What is a college at a university

How does the American education system work?

The best universities in the world are to be found in the USA - no wonder, after all, despite the high tuition fees, these have a particularly high priority in the American education system.

The school system in the USA

In the USA, general school attendance is usually up to the age of 16 or 18, depending on the state. A three-tier school system with a grammar school, secondary school and secondary school as in Germany does not exist in the USA. Instead, children with different talents attend school together.

A child's school career in America begins with the six-year "Elementary School", which starts with kindergarten and goes through to 6th or 8th grade. In grades 7 to 9, the “Middle School” or “Junior High School” continues. The pupils then attend the “high school”, which is comparable to the German comprehensive school. American teenagers attend this school from grades 9 to 12 and 10 to 12 respectively.

Graduating from high school entitles you to attend college. In the USA, university education has a particularly high status. The USA is the nation with the highest percentage of young people attending college.
The school system is state-run, which means that everyone has the opportunity to attend school free of charge until they have completed compulsory schooling. This offer is used by 90% of the students. The remaining 10% attend one of the country's private schools.

What is the difference between college and university?

The term college or university depends in part on the individual states. A bachelor's degree or just a degree in certain areas can often be obtained at college. At the university, however, a doctorate is also possible. The college and university are thus similar to the German technical college and university.

High tuition fees for universities

There are different types of colleges: undergraduate schools, graduate schools, and professional schools. In principle, tuition fees are charged at the universities, which also far exceed the German tuition fees at state universities. However, because this branch of education has a very high status, many parents take on these high costs. Many years in advance of this, save for the education of their children. A much more extensive range of scholarships than in Germany enables socially disadvantaged and particularly good students to attend a college or university. Famous American universities include Princeton University, Harvard University, Columbia University, and Yale University.

Author: Miriam Bax
Published on February 3, 2011

Tags: College, High School, School System USA