Cambridge A Levels, also known as Cambridge Advanced Level or A-levels, are a set of high school qualifications offered by the University of Cambridge International Examinations (CIE). These qualifications are recognized and respected worldwide and are typically taken by students in the final two years of their high school education, usually around the ages of 16 to 18.
Students in the UK, Singapore, Malaysia and many in India study for this highly coveted qualification. Out of the numerous possible subjects available – over 50, should one take the General Paper (GP) subject?
While it is highly popular in the UK and in fact compulsory in Singapore, it all depends on the academic and career goals, as well as their interests and abilities of the students. Here are 8 factors to consider when deciding whether to take the Cambridge A-Level General Paper (GP):
- Academic Interests: GP is a broad-based subject that covers a wide range of topics, including current affairs, literature, science, history, and more. If you have a strong interest in exploring various subjects and are comfortable with essay-based assessments, this subject might be a good fit.
- University Requirements: Check the admission requirements of universities or colleges you are interested in. Some institutions may require or recommend the General Paper, while others may not consider it as a significant factor in the admissions process. In Singapore, a government review of their University Admission requirements has made the GP subject compulsory
- Career Goals: Consider how GP might align with your career goals. If you aspire to careers that require strong communication, critical thinking, and research skills, this subject can be beneficial.
- Language Proficiency: GP is usually conducted in English, so ensure you have a good command of the language to excel in this subject.
- Academic Strengths: Assess your academic strengths and weaknesses. If you are confident in your ability to write well-structured essays and analyze complex issues, then GP can be a good choice.
- Time and Commitment: Be aware that the General Paper can be demanding in terms of reading, writing, and critical thinking. Consider whether you have the time and dedication to excel in this subject.
- Access to Tuition Services: The competition for limited university places is an intense reality. No wonder why the tuition industry is booming almost everywhere in the world. “GP is inherently a challenging subject to score and our tuition services make it a lot more possible to do so,” says Mr. Kelvin Hong, Founder and Chief Tutor of Ace GP Tuition in Singapore.
- Alternative Subjects: If you have other subjects in mind that are more closely aligned with your career aspirations or interests, you may want to prioritize those instead.
Ultimately, the decision to take the Cambridge A-Level General Paper should be based on your individual goals and abilities. It can be a valuable subject for developing important skills, but it may not be necessary for everyone. Make sure to consult with teachers, counselors, tutors and educational advisors to make an informed choice that aligns with your academic and career path.