System of Education in the United Kingdom

The quality of a country’s future life, commercially, industrially and intellectually, depends on the quality of its education system. The state in the United Kingdom provides a full range of free schooling. Those parents who prefer to send their children to private educational institutions, are free to do so. There are about 2500 fee-paying, or public schools in the country. State schooling in the UK is not as centralized as in most European countries.

Firstly, there is no prescribed curriculum. Secondly, the types of schools available and the age ranges for which they cater vary in different parts of the country. Local Educational Authorities are responsible for education in each area. At any state school no tuition fees are payable. State schooling in the UK is funded by the government and the local rates.

Schooling is voluntary under the age of five, and compulsory from 5 to 16. Generally, primary education in the UK takes place in infant schools (for ages 5-7) and junior schools (for ages 8-11); secondary education takes place in secondary schools. Pupils can stay at school voluntarily for up to three years longer. Until 1964 children took an ‘eleven plus exam’ at the age of 11 and were ‘streamed’ according to the results of the exam for education in different types of secondary schools. Grammar schools provided a mainly academic course for the top 20 %, technical schools specialized in technical studies, modern schools provided a general education with a practical bias.

In 1965 non-selective comprehensive schools were introduced, though the old system still exists. Having completed a compulsory education, 16 year-olds may start work, remain at school or study at a Further Education college. At schools and colleges they can take the school-leaving General Certificate of Secondary Education (GCSE) exams – in a range of subjects.

Other students prefer to pursue work-based training such as General National

Vocational Qualifications (GNVQs), which provide skills and knowledge some in vocational areas such as business, engineering, etc. Having completed GCSEs most students usually specialize in three to four subjects leading to General Certificate of Education (GCE) A Levels. Others can take higher grade GNVQs. Many students then move towards higher education training at universities, colleges and institutes offering studies at degree level and higher.

The most common degree courses, which usually take three years to complete are the Bachelor of Arts (BA), Bachelor of Science (BSc), Bachelor of Education (BEd), Bachelor of Engineering (BEng) and Bachelor of Laws (LLB). Master degrees for those undertaking further study include the Master of Arts (MA), Master of Science (MSc), Master of Business Administration (MBA) and Master of Laws (LLM). Then there are research-based postgraduate courses leading to the Master of Philosophy (MPhil) and Doctor of Philosophy (PhD/DPhil).

These academic qualifications involve thousands of courses at more than 180 higher educational establishments in Britain. The most famous British universities are, of course, Oxford and Cambridge called ‘Oxbridge’ and famous for their academic excellence.

Translate the following sentences into English.

1. В Великобритании государство предоставляет весь спектр образовательных возможностей: платные частные школы и бесплатные государственные школы различных типов. 2. В государственных школах Великобритании нет обязательной программы, они финансируются правительством или из местных налогов. 3. Начальное образование делится на начальную школу и младшую школу, средние школы делятся на грамматические, технические, современные школы и неселективные общеобразовательные школы.

4. После завершения обязательного образования в 16 лет ученик может остаться в школе, пойти работать или пойти в колледж для дальнейшего обучения. 5. Ученики средней школы сдают экзамены на Общий сертификат о среднем образовании в 16 лет и экзамены повышенного уровня в 18, если они остаются в школе. 6. Высшее образование включает курсы, ведущие к степени бакалавра искусств, наук, образования, инженерных наук или юриспруденции. 7. Те, кто продолжает образование, получают степень магистра искусств, наук, управления бизнесом или юриспруденции.

8. Исследовательские курсы, подводящие к получению степеней выше бакалавра, могут привести к степеням магистра философии или доктора философии.

1. The state in the United Kingdom provides a full range of educational facilities – fee-paying public schools, and free state schools of different types. 2. State schools in the UK have no prescribed curriculum and are funded by the government and the local rates. 3. Primary education is divided into infant schools and junior schools; secondary schools are divided into grammar, technical, modern and non-selective comprehensive schools. 4. After completing compulsory education at 16, a pupil can stay at school, work or go to a Further Education College.

5. Pupils of a secondary school take General Certificate of Education exams at 16 and A-level exams at 18 (if they remain at school). 6. Higher education training includes courses leading to the Bachelor of Arts, Science, Education, Engineering or Laws degree. 7. Those undertaking further study get the Master of Arts, Science, Business Administration or Laws degree.

8. Research-based postgraduate courses lead to the Master of Philosophy and Doctor of Philosophy.

Из пособия “ЕГЭ. Английский язык. Устные темы” Занина Е. Л. (2010, 272с.) – Part two.

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System of Education in the United Kingdom