Is there any point in doing a couple of CIE subjects alongside NCEA?


My school offers NCEA and we have to do this as our main secondary school qualification, but they also let us do CIE Mathematics alongside this if we want. Since I’m not going to be using CIE for university entrance is there any point in me even doing this additional Maths exam?


Certainly! CIE Mathematics tends to go a bit deeper than NCEA in many respects. For example, in NCEA you learn about integration, and then in CIE you learn a few more techniques for integration that NCEA doesn’t touch upon. Furthermore, in CIE you also get a bit of exposure to other important concepts in Maths, such as matrices and vectors.

Now if you’re interested in Maths at all, doing CIE alongside NCEA is definitely a great idea. It gives you more exposure to Maths and this will ultimately help you if you decide to do Scholarship Calculus. Additionally, if you have to take a first year Maths paper at university (which is a pre-requisite for a lot of non-Science majors such as Finance and Economics), then you will be much better prepared having done both CIE and NCEA.

Having said that, you want to make sure that by doing CIE Mathematics you’re not going to be jeopardising your chances of doing well in NCEA. After all, this would be your priority since your NCEA results are being used for university entrance.