Iris is originally from Singapore. She holds a Master's Degree in Education Policy, Organisation & Leadership from the University of Illinois Urbana Champaign, USA, a Masters Degree in Mathematics, Science and Technology from Columbia University, USA and a Master's Degree in Mass Communication & Media Arts and MBA from Southern Illinois University Carbondale, USA.
Iris' philosophy is "Enjoy learning while teaching."
Iris has taught in Singapore, China, Japan and the USA.
She enjoys travelling and learning about different cultures around the world. She also likes Singapore local dishes and Japanese food.
As you are searching for a pre-university programme for your child, it’s likely you are finding a lot of information about the IB Diploma Programme (IBDP), the A-levels and the American Advanced Placement courses. While these educational programmes are similar in the sense that they strive to prepare secondary students for their university studies and careers, there are also distinct differences that you should be aware of.
By taking the time to understand the differences between these three different options, you will begin to have a better idea of which type of pre-university programme would be best for your child.
The International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme, or IBDP, is a two-year programme that is designed for secondary students between the ages of 16 and 19 years old. The IBDP is unique in the sense that it offers all of its coursework with a global focus, and it emphasises the importance of skills-based learning. This diploma programme is only available at IB World schools, so if you are interested in this programme, you should focus your search on international schools that offer this option.
The General Certificate of Education Advanced Level certificate, or the GCE A-levels, is the educational qualification that is offered in the United Kingdom and a number of other countries to students completing their secondary education. A number of countries, including Singapore, Uganda, Kenya, Mauritius and Zimbabwe have developed qualifications with the same name as and a similar format to the British A Levels. The A-levels are generally worked towards over 2 years and widely regarded around the world as a premier option for secondary school students with universities granting offers based on A-level grades achieved.
The Advanced Placement Program is offered by the College Board (who also prepare the SAT) in high schools throughout the United States and Canada. It is not a stand-alone programme of study but is offered as individual courses (at Advanced Placement level) by high schools who often combine it with their own high school diploma. Each Advanced Placement (AP) course is designed to provide learners with collegiate-level coursework. Students who pass the AP exam for an AP course are well-prepared for further study in that area and are eligible for credit in American universities.
There are several significant differences that you will want to compare when deciding between the IBDP, A-levels and the AP. Here are a few to keep in mind:
There are distinct differences between the curricula offered by the IB Diploma, A-levels and the Advanced Placement courses. Here is what you need to know:
In addition to having distinct differences when it comes to the structure of the curriculum, there also are differences in the individual course structure. Here’s what you should know:
The IB Diploma is known for making skill development a top priority, with many of its courses offering opportunities for hands-on learning and skills-based instruction. A-levels, on the other hand, have a more academic focus.
Similar to the A-levels, Advanced Placement courses focus more heavily on academic skill development. Students will focus on paying attention during lectures, independent reading and in-depth research and writing.
It is worth noting that the IBDP is governed by one consistent exam board, while there are various boards that evaluate the exams of A-levels. In addition, A-levels use the traditional letter grade system, while IBDP utilises a points-based system.
The Advanced Placement exams administered by the College Board are assessed on a scale of 1 through 5. Students who receive a 1 will not be recommended to receive college credit, while those who receive a 5 are considered extremely well qualified for college credit.
The IBDP, A-levels and Advanced Placement courses are considered premier pre-university educational programmes that are accepted by the top universities around the globe. At OWIS, we believe the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme is the best choice for our secondary school students. It is a proven pre-university programme that is respected around the world, and its global focus complements the overall mission at OWIS.
We strongly believe that our students benefit from our multicultural student body and our international approach to education, and the IBDP allows us to reinforce our commitment to our mission. The IBDP at OWIS will help your student become an internationally-focused learner who is uniquely prepared for a competitive global economy.