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Zimsec Vs Cambridge: Which is better?

ZIMSEC (Zimbabwe School Examinations Council) and Cambridge Assessment International Education are both examination boards that offer qualifications for students in Zimbabwe and other countries around the world. While both boards aim to provide high-quality education and assessment, there are some differences between them.

Also Read: Zimsec November 2023 ‘O’ Level Results available online for five days only

More about ZIMSEC

ZIMSEC is an autonomous parastatal under the Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education. It is an internationally accredited examination board. Its syllabuses were evaluated by the National Academic Recognition and Information Centre (NARIC) in the UK and found to be equivalent to the General Certificate of Education Standard offered in the United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand, United States of America and other English-speaking countries, hence the internationally recognized qualifications conferred by the Council.

Are ZIMSEC Certificates/ Qualifications recognized internationally?

ZIMSEC certificates are recognized and accepted in Africa and abroad. Colleges and Tertiary institutions around the world accept ZIMSEC certificates and qualifications when considering student applications for further education. Government and corporate organisations across the globe also recognize with much esteem ZIMSEC qualifications, when considering job applications within their organisations. A few examples (not limited to) of countries that accept ZIMSEC certificates are South Africa, Botswana and all SADC countries, Namibia, Kenya, Malaysia, Cyprus, Canada, Australia, The United Kingdom, Germany, Sweden, Dubai, and China.

Comparisons of Zimsec vs Cambridge curriculum

One major difference is the syllabus and curriculum. ZIMSEC is primarily focused on the Zimbabwean curriculum, while Cambridge offers a wider range of syllabuses that are recognized internationally. Cambridge qualifications are widely accepted by universities and employers around the world, while ZIMSEC qualifications may have more limited recognition.

Furthermore, Cambridge offers a range of qualifications including IGCSE, AS-level, and A-level qualifications, while ZIMSEC mainly offers O-level and A-level qualifications.

Ultimately, the choice between ZIMSEC and Cambridge will depend on individual preferences and circumstances. Students who are looking to study abroad or work internationally may prefer to take Cambridge qualifications, while those who plan to stay in Zimbabwe may opt for ZIMSEC qualifications. It’s important to do research and consult with educators and advisors to make an informed decision.


ZIMSEC aims to offer an excellent, value-driven, educational assessment and responsive awarding system. Through maximum capacity utilization, the Council is gearing itself to continually exceed expectations. ZIMSEC carries out quality assessments to guarantee the quality of manpower for national development. It identifies potential talents, competencies and skills for future leaders of industry, commerce and government, and feeds institutions of higher learning and the employment sector. ZIMSEC sets standards for levels of academic expertise of Zimbabwean nationals for use locally and internationally.


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