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Peterhouse Boys

Curriculum CIE A Level Prospectus


This document has been produced to help parents and pupils know exactly what is involved in choosing subjects at A level. The specific subject information, written by Academic Heads of Department, includes the course content, previous pass rates and the qualifications needed for entry into the subject concerned together with suggested/suitable combinations of subjects.

The selection of A level subjects is of critical importance and can have a long lasting influence on university applications and career choices.

To parents I would like to say the following:
• please take time to discuss the implications of the choices made with your son/daughter; and
• the selection of A level subjects should be heavily influenced by the ability/aptitude of your son/daughter and not by the aspirations you may have for him/her – you must guard against pushing you son/daughter in a direction which you rather than he/she wants!

To pupils I would like to add:
• do as much research as you can into the various options and make sure that you understand the consequences of the choices you make;
• do not be influenced by the choices which your friends are making – it is important that you make choices for your own benefit; and
• above all else choose subjects which interest/stimulate you.

A level choices need to be made by half term, but it is possible to make changes to these choices following the publishing of IGCSE results.

When the IGCSE exam results come, we weight them by giving them the following values:

A* 6 points
A 5 points
B 4 points
C 3 points
D 2 point
E 1 point

To qualify to take 3 A levels, a pupil should ideally:
• pass at least 6 subjects at IGCSE level including English Language;
• obtain at least 23 points in the best 6 passes; and
• have a viable A level package.

It is possible for pupils who do not qualify to take 3 subjects at A level to take 2 subjects
at A levels and one subject at AS.

In addition to taking 3 A level subjects, in order to broaden the academic curriculum at 5th
form level, all pupils in the 5th Form will take a course in English Language, Global Perspectives or French Language, all of which are examined at AS level at the end of the 5th form year.

Mr Jon Trafford



You should choose a career based on the subjects you enjoy studying. There are many years of study to come - you should enjoy them!!

Try to narrow down the field of choice to ‘Arts’, Sciences’, ‘Business (Commerce)’, “Engineering’ etc.
Choosing a ‘specialty’ field over a ‘common’ field will give you more job opportunities. For instance, Accounting is ‘common’. Forensic Accounting is ‘specialised’.

South African University requirements are very specific and need to be adhered to for successful admission. For instance:
1. National Benchmark Tests (NBTs) are required if you are pursuing Bachelor degree studies at a South African university.
Please double check the website of your choice SA university(s) if your degree requires the NBT Maths
2. If you are pursuing a Diploma or a Higher Certificate, the NBT is not needed.
3. AS level First Language English is required for entry at many SA universities (please check the website of the SA university that you are wanting to apply to see if they require this).
4. A level Maths is required for most all degrees except for Humanities degrees : Literature, Languages, Art, Music, Philosophy and Religion

Be aware of specific requirements in particular fields of study:

5. A level courses for the Medical field varies per country. Some require Biology as compulsory and the UK (for instance) feels Chemistry is the compulsory subject. The other two programs that are secondary would be Math and Physics
6. Engineering requires Mathematics and Physics and one science subject (Chem or Bio)
7. Agriculture prefers Biology and Chemistry
8. B Comms require some level of post IGCSE mathematics
9. BA / B Soc Sci / Humanities degrees have very few restrictions.
10. Architecture often requires Physics as Architecture is widely considered an ‘Engineering’ program

If in doubt, please visit the Careers Dept on the 1st floor of the Megahey Centre.
Be involved in your future career choice - don’t follow the crowd.

Only you can truly choose what you want to do with the rest of your life so choose something you are passionate about –or– choose a career where you are helping people << this will, in turn, give you a sense of fulfilment and ultimately, a passion in life.

