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IBDP Course Rigor: US Admissions vs UK Admissions

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By Hubert Ho | Head of Admissions Consulting Services, Kaplan Test Prep and Admissions

A new school year just starts. It is also time for students and parents to re-think about how to arrange the subject mix in the upcoming academic year, especially for the IBDP students. However, it is very important for you to understand the fundamental difference in admissions criteria between US colleges and UK universities. And it might cause a headache for you as it will require you to choose subjects indifferently.

As you may know that there are several pillars for an outstanding student profile, including academic readiness, admissions readiness, etc. The IBDP score can be one of the many indicators for these two pillars in several ways. Firstly, the subject mix in your IBDP can help in measuring your course rigor and part of your demonstrated interest. The subjects you chose will prove your true passion and interests. Also, the HL subjects you chose will become how big the challenge you can take in your junior year and senior year. The US colleges want to see how far you can expand your comfort zone.

Besides the subject mix, the IBDP score is also an indicator for your success level towards your academic readiness. However, US colleges require you to have a decent score in specific subjects that you are interested in for showing your demonstrated interest. Whereas, UK universities require you to show the ability to get a decent score in the overall IBDP score. There will be several tactics to get a decent score as it is not required for you to pick the subjects relating to your demonstrated interest in some sense.

Picking the right subject mix is a start of your junior year and your prolonged US college and UK university admissions journey. Hope this can help you to start thinking again whether the current subject mix in your IBDP can give you a competitive edge.

hubert-protrait

Mr. Hubert Ho
Head of Admissions Consulting Services, Kaplan Test Prep and Admissions
Associate Member of IECA, Member of NACAC and AEE
MCom (Finance), UNSW
BCom (Management & Marketing), University of Wollongong

• 10 years+ of experience in education industry
• Proven track record helping students gain admission to US prestigious colleges including Yale University, Stanford University, Cornell University, UCLA, UC-Berkeley, New York University, Boston University

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