The first full range of International A-Level lessons ever available Online brings university entry possibilities to millions around the world

Hong Kong Education, Latest News Comment

A-Level students can take 100-150 hours of full online classes designed by online learning professionals for free no matter when and where

A level

(4th March 2018, Hong Kong) ITS Education Asia, a Hong Kong based school organisation established in 2005, has released the world’s first set of video-based lessons for the globally recognised International A-Level (link: With an entry point of zero cost, students from all backgrounds are now able to gain A-Level qualifications for entry to universities around the world in the following extensive range subjects: Accounting, Biology, Chemistry, Economics, Geography, History, Mathematics, Physics and Psychology.

The lessons have been specifically produced for maximum effect online learning by ITS’ professional teaching staff, all of whom have extensive experience in teaching the course to students in the classroom and achieving excellent examination and university entry results. Every student can now watch 25 sessions of video lessons per unit of A-Level (around 100 to 150 hours in total depending on subject requirements) absolutely free of charge. There are an additional set of 5 revision videos per unit for those wishing to upgrade.

Registration for free classes is a simple log-in process via the ITS Education Asia website (link) which also includes all the information students need to make informed subject choices depending on their needs and wishes. Having sampled up to 10 hours of free online A-Level courses, students can explore a comprehensive range of affordable online support packages to suit every need and budget for the remainder of their course, or alternatively continue with just the videos for free. To date the most popular and cost-effective packages, comprise the modestly-priced “Mentor”. Other expert support services include personal homework marking and fully live tutorial lessons with individual teachers. The courses allow maximum flexibility for students wishing to have more control over how, when and where they learn. They bring the A-Level into places where no traditional schools could ever hope to deliver such a high-end programme and to millions around the world wishing to study A-Levels to enter universities around the world. And of course they overcome quality international education’s biggest barrier to entry – price, by making A-Level classes online and extremely affordable.

ITS co-founder, and Oxford graduate, Danny Harrington explained, “based on our experience by far and away the best value package is “Mentor” which comprises all the video lessons on demand, access to notes, model answers, access to peer-to-peer forum and a free education planning consultation for a mere US$195/two units, which is a fraction of the cost of traditional face-to-face tutoring and allows flexibility of timing and without the need to attend a specific location and needing nothing but an internet connection to a simple smartphone, tablet or laptop.”

ITS sees these courses as ideal for students who

  • cannot access other schools/institutions to complete their exams;
  • face mobility problems that make it difficult for them to attend mainstream schooling;
  • are home-learners and looking for additional qualified expert, experienced teaching support;
  • do not wish or cannot afford to attend overseas boarding schools to complete their senior secondary education;
  • are studying the IB, BTEC or other syllabus but wish to add an additional subject to improve their academic portfolio as well as chance of university entrance
  • are at an international school and want to review their course content;
  • are post-compulsory-school-age who need formal qualifications, or
  • life-long adult learners wishing to enhance/or change their career or secure university courses.

“We have always sought to release students from the cost, time and locational limitations of mainstream education models while still allowing students to gain the qualifications they need to progress in the modern world. ITS Education Asia has worked hard and is proud to have devised the very first globally recognised and affordable online A-Level programme content for the most popular subjects taken. With this International A-Level project we believe ITS Education Asia has found a way to bring university entry possibilities to millions around the world.” Danny concluded.

For media enquires, please contact Sean Lai, Director of Admissions (China & Hong Kong) /

Danny Harrington, Director of ITS Education Asia at 2116 3916 or email to us:

[email protected].




Annex 1 Brief introduction – ITS Education Asia

ITS Education Asia operates two schools registered by the Hong Kong Education Bureau since 2005, offering actual classes at centres in Hong Kong and access to quality online courses across the globe. ITS Education Asia is an official Pearson, Cambridge ATS and UCAS centre and has rich experience in helping students to qualify for Oxbridge universities. ITS also provides university entrance consultation for students who wish to further their study in UK or US.


Annex 2 Our Professionals



Danny Harrington

–          M.A. (Oxford), DipHE (London), CELTA (RSA/Cambridge)

–          Co-founder of ITS Education Asia

–          Expertise: Geography, English, Theory of Knowledge, Philosophy and Religious Studies


Gary Hadler

      –     B.Ec., Dip.Ed. (Monash), M.B.A (NTU)

–          Co-founder of ITS Education Asia

–          Expertise: Economics, Business Studies and Accounting at all levels and has also been an IB examiner.


