IGCSE English course enables students to develop the ability to communicate clearly, precisely and effectively when speaking and writing, using a wide range of vocabulary, correct grammar, spelling and punctuation. Students are given the opportunity to read, interpret, evaluate and respond to a wide range of literature in English which includes prose, poetry and drama from contemporary literature and works of Shakespeare.
The IGCSE English syllabus helps students to deepen their understanding of how writers use English to express meaning and achieve the effect required. It also stimulates students to read and explore wider and universal issues which promotes a better understanding of themselves and the world.
The IGCSE English syllabus is divided into 3 parts:
- Speaking and Listening
The IGCSE English qualification is an English GCSE that can be examined anywhere in the world. “Ordinary” English GCSE, on the other hand, is rarely examined outside the United Kingdom. IGCSE English is a truly international qualification, recognized all over the world.
IGCSE English As A First And Second Language
In theory, both options are equally weighted. According to IGCSE, English as a First Language (EFL) is intended for students who speak English as their first language. English as a Second Language (ESL) is for people whose first language is not English but who want to improve their communication skills in it.
What Is the Distinction?
If you are comfortable with English and use it as your primary mode of communication, EFL is the better option. The course is more advanced in terms of evaluating vocabulary, grammar, spelling, punctuation, and other skills. It begins with the assumption that you are already a fluent English speaker and writer.
ESL is intended for those with less advanced English skills who want to improve their language skills in order to increase their opportunities for further studies or for their planned career.
The best way to understand the distinction is to read what the assessment has to say about it:
IGCSE English – First Language Cambridge (0500)
Cambridge IGCSE First Language English is intended for students who speak English as their first language. The course enables students to:
- Improve your ability to speak and write clearly, accurately, and effectively.
- Employ a diverse vocabulary as well as proper grammar, spelling, and punctuation.
- Create a personal style and be aware of the audience to whom you are speaking.
Learners are also encouraged to read widely, both for their own enjoyment and to broaden their understanding of how English can be used. Cambridge IGCSE First Language English also fosters more general analysis and communication skills such as inference and the ability to organise facts and effectively present opinions.
English As A Second Language IGCSE (Speaking Endorsement) (0510)
Cambridge IGCSE English as a Second Language is intended for students who already have a working knowledge of the language and want to improve their understanding in order to advance in their education or career. Learners will improve their ability to understand and use English in a variety of situations as a result of their studies.
The goal is to achieve a level of practical communication that is suitable for everyday use and can also serve as a foundation for further, more in-depth language study. Marks for the speaking component do not contribute to the overall grade candidates receive for the written components in Syllabus 0510.
Planning to Prepare for IGCSE English?
Which is the Best Option for You?
Making the best decision on which option is best for you is determined by two major factors:
- Your familiarity, fluency, and level of comfort with the English language
- Your future academic or professional goals
If you plan to study or work in a country where English is the primary language of communication, college admissions departments and prospective employers will usually favour those who have studied EFL because it gives them confidence that language will not be an impediment to your academic or career progress. While there is no official acknowledgement of the fact, it is widely accepted that a C in EFL is frequently preferred to an A.
If you intend to study or work in a region where English is not the primary language and it is not your native tongue, ESL is a better option because you may be able to achieve better grades, which will impact your overall performance, and this higher grade may be more appealing to admission departments or employers.
To summarise, if you have a level of English comfort that will allow you to get a good grade in EFL, you should pursue it. If your level of comfort is low but you want to demonstrate that you can communicate effectively in English, ESL may be a better option.
Language skill self-evaluation is difficult and rarely accurate. Enrolling in an online tuition organisation known for its excellence in IGCSE tuition and helping students improve their performance is the best way to get the inputs and guidance you need to make the right choice, as well as the support and coaching you may need to score well.