IGCSE vs CBSE – Which is Best for Your Child?


Your today’s decision can change the future of your child. Selecting the syllabus for education is one such thing that has a widespread impact on the child’s overall development. Nourishing the student with the right knowledge at every step of life is essential to prepare them to recognize their inner talent and finding their objective. With the development of the brain through the researched study material and impeccably formulated curriculum, the education system plays a crucial role in making them winners. CBSE or IGCSE institutes in Kuwait, UAE and other middle east countries are increasing over the years and it’s your choice to make him/her a winner in life by choosing the right syllabus for your children.

What is IGCSE?

The International General Certificate of Secondary Education (IGCSE) is an internationally acknowledged and valued education board. The University of Cambridge (International Examinations) controls, monitors and regulates the board. The curriculum followed by IGCSE has been formulated after an exhaustive study. It is aimed at developing and encouraging analytical skills, reasoning aptitude, and inquisitive traits. That will make the students capable of asking questions to reach the root cause of every aspect taught in class.

The teachers at the IGCSE board act as intermediaries between the student and the open/ wide world. Rather than injecting knowledge, information, theories, and formula, they guide the students to obtain answers by themselves. The syllabus enhances the inner strength of the children so much so that they can face any international competitive exam with confidence. Further, the student who had undergone IGCSE syllabus education is well prepared for the International Baccalaureate (IB) diploma, North American APT, and A levels.

Since the IGCSE is recognized and acclaimed internationally, the syllabus is equally tough. The exams will scrutinize a student’s comprehensive understanding of the subjects. Instead of just checking just the superficial awareness of the theories. The board provides insight into both domestic and international concepts, cultures, and customs. IGCSE is the best board/ syllabus for students who dream to pursue higher education in universities and colleges abroad.

What is CBSE?

The Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) follows a syllabus that has been aimed at preparing children more towards science and engineering-related fields. It is the most common education board in India. The National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT) has recognized CBSE, which delivers education in both English and Hindi. The student can opt for the medium to pursue the studies.

The students have to appear for the common board exam after 10th, viz. All India Secondary School Examination (AISSE). Similarly, the board exam after 12th is called All India Senior School Certificate Examination (AISSCE). You will find both private sector and public sector schools following the same syllabus. Kendriya Vidyalayas (KVs), both in India and abroad, follow the CBSE board.

Unlike other boards, CBSE focuses on theoretical knowledge rather than nourishing students with practical aspects. Students aiming for STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Maths) related fields can opt for CBSE, as it focuses on those subjects more. CBSE has an easy curriculum, which could be covered by students without much complication.

What are the Differences between IGCSE and CBSE?

The differences between IGCSE and CBSE are enumerated below. You can understand that both the syllabuses differ in core factors itself. And hence, both are entirely different from each other.


  • Central Board of Secondary Education
  • Established by Government of India
  • English and Hindi Medium
  • NCERT/ Govt approved books only
  • Stipulated, traditional, subjects only


  • International General Certificate of Secondary Education
  • Controlled and regulated by University of Cambridge International Examinations
  • English only
  • No restriction on books. Any book elaborating the concepts
  • Students can opt from more than 70 subjects



  1. The best option if the student is considering higher studies in universities and colleges overseas
  2. Prepares the student in every facet of life
  3. Practical learning method, focussing on reasoning and critical thinking
  4. A wide selection of subjects for the students to choose from (70+)
  5. Choose any book from the recommended lot. Thus, there are no limitations regarding the same


  1. The fee is higher compared to CBSE and many other boards
  2. Cannot opt for Hindi or any other medium. English is the only medium of education.
  3. Coaching centers and tutors are less compared to CBSE



  1. The best option for children of central govt employees, bank employees, and other transferable jobs
  2. Low fees compared to many other boards
  3. Recognized nationally
  4. Many coaching centers and tutors are available


  1. Number of subjects/ streams less compared to IGCSE
  2. Subjects focus on theoretical knowledge
  3. Reasoning aptitude and critical thinking not nurtured much
  4. Marking based on the student’s capability to memorize things. Rather than the ability to analyze and ascertain aspects using his/ her practical thinking

What are the Pros and Cons of IGCSE and CBSE?

In addition to the above-mentioned factors, you may consider the pros and cons of both IGCSE and CBSE syllabuses to finalize the one for your child. So that he or she can scale the summit of success in life.


The Tail End:

Both IGCSE and CBSE education systems differ in approach.  Opt the right education system according to the aspirations and dreams of your child.



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