Andrew Hall

–          B.A. (Delaware)

–          Director and Executive Principal of ITS Education Asia.

–          Expertise: History and English Literature as well as providing teacher training and programme development consultancy for individuals and organisations.

Sean Lai –          LLB (CUHK)



Annex 3 Diagram of the flow

Steps Details
1. Choose ·         Go to the website:

·         Choose the package you wish to register per subject (you can choose different levels for different subjects)

2. Register ·         Follow the links to register online
3. Learn ·         Watch the videos and enjoy the support services you buy
4. Apply ·         Apply for exams in your subjects either locally or in Hong Kong with ITS. ITS is Pearson Edexcel Academic Centre No. 92885
5. Plan ·         Get counseling on university choices from the ITS team

·         Apply to universities of your choice

6. Exam ·         Sit the exams at your chosen centre
7. Result ·         Get your results and go to university



Director of Admissions (China & Hong Kong)

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Is home-schooling a realistic option in Hong Kong?

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Is home-schooling a realistic option in Hong Kong?

By Danny Harrington, Founder, ITS Education Asia

Blog Photos


First of all let’s deal with the legal side because there is a general urban myth that home-schooling is illegal in Hong Kong. Not true. There have been cases where home-schoolers have been dealt with by the law but often the context has been missed out once these stories hit the media. In response to a question from Dennis Kwok to Legco back in 2015, EDB stated unequivocally:

“While we [EDB} would not as a rule disallow home-schooling, for the interest of the children, we would examine it case by case taking into account relevant factors on whether the family is likely to be able to provide children with all-round education..… Parents who wish to home-school can write or email to the EDB seeking an assessment.”[1]

So there you go. Home-schooling is allowed. There is a further grey area which is the extent to which expat children are considered to fall under the compulsory school-age laws. The current situation seems to be that expat children are treated much more leniently, particularly those of expats on temporary work-visas. You are always best talking to EDB though.

There are a number of reasons why expat parents may consider home-schooling as their best option in Hong Kong. There is the question of school place availability. It is incredibly difficult to access local schools as the competition for places from local families is so high and there are huge concerns about impact on education of being thrown into a completely different school language and cultural environment. Most expats look therefore to the international school system but there are limited places, dependent on year group, and quite a variety of schools some of which are more popular than others.

Recently, we have also seen more and more expat children with SEN [often certified from the home country] finding it nigh on impossible to secure an appropriate school place. There is plenty of controversy over the provision of SEN in English-medium schools at the moment and for many parents, while the argument rages, they simply have to do something about educating their child and so home-schooling is often the most immediate solution.

The other major factor is cost. An international family coming to Hong Kong these days will usually want their children to experience the opportunity as well. But we mustn’t forget that “international school” in Hong Kong means independent or private school anywhere else and of course the costs are comparable. At USD20,000/child/year up [and as much as USD40,000++] there aren’t all that many families that can find the spare cash to educate one, let alone two or three, children. Home schooling by comparison can be done very cheaply indeed for younger kids and even for children in exam years, such as IGCSE and A-level, getting support online both in terms of materials and expert teachers through live online classrooms doesn’t really need to exceed about USD5000/child/year although deluxe options could take this up to more like USD15,000/child/year. The beauty of the UK IGCSE and A-level is that you can take the exams as a private candidate at times of your own choosing, unlike school GPAs and the IB which can only be taken in mainstream schools.

The key questions are:

To what extent can you as a parent/family provide rich, varied, relevant and stimulating learning?

To what extent should you engage experts to supplement your efforts and your child’s self-learning?

What outcomes do you want for your child, such as the next step, and does that require formal qualifications?

How will you provide for your child’s social development without the ready-made community of a school?

There are a number of home-schooler support groups on Hong Kong and they are easy to find and access through platforms such as MeetUp. In this way you can both network to get the best academic process in place and to deal with the socialising issue. There are at least 33 families currently registered with the EDB for home-schooling but probably upwards of 120 families actually home-schooling and they are putting together an ever-improving support framework.

Home-schooling: it’s not easy, but it’s not illegal and it could just be what you’ve been looking for.

ITS Education Asia is a fully accredited Edexcel centre providing courses, tutorial support and examinations in UK IGCSE and IAL.