Jenny Kirkman
Careers Officer

V and VI form Subjects 
One subject from three of columns 1-4, plus life skills.
V Form also select one subject from column 5 (with 30+ IGCSE points)

AS Level (5th Form)
1. The Accounting System: A Recording Financial Information; B Accounting Principles; C Control Statements
2. Financial Accounting: D Preparation of Financial Statements; E Capital (Equity)
3. Financial Reporting and Interpretation: H Interpretation and Analysis; I Company Financing
4. Elements of Managerial Accounting: J Costing Principles and Systems; K Budgeting

A Level (6th Form)
1. All may be examined at A Level
2. Financial Accounting: D Preparation of Financial Statements; E Capital (Equity); F Business Purchase; G Published Company Accounts
3. Financial Reporting and Interpretation: H Interpretation and Analysis; I Company Financing
4. Elements of Managerial Accounting: J Costing Principles and Systems; K Budgeting; L Standard Costing; M Investment Appraisal
In addition to the general ‘A’ Level requirements, a C grade or better passes should be obtained in English and Mathematics. Preference may be given to pupils who study Business Studies at ‘A’ Level and who may have passed IGCSE Accounts already. Considerable mathematical ability will be needed. Although the syllabus assumes no prior knowledge of Accounts, pupils who tackle Accounts must be numerate, logical, consistent hard workers and accurate. If you dislike working with figures then this is not the course for you.

These are the same as for Business Studies but with greater emphasis on the Accounting function. This course is invaluable for any progression to a commercial degree and professional accountancy firms express great interest in students with good passes here.
Any business needs owners and bookkeepers! Job opportunities for accountants after training and qualifying are numerous. Knowledge of accounting is useful if you hope to be a successful business man.

The overall pass rate has quite high in recent years with 100% in the year 2018. We intend to maintain this performance.

P Chirombe
Head of Department: Accounting

Art and Design is a mode of expression and communication. It is concerned with visual perception and aesthetic experience and forms a language in addition to those used by literary, mathematical, scientific and factually based subjects.

A-level Art and Design involves a considerable amount of Coursework. At present the area of study which we undertake is Painting and Related Media. Drawing and Painting feature prominently, covering a wide spectrum of media and techniques. Printmaking, basic design, and sculpture are also introduced into the course. Photography has also become very popular at this level.

Pupils are encouraged to make well-founded assessments of their own and other artworks. Direct contact with art and Artists in Zimbabwe is of particular importance, resulting in meaningful visits to local galleries, artists' studios and workshops.

The AS assessment is made on both the Coursework and a Controlled Test (timed exam). In Sixth Form there is no Controlled Test but two areas of study have to be undertaken, Practical coursework and Personal Studies, where individual in-depth investigations are made of the work of influential artists and craftsmen in Zimbabwe.

The preferred requirement for A Level is a B grade pass at IGCSE.

We hope to make the course an enjoyable and discovering experience for anyone who joins us.

Godfrey Masanga
( HOD Art and Design )

Biology has remained the most popular pure science studied at ‘A’ Level in the school. The department boasts of splendid state of the art laboratories.

The syllabus builds upon the concepts covered at IGCSE, although in more detail and with greater emphasis on application than memory. Practical work assumes greater significance now, with an additional Planning, Analysis and Evaluation paper, in addition to the traditional Practical paper. The syllabus is divided into two sections, the Advanced Subsidiary ‘AS’ and the Advanced level A2. In Fifth Form, pupils complete the AS syllabus and sit for AS exams. In the Sixth Form year pupils study the A2 Syllabus and sit for A2 exams.

In addition to the general ‘A’ Level requirements, ideally, “A” grade passes should be obtained in Biology, Chemistry and Mathematics at IGCSE. Certainly a candidate with no background in chemistry will struggle with this subject. Those who opt to study the subject together with Chemistry and Maths will be better prepared to pursue Life Sciences at tertiary level.

Successful completion of the course assists pupils in embarking on careers in Agriculture, Conservation, Dentistry, Food Science, Horticulture, Medicine, Microbiology, Pharmacy, and Radiography.

Results have fluctuated with the wide range of abilities of pupils attempting this subject in recent years. The pass rate has ranged from 90% to 100%.

