The 2017 Survey of University Admissions Officers, an initiative of the ACS International Schools (ACS) and IB Schools and Colleges Association (IBSCA) concludes that Diploma Programme (DP) students are better equipped to thrive at university than A-level students.
For the survey, 81 university admissions officers at various universities across the UK and 20 from the US were interviewed between 8 March and 21 April 2017. Almost half say UK students aren’t ready to excel at university and have poor social skills.
Thinking and working independently, good time management and social skills are general academic skills university admissions officers look for in applicants. An inquiring mind and the ability to persevere and complete tasks are also rated as ‘important’ or ‘very important’ qualities.
The DP scores best—and significantly outperforms A-levels— for ‘encouraging independent inquiry’, ‘developing self-management skills’ and ‘nurturing an open mind’. A-levels are rated better for ‘developing in-depth subject expertise’.
“The world no longer rewards people for what they know—Google knows everything—but for what they can do with what they know. Global education today needs to be much more about ways of thinking, involving creativity, critical thinking, problem solving and decision-making; about ways of working, including communication and collaboration”, says Andreas Schleicher, Director for Education and Skills at the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development.
Read the full report here.