Which is worse?

<p>My school offers 2 curriculms..
New Zealand Certicate Assesment (NCEA)
Cambridge International Examination (CIE)</p>

<p>NCEA is an easy-fair course. It is intended for average students. It's a New Zealand curriculm. It was introduced only 1-2 years ago so I doubt that adcoms are familiar with NCEA.</p>

<p>CIE is a hard course. It is intended for the 'accelerated' students. It's internationaly recognised.
BUT...
In my school, we can only take 1 A-Level. 2 A-Level courses for really special students. So at year 13, we take 2 or 3 AS subjects and 1 A-Level subject.</p>

<p>Right now, I'm taking NCEA, but I have an option to change to CIE.</p>

<p>I'm afraid that the admission commitee at colleges will compare me to other CIE students and see that I only have 1 A-level course whilst everyone else has like 4 to 5 A-Level courses.</p>

<p>Plus, if I choose CIE, I'll have to catch up to the AS class. This will be probably really hard because NCEA level 1 and IGCSE are at totally differnt levels. So, if I start AS next year, I'll probably end up getting really bad grades like B's and C's. </p>

<p>NCEA is easy. It's not a 'rigorous curriculum'. My guidance councellor will surely tick a box that says something like 'average curriculm'.</p>

<p>So should I take CIE and get bad grades and get compared with the rest of the international students but take a good curriculum so I'd be 'taking the most of all the opportunities given'.?</p>

<p>Or stick with NCEA, get good grades but take an average curriculum?</p>

<p>Thanks
BTW, what's O-Levels?</p>

<p>i think O-levels are the older (?) version of GCSEs which is what students in the UK take from year 10- 11</p>

<p>personally, i think you should take the CIE. its better to show that you've made the most of your opportunities than to take the 'safe' option which won't challenge you at all.</p>

<p>I think u should go along with CIE.</p>

<p>If you are applying to a highly selective school, they will take careful note of whether you have taken the most rigorous courses available to you. They hold in somewhat lower regard students who do not challenge themselves. For less selective schools it may not matter.</p>

<p>go for the CIE - but make a note of your situation somewhere on your application, so the adcom will know that you went out of your way to challenge yourself, even when you could've just sat on Easy Street...</p>

<p>ok - but do u think they'd like me better if I chose CIE and got Bs and Cs? Or take NCEA and get the highest grade?</p>

<p>Won't they kinda look at me funny if my report card is a combination of A B Cs? Instead of all A's?</p>

<p>And what rating would you give JHU as a selective school- out of 1 to 10, 10 being the most selective?</p>

<p>NoFX - your question reminds me of the one that goes: "Is it better to get A's in an easy course, or B's in a tough course?"</p>

<p>You know what the adcom said? "Get A's in a tough course." !</p>

<p>I think you should challenge yourself with the tougher option, and really give it your best shot. Try to get A's - don't just assume that because the course is harder, you'll automatically do worse. Try!
The only time I would advise you not to do CIE is if it is way over your head, and you know it. But I really doubt it can be that hard...afterall, millions of kids just like you write those exams, and get A's in them. Why not you?</p>