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#1 10/8/13 13:55

Samer
Member
From: Lebanon
Registered: 4/9/09
Website

Your education system ?

I'm curious to know how the education system is like in other countries  ..
For example here it's obligatory to take these courses each year till 10th grade:
Math, Biology, Chemistry, Physics, English Language or French Language, Arabic Language (main language), History, Geography and Sociology.

Then in grade 11 the student can choose one of 2 branches to continue in,
scientific: focuses on Science and Math (still takes the other courses but their % of the overall grade becomes much lower) or literature: focuses on Language, History, Sociology and Philosophy.

Then in grade 12 student can choose out of 4 branches : 1.Life Sciences (focus on Biology, Chemistry,) , 2.Mathmetics (focus on Math and Physics) 3.Philosophy (Literature History and Philosophy) or 4.Economics and Sociology (sociology, economics) but all 4 branches continue taking all other subjects but with lower % of the overall score with few exceptions.

grade 1 to 5 are elementary school
grade 6 to 9 are intermediate school
grade 10 to 12 are highschool
after grade 12 one can continue to college/university with a major they choose that suits the branch they studied.

there are official exams at the end of grade 9 and grade 12 held by the ministry of education.

how is the education system in your country ? And what is your favorite school subject ?

Last edited by Samer (10/8/13 13:58)


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#2 10/8/13 14:18

TOCS
Member
From: Denmark
Registered: 4/4/07

Re: Your education system ?

In Denmark we start at school at the year of at least 5 (usually 6 though). There are 10 grades: 0 - 9, starting at 0 of course. Courses like mathematics, Danish (our language obviously), English, history, physics and chemistry (melted into one course), biology, geography are all obligatory. When you hit the 6th grade you get your first electives and you get to choose if you want to learn German. The electives are usually it's between cooking, blacksmithing,  carpenter, painting and art or tailoring. Every year until you hit 9th grade, you have to pick at least two. When you hit 9th grade the electives are over. Before the exam in 9th grade however you are presented with term tests in 8th grade so you get a feel for it.

All this is of course based on what it was like back when I still was in elementary school. After elementary you can do whatever you want basically. Take a Sabbath Year, take the 10th grade (which is basically the same as 9th grade) or continue on with other educations.

Personally I'm studying marketing related subjects on a youth education program called HTX on a school called EUC-Syd ('Syd' meaning 'South' which is because I live in the southern region of my country known as South Jutland). This education of course includes the usual stuff like English, mathematics, physics, chemistry so on so forth. I'll be done in 2015. I had some problems acquiring internship while doing various educations before going to HTX, so I eventually ended up somewhere else. This means if I had taken HTX back right when I left elementary, I could've been done with it now and continued for university or something else.

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#3 10/8/13 16:56

Iritscen
Moderator
From: NC, USA
Registered: 22/10/07

Re: Your education system ?

You guys both have very specifically-structured educational systems.  For the U.S., at least where I went to school, it was fairly unstructured.  There was just a pool of required and elective courses in high school (9th-12th); for instance, art class was required for a semester some time in high school, and it was up to you what grade to take it in.  Classes in elementary and middle school were fixed, as far as I remember.  There may have been a few electives in middle school (6th-8th).  Elementary school (1st-5th) gave us the usual basic reading/writing classes, plus teaching us typing (which was all you did with computers back then), music, and the basic kinds of art.

It would be unheard of for a normal American high school to offer classes in blacksmithing, carpentry, or tailoring, or anything else physical in nature.  I think there are "vocational" high schools that specialize in certain areas, though, like computers, as well as the "trades" like carpentry.  But normal American schools excel in teaching you things that are absolutely useless in everyday life (higher math, hard sciences), thus most students in those classes are not motivated.  We do learn a tiny bit of sewing and cooking in Home Ec, and also woodworking; those classes are in middle school.  After that it's all esoteric subjects that nobody needs to know.  They don't teach kids any "life skills", assuming that parents will teach those at home (which they do maybe 50% of the time, tops).

When I was in school, there were major tests in 10th grade (CAPT — that was the Connecticut test, no idea what other states do) and in 12th grade (SAT — that gives you the all-important score that you need to get into a good college).  My school also required you to come up with a project at the end of 12th grade based on a subject of your choosing (like making a movie or putting on a presentation about foreign film).  But things are always changing, so who knows how it works now.  The grade divisions also differ by school system, so some schools will be 1-6, 7-8, 9-12, or something else.

