Higher Education in Britain
Higher Education in Britain
Only 25 per cent of the student population goes on to higher education. Competition to get into one of Britain's universities is fierce and not everyone who gets A-levels can go. Students usually need three A-levels to go to university and grades at A-level go from A, the highest grade, to E.
Students apply to universities months before they take their A-levels. The students are given a personal interview and the universities then decide which students they want. They offer them a place which depends on A-level results. The more popular university, the higher the grades it will ask for.
Most big towns in Britain have both a university and a college of higher education. A British university usually consists of colleges. The departments of the colleges are organized into faculties. There are 91 universities and 47 colleges of higher education in Britain. The most famous and prestigious universities are those in Oxford and Cambridge.
Universities offer three- and four-year degree courses. A degree is the qualification you get from university when you pass your final exams. You are then awarded a BA (Bachelor of Arts), BSc (Bachelor of Science) or BEd (Bachelor of Education).
Students who are studying for degrees are called undergraduates. They go to large formal lectures, but most of the work takes place in tutorials: lessons in groups often or more when students discuss their work with the lecturer.
Most British students choose to go to university a long way from their home town. University is seen as a time to be independent, to live away from home and develop new interests. British students do not have to pay to go to university, but do need money to live away from home while they are studying. Some students whose parents do not earn a lot of money are given a grant from the local education authority. If students do not get a grant, parents are expected to pay for their children. In fact, the grant is not a lot of money. Students used to work during holidays to earn more money, but it is now difficult to find such jobs. The result is that more students are dropping out, failing to finish their courses.
Not all students study full time at university or college. Manj people combine their studies with work. Large companies often have their own in-house training schemes. The British government very enthusiastic about such training schemes, because so few people go to university.
competition — конкурс
fierce — большой, высокий, жестокий
grade — оценка, отметка
degree — (ученая) степень
to award — присуждать
bachelor — бакалавр
undergraduate — студент
университета tutorial — консультация,
с руково independent — независимый
to develop — развивать
to earn — зарабатывать
grant — стипендия, грант
local education authority — местные органы народного образования
to expect — ожидать, предполагать
to drop out — бросать (учебу)
to fail — терпеть неудачу, не суметь
to study full time — учиться очно
to combine — совмешать, сочетать
scheme — схема
to be enthusiastic about — относиться с энтузиазмом
training — обучение
few — мало
1. Is it difficult to get a place at a university in Britain?
2. How long does a student have to study to take a UK degree?
3. What kind of degrees can students be awarded?
4. Does University teaching UK differ from that in other countries? In what way?
5. What are the advantages and disadvantages of going to university or college in Britain?
6. What can students do if they don't get a grant and their parents refuse to pay for their education?
7. Do many British go on to higher education?
8. Wbuld you like to enter any British university or college? Why?
9. What is necessary for a Russian student to go to university in Britain?
10. Can you compare British and Russian universities?