The English education system is recognized as one of the best. She is also very conservative due to her age. The first educational institutions appeared here in the XII century, and to this day, a high level of teaching and strict discipline are valued above all else in English schools and universities.
British universities occupy the top positions in all kinds of rankings for the quality of education. That is why studying in England is the dream and goal of many applicants, including Russians. Before applying abroad, you need to find out the specifics of studying in the UK for foreigners, see options for schools and universities, as well as requirements for admission.
Education system in the UK
The British education system took several centuries to develop. There are two sectors of education in the country:
- state – studies are free;
- private , involving payment for private educational institutions.
Education in England takes place in four stages:
- Primary – children enter at the age of 5 and study until the age of 11.
- Secondary – lasts from 11 to 16 years.
- After – school – lasts from 16 to 18 years old.
- Higher education – from the age of 18.
The third stage is conditional. Children can study in high school, or they can go to college and study specialized subjects.
Presented by nurseries and kindergartens. This period is limited to 2 to 7 years of age. However, most British children attend such schools for only a couple of years – from 2 to 4.
Kindergartens are paid, and their price is much higher than in other European countries. State kindergartens are usually designed for 2-3 hours of children staying in them – they resemble courses or circles.
Preschool education is aimed at developing abilities, teaching reading, writing and counting. It is considered one of the best in the world, as most children already have the listed skills when entering primary school.
Many private schools practice so-called preparatory education. Children are sent to study at the age of five, and teachers are actively preparing them for entering primary school, teaching them basic skills – reading and writing.
Primary school education
In elementary school, the British study about ten disciplines. In the first year, they focus only on the basics of mathematics, English and English literature. After a while, humanitarian, computer and scientific disciplines, as well as foreign languages are added to the study.
Primary education in the UK is more like our kindergarten, where children are entertained and played with. Much time is devoted to creativity, walks and sports. Teachers try primarily to develop communication skills and help the child gain self-confidence.
Secondary school education
From the age of 11, secondary school education begins. It lasts up to 16-17 years and is obligatory for all citizens. Studying in the UK in high school combines two basic stages:
- 11-14 years old, is called Key Stage 3;
- 14-17 years old, called Key Stage 4.
2 years after starting secondary school, you must pass a general exam, which includes about ten subjects. Among them are the Latin script, Welsh and Irish languages. Having successfully passed them, you can continue learning. After that, students undergo career guidance in order to understand what subjects they have abilities and interest in.
Upon completion, each student receives a GCSE certificate. Then you can continue to study and prepare for admission to a higher educational institution or go to work. Compulsory education for the British ends in high school.
Education from the age of 16
If the student is not going to immediately go to work after the GSCE exam, he can continue his studies and stay at school for another 2 years. It was at this time that active preparation for entering the university begins.
Those wishing to continue their studies go to the A-level course. Each year ends with mandatory proficiency exams. The student himself chooses what he wants to study, depending on the goals of the future admission.
In the first year, he must choose 4-5 subjects, in the second year – 3-4 disciplines. There is not a single subject that is compulsory for all students. The general education school offers about 20 disciplines. The prospective student chooses exactly those who will then determine his specialty.
Study in England for Russians begins precisely with the A-level stage, that is, preparation for the institute. Without it, there is practically no chance of admission.
It is paid for both the British and the guests of the island. However, there are free tuition programs for the best students. Local citizens have some privileges, for example, the possibility of partial payment. Higher education is possible from the age of 18. It includes:
- bachelor’s degree;
- doctoral degree.
Studying for a bachelor’s degree lasts 3-4 years. Usually, with a four-year study, the last year is aimed at obtaining knowledge of the first master’s degree. After successful graduation, the student has the right to go to work in the chosen field, or continue to study in:
- Master’s degree – implies research activities, lasts about two years;
- postgraduate studies – improving knowledge lasts three years.
Few people know that the educational system of Britain was the basis for the popular and used in many countries Bologna system. The academic year differs from the usual one for our students (semesters or quarters) and consists of three terms. Students attend standard lectures and seminars, but a lot of attention is also paid to self-study and tutorials. This concept refers to the performance of work by small groups of students with supervisors.
Progress is constantly monitored through coursework, research projects and essays, and there are mandatory exams at the end of the year. The scoring is different. In some institutions, it is displayed as a percentage.
Conservatism does not prevent the British from regularly working on the educational system and improving it. Universities are constantly being equipped with new tools and technologies, teaching is also amenable to change and new methods.
Classification of schools by gender of students
There are the following types of schools in Britain:
- Mixed is a standard variety, familiar to our realities. Both sexes are trained in them. Proponents of blended learning emphasize that from an early age, a child learns to communicate and interact with the opposite sex. Also, the opposite sex enhances motivation for learning and self-development.
- For girls – educational institutions in which only girls study. This type of school also has many advocates. Girls develop emotionally and physically much faster, so in such a school they will not have to adapt to the capabilities of the opposite sex. They are distinguished by better discipline and are not distracted by “love”, therefore they study better and show better results.
- For boys – educational institutions in which only boys study. This is argued by the fact that they are very active and mobile, therefore they require a different approach and more sports activities. The criteria for success also differ – the emphasis is on leadership and self-confidence.
Features of English education
All citizens of the country must receive an English education in the period from 5 to 16 years. Parents can send their child to a public or private school, based on their wishes and possibilities. The first method is affordable and free, while not everyone can afford private education.
Also, this country is distinguished by a variety of types of schools. Pensions, which first appeared several centuries ago, are widespread here. Children not only study, but also live in such schools.
Preschool education system
Preschool education is an important component of the educational cycle. Children study in kindergartens from 2 to 7 years old. However, most parents decide to send their child to primary school at the age of 4-5 years.