a Group 2 or a Group 3 subject, and Co-ordinated Sciences (Double Award) counts as two subjects.

IGCSE Assessment

Cambridge IGCSE examination sessions occur twice a year, in June and November. Results of IGCSE examination are declared in August and January.

IGCSE Grades are benchmarked using eight internationally recognised grades, A* to G, which have clear guidelines to explain the standard of achievement for each grade.

Cambridge IGCSE ICE – International Certificate of Education

Cambridge IGCSE Examination is taken as a qualification towards International Certificate of Education (ICE).

The ICE is awarded to the candidate who passes in at least seven IGCSE subjects including two from Group 1 (Languages) and one from each of Groups 2 (Humanities and social Sciences) to 5 (Creative & vocational). The seventh subject may be chosen from any of the syllabus Groups.

The candidates who qualify for the ICE award are given any one of the three categories

Distinction Grade A (a) or above in five subjects and Grade C (c) or above in two subjects.
Merit Grade C (c) or above in five subjects and Grade F (f) or above in two subjects.
Pass Grade G (g) or above in seven subjects. The requirements for the ICE must normally be satisfied at one and the same examination.

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Last Updated: Mon Feb 24 2020

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