Sorting out the Difference Between High School and Colleges in the UK
- September 14, 2018
- Posted by: administrator
- Category: Study in UK
One of the most unexpected hurdles that an unfamiliar educational system comes with is that of steering your way through the verbal jargon of the processes, customs and vocabulary. For the already enrolled students in the universities in UK or those who are hoping to study, the difference between different types of institution can be confusing – for example, high schools and colleges. Let’s sort out the first things first; most parts of the UK refer high school to as a secondary school. One may observe the term high school is more in use in Scotland, the very country wherein this term originated. What dissects the high school and college in the UK is that one is part of the statutory education system and the other is part of the optional further education (FE) system.
Age is another key difference between high school and college students. For the major part, high schools offer statutory education for students who are of the age between 11 and 16 albeit some also have sixth form centers, which offer courses for students, aged 16 to 19. The colleges also offer adult education courses which makes it an automatic choice for the adult students of all ages. They give students over the age of 16 the chance to take A Levels or GCSEs as they may have missed the opportunity to pass at high school. Typically, the high schools provide students with the opportunity to study for GCSEs and A Levels. As an exception some of the institutions offer alternative qualifications such as the International Baccalaureat. If one were to look at the further education in the colleges, they have plenty of choices for courses that have their primary focus on skills-based courses in areas such as computer skills and craft skills instead of academic courses of study.
On the other hand, the high schools are focused on the needs of students and their parents. The Further Education College or FE colleges are more inclined to a hub for community learning. They offer services such as taster courses and evening courses with the main objective to bring in more adults to continue their education. In the recent period of time, few FE colleges have commenced the degree-level courses in partnership with universities in UK, for students who want to access higher education in a more relaxed environment that is local to them.
A different experience
To sum it up, the distinct difference is what makes the high schools and colleges set certain standards of education. The focus of high schools is toward the education of minors and as such they have to administer with certain set of rules and regulations which includes wearing a uniform and not allowing them to leave the school site during the school day. Additionally, the high school students do have the power to act when it comes to selecting the subjects, the do have the obligation to take a number of core subjects, such as English, Maths and sciences. This is a stark contrast to the FE colleges that rather encourage a more relaxed environment in which students take responsibility for their education. These students are free to choose their own study programme and are only expected to be on campus during class times. Some of the course choices are GCSEs, Higher National Diplomas and A Levels to BTEC courses and skills diplomas. People come to FE colleges are also given the choice to learn new skills and pursue their hobbies.
Thus it can be said that having the knowledge of the difference between high school and college is very useful if you plan on choosing the next level of your studies in the UK. A bit of a research with the help of the foreign education consultants too is beneficial.