P Fantiso
Head of Department : Biology

AS Level (5th Form)
1. Business and its environment: Enterprise; Business Structure; Size of business; Business objectives; Stakeholders in a business
2. People in organisations: Management and leadership; Motivation; Human resource management
3. Marketing: What is Marketing? Market research; The marketing mix
4. Operations and project management: The nature of operations; Operations planning; Inventory management
5. Finance and accounting: The need for business finance; Sources of finance; Forecasting cash flows and managing working capital; Costs; Accounting fundamentals
6. Strategic management: No topics at AS level

A Level (A2) 6th Form
1. Business and its environment: Business structure; Size of business; External influences on business activity
2. People in organisations: Human resource management' Organisation structure; Business Communication
3. Marketing: Marketing planning; Globalisation and international marketing
4. Operations and project management: Operations planning; Capacity utilisation; Lean production and quality management; Project management
5. Finance and accounting: Costs; Budgets; Contents of published accounts; Analysis of published accounts; Investment appraisal
6. Strategic management: What is strategic management? Strategic analysis; Strategic choice; Strategic implementation
In addition to general ‘A’ Level requirements, B grade or better passes are preferred in English and Mathematics. A pass in Business Studies at IGCSE is useful background.

Along with Business Studies it can be an advantage to study Mathematics and Accounting.
However, it goes well with any A Level subject.

Material taught in this course is a useful grounding for various B. Comm degrees, where post IGCSE Mathematics is also invariably required. Although not a prerequisite, pupils may start these type of degrees with an advantage having studied Business Studies. Professional commercial diplomas (such as CIS, CIMA and ACCA) include much of the material studied broadly in Business Studies.

Pupils with a pass in this subject make useful management trainees and will have a good basic knowledge from which they can build their own businesses in entrepreneurial fashion.

Results have steadily improved in recent years with the overall percentage pass rate of 100% in 2018.

P Chirombe
Head of Department: Business Studies

Chemistry at A level is challenging but also very exciting for those who have a genuine interest in science. The course is designed to set a sound platform for the study of Pure Chemistry and related subjects at University. Chemistry is a requirement for those wishing to study Medicine, Physiotherapy, Pharmacy, Dietetics, Chemical engineering, Veterinary Science and many other areas.

At Peterhouse we are following the Cambridge syllabus, which is divided into two parts AS Level (which is examined in the fifth form) and the A2 level (examined in Sixth Form).

CIE has made changes to both AS and A2 syllabus for exams to be taken from 2019 onwards. More topics have been incorporated into the AS syllabus while some A2 topics have been replaced by new ones. This makes the subject more interesting and prepares the pupils better for the real world. We have welcomed these changes and believe that they are a step in the right direction for the development of the subject.

Pupils may enrol for A level Chemistry with an “A” grade in IGCSE Chemistry and Mathematics. Pupils with B grades in either or both subjects will be considered if there are available places, and if their IGCSE class teacher approves.

Chemistry being a pure science is best combined with other pure sciences especially Physics, Biology and Mathematics.

There is much new material to be learnt in ‘A’ Level Chemistry and hence no one can hope to do well without some hard work. We recommend an hour of study per day outside lesson time each weekday as a general guideline for those aiming for top grades. We aim and usually manage to finish both the AS and A2 syllabuses the syllabus by the first FFW of the Michaelmas Term of Vth and VIth Form years respectively.

A Chakumhara
Head of Department : Chemistry

The number of pupils taking the subject averages around twenty five per year and is shared between two teachers. This enables the staff to give individual guidance to pupils taking the subject. The course of study in the first year culminates in AS qualification to successful candidates. This will be extended to A Level qualification in their second year. Design and Technology is a complementary subject to Mathematics, Physics, Geography, Art and Design at both A/S and A Levels.

Pupils who opt for this subject should be able to develop and sustain their own innovation, creativity, entrepreneurial skills, critical analysis and appreciation of responsible design. Holders of IGCSE Design and Technology, and those pupils with a sound background in Art, Mathematics and Science will certainly enjoy a distinct advantage. It is essential that the pupils who choose to do the subject develop the ability to communicate clearly through drawing.

During the first year, pupils will be expected to cover the core content that includes exposure to modern technologies and the use of computers in industry. Pupils will also use Computer Aided Design programmes to generate drawings, and spend time in the workshops acquiring experience and skills in working with a variety of resistant materials. This will prepare pupils for one written examination paper and a coursework project which culminates in the production of a model in order to get an AS qualification.

