The A-Levels academic programme is one of the most internationally recognised academic programmes, and allows for maximum specialisation of each student in a range of subjects of their own interest. This is achieved because students concentrate their efforts on those areas of knowledge that will allow them to access the university studies of their choice, providing them with the necessary knowledge and skills to do so.
Many students in Spain have to go abroad to have the opportunity to do this programme, but at O Castro British International School they can do so without leaving their home town.
Academic success in A-Levels lies in the opportunity to gain access to any university in the world. Good results in the qualifications are a passport that allows students to enter some of the best universities in the world, such as reference centres in Spain, the United States, the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, Germany, etc... And as if this were not enough, this programme is recognised not only by numerous universities, but also by companies because students demonstrate the ability to research and think critically and autonomously, as well as a deep knowledge of the subjects studied.
This programme, established in 1951, is aimed at students between 16 and 18 years of age, and lasts two academic years, the equivalent of the Spanish Baccalaureate.
Two specialisation courses, according to their strengths
"Each student has the possibility of choosing their subjects, and a personalised curriculum, after a careful joint evaluation carried out with the help of the school's university advisors and academic tutors," explains María Guyre, technical director of O Castro British International School. Subjects are chosen with the aim of creating the ideal profile for the study pathway each student wishes to follow," adds Guyre, "based on their interests, strengths and entry requirements for the universities and studies they wish to pursue.
The A-Levels curriculum helps students develop the skills they will need to succeed throughout their lives, both at university and in their careers.
Would I have to take the EBAU?
One of the concerns for Spanish students on the A-Level programme is knowing for sure which pathway they will choose when they leave school. "Students can access universities in Spain, both public and private, directly, without registering for the EVAU, with their A-Levels and through the "University Access Qualification" issued by the UNED based on the student's A-Levels," says Guyre. Even if a student wants to improve the average mark for access to the Spanish university, he or she can take a test that would help them improve up to 4 points: the exams known as PCE, which stands for Pruebas de Competencia Específica, equivalent to the Voluntary Phase of the EBAU, organised by the UNED. "These exams are prepared at the school for two years, in parallel with the A-Levels. These subjects are chosen according to the same criteria as the A-Levels".
How are A-Levels assessed?
Final assessment takes place during the May and June exams at the end of the second year and may require the performance of exercises or other practical tests. Students receive an A-Level certificate for each examination passed. Students graduate with grades in each of their subjects, ranging from A+ to F.
This programme is close to the global reality we live in. Nowadays, it is not only necessary to know languages, but also to study as in the countries where you may have to work. A-Levels ensure skills, abilities and knowledge that prepare students for their future.