In relation to both the Cambridge (CIE) and the Edexcel IGCSE specification; the specifications change slightly most years but the fundamental outline of the knowledge required to take the examinations stays the same. If there are any major changes we will send out amendments with the course. In this way the course and set books can be used for any year, even if the student sets out at one pace and decides part way through that they will take the exam sooner, or indeed, later.

Our tutors are all experienced home educators who have created these courses in response to the needs of home-educating parents and students but they are equally suited to any private candidate who wishes to study IGCSEs.

Students can start at any time and work at their own pace towards
taking the exams which are in May / June and for Cambridge (CIE) Oct / Nov each year and January for Edexcel.

Cambridge (CIE) exam board details: With the Cambridge (CIE) board it is possible to take the exam at two levels : core and extended.

The highest mark possible at core is a C and at extended level an A*.

There are three papers regardless of the level taken.

  • Paper 1, a multiple choice paper and
  • Paper 6, an alternative to practical paper are taken at both levels.
  • Paper 3 OR paper 2, a short answer paper, is taken at either extended or core respectively. 

The candidate is required to register with an exam centre as a private candidate to take the exam.

For the May / June sitting registration is usually by the middle of February the same year, and for the Oct / Nov sitting it is usually by August the same year ( due to school / centre closures over the Summer break this can actually be necessary by the end of June )

Edexcel exam board details: Edexcel – Exams are in the Summer – May / June and Winter – January
You do not have to decide before the exam which level to take. (All grades available on the same paper – the questions get harder through the paper and are marked accordingly.)
There are two papers.
The Edexcel site has an interactive map on which you can find a centre near to you which takes private candidates’
For the May / June sitting registration is usually by the middle of February the same year, and for the January sitting it is usually by October the previous year. 

Exam Centres

Only some exam centres will accept private candidates. You will need to contact them directly to find our more and to register for the exams. We are compiling a more comprehensive list of exam centres, it’s still a work in progress but you can find it here

For more general ‘exams‘ information, there is plenty of help available in the HE Exams Yahoo Group

Th e HE Exams wiki is a great place to start investigating things:

For information on exam centres in Oxfordshire there is a Facebook Group run by Dorothy Murphy called Oxfordshire-HE Exams.

ECHO Discount – One exam centre used by some of our students this year, based very centrally in the UK, is run by  ‘Tutors and Exams’  in Coventry and if you mention this website they will give you a 10% discount on their published prices.


Here’s some more information from them:

Tutors & Exams are delighted to be working with Echo Education and their learners and offer a discount structure on their exam bookings.

Tutors & Exams is here to provide learners who wouldn’t normally have direct access to exams and associated services such as home educated, self-learners, excluded learners and private candidates a safe, calm and welcoming environment. With a supportive and caring eye, you can be assured of the best level of care and service throughout the whole process. Services include testing and accommodating Access Arrangements, Controlled Assessment, Coursework Marking, Speaking Tests for Foreign Languages, ICT Practicals, Functional Skills Testing, Science Practicals and a whole lot more. We are approved for Cambridge iA-Levels, iGCSEs, O-Levels and Pre-U. Edexcel iGCSEs. AQA, Edexcel, OCR, WJEC A-Levels and GCSEs and much more.

We are based at Central Hall, Warwick Lane, Coventry, CV1 2HA. This is a 5 – 10 minute walk from Coventry train station and Pool Meadow bus station and is less than 5 minute walk from the city centre and city car parks.

There are comfortable facilities and a coffee shop within Central Hall for parents/chaperones to sit and relax whilst the learner sits their exams. You could even have a breakfast before your exam or relax in the quiet rooms available.

All of the team are professionally trained and enhanced DBS (formally CRB) checked. We care passionately about the safety and wellbeing of all of our clients irrespective of ability, age, gender orientation, race or religious beliefs.

We offer GCSE, A-Levels, iA-Levels, iGCSE and Functional Skills to adults as well as younger learners. All enquiries will be dealt with integrity and professionalism.