In the second year, pupils will specialise in either Graphic Products or Product Design in preparation for A Level examinations. They will also undertake a school based coursework project in an area of interest that should coincide with their chosen specialisation.

The subject meets the needs of pupils ranging from those who are perhaps not yet sure about their specialist areas and those who wish to study any of the following programs; Interior Design, Graphic Design, Architecture, Product Design and Industrial Design. It will also be useful in any of the Engineering fields. The course offers much opportunity to experience and understanding industrial practices as it explores critical evaluation skills relevant to technical, environmental and social issues. Another advantage is that some pupils may use their Design Portfolios to help in gaining admission into Design courses at Colleges and Universities.

T. Mhete
Head of Design and Technology

The Department has a team of qualified and experienced teachers for the subject, and there are excellent resources in terms of textbooks. The school library houses DVDs, videos and reference books on a number of topics, and the department itself has build-up a similar resource base.

The course encourages an academic approach to the study of religion, and is divided into two main sections, firstly the Prophets of the Old Testament (pre-canonical and pre-exilic prophets), and secondly, the four gospels. The course also expects the pupils to apply knowledge to real life situations in the world today. Pupils will write the AS examination at the end of V Form, before proceeding to A-Level the following year.

Pupils should have obtained B grade IGCSE passes in both Religious Studies and English Language. We recommend that Divinity is studied with other humanities subjects such as History or Geography, and also English Literature.

Divinity can be used as one of the required A-Levels for entry into further study in most disciplines, but perhaps more specifically in Teaching, Business, Law and Politics.

The pass rate for 2018 was 100% both at AS and A-Level.

In Divinity the pupil is expected to develop skills in critical interpretation, evaluation and analysis. There is also a lot of reading, writing and debating in the subject. It is not necessary for a pupil to have or practice a religious faith, but must have an open and literal approach to matters of religious sensibilities.

LT Makwindi
Head of Department: Divinity

In A Level Literature classes, Language is not formally studied but good style and clear expression are needed and Language errors are corrected in essay work. We study eight texts, ranging from Shakespeare up to the twentieth century writers like Wole Soyinka and Tennessee Williams.
Candidates write four papers, two (papers 3 & 4) at AS level in V Form and two (papers 5 & 6) in VI form at A2 level. The choice of texts covers all three literary genres: drama, poetry and prose. Texts range from reasonably easy to difficult ones.

The English Department accepts most candidates who wish to study A-Level Literature in English. A pass in Language is essential, and literature must have been studied to an acceptable level. If you do not enjoy reading or if you find writing difficult, do not attempt this course.

Almost anything. English will help you with most other subjects where copious notes are needed – one’s expression improves and insight and perception are developed.

With one or two other subjects it gains one entry into University. It is useful in any general Bachelor of Arts course and is crucial for Law and very helpful in Accounts or Business Studies; other fields are Publishing Assistant, Editorial Assistant, Copywriter, Social Media Manager, Copy Editor and Teacher/ Lecturer.

Results have been very good over many years at Peterhouse with 100% pass rate most years. However, only pupils who go the extra mile in their studies achieve A and A* grades. Their expression must be flawless and their depth of analysis of texts should be outstanding. In 2018, one of our AS candidates, Ian Fowlds, was named The Best AS Literature Candidate in Zimbabwe.

If you are thinking of choosing Literature in English, you should enjoy reading, writing and participating in class discussion. There is nothing worse than a candidate who never says a word. It is an exciting course with some lovely books and will instil a love of Literature which should give you pleasure all your life.