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IGCSE and A-levels in January 2018

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by Ruth Puentispena, Exams officer, ITS Education Asia

The winter exam session held by Edexcel in January each year offers a wide range of international qualifications at IGCSE and IAL, allowing students to tailor fit their academic goals in preparation for university and the future. A trend in the exam candidates that sit every January shows that these students usually get a head start on their qualifications. IGCSE Candidates have a wide range of core subjects including Math, Science and English to choose from should they decide to sit their exams early. International A-level Candidates also take this opportunity to divide their work load by sitting some units in this exam session. This is particularly advantageous for Math students as most additional units are available in this exam session as well.

The IGCSE exam period for January 2018 is from January 8 to January 25, while the IAL exam period goes from January 8 to January 29. Given that this is a shorter period than the summer exam session, students are able to focus more on doing well in each exam as they can maximize preparations for these during their Christmas/winter break. An unspoken rule among parents is that they often use the winter exam session as practice for the summer exams by having their children sit their exams at ITS in preparation for the IGCSE exams held in June at their child’s school. This has almost always been to a child’s advantage. Should you wish to enrol your child at ITS for January exams, please note that we are now in triple late fees – you can enrol at any time up to the day of the exam.

You may email [email protected] should you need the relevant forms or would like to be added to the June alerts list – enrolments will open in March. If you would like more information regarding tuition in preparation for IAL and IGCSE subjects, please feel free to email us at [email protected].

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Robot automation will ‘take 800 million jobs by 2030’ – report

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By Gary Hadler

Robot automation will 'take 800 million jobs by 2030 - report

The article is a worrisome prediction for the workforce situation that people will face in the near future.  2030 is only 12 years away which means this is the ‘predicted’ situation that many of those starting schooling now will face when they enter the labour force.  Possibly even more worrying is that it suggests that many jobs people now have will be disappearing and thus people in those occupations will face structural unemployment.

The figure of 800 million workers globally losing their jobs is enough to send shivers down one’s spine.  This suggests that everyone will feel the impact of the changes in the labour market.  This will directly or indirectly affect all of us in some manner.  The prediction that 1 in 3 people in the developed world will see their current jobs disappear by this time is dramatic.  Even if this article is overstating the scope and/or speed of these changes it would suggest trying to ignore such a trend is both foolish and dangerous.

The article certainly implies that consideration should be given when planning one’s career or choosing which industry to work in thought should be given to the effects automation/robots will have on the long term prospects for those jobs.

It is not that surprising that this trend is speeding up given the very high wages that are now being required in the developed world.  The article points out it is the developed world which will suffer the brunt of the job losses.  Businesses will increasingly seek to replace expensive unit labour costs with automation.  As Artificial Intelligence (AI) improves then humans become less necessary in delivering a service.  This related article ( Intelligent Machines: The jobs robots will steal first even suggests occupations such as doctors will see the demand fall as AI can do a better, quicker, cheaper job of identifying diseases and recommending medication than individual doctors do.  The machine will always have access to the latest data and the AI will improve with the learning that comes over time.

I know from a personal point of view as a business owner there is constant pressure to reduce costs and improve efficiency.  This leads to automation and outsourcing where possible to lower labour cost markets.  A business has no choice as the need to stay competitive requires this.  This is then combined with improved service.  An example would be an automated taxi driver that never gets lost and can speak every language.  Or an automated diagnostic machine that then very cheaply diagnoses many common ailments and prescribes suitable medication.

We all have seen examples of this happening in our lifetimes.  The first big noticeable area in my lifetime was the ATM replacing the need for many bank tellers.  In Hong Kong the octopus system has meant ticket sellers at public transport locations are now very few where they used to be many.  Bar code scanners have sped up checkouts and there are now numerous locations where people can auto scan their own shopping without the need for checkout operators.  Smart finger print scanners or facial recognition software have been reducing the amount of immigration counters needed at airports.

It is true that these technologies do create new jobs but not in the volume that the old ones are to disappear.  This has far reaching consequences for all of us.  Young people should consider the effect of these technological changes when considering their education choices and career options.  Everyone needs to do what ever they can to make themselves less vulnerable to sudden job loss due to technology.

The future is possibly a scary place for many who may see this unemployment hit them at some time soon in their working lives.

