Stages in a person’s education
Here are some names that are used to describe the different types of education in Britain.

Note: Comprehensive schools in the UK are for all abilities, but grammar schools are usually by competitive entry. Public schools in the UK are very famous private schools. Polytechnics are similar to universities, but the courses tend to be more practically-oriented. Colleges include teacher-training colleges, technical colleges and general colleges of further education.

Exams and qualifications

Some schools give pupils tests every week or month to see if they are making progress. The school-leaving exams are held in May/June. In some schools, colleges and universities, instead of tests and exams there is continuous assessment, with marks, e.g. 65%, or grades, e.g. A, B+, for essays and projects during the term. If you pass your university exams, you graduate /’graedjueit/ (get a degree), then you’re a graduate /’graedjuat/.

Talking about education

– Asking somebody about their country’s education system.
– What age do children start school at?
– What’s the school-leaving age?
– Are there evening classes for adults?
– Do you have state and private universities?
– Do students get grants for further education?

Note: A professor is a senior university academic, not an ordinary teacher. University and college teachers are usually called lecturers or tutors.