Accounting GCSE – don’t do it!

Great news! Maryam and Danyal both got A*s in their Accounting iGCSE’s, but it was close. Edexcel iGCSE Accounting is flipping hard, as Isabelle realised mid way during the course. The A* ground boundary is 90% and the papers are not easy. Maryam and Danyal managed 93% and 94% respectively – it’s by far the closest they’ve got to not getting A*s in all their iGCSE’s to date.

I can’t find stats on percentage of A*s for Accounting iGCSE, but A* rates do vary wildly between subjects. 6.5% of all GCSE’s are A*s, but it’s 40% for Latin, 3% for Business Studies, less than 1% for Engineering, and if memory serves me right, low for Accounting. I assumed that the disparity is because of the type of schools that do each subject – for example only the posh public schools do Latin, but I now think that is only part of the story – the other part is that some subjects, such as the Accounting, are simply much harder than others. So avoid them. It leaves us in a bit of a dilemma for Sabeen as Accounting is the only useful subject our dynamic duo have studied in their GCSEs so far.

So Maryam has got the 5 A*s that we wanted her to get and her GCSE’s are now history. Danyal still has 2 to go. Sabeen is about the start the journey.

A quick update on the A-levels – Maryam and Danyal are doing shockingly well with their physics. Bear in mind that it’s meant to be a 2 year course – they started work 6 weeks ago and are getting B’s in past papers in 40% of the assessment. We’ve covered the material in the other 60% too, but have’t done any past papers on them yet, so they are perhaps 4 weeks away from getting B’s in their past papers over the entire syllabus. 10 weeks to be getting B’s in past papers in an A-level?! I find that incredible – but it has all been about leveraging the power of intensity – they’ve been studying physics for around 3 hours per day, after all.

However, the Physics A-level seems to be an outlier – Maryam has been working for her Biology A-level for 6 months now and she’s not nearly ready for the exam. Physics is all about understanding principles and so if the child is fairly intelligent, has a strong foundation in maths, and is taught well (ahem, that’s me!), they can pick things up very fast.

Author: Asim Qureshi

Passionate about tech startups, home schooling, barefoot running and squash.

12 thoughts on “Accounting GCSE – don’t do it!”

  1. Congratulations! I don’t know how you do it! How old is the youngest who is about to be starting his IGCSE? Mine is 8 and no where near. I think you need to definitely write more about your kids’ journey. Would be enlightening for the rest of us homeschoolers. Simply amazing. Thanks.


    1. Nancy, thanks for your kind words. The youngest is 8, and she now getting low A’s (remember there is also an A* which is a grade above A), occasionally B’s, in her Maths iGCSE. However, she is probably the most mathematically gifted of the 3 though.

      I am absolutely confident your 8 year old could do the same, at the latest by the age of 9, or if he/she is exceptionally slow, by 10. It’s a matter of being focused – both parents and child. And frankly, I can understand many parents not wanting their kids to do exams so early – I want them to because I feel it looks good on their CV and let’s them focus on their passions much earlier in life.

      If a child does exam papers again and again, their grades will improve very quickly…


  2. Hi Asim!
    I was just binge reading through the articles of your home-schooling blogs. Really liked reading them. You have defined the approach clearly to be honest. Keep up the good work!


  3. Hi Asim!
    I’ve enjoyed reading your homeschooling journey, its very well executed with great results! May I know where did you register the kids for their IGCSE exams & is there a minimum age for taking the exams? Thanks!


    1. Brenda, we registered the kids at the British Council in Kuala Lumpur.

      There are no age limits for taking IGCSE exams.

      Good luck!


      1. Hi Asim
        Thank you very much for all the insights its been quite helpful. My name is Thuli and I am from South Africa.We are currently homeschooling our 2 daughters aged 8 and 9. How are your kids learning all the languages? which schools or apps are you guys using?

        Thanking you in advance


      2. Thulie, I’ve mentioned it elsewhere on this website – perhaps search for “Skype”. We basically get students to talk to them via Skype for 30 minutes a day at least 3x per week. It must be a chat with as little English used as possible. Total immersion. Good luck!


  4. I read your article and then I read through some of the comments other people made. I homeschool my two teenagers and when I found this article I knew I had to make them read it.


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