Planning to Study Commerce for A/Ls ?


If you’ve successfully made it through G.C.E. Ordinary Level (O/L) and are contemplating on which stream to go along for G.C.E. Advanced Level (A/L), commerce is one of the safest bets out there. Why? Not only does it have the highest pass rates (only second to the Arts stream), but it provides versatility as well. In this day and age, everything is looked at from an entrepreneurial point of view. No matter what your career path is, the final product of your work would be to make a profit for your paymaster, or yourself, if you’re self-employed. In a world where everything is boiled down into rupees and cents, why not master that art? And just how do you do that? Pick up commerce as your field of study for A/Ls. The technicalities of this process are broken down as follows for your ease.

A/L Commerce Subject Combinations

As it’s known, three core subjects have to be completed, excluding General English, General IT and General Knowledge, if you’re following the local G.C.E. Advanced Level (A/L) program. In the commerce stream, the said three core subjects are Accounting, Business Studies, and Economics. This has been the traditional subject combination for commerce students for over two decades now. But over the past few years, optional subjects have been introduced as well. And if you are to enter a state university by studying in the commerce stream for A/Ls, the following criteria must be met.

At least two of the following three subjects have to be chosen:

  • Accountancy
  • Business Studies (BS)
  • Economics

The third subject can be chosen from the following list:

  • Business Statistics
  • Geography
  • Political Science
  • History (Indian History, European History or World history)
  • The logic and the scientific method
  • English
  • German
  • French
  • Agricultural Sciences
  • Combined Mathematics
  • Information and Communication Technology (ICT)

Finding Teachers for A/L Commerce | How GuruPaara can Help

All the help you need regarding A/Ls is just one mouse click away. Simply type on the address bar of your browser and click enter, and you’re good to go. The homepage would provide you with all the guidance you need to find the teachers who suit you the best.

Just select your stream of study, subject which you want to find teachers for, medium of study, and the type of classes you’re interested in (individual, group or mass) from our drop-down menus and click on “Find Teacher”. That wasn’t so hard, now was it?

Apart from this, our website offers you a summarized, yet informative introduction to A/Ls. Just click on the “How to Start A/Ls” button on the homepage.

A/L Commerce Stream University Opportunities & Degrees Offered

This is where the versatility part comes into play. If you pass with flying colors and get accepted into a state university, you’ll have a myriad of degrees to select from. Some degrees which are offered by almost all the management/finance/commerce faculties in Sri Lanka are:

  • Bachelor of Commerce (Special) Degree
  • Bachelor of Business Management (Special) Degree
  • BSc. Marketing Management (Special) Degree
  • BSc. Accounting (Special) Degree
  • BSc. Business Administration Degree
  • BSc. Human Resource Management (Special) Degree
  • BSc. Banking and Finance Degree

You can learn more about the degree programs from this link as well :

Apart from these common degrees, there are other degrees available as well, depending on the university. For an example, the university of Sri Jayewardenepura offers a degree called “B.Sc. in Estate Management & Valuation (Special)”. Plus, commerce students are also eligible to apply to LLB programs, just like students of all other streams, provided that they have a formidable Z score. It should also be mentioned that private institutions such as NIBM, NSBM, SLIIT and KDU also have a wide choice of degrees to be selected from for commerce students.

Professional Qualifications

Degrees aside, there are a myriad of professional qualifications out there which students of the commerce stream can follow upon completion of A/Ls. Some of these qualifications don’t even require the completion of A/Ls. A few of the most recognized professional qualifications which are readily available for commerce students are:

  • CIMA: It’s the world’s leading, and largest, professional body of management accountants.
  • ACCA: It’s the world’s leading, and largest, professional body of financial accountants.
  • CISI: The Chartered Institute for Securities & Investment (CISI) is the professional body for the securities and investment industry.

Apart from these professional qualifications, qualifications such as AAT (Association of Accounting Technicians) or CASL (Chartered Accountants of Sri Lanka) are also available for commerce students.

Balancing Academic and Personal Life with A/L Commerce

It wouldn’t be wrong to say that this is privilege which is most often enjoyed by students of commerce. Mathematics and Biology are cumbersome streams of study for A/Ls, and the majority of students who study in those streams have to be in touch with their academics on a regular basis. This is because their content is fairly harder to understand than commerce, and the workload is heavier.

Commerce on the other hand, offers the best of both worlds. The syllabi aren’t all that cumbersome, and it doesn’t take up much of the students’ time to pass examinations with top grades, compared to fields like Mathematics and Biology. But, it offers almost the same versatility as the said two streams. It’s evident by the degrees, professional courses and postgraduate qualifications offered to students who sit for A/Ls from the commerce stream. The availability of free time can be utilized into other productive activities such as taking part in school level sports, being a part of clubs and societies and engaging in other extracurricular activities, which also have a massive a say in the CV at the end of the day.

Reasons NOT to Pick A/L Commerce

The biggest misconception about doing commerce in Sri Lanka is that the students who select commerce for A/Ls do that due to their incompetence of following a science stream such as Mathematics or Biology. This may have been a reason a couple of decades ago, because the job market was heavily focused on doctors and engineers. But now, in the modern world, entrepreneurship is the name of the game. Which means that the versatility which studying commerce offers you, can mold you into a true global professional in the long run. So, the lack of “ability” to study science subjects should not be a reason for you to choose commerce. Choose it out of reason. And choose it because of the many doors it will open for you in the future.

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