Then you have college — broadly speaking, two years there will get you an Associate's Degree and four will get you a Bachelor's Degree.  Then, for the big-money or very technical occupations, you move on to graduate school to get a Master's Degree (typically two years) or a Doctorate, AKA a PhD (could be 3-8 years after the Master's Degree).  Then there might be post-graduate school and post-doctoral fellowships to slowly ease you into the field of your choice.  But few people need to do all that for their career; most get a Master's Degree, and that's it.

You can probably tell that I have some issues with the way things are done.  I think students should start specializing in a certain area by 9th grade, for one thing, because the "liberal arts" 9-12 approach wastes a lot of time before you can get to college to study in your preferred area.  The end result in most high schools is that it feels like they're just making up excuses to keep you indoors.  By the time I was in 10th grade, I had pretty much decided that I only cared about programming anyway, and did a minimum of work in all other classes in protest of the workload.  Needless to say I didn't have a great GPA, but it didn't affect me later in life, so I guess I was right and they were wrong.

College also wastes a lot of time.  I had to take Humanities and Chemistry even though I was studying Accounting!  I also had to take an introductory computer course that was 15 years too basic for me, etc.


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#4 11/8/13 3:18

Samer
Member
From: Lebanon
Registered: 4/9/09
Website

Re: Your education system ?

Mmm I think both of your systems have more freedom of choice than mine ... We don't have elective courses during school at all ... Only in college/university ... But i forgot to mention some private schools (elementary to highschool) do offer additional subjects mostly ''sports'' or ''music'' or ''spanish Language'' but they're more or less obligatory. ''computer'' courses are very very basic and not all schools offer them, at grade 6 i was being taught how to use microsoft word ... And at grade 12 i was being taught the same exact thing while i had already learnt much more about computers on my own at home so i was bored out of my mind with what they were teaching.
we don't have any subjects like blacksmithing, cooking, or carpentry at highschool ... However i also forgot to mention, after grade 9 or grade 12 and succeeding the official exam the student can go into what we call ''Practical school'' (translating the name from arabic) instead of continuing 10th grade or going to college ... Practical school teaches stuff like being a car mechanic or a barber or a carpenter or stuff like that ... But it's usually considered by society that those who choose it have failed normal school or aren't smart enough to continue school or go to university. The pros is if they go to practical school after 9th grade they'll have a profession on their hand after 2-3 years .. While if they continue to university they have to pass through 12 grade and then to university taking much more time.
at university (after 12th grade) you choose the major based on your branch .. Those who studied literature can't choose anything scientific ...however those who studied life sciences can choose anything scientific or literature/philosophy related.
then it depends on the major ...
i went into pharmacy which after 5 years gives me a Bachelor's degree. Other majors like Business or accounting take 2-3 years.
then one can continue to take a Master's degree or PhD after the Master's if he wants, similar to what Iritscen said. We only choose some elective courses at uni. But we were obliged at uni to take a 1 course in these subjects Arabic, Human Rights, Intro to Computers (again teaching you how to use microsoft word and powerpoint very basic) and and English Language.
for me i had to choose other electives worth 7 credits throughout the 5 years these included stuff like Statistics, Oral and Dental health, First Aid, and ... That's all i remember ... In short the elective courses were worthless and a complete waste of time, neither the instructor nor the students cared about them, they were just there to force you to take more credits and pay more imo.
What i would change in my education system is give more freedom of choice ... Example I hated sports as a kid, i wish i could have had the choice to take art (painting, drawing) instead.
through high school even after I chose the scientific branch i had to keep taking subjects like philosophy and history which i didn't mind but i wasn't fond of either. And I wish they would take more care of the computer subjects and make them grow instead of repeating the same thing and each year they treat it as if you've never heard of a computer .. (but in some cases that's true for some students .. We're still not very technological friendly compared to other countries). Also Home ed sounds like it would have been useful but we've never had that as a subject, and as Iritscen said, there are basically no courses that give you everyday skills, our high school math and science btw are similar to those in USA, (advanced trigonometry, differential equations etc... but the difficulty differs according to the branch) .