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The End of Australia’s car-making industry

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The End of Australia’s car-making industry (1)

I just finished reading this article (The end of Australia’s car-making industry ) and thought it was a very good time to comment on some of the reasons for this decline and the problems resulting for the Australian economy.  As an Australian I grew up in a world of fierce rivalry between those who supported “Holden” and those who were pro “Ford” in relation to their favorite cars.  Everyone of my class mates (or at least as far as I can remember) had an opinion on which was better.  Everyone wanted to get one of these cars as soon as they came of age.  At this time in my life it was unthinkable to believe that the car manufacturers in Australia would not survive.  There was a belief that Australian cars were the best in the world for Australia.  Australians were fiercely proud of the car manufacturing industry.  So what went wrong?

As discussed in the article the trade protectionism was, to a large extent what allowed these car manufactures to develop in Australia in the first place.  The high tariff barriers made these Australian made cars cheaper than those imported ones.  The movements towards free trade and the decrease in government protectionism resulted in imported cars being cheaper than the locally produced ones.  This however is but one of the reasons for the decline in Australian manufacturing and the Australian car industry.  The effect of the tariff may be illustrated.



As shown above the tariff raises the price of imported cars into Australia from  PWorld to price Ptarriff reducing car imports into Australia and generating tax revenue for the government.  It also results in a loss to society cause by the higher prices and the inefficiencies caused by the tax.

Added to the loss of tariff protection the Australian government also cut off subsidies to the car industry in Australia.  A quote from the Australian Prime mister illustrates this point Prime Minister Malcom Turnbull said a lack of government support was not to blame since the government had provided a total of 7 billion Australian dollars ($5.5 billion) in subsidies to the industry since 2001.” These subsides have been progressively cut to help try to balance increasing budget deficits and to comply with international trade agreements.

It is also a factor that Australian car production could not achieve the very large economies of scale that were needed to reduce the unit cost of cars.  These economies of scale mean that the very large car producers such as Toyota prefer to produce their cars in a few locations and export to the other markets.  Not have local factories in different countries produce cars for just that country.   It was not just the economies of scale in production that Australia could not achieve but also in Research and Development which meant Australian cars were just becoming rebadged cars that were developed in other locations.  The individually designed Australian specific car virtually disappeared.

The changes in the Australian population also meant that Australia has become an increasingly  country of migrants.  These more recent Australians did not grow up with the “tribal loyalty” to a car company.    This can be illustrated by the diagram below.  Back in 1970 the Australian population was around 12 million.  It is now around 24 million.  The growth for the most part has been from immigration.



The other very significant fact that is often left out when discussing the decline in Australian industries such as car production is the extremely high minimum wage in Australia.  Take a look at this list from 2016 on minimum wages in a select group of counties.

Australia: $17.70 per hour

United Kingdom: $AU14.66 per hour

New Zealand: $AU14.22 per hour

France: $AU14.98 per hour

Germany: $AU13.17 per hour

Canada: $AU10.45 – 13.81 per hour

United States: $AU10.08 per hour

Japan: $AU10.01 per hour

Mexico: $AU5.50 per hour

Czech Republic: $AU3.37 per hour

China: $AU1.68 – 3.93 per hour

Brazil: $AU341.16 per month

India: $AU3.09 – 7.44 per day

It is very clear that Australia is now one of the most expensive places in the world to employ labour.  Successive governments have increased minimum wages by allocating responsibility to an ‘independent’ tribunal that only is considering the quality of life of the people on the minimum wage.  No (or very little) account is taken of relative wage rates with other countries.  It is not that Australia is more expensive than India to employ labour, it is that Australia is more expensive than virtually everywhere.  This means that it is cheaper to make things almost anywhere in the world other than Australia.

The decline of the Australian car industry has seen considerable loss of jobs.  According to this recent publication from Swinburne University   In 2009-2010 there were approximately 73,772 full-time employees in the motor vehicle industry (which includes the production of other transport equipment as well as parts),

These job losses can be further expanded when considering the impact on employment in other sectors directly affected by the auto manufacturing industry as this diagram from the previous mentioned article from Swinburne shows


Source: Valadkhani and Smyth (2016, Table II, p.698-701).


Thus it was with sadness that I read the BBC article and decided to write this commentary about it.  I worry for my country of birth as I see the decline in manufacturing as a structural factor that will not be reversed.  Where are the jobs for future Australians going to be created?  The mining and agricultural industries are not generating growing employment numbers.  These industries are largely mature.  It is also the case that most of the jobs in these industries are in rural Australia,  not where most of the population chooses to live. Approximately 90% of Australians live in Urban areas   ( ). So it is with difficulty that I can see where the young will find their jobs.

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