Everything You Need to Know about A-Levels for Adults

It is highly unlikely for us to have heard of anyone who is in their adulthood and sitting for the GCE A level examination. This is a highly unconventional pathway and very few consider this as an option. This is for individuals who have completed probably a diploma and are working for a meagre salary that they wish to go for a degree.

GCE A level
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In the adult stage of life, individuals would have already landed a job and would not have much time to dedicate to anything else. But for those who wish to sign themselves up as private candidate for A level, they need to set aside time to spend time to study. It’s even more challenging than it sounds as A-Level syllabus is extremely rigorous.

Source: www.lifehack.org

This means as a private A-level candidate, you would be competing with students who are spending their 2 whole years of junior college life on just studying. On the other hand, as an adult who’s a private candidate, you would have to juggle your work and other life commitments with studying.


This is not meant to demotivate you, but it’s important to be aware of this before diving into this option. A-Level syllabus in Singapore is known to be one of the most difficult examinations for students to crack through. Children who are enrolled in junior college would dedicate their 2 years entirely to studying and most of them do not have anything else to worry about other than studies.

A-Level Syllabus
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However, as an adult, your life situation would be starkly different. You have gone past the education phase of your life and have entered the working world from sometime back. So, it is possible that you would have forgotten how it feels like to sit through 3-hour exams and study for content-heavy subjects.


Students in junior college today are aware of a wide variety of study techniques and they know of various coping mechanisms of stress and exam anxiety as well. Students today use various software such as Anki to create flashcards to learn by spaced repetition technique, they watch video lectures online, they use Zoom to have online discussions with friends to study together. And there is so much more; the list is endless.

Source: host-students.com

But for an adult private candidate, there will be very few others who are on the same boat and it’s challenging to relate to others. Others around you may not understand your sentiments and empathise with your difficulties so it’s difficult to seek advice and ask for help with regards to this.

It is important for you to find articles or videos online that coach you on how to study smart. You can keep in mind that many individuals overseas have gone to medical school in their late 30s and 40s to get a medical degree (which takes 5.5yrs to complete and its extremely taxing and rigorous) and they emerge out of it with success.

study smart
Source: insight.study.csu.edu.au

You may need to brush up on your study techniques and refine your learning techniques but most importantly, you need to have the will power to do all this.


It will be good to seek help through A level tuition services in Singapore as studying all alone and internalising all information by yourself is near impossible (considering how challenging the syllabus already is).

A-Level Tuition
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Right here at ChampionTutor  we have expert A-level tutors who passionate to teach and ensure that their students achieve success in their examinations no matter how challenging it may be. Apart from teaching them the subjects, they would also be a great support and motivation to get through this arduous journey.

The support and encouragement are of utmost importance of adult A-level private candidates especially because it is something that very few individuals would put themselves through. Some you have dived into the path may seem to doubt themselves and want to back out of it. However, A level tuition teachers would push their students and help them achieve excellence beyond expectations.


This would be very similar being in a Junior College as you’ll attend classes with other private A level candidates. There are quite a few options such as A level courses offered by

  • DIMENSIONS International College
  • Spring College International
  • Management Development Institute of Singapore college
  • BMC International College 

And so much more. For more details, you can visit the individual websites for details. However, the drawback to this is that it may be expensive to enrol for these programmes. If you are willing to spend a large sum, you can consider it as an option.


Unfortunately, there is no such option for A-Level courses. In fact, it A-Level subjects are not meant to be learnt online as there is so much of depth to it. Learning in person with the guidance of a teacher is the best way to do this. You can consider online tuition options if you think that may help you out in your studies.


Singapore tuition
Source: www.seab.gov.sg

The amount of examination fees payable will be based on your citizenship at the point of registration. The examination fee for each subject includes both the basic fee and subject fee, which may differ between subjects.

A Goods and Services Tax (GST) of 7% applies to both basic and subject fees. The examination fees is also not transferable from one examination year to another, or from one candidate to another.


It is compulsory for you to sit for all registered components of a subject, such as,

  • Oral
  • Listening Comprehension
  • Coursework
  • Practical
  • Written Papers

‘Absent’ will be issued for the subject if you do not sit for one or more components. This will not be the situation unless you have been granted prior exemption by SEAB (Singapore Examination and Assessment Board).


Access Arrangements (AA) are examination arrangements granted to candidates with specific learning and physical needs. This is to allow them to sit for national examinations without compromising the assessment objectives. If you require AA to sit for the examination due to specific learning and physical needs, this needs to be diagnosed before the examination.

There are a few sections that need to completed in order to get this:

  • SECTION A: All particulars need to be filled in.
  • SECTION B: Indicate your medical conditions if any.
  • SECTION C: Select the requested AA if needed.
  • SECTION D: Indicate the details of all the subjects and papers. The paper number should be indicated in the appropriate column.
  • SECTION E: Declaration


Although there are very few people in the same situation as you in Singapore, it does not mean that you are all alone. You have the ability to work hard and achieve your goals as long as you focus and set your heart in what you do.

Source: www.inc.com

Some people around you might not be supportive of taking A-Level examination as a private candidate as you may have to sacrifice your time on other commitments and there is a certain amount of cost that you would incur in enrolling for classes, tuition and for examination. The money does not come free, so obviously you will need to work to earn that or you need someone who can support you financially to ease your burden.

IN CONCLUSION, though you may be motivated to sit for national examination, you need to remind yourself of how challenging it could be. When you are mentally prepared for what you can expect, you will take things more lightly and you will have an easier time dealing with the stress and anxiety that comes along with this.