[photopress:MBA_examinations.jpg,full,alignright]A longish high school blog which deals with studying overseas through a comparison between four countries, the United States, China, England, and France. Does not help anyone come to a decision but spells out all the important facts.
Education in the US is mainly provided by the government and is controlled and funded at the federal, state, and local levels.
The SAT and ACT are the most common standardized tests taken when applying to college. Colleges and universities consist of four years of higher learning. If admitted, students complete an undergraduate study program to achieve a bachelor’s degree in a major of their choice.
The People’s Republic of China has a system of public education including primary schools, middle schools (equivalent of middle and high school in US), and universities.
At least nine years of education is required for Chinese students. The five years of primary education is free, followed by secondary education with 3 years of middle school and 2 years of high school.
There is intense competition for admission to China’s universities. Beijing and Tsinghua universities rank among the most prestigious in the country. China uses national examinations to select students for higher education and leadership roles. A National College Entrance Examination is the main factor in determining college admission.
In England formal education is required for children aged 5 to 16. In England, forms are the equivalent of grades in the US.
All students go through a series of four tests, at different points of their education (like standardized tests in the US). They are often referred to as SATs (not for college admission). The main academic qualification for 16-18 year olds is the Advanced Level GCE. Students vying for university entry study 3 or 4 subjects to A-Level and an additional subject to AS-Level.
Students enter university after age 18 and study for an Academic Degree. The first degree typically offered is the Bachelor’s degree (3 years); some colleges offer an undergraduate Master’s degree.
France is highly centralized and educational programs are regulated by the Minister of National Education.
Academic councils called académies are responsible for supervising all aspects of University education in a given region. Private universities are independent of académies. The baccalauréat aka bac are the examinations students must pass to enter university, similar to the British A-Levels, and American SATs. Higher education includes universities and Grandes écoles (more prestigious than universities, highly competitive). Higher education is funded by the state so tuition costs are low.
The United States, China, England, and France have different education systems, standards, and characteristics but all have prestigious universities as well as educated and talented young people.