A Levels remains popular

Not just a course, but an experience that transforms you as a student

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The introduction of new education system according to the Education Act Eighth Amendment Bill has made significant changes in the education sector of Nepal, but A Levels remains unaffected by it.

The Education Act Eighth Amendment Bill has categorised school education into two levels - basic education (Class I to VIII) and secondary education (Class IX to XII). It is no more School Leaving Certificate (SLC) for Class X students; it is Secondary Education Examinations (SEE). After the Bill was passed, the Higher Secondary Education Board was dissolved and the National Examination Board (NEB) was formed that is responsible for secondary education (Class IX to XII).

Despite all the changes, A Levels remains popular among SEE-appeared students, who are waiting for their results.

One of them is Yomina Shrestha. This SEE appeared-student from Little Angels' School wants to study A Levels at Little Angels' College. She wants to study Science in A Levels so that she can enter a medical or engineering college in future.

"I am really excited to join this course and receive quality education," shared Shrestha, who managed to get enrolled in the college "despite limited seats". As SEE results are yet to be out, the college is taking students who scored B+ or above in SEE sent-up test. One can choose to study a diverse range of subjects in A Levels - from Music to Medicine. And Sikkum Limbu, who is all excited to start her A Levels in Chelsea International Academy, has selected Economics, Sociology, Art and Design, English and Psychology.

Limbu, who is waiting for her SEE results, rather than opting to study in Class XI chose to study A Levels because of its "international" appeal. "It is the dream of every Nepali student to get a degree of international standard and A Levels provides that platform. I believe it will give me a wide range of opportunities and teach me an international way of learning," she added. With such interest from SEE appeared students, A Levels has not been affected by the introduction of new education system in the country. "The new system has not affected the A Levels this year. It all depends upon the government's norms in the future," Medina Shakya, A Level Programme Manager at The British College stated. Prabhat Chhetry, Coordinator at Little Angels' College, Hattiban added, "This change will have the least impact on A Levels since students can choose to continue Class XI and XII in the same school or join A Levels or IB after SEE results. On the other hand, since this is an international degree, they may choose to study if they can afford to do so," he stated.Unless schools (that have been running classes till Class X) in Nepal add classes up to Class XII, A Levels here won't face problems of getting students, as per Chhetry.

Having said that, studying for A Levels demands a high academic standard of achievements as per Shakya, "Thus, students must have sound academic ability to fulfil the rigours of this challenging programme and must be good enough to choose subject combination." As such even before the results are out, SEE-appeared students can join A Levels. "To join A Levels, a student must have passed SEE, Class X (CBSE) or O Level. There is no official percentage or grade criterion but schools may ask for a minimum of ‘D' grade in SEE," informed Roshan Bhandari, Principal at Campion Academy.

For those wanting to join classes before the results, they need to pass an entrance test, fill out an admission form and pay the fees, as per Bhandari. However, whether students should be allowed to continue studying A Levels or not would depend entirely on their SEE results. On a cautionary note he pointed out that admitting students in such a way could adversely affect the quality of studies and the results; so he suggested that schools take a stand and admit only the deserving students as A Levels will be very challenging for students. Bhandari claimed that demand for A Levels programme is on the rise since it offers global standards in education, makes a student confident, responsible, reflective, innovative and engaged. "A Levels is not just a course, it's an experience that transforms you as a student," he cited.

source: Anjila Shrestha (2017),"A Levels remains popular", The himalayant times, 24 april 2017
photo: THT

2017-04-24 | EducateNepal


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