Tonderai Michael Nzanga
Head of Department : English

Fifth Form pupils can choose to study AS Language as a fourth subject, and in recent years and they have performed very well in their examinations. The AS Language syllabus has a Paper 1: “Passages” which gives pupils the opportunity to explore the effects of language in context. They comment on aspects such as vocabulary, figures of speech, syntax, formality and informality of language and other linguistic features. The second type of question in this paper has a directed writing task. Pupils learn to copy the style of a given passage of any genre: article, report, narrative text, leaflet, and etcetera. Paper 2 tests pupils’ ability to write for different audiences in different styles.
A Level English Language is studied by very few pupils who have a love for the subject and who are ardent readers. Paper 3: “Text Analysis” is similar to the AS Paper 1, but it has a comparative aspect of texts of different genres. The Paper 4: “Language Topics” is a good introduction to the study of Linguistics at university. Topics like: Spoken Language and Social Groups, English As A Global Language, Kachru’s Three Circles, main stages of early linguistic development in children and other interesting linguistic concepts are taught. At A Level, the subject really gives pupils the opportunity to explore how language catalyses the development of human beings in the global village.
How do you qualify?
You have to love reading material written in different genres; you must be someone who reads everyday: newspapers, magazines, novels, poetry, drama and any other works of art.
To study AS language
You must have passed your IGCSE English Language with at least a C grade or better. A Literature in English pass is an added advantage; this is because all exercises that pupils do at this level involve the use of language in a literary context.

To study A level language
An AS Level pass with at least a C grade or better is a requirement. You must be someone who is willing to do most of the work; the lessons are pupil centred. There is lots of research involved.

We have had encouraging results at both AS and A Levels in English Language. At AS Level, the average pass rate has been above 85% for many years; in 2018, it was 91%. At A Level, it has been 100%; in 2018, Michelle Mwenje was honoured by the University of Cambridge for being The Best A Level English Language Candidate in Zimbabwe.
Tonderai Michael Nzanga: HOD English Department

multilingualism allows for more career prospects. French gives you access to the Francophone world. French speaking students can look forward to working in the following sectors and organizations:-
- Travel and Tourism,
- The United Nations,
- The banking sector,
- IMF,
- EU,
- AU,
- ADB,
- Diplomatic service
- International relations
- Lectureship
- Teaching
- journalism
- Medecins Sans Frontieres.
- The international Red Cross
- Fashion
- The Olympic Games
- Gastronomy

French is compatible with almost every other subject. Over 20 000 English words have their origins In the French language. In Food science some culinary terms are French words. The greatest Art works are by French painters. In English literature the most prolific writers and novelists are French. The French revolution is an important event in European history. Any pupil whether they are “Arts” inclined, “Science” inclined or even leaning towards commercials will have French as an added advantage no matter what career path they chose to follow. French can be partnered with English, History, Travel and Tourism, Business studies and Art.

AS French Language is offered over a period of one year (8 periods per week), as a fourth subject. This will enable you to excel at your career of choice because you will have the added advantage of speaking a foreign language. In addition to this, the DEFL and DALF (French Language Diplomas) will be offered over.

A2 French may be offered to students who are Francophone and to those who manage to attain a B pass or better at AS level.

More than 200 million people speak French on the 5 continents. French is the only language other than English that is taught in every country. Speaking French also opens up study opportunities at renowned French Universities and Business schools.

S. Gombedza
Head of Department: French


The department has three classes per year at AS and A level. These classes are not necessarily concurrent and pupils may opt for the subject in different combinations. Our basic textbook is good but inadequate on its own, and independent research is encouraged. The Internet should be widely used for this purpose.


The ‘A’ level Geography is very contemporary. It occupies a pivotal position in the understanding and interpretation of social, economic, political and environmental conditions and change, from micro, to local, to national, to regional, to international scale, with a good historical perspective. It stresses the complex and varied interactions between man and his environment, and the management of this impact to achieve sustainable development.

Candidates follow the AS syllabus in Fifth Form which consists of core topics in both Physical and Human Geography and their interrelationship. The AS examination is written at the end of Vth Form. The ‘A2’ syllabus is advanced topics of a similar nature studied in Sixth Form, and our candidates write this component at the end of VIth Form.


An A or a B grade at IGCSE is preferred and pupils should have a pass in Mathematics and a B grade or better in English Language.


As a subject on its own, Geography does not lead directly to career options, unless one considers the academic field. However, the real benefit of the subject is its opening to a variety of careers in the natural and human sciences. Past pupils have found it useful in their careers in environmental
management, ecology, geology, rural and urban planning, horticulture, tourism, and of course, teaching. All in all it is a useful and flexible subject.


Results have generally been good, despite the subject, sometimes being chosen by academically weaker pupils. Having said that, high grades are possible even for a candidate starting the subject with only a “C” grade at IGCSE, but obviously this is harder work!


It must be appreciated that the subject matter covered is very wide, and it is expected that the pupil applies him or herself in independent study.
Thought and analysis comes from the pupil through additional reading, use of I.T. and videos and through discussion. It is not teacher-centred but pupil-centred. It is also expected that pupils participate fully in various field trips which are organized from time to time. It is by no means an “easy option”!

C R Tswatswa
Head of Department: Geography

Currently there are four experienced and dedicated teachers taking the two AS and two A2 classes.

The new syllabus commenced in 2014 and pupils no longer sit for three hour exams.
Pupils sit two papers on European History Syllabus (9389) of 1 hour and 1 hour 30 minutes duration at AS Level. The two Options are, Component 1: The Search for International Peace and Security, 1919-1945 and Component 2: Modern Europe, 1789-1917. At Advanced Level the pupils do two papers which are Component 3: The Origins and Development of The Cold War, 1941-1950 and Component 4: Europe of the Dictators. The pupils write 2 Papers of an hour and 1 hour 30 minutes respectively.

In addition to the general ‘A’ level requirements, B grade or better passes are required in both History and English Language at IGCSE level.

Along with History it is useful to study English and any other ‘Arts’ or ‘Business’ subject. A useful third choice for pupils is Geography or Divinity. Lately, pupils are choosing Mathematics alongside the History, and this has been used to determine the two sets.

The course is beneficial to pupils wishing to take tertiary literal courses such as Education, Law, Business and Administration among many others.

We acheived a 100% pass rate in 2017, with 3 pupils gaining A* grades. We also achieved a 100% pass rate in 2018 at Advanced Level, with 1 A*, 4 As, 6 Bs and 6 Cs.

This is a course for students who enjoy History. The experience of key figures in history makes interesting studying and often offers lessons in modern life. This course does however demand serious commitment with at least one essay per week being written and considerable reading being essential.

F Mukucha
Head of Department : History

Computer Science

The department has excellent computer facilities which allow pupils to effectively use Information Technology for learning. Pupils are required to write the AS Computer Science examination at the end of Vth form and AS/A2 examinations in VIth form. Pupils who fail the AS examination are required to rewrite the examination in May/June of their VIth form year and if they fail again will not be allowed to write A2 examinations. The department has ninety computers in four networked IT rooms with broadband internet access. Pupils have access to Wi-Fi in boarding houses and around the school.

Computer Science is a discipline which requires thinking both in abstract and in concrete terms. On a higher level, computer science is concerned with problem solving: modelling and analysing problems, designing solutions, and implementing them. Problem solving requires precision, creativity, and careful reasoning.
In AS and A level Computer Science, students learn the principles of computation and algorithms, computer programming, machine data representation, computer systems (hardware and software), computer organisation and architecture, communications and networking, databases and the consequences of using computing.
Computer Science equips pupils with the Computing/IT skills needed in Computer Science/IT-related careers and other professional fields. The syllabus encourages pupils to become effective and discerning users of ICT. It helps them to develop a broad range of ICT skills, knowledge and understanding.

An A or a B grade is required in IGCSE Computer Science or an A grade in IGCSE ICT. At least a B grade in Mathematics is vital, and passes in any science or commercial subjects are also desirable.
Pupils with a good grade in Mathematics and the ICDL Base will be considered. A general requirement is a passion for IT.

IT will provide a good foundation for further studies in Computer Science/Information Systems, Business, Engineering and other courses.

Please note that some Universities require A Level Mathematics for admission to study Computer Science. Pupils are therefore advised to study A Level Mathematics if they plan to study Computer Science or Information Systems at University.
Having a laptop at school, with a reasonably fast processor and large memory will be a distinct advantage.

R Ziko Head of Department: (IT Academic)

Peterhouse offers a course to our Vth Form pupils which carries on into the VIth form year for those who plan to be involved in hunting, guiding, tourism or conservation in Zimbabwe. The course occupies the same amount of time as do the A level subjects. The syllabus covers all the topics required for the National Parks Learner hunter/guides licence. It would suit a pupil who has a love of the bush, wildlife or an interest in Conservation and may be done in conjunction with Travel and Tourism.

There is a lot of practical work – we have a practical session every week and through the year have several bush trips with Professional Hunters and Guides. Pupils will learn skills such as making biltong, camp cooking and mechanics as well as gain a good knowledge of the animals, birds vegetation and habitats of Zimbabwe. We visit a number of wildlife and conservation areas, and spend a lot of time in Gosho Park and Calderwood Park.
We also have practical outings visiting a local farm and Cleveland for firearms, safety and target practice. The pupils are required to do a First Aid course before they can register for their exams. (Some of the above will incur extra cost not included in school fees).

Exams are set by National Parks, and consist of 4 papers – Habits and Habitats, Firearms, Law and a General Paper. The standard is high – the work is not too difficult but there is a large amount of information to cover - pupils will need to put in a considerable amount of hard work to complement their practical knowledge. We also offer the syllabus for the learner Canoe guiding paper which is set by National Parks.

Once these exams have been passed, pupils can apply for a Learner Professional Hunter/guides licence and then work an apprenticeship with a Professional Hunter or Guide to gain the experience needed for the final Proficiency test with National Parks. Obviously a pupil who has studied for these exams would be in a very good position to apply for an apprenticeship, have a good background knowledge of the bush and have a good idea of what is involved in the industry. Should a pupil wish to go on to university, 2 relevant A level subjects must be passed to gain university entrance. One of our past pupils has started a course in Game Management at university in South Africa leading to a Diploma. This can be converted to a degree in Game Management with one more year of study.
Anyone wanting to go into Ecology or research or work in Conservation in Zimbabwe would benefit from the background this course gives and the LHG course ties in well with Travel and Tourism, Geography and Biology.

Penny Raynor
(Conservation Officer, Peterhouse group)

While it is true that Mathematics is required for many disciplines these days, it is not true that all students are capable of the insight and algebraic manipulation which are required at this level.

The basic requirement to begin an ‘A’ level course is a grade A at IGCSE. Lesser qualifications (i.e. grade B) may be considered but it has been found that those who were not capable of an A grade at IGCSE find the course increasingly difficult as time goes on and achieve at best a pass with a low grade.

In some cases pupils who opt for Mathematics at A Level are found to be struggling, and are offered the ‘AS’ syllabus over two years. This route is also a good option for those who need Maths purely to meet entry qualifications for tertiary education. All enrolled for the full A level course will write the AS at the end of V Form. Those failing at that stage will not continue to the full A level, but will instead join the final year of the 2-year AS route.

The syllabus that we follow contains four papers – Pure 1, Pure 3, Mechanics 1 and Statistics 1. This gives a good spread of modern elementary mathematics and a good introduction to university mathematics. The AS portion is Pure 1 and Statistics 1.

Regardless of the grade obtained at AS level, pupils will write all four papers in their final sitting as better grades are normally obtained by this route.

L Kunatsa
Head of Department : Mathematics



Our department currently has two Physical Education teachers, who both read for a degree closely related to Physical Education as a subject. The two members of staff also teach in other departments; Biology and Geography. In regards to the facilities within the classroom environment, the Physical Education department has two rooms. Both members of the department are knowledgeable and enthusiastic about academics and sport; and are involved in sports at a high level.


Our department is continually looking to make effective use of the technology available and as such attempt to use media where appropriate to enhance the learning environment.

Currently, staff will begin with, and see through a class from the start to the end of their A level syllabus. The continuity hopefully brings with it the best possible results for all pupils, who have the time to develop a good working relationship with their teacher.


In addition to general V Form entry requirements, a pass in IGCSE Biology is required. IGCSE Physical Education is not a prerequisite, and indeed we currently have pupils in V Form doing well without IGCSE, but it proves advantageous to have a good grounding in the subject knowledge.


The A level syllabus is much harder than that experienced at IGCSE level. Concepts and content are built on from IGCSE however the style of questioning by the examiner requires more analytical reasoning. There is no continuity between the two syllabi; the AS content differing to that of A2.
One should also be aware of the weighting of assessment, with seventy percent of the overall mark obtained from theoretical knowledge, twenty percent from practical activity (in which it is essential to be proficient in two sporting disciplines) and ten percent from written/oral presentations.


Those who wish to pursue a career path relating to sports or sports administration will find this subject useful. Some universities now actually have Physical Education as a prerequisite to enter a chosen degree. Sports science, Physiotherapy, Occupational Therapy, Nursing are areas where this subject is likely to prove useful. Pupils should also be aware that although Physical Education is a recognized subject world-wide, at this time South Africa does not have it on its list of prescribed subjects. This does not mean that you could not gain entry to a university but are likely to only be entered into a specific area that relates to Physical Education.

Physics naturally blends with all science subjects. It is strongly recommended at ‘A’ Level for the career minded in the Industrial Sciences. Pupils who have the skills and interest to spend some time experimenting, formulating hypotheses, applying computing skills and solving problems should consider Physics. It is not a purely abstract subject, but has many practical applications. It is an important subject today due to our reliance on technology. It is research in Physics that has led to the development of these technologies. The world would be a very different place if previous generations of physicists had not developed computers, fibre optics and satellites!


In addition to the traditional topics in Physics, Peterhouse offers such fascinating applications as Medical Physics which includes various imaging techniques and other diagnostic methods, Electronics and Telecommunications (including cellular technology), all of which are important in the technological revolution.


An A or B grade in Physics or an A grade in Physical Science is required. Only pupils intending to study post IGCSE Mathematics will be allowed to study Physics as it has a large Mathematical component. In addition an interest in Physics and a high degree of commitment are essential to cope with the demands of a rigorous approach to Practical work and problem solving processes.


The Physics Department is well equipped to meet the demands of the latest syllabus including access to the Information Technology laboratory. It boasts two new laboratories and new equipment especially in Electricity, Magnetism and Electronics. It has achieved commendable results in recent years with the pass rate remaining over 90% for the past seven years, reaching 100% on two occasions.


‘A’ Level Physics provides a foundation for further studies in numerous fields such as Architecture, Mining, Engineering, Medicine, Research and Education. An increasing number of Physicists have entered careers in Agriculture, Astronomy, Crime Detection, Defence Industries, Electronics, Instrumentation, Mining, Telecommunications. .
R Chiminya

Head of Department : Physics

The syllabus, completed over two years, comprises three papers and a coursework project. Being a practical subject a number of case studies are included, involving outside visits to tourism establishments and visiting guest speakers. This provides an interesting aspect to the course and assists with overall perception of the industry.

The coursework project is on Event Management. This involves the class working as a team to plan and stage a live event. Wide use is made of the Internet to keep abreast of changes in the fast growing industry. The coursework is normally centered on an overseas visit or a visit to neighboring South Africa and it is the pupils who plan, and run such events. At Vth Form Level, the pupils write 2 of the syllabus components as part of their AS Level examination.

An IGCSE pass in English Language is necessary and prior knowledge of Business Studies and Geography are advantageous. A pass in Travel and Tourism at IGCSE would be a much needed added advantage.

The tourism industry globally is gaining popularity every year and currently contributes approximately 12 percent of global GDP. As such, opportunities in the industry are excellent and varied. Alternatively, students may opt for a business related university degree, specializing in event management or hospitality. For example, some former pupils are now working as event managers for FIFA, having completed their degree programs.

Previous results have been very good, with more and more pupils going on to attend international hotel and catering colleges and universities. Generally those students who are less academic cope very well with the syllabus content and achieve good passes.

This subject is a very practical and excellent option for those considering a career in the tourism or related industries, such as Marketing, wildlife or hospitality, Event Management and Tourism Management; it gives pupils broad insight into the industry with field trips, lectures from industry professionals and interesting subject matter. Pupils should also be aware that although Travel & Tourism is a recognized subject world-wide, at this time South Africa does not have it on its list of prescribed subjects. A pupil wishing to further their education in South Africa would need to rely on their other two subjects for admission, although having overcome this hurdle, individual faculties do consider the subject.

Rutendo Mudiwa
Head of Department: Travel and Tourism