Structure of the Educational System

The educational system in Cameroon is divided into primary (six years, compulsive), middle school (five years), secondary (high school, two years), and tertiary (University). The academic year runs from September to June, at which time, end-of-year-examinations are always written. The General Certificate of Education (GCE), both Ordinary and Advanced levels, are the two most qualifying exams in the Anglophone part of Cameroon. There are two separate secondary schooling systems, depending on whether the French or British colonial models apply. In broad terms though, the secondary phase comprises a lower (middle school) and an upper level (high school). For the majority of young people this distinction remains academic, because their parents are unable to afford secondary school fees at all. Students who graduate from a five-year secondary school program have to sit for the GCE Ordinary Level, and those who graduate from a two year high school program have to sit for the GCE Advanced Level. So far, the GCE advanced level and the Baccalaureate (the French equivalent of academic attainment) are the two main entrance qualifications into institutions of higher learning. After secondary school, there is the possibility of undertaking "vocational studies," courses aimed to unemployed people under the responsibility of the Ministry of employment.

Grading scale

French grading scale

Scale Grade description US Grade Notes
15.00-20.00 Très bien (very good) A
13.00-14.99 Bien (good) A-
12.00-12.99 Assez bien (quite good) B+
11.00-11.99 Passable (satisfactory) B
10.00-10.99 Moyen (sufficient) C
0.00-9.99 Insuffisant (insufficient) F Failure (May be considered passing if entire year is passed)

English grading scale

Scale Grade description Division US Grade
A First class A
A- Second class Upper division A- / B+
B Second class Lower division B
C+ Pass C