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Education system in the USA


For international students, Education system in the USA provides a diverse range of options. There are so many schools, programs, and places that even students from the United States may be overwhelmed. As you begin your school search, it is critical that you become acquainted with the American educational system. A better understanding of the system can help you make a more profound choice. 

Why study in the USA?

Students dream of studying at their favourite reputable universities. The United States offers many courses from prestigious universities. According to the U.S. News & World Report, the United States is home to around half of the world's greatest universities. Universities in the United States provide top-ranked academic opportunities in all fields, from undergraduate courses to Ph.D. programs. You can select from a vast range of institutions in the US, as there are over 5000 options. Different Universities offer various courses, from world-class academics to international-friendly study programmes.

Another significant advantage of enrolling in a university in the