Cambridge A Levels - St Andrew's College

Cambridge A Levels

C ambridge International is the world’s largest provider of international education programmes and qualifications. Cambridge International A Levels are highly regarded internationally and accepted as equivalent to UK A Levels, offering rigorous, in-depth, advanced study in areas of particular interest. Every year thousands of learners with Cambridge International AS & A Levels gain places at leading universities around the world, including those in the UK, USA (including Ivy League universities), European nations, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and South Africa.

We offer a Cambridge International A Levels stream as an alternative to the IEB Matric. It is structured as a two-year course, starting with the AS Level in the first year (Grade 11), and extended to the A Level in the second year (Grade 12). We offer Cambridge International qualifications through a Cambridge Associate.

The purpose of offering the A Levels stream is:

  • To allow our pupils the opportunity to apply for and be accepted to the international universities of their choice.
  • To stretch and enrich our top pupils academically, through more advanced, rigorous and in-depth study in areas of particular interest.

Both the IEB Matric and Cambridge International A Levels are highly regarded worldwide. While A Levels provide easier access to international universities, the IEB Matric is more suitable for applying to South African universities.


A Levels Application Form 2022

A Levels Subject Choice Booklet 2022

Frequently Asked Questions About A Levels


St Andrew’s College online presentation on the Cambridge International A Levels Stream, explaining what the A Levels stream is and how it works. Click on the video below:

View another St Andrew’s College A Levels video:





Cambridge International Examinations (Private Candidates)

St Andrew’s College is a Cambridge Associate Examination Centre, and we welcome private candidates from the Eastern Cape to register to write their Cambridge examinations at St Andrew’s College, in either May/June or October/November of each year.

Private candidates wishing to register to write their Cambridge examinations at St Andrew’s College should follow the link below to the online registration form. Further information, costs, and terms and conditions are included on the registration form.

Online Registration

Deadlines for registration for 2021 examinations are as follows:

October/November 2021: 31 July 2021


We offer the following Cambridge AS/A Level subjects:

English Language                    Afrikaans (IGCSE)        isiZulu (IGCSE)             French

English Literature                   Mathematics                  Biology                            Chemistry

Physics                                       Geography                      History                            Art & Design




  • Pupils take five or six subjects in Grade 11 (AS Level) and carry three or four subjects forward in Grade 12 (A Level).
  • Grade 11 subjects (AS Level) should be selected carefully to fulfil the requirements for South African university exemption.
  • Once pupils have started on the A Level stream, they will not be able to change back to the IEB Matric.
  • All pupils on the A Levels stream are expected to play a full part in the life of the school.

Subject Choices (AS/A Level unless stated)

Group 1 Group 2 Group 3 Group 4
English Language Afrikaans (IGCSE) Mathematics Art & Design
isiZulu (IGCSE) Biology
French Chemistry
English Literature

Grade 11 subject choices are based on requirements for exemption for SA universities:

Grade 11 (AS Level / IGCSE)

  • Pupils take five subjects: one subject from each of Groups 1, 2 and 3, and two subjects from Group 4.
  • Group 4 subjects will be clustered in three options, so some combinations of subjects may not be available.
  • Academically able pupils may be allowed to take a sixth AS Level subject from Group 4, subject to availability.
  • It may be possible to take Biology as an alternative to Mathematics to meet the requirements for Group 3.
  • Foreign students may be exempt from a second language for exemption purposes.

Grade 12 subject choices should be based on requirements for pupils’ overseas or SA universities and courses of choice:

Grade 12 (A Level)

  • Pupils take three A Level subjects (chosen from the AS Level subjects taken in Grade 11).
  • Academically able pupils may be allowed to take a fourth A Level subject.

Note: All subjects are offered subject to sufficient demand. Where there is a maximum number of places available for a particular subject, the top candidates, based on previous academic performance, will be allocated the places in that subject.

Qualifications for Entry

A 70% aggregate in Grade 10 is required for entry to the A Level programme. Consideration will be given to those with an aggregate above 60%, depending on work ethic and subject choices. The requirements for those who arrive having completed a set of IGCSEs will be similar. The transition from Grade 10 or IGCSE to the Cambridge A Levels programme is challenging in terms of more advanced, rigorous and in depth study, and the levels of independent study required.


There will be an additional charge of R16 500 per annum attached to taking the A Levels stream, over and above the normal school fees. Further costs will include examination registration costs and textbooks.

Advantages of taking Cambridge International A Levels

Cambridge International A Levels are internationally recognised as the premier university entrance qualification. Should your child be aiming to study at an overseas university, an A Levels qualification will streamline the process. Pupils intending to study in South Africa will also benefit from the in-depth, rigorous, university-style approach to their work, which will give them a head start to their tertiary education.

Disadvantages of taking Cambridge International A Levels

For pupils intending to study at South African universities, very careful consideration of subject choices is necessary to ensure matriculation exemption and to meet the specific university faculty requirements. The requirements for A Levels students applying to South African universities tend to be more challenging, and the later release of Cambridge results may hinder smooth entry to South African universities.

The step up to Cambridge AS and A Levels from Grade 10 is challenging in terms of the academic demand and the necessity for independent study.

Further Information

For more information about our Cambridge International A Levels stream, please contact Graham Creese (HOD A Levels) at

More information on Cambridge courses and qualifications can be found on the Cambridge International website:

We also recommend the Cambridge International Recognitions Database, which details specific entry requirements for universities around the world for pupils with A Level qualifications:

Please browse the links below for more information.

  • Universities South Africa – requirements for SA Universities

  • Cambridge International AS and A Level Recognition

  • Destination USA / UK / Australia

  • Informed Choices – Russell Group (UK)

  • Video: Why UCT Welcomes Cambridge Students

  • Stellenbosch entry requirements for Cambridge Students

  • Cambridge International Recognition Brochure:

Cambridge International A Level Results 2020

In 2019, St Andrew’s College and the Diocesan School for Girls introduced a Cambridge International A Levels Stream, giving our students the choice of a recognised and respected international alternative to the mainstream National Senior Certificate (NSC) written through the IEB. Successful completion of a Cambridge International A Level qualification provides pupils with access to the top universities throughout the world, including South Africa.

Our first group of 16 St Andrew’s College and DSG students wrote their final A Level examinations in October and November of 2020, and we are thrilled to be able to announce the 2020 Cambridge International A Level results.

The subject pass rate of our students who wrote the 2020 A Level examinations was 100%. 98% of our subject results were A* to C symbols and 94% of our students achieved A* to C symbols across all their subjects. More than three quarters of our subject A Level results were over 80%, including 38% A* symbols (over 90%).

All our candidates who wrote A Level Biology, A Level Chemistry, and A Level English Literature achieved A* or A symbols, while 86% of our results in A Level Mathematics, 75% of our results in A Level History, and 73% of our results in A Level Physics were A* or A symbols.

We warmly congratulate the following pupils who achieved exceptional results in their Cambridge International A Level examinations:


We are delighted to congratulate Michael Velloza on being accepted to read a degree in Politics, Philosophy and Economics at Oxford University this year. Michael achieved three A* symbols and one A symbol in his Cambridge International A Level examinations in November 2020. Our warmest congratulations and best wishes to Michael as he embarks on this exciting academic journey!