Last edited by Samer (11/8/13 3:25)


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#5 11/8/13 8:46

Iritscen
Moderator
From: NC, USA
Registered: 22/10/07

Re: Your education system ?

Interesting.  I do like the concept of the branches you have in high school, that's a step towards letting kids specialize which I wish they would take here.

Supposedly public schools make kids take all those different kinds of classes to broaden their horizons and let them discover new interests, but in practice, the kids only remember what they need to until they're tested on it.  I think I've heard reliably that we forget 80% of what we learn in school.  So I seriously question the usefulness of making kids take classes they don't want to.

I had to laugh when you said that they kept introducing you to Microsoft Word.  My college class was just as frustrating.  I'll never forget the first thing the teacher in the Intro to Computer Systems class said: "Now, this big... little box is the monitor."  Then he showed us the mouse.  I wanted to shoot myself.  You'd think that they would allow you to skip classes like that if you show aptitude in the admittance test.  Certainly I was able to take some more advanced classes in other areas because I did well in those parts of the admittance test, but they still insisted on the "This is a monitor" class.

In some respects, your classes in high school sound more advanced than ours; my high school was pretty fancy but I don't recall any Philosophy class (insert stereotype here about Americans wink).  Interestingly, "Home Ec" is short for "Home Economics", which sounds like it would teach you about running a household financially, but that's where they taught us sewing and cooking in middle school.  They should have continued with those Home Ec lessons in high school, covering credit cards and other important life stuff.

Overall, I actually did enjoy school; I just wasn't committed to doing all the homework they assigned us.


byproducts are fine, but where's the beef?

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#6 11/8/13 9:12

tens
Member
From: Dota 2
Registered: 27/4/13

Re: Your education system ?

I'm too young to comment about my education system, so I'll just spectate.


What does it matter? Even if the odds are against me, I'll do it, it doesn't matter.

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#7 1/9/13 1:53

berry
Member
From: Singapore
Registered: 15/3/12

Re: Your education system ?

Here in Singapore , we don't go by the "grade" or "year" system. Instead, we follow this system:

Primary school: primary 1( age7 ) to primary 6 (age 12) . after primary 6, everyone will have to sit for a national exam called PSLE, which determines the secondary school one would be posted to. In primary school, we learn English Maths science(very basic phy ,chem ,and bio squished together) and mother toungue.

Secondary school: sec 1 ( age 13) to sec4( age 16) or sec5 ( age 17)
At sec 4, those in the express stream will sit for the olvls. Those in the normal academic stream will sit for the nlvls and then the olvls at sec 5. There's another stream called the normal technical stram but I'm not too sure what goes on there. In sec 1and 2 , we took like all the subjects ( home econs, DnT , bio phy chem , English , mothertounge , lit hits geo, Maths bla bla bla) it was like an exposure year to the different subjects available. At the end of sec2, we will have a sch based streaming exam, which will post us to the different classes with a set of subjects. English , Elementary math, Additional math , bio, phy , chem , geography, social studies were the subjects I took. These will also be the subjects I would have to sit for for the O lvls.

After the O lvls, based on our results, we could choose to go to a Junior College ( it's a 2 year pre university school, preparing us for the GCE Alvls) or a polytechnic ( for a diploma ) . Oh, and since primary and secondary education are the only compulsory education, after completing sec sch some could also choose to go to work.

For me, I'm currently in my first year at a junior college,  studying h2 math, h2phy, h2chem and h1 economics, along with the compulsory h1 subjects: General Paper , Project Work and mother toungue. I wished I could take h1 bio instead of h1econs, but because of the compulsory gov policy to make us all rounders neutral , we must take at least one constrasting subject, which would be an arts subject, hence econs, since I'm in a science stream. Oh and btw h1 means higher 1 and h2 means higher2 . H2 subjects are more in depth then h1 subjects. So aft my Alvls, it would be a one way path to university.

The education system in Singapore is pretty much stressful, with lots of streaming and exams. This 2 years for me would probably be my must stressfull and crucial years of education, cause in JC, u either make it ( to uni) or break it, as an alvl cert is useless unless for uni admission. And the competition here is very intense. Imagine competing with like lots of math and science geniuses from India, and esp ,China. And there are also too few unis in Singapore.


Hmm...

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