A Cambridge home-school matric is one of the options for South African high school home-school students to get a matric certificate with university exemption.
Who is Cambridge?
CIE is part of Cambridge Assessment, Europe’s largest assessment agency and a department of the University of Cambridge. Cambridge Assessment was established in 1858 as the University of Cambridge Local Examinations Syndicate
What qualification does your student get?
In South Africa most students do two courses:
IGCSE (International General Certificate of Education) takes 18 months – 2 years to complete and is for students from 14 – 16 years of age. This is the same as grades 10 and 11 in local schools although the subject content is different. Your student will take 7 subjects on this level.
Following this South African high school students do the AS Levels normally from about 16 – 19 years of age. This is also an 18 month – 2-year course and is the equivalent of Grade 12 in South Africa. Your student will take 5 subjects on this level.
NOTE: If your student does very well on a subject at IGCSE level (B or A) they can “carry” it over as an AS level subject. This means that they will only write for 4 subjects at the end of their AS course and one of their IGCSE subjects can count for the 5th.
To achieve the equivalents of “A Levels” the South African student needs to complete a Grade 13, but most students do not take this option as it is not necessary for matric exemption and university exemption.
What subjects must your student take?
According to the guidelines set by the exemptions board of South Africa, your student needs to choose subjects according to the groups laid out. For example:
Afrikaans (or another second language)
Maths or Maths literacy
Discretionary Subjects (two from the following list)
A third language or Biology, Chemistry, Mathematics or Physics;
Art, Economics, Geography, History, Music
Accounting, Business Studies, Computing, Design and Technology or Further Mathematics;
However, practical subjects are not available to some homeschoolers who prefer to do the Cambridge Homeschool Matric independently i.e. without the help of a private college. While Cambridge offers over 70 subjects at IGCSE and AS level, not all can be taken in South Africa.
Where does my student get their textbooks?
Once you have chosen your subjects you will refer to the list of resources for each subject on the Cambridge website. Take special note of resources with a check mark next to them. These are endorsed by Cambridge and should be your first choice. These books can be bought directly from the publishers but we have found that online stores are just as reasonably priced and quick to deliver.
Where and when does the student write exams?
Exams are written twice a year either through the chosen college or if you are an independent student at a Cambridge examination venue. Some private schools allow independent examinees to sit and write with their students or you can write at the British Council in your town.
Exams are written in May/June and November each year. Cambridge will charge a per subject exam fee of about R450 which you have to pay in advance. There may be other fees on top of this according to where you choose to write the exam.