Zoe is ‘top of the world’ for Food IGCSE

A L6 girl received the highest mark in the world for her Food and Nutrition IGCSE exam this summer.


Zoe, who is currently studying A Levels in Art Textiles, Business and Maths at Headington, was contacted by Cambridge Assessment International Education to congratulate her on her exceptional achievement.


Zoe said: “I really wasn’t expecting it, I wasn’t sure I was even going to get a good grade because I know how hard it is to get an A* in this subject. I never thought I would get something like that – I feel like I’m going to get a letter saying it was a mistake.”


She was awarded an Outstanding Cambridge Learner Award for her achievement. Only 2.6 per cent of students globally achieve an A* in IGCSE Food and Nutrition, which is assessed 50 per cent on theory and 50 per cent on practical skills. Zoe achieved the highest mark of all students sitting the exam anywhere this summer.


Throughout the course Zoe cooked at least once a week. In the 55-minute lessons, she made a variety of savoury and sweet recipes, prepared two-course meals with suitable accompaniments, cooked for special diets, made cakes, roulades, all types of pastry, sauces and a range of picnic and buffet style dishes. For her practical exam, Zoe was asked to make five items which would be suitable for selling at a school event. She had two and a half hours for her exam and Zoe chose to make from scratch pizza whirls, smoked salmon and dill mini quiches, vegetable spring rolls, iced fairy cakes and gingerbread.


Zoe said she enjoyed baking treats for family and friends at home and said she continued to use some of the recipes from the course, many of which are simplified to allow completion within the relatively short timeframe. She said: “Hopefully it will be useful when I get to university and it’s helped me learn to make food quite cheaply as well.”


The Outstanding Cambridge Learner Awards programme celebrates the success of learners taking Cambridge examinations in over 40 countries around the world.


Head of Food and Nutrition Mrs Marie Colquhoun said: “There are only a tiny percentage of students globally who get an A* so to be top of those students is amazing. We are very proud of Zoe for this incredible achievement.”