If you ask a previous student about the difference between IGCSE and Cambridge 0 level examinations, you might get this response: O levels’ syllabus is hard but exams are easy if you study while IGCSE’s syllabus is easy but exams are hard if you don’t practice.

In any case, Cambridge provides these platforms to support and maintain the development of the modern curriculum. Through O level and IGCSE, they evaluate the level of students by creating different subject-based exams while assisting in improving the teaching practice.

Now let’s further discuss the differences between these two.

Ordinary Level (O –LEVEL)

This is a qualification for subjects by the students from 14 to 16 years. This is followed by A level and it was ousted by GSCE in 1988. GSCE stands for General Certificate of Secondary Education, an internationally recognized program.

At the end of the course, students undertake an assessment test which contains the practical, oral and written component. The Cambridge O level examination is recognized by top universities and companies worldwide as academic ability evidence.

International General Certificate of Secondary Education (IGCSE)

The IGCSE is now a globally renowned system that’s refined by Cambridge University. Deemed as a proper and international qualification with its curriculum existing in specific English language. It depends on the GCE O level and the degree is equal to GSCE /O levels.

The Cambridge International General Certificate of Secondary Education (IGCSE) is currently the world’s most popular international curriculum for 14 to 16-year old. It is offered in around 2,300 schools in more than 130 countries globally. This internationally is the equivalent of GCSE in the United Kingdom as well as the International GCE ‘O’ Level Examinations.

At the end of the course, students undertake an assessment comprising of practical and coursework components along with a written and oral examination. IGCSE is also recognized by top universities and companies worldwide as academic ability evidence, albeit in higher regard.

O-level VS IGCSE


  • For the O-level, students receive grades for their academic performance from A* to E, which is highest to lowest.
  • IGCSE, on the other hand, is proposed at a comprehensive capability students’ range, by giving grades from A*to G from highest to lowest.


Syllabuses in O-Level were created to meet specific local needs, for example, minority languages.

The coursework In IGSCE is accessible in different syllabuses, permitting centers a component of individual decision and permitting instructors to assist in the method of assessment.


O-level don’t use a wide focus since there are more confined pragmatic test alternatives in O Level sciences and these limitations are good for some learning institutions where assets are constrained.

On the other hand, IGCSE focuses on the extensive side of learning and also lets students be ready for further study and future occupation.

There you have it. To reiterate, there is less coursework at O-level while IGCSE provides more. The syllabus of the O-level is focused on local needs. Both have examinations that are recognized by top universities and companies globally with the IGCSE receiving an even higher status and acclaim.

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