What I talk about when I talk about; Alevels

It was two days ago that I was in the car with Sara (this housemate from college) and we were in this very serious mode on discussing about "How should we tell our kids when they decided to take alevels as their path of education?"

We got silent after that.

"Should we tell them it's too hard that they shouldn't take the risk"
"Should we advise them to take something more secure and easy like diploma maybe?"
"Should we just say no"

Well, to talk broadly about this education path I shall beware that I might be biased. Because it's limited to one perspective and everyone's perpective might be different from one another. One can just disagree with me, or just say that their education path is way better than mine. I don't know about that, but at least this is what I think.

Alevels to me, is tough, apparently. Because shall you know it's exam-based system. Just like spm, you just need to study and do past-years to ace the exam in the end (at least as what most of them who don't know, said). But one thing is that Alevels is different on how it examines our capability. I can't even follow the pattern somehow, but I would just say Alevels can be sooo tricky, until you lost control of their tricks. You can finish Past-years all you want but still you might be not ace the exam. It requires one perfect understanding, at least to what I understand. I'm afraid Alevels it's not for those who would prefer to memorize instead of understand.

And as we all know, (most) Malaysian students have this one habit to memorize things (God bless us with a good memory). Even the kiasu-nerdy one still can't get rid of this habit. Frankly speaking, you'll survive with flying colors in Spm if you have this habit but not until you find Alevels. Know that I'm not generalizing any of my statements here (it limits to some extent), it still at the end of the day depends wholely on one individual's capability. Every student has different capability and ability to understand, this we cannot hesitate. But I still think Alevels has given me something that is so valuable throughout the process (the wisdom of course) , it made me a very critical and evaluative in thinking. When I'm given a subject to be observed, I tend to think throughly and deeply; basically Alevels students are taught to be good at evaluating (it takes 2years tho to understand what evaluating is all about) That's one thing; the system.

Why exam-based system is something you should consider twice? here's why...

Unlike diploma, you have to focus only to one final thing; the exam day (sounds nice). Throughout the process you might miss the enjoyment of co-curriculum that then contributes to your cgpa. In alevels you have nothing else to help you if let say you didn't perform well on exam. Nothing like attendance, or co-curriculum, credit hours; nothing will help but what you've done on your papers (sounds scary. it is) That's the cons.

Last-minute-study students, Alevels might be for you or not ...

I have observed many of my friends, like what kind of students they are. Are they those ass we label as kiasu? Or those that do nothing at the early stage but will then study hard on last minutes? Well, both types can just survive well. Still, many of them didn't passed with flying colors. It depends, on how we perform on the exam day; and that's when 'Understanding skill' takes place. If you are given a question that you didn't expect, how will you manage that? Yes, that's when your understanding skill does its part.

Still, it's how the system works.

But sometimes there are another things from every part of your life could be the contributor to what you'll get at last. How you are with teachers. How you are with God. The connections of you with your friends. And of course, your aim, it is when getting the best result is nothing like an option anymore, but an obligation.

I understand now when someone say, that education is partly our choice. But until one point, you don't feel the same anymore. Considering the amount of money your scholar tank has invested on you, your parents' hopes, your neighbours' expectations, and even your dreams since kid. It is, indeed, a tough journey.

The cost; it's an international paper, guys. It consists of two parts; As Level + A2 Level = Alevels (nice equation, isn't it?) It is a simple process when you ace all the papers because the fund tank can pay it all for you. But it raises an issue when you didn't pass the required points so you need to repeat the particular paper (might be only subjected to scholar-funded student). You pay with MYR but accordingly to the current currency of the particular state (in this context; Uk). And we do not making jokes about british pounds because it's indeed so costly when the economy is at unstable motion (lol the term tho) You just need to close your eyes closely enough and forget about the money issue (for a moment), you just pay in the name of "it's my dream, I'm going to achieve it anyway" Haha, lol it's true there's no condition in order to achieve dreams, one can just get crazy for this (you will too)

Imagine this situation, you are at peak of 'fly or die' you don't want to screw any papers, you're entirely prohibited to make mistakes; all these pressures are then will make you want to cry and quit from this Alevels sucking phase. In the end, if you pass then you pass la. If not, I suggest you to cry for a day and please be hurry in looking for locals placement starting a day after lol (I really mean this)

But the thrill doesn't stop there for both either you get to fly or not. Don't ask me how the one who gets to fly manage that struggles? I'm none of them. Allah bless them, they'll manage in the end. But for those who are here (locals) , welcome to the world when you'll feel life is freakingly unfair haha. Indeed, it is. You would want to consider in going public university eventhough you have the privilege to continue undergraduate at private one. But it's not easy as it seems, there you'll find with that international qualification you got there (sounds amazing, it's not actually), you're no different as those who come from China mainland, Nigeria, Pakistani, and even Thailand. You'll be addressed as a foreign student as the way they treat you. You cannot pass through with full access anymore like how you got (not so long time ago) after spm. You need to pass through using another specific channel, and the chances of you'll get approved to admission is less than 50%. But it's okay, as for every hardship comes ease, let's move to private one shall we?

You are so lucky to be in Malaysia, because this country has sooooo many private universities to choose from. My advice; be wise in choosing. Look for details in everything you look for, either its their course, the subjects it offers, its accommodation and so much more.

Last but not least, after you've finished looking and yet has come to a definite decision; have Tawakkul.

For in the end, Allah knows best.

Oh, and to continue on how we (me and Sara) should tell the kids either Alevels is the right choice or not, we then decided to just be fair to them. Yes, kids like me not so long time ago has been so eager to try something challenging like Alevels. No one really told me either it's something I should go for or not, indeed, I was the who decided to take part in this challenge. Parents just agreed with my choice, and I will do the same like how my parents did to me. I'll support any of their decision without being biased in anything. The kids are pure soul, and they deserve to take part in any challenges they opt for. Let them choose , let them learn, bila sampai akhir nanti the least they will ask to themselves it's either 'berbaloi atau tidak?'

And for me, it's more than berbaloi; it's priceless.


  1. A huge thank you for this post. Made me realise something

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