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Difference Between CBSE and ICSE

graduate-hatCBSE vs ICSE

Both the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) and the Indian Certificate of Secondary Education (ICSE) are self-financing educational institutions. The CBSE and the ICSE have a different syllabus, education pattern, exams and other aspects.

One of the differences that can be noticed is that the Indian government has recognised CBSE, but has not recognised the ICSE. Though the certificate given by both the institutions are valid globally, the CBSE certificate has more value than the one of ICSE.

When talking abou the syllabus, the CBSE has a more scientific approach. The whole syllabus is divided into several units. In each unit, is also specified the number of periods that are needed for completion. The syllabus also includes the amount of marks in each unit. The ICSE does not have such a scientific approach. Unlike the ICSE syllabus, the CBSE syllabus helps the teachers and students to plan for the exams in a more scientific way.

Moreover, the ICSE syllabus is considered to be heavy when compared to the CBSE. While the ICSE has two papers on English, the CBSE has only one paper. The ICSE has three papers in the science group (physics, chemistry and biology), but the CBSE has only one paper. In social studies as well, the ICSE has two papers, geography and history, while the CBSE has only one social sciences paper. Another difference that can be seen, is that Environmental Education is compulsory with ICSE. On the contrary, it is not so with the CBSE.

In terms of the exam pattern, the entrance examinations follow the CBSE. This means that those students studying ICSE have a disadvantage when taking competitive exams, unlike the CBSE students.

Unlike the ICSE, the CBSE syllabi are frequently upgraded. The CBSE has a “Front Line Curriculum” concept that upgrades the syllabi with more relevant materials.

Anogther difference that can be seen between the CBSE and the ICSE, is that a large number of schools have affiliated with the CBSE, but not with the ICSE. Moreover, the CBSE Board allows regular and private candidates to take the exams. On the other hand, ICSE will not allow students who have not been studying in ICSE affiliated schools to take exams.


1. The Indian government has recognised the CBSE, but has not recognised the ICSE.

2. Though the certificate given by both the institutions are valid globally, the CBSE certificate has more value than the ICSE.

3. When talking of syllabi, the CBSE has a more scientific approach than the ICSE.

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    • ya ur right im also a icse student i know the value of icse ur right…………………………………………………………………….

      • ur very wrong icse is better than cbse im also a icse student sie plz change it …………………………………………………………………….

        • Mounikapriyanka, I am in confusion as I already took admission to ICSE LKG course for my doughter, how ICSE is betterthan CBSE u tell and also the difference between them correctly.

  2. Am also confused .
    My one daughter is in ICSE and I love there syllabus , way of teaching, examination Patton etc. But after reading this answer I am little confused .what to do .shall I change her board or what.?………

  3. Hi

    thank you for the information and to the people who have comment .I am at the same position so confuse to choose the board..we are planning for IGCSE which board is the good to study. plz reply

  4. also i am confused ,same case my daughter is in ICSE pattern ,what schould we do for next chield.

  5. I am studying in NPCS muz .after readig the above topics iam very confused. what can i do change the board yes or no

  6. Excellent information you have provided on CBSE and ICSE. Really helpful for the students and for the parents who are in confused between this two board

  7. The above information is really helpful.the parents must read it before selecting the school for their child.

  8. I m confused that one site u say both course are valid globally and says icse are not recognized by indian government. While the ICSE has two papers on English, the CBSE has only one paper. The ICSE has three papers in the science group (physics, chemistry and biology), but the CBSE has only one paper. if u see comparison isce is difficult than cbse
    can u clear my confusion

  9. i think icse students have more strong base than cbse i.e., their basics are clear and yes i also do not agree with the point that icse is less than cbse , it has good scientific approach according to me!!!!!!!!!!

  10. ICSE has more value than CBSE.

  11. thanks it was helpful

  12. I thing ICSE is more better then CBSE because it is more helpful in completion Adam.

  13. Im confused.i think child must read class 10 in icse.then u select cbsefor further study

  14. Hi All

    Can you Please any one help us to answer my Below question.

    In case of my child is not like continue the ICSE pattern

    example for Sixth grade ICSE student will face 12-13 subject examinations while CBSE student will face on 5-6 subject examinations.

    So for ICSE pattern schools student it’s possible to change CBSE pattern schools.

  15. CBSE is more better however it would be wrong to say that ICSE is not so gud but in CBSE students have overall knowledge of each subjects n it is beneficial for competitive exams olso

  16. I’m also so confused. why ICSE student had disadvanage in competative exams compared to CBSE students? My son studying in ist class in ICSE. Everybody told me that ICSE didn’t give 100% marks and persentage the board of ICSE will give only 70% marks, however your child write exams exlent. I’m confused. plz give me currect answer

  17. dears,

    kindly advised i am also joining my son for CBSE school
    i am totally confused

  18. Dears . Syllabus and curriculum is not an important. Many scientific literature has revealed that , conducive environment can encompass to increased the motor cycles and quality domain of children . I request that all parents should provide good environment to ur children. Regards Basavarajaiah D.M . Chartered Scientist UK Science council

  19. I think ICSC it’s syllabus heavy burden for pupils

  20. Hello Everyone!

    Don’t get panic between these CBSC & ICSC. Both are good. It always depend on IQ of student, how does he/she studies. Whatever school you admit your kids, they will do their best.

    I have seen a student who studied in Govt school an has passed the entrance examinations very easily.

    It all depend on how your kids shows interest in the subject rather than the school teaches them.

    Both have their pros and cons and form an extremely vital part of the Indian Education System.

    ICSE on the other hand is conducted by yet another board, CISCE or the Council for the Indian School Certificate Examination. It is similar to AISSE conducted by CBSE. (if ICSC is not recognized by Govt, then Govt would have closed/banned it, but these both are behind quality)

    In fact its competition between CBSC & ICSC, just like in other business.

    You all need not change the schools in which they are presently studying; both are good; rest all is your kids fortune. It can’t be changed.

    -Satish Naik-
    Pricipal, Kamadhenu BCA College Karwar.

  21. Why your information is very confused you can explain very simple which one board is best CBSC is more value to icsc why private school education icsc ? Please update

  22. Dear all
    I am satisfied with one of the professor has started up that it depends on the child atmosphere

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