Baccalaureate is better than A-level, say university tutors

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Most university admission tutors believe that the International Baccalaureate (IB) is a better preparation for higher education than A-levels.

A survey showed 57 per cent thought IB students were better able to cope with their degree than those who studied A-levels. Only 3 per cent said A-level students had an advantage over IB candidates while 40 per cent said the qualifications were of equal worth.

IB students take six subjects including English, maths, a foreign language and a science, write a 4,000-word dissertation and do 150 hours of community service. The vast majority of tutors who responded (97.3 per cent) welcomed the breadth of the curriculum and said IB students had "a wider perspective" and "strengths when faced with making choices".

Prestigious institutions including the London School of Economics said compulsory maths gave IB students an advantage while Imperial College noted that the IB maths exams were more demanding than A-levels. The survey was conducted by the International Baccalaureate Organisation, which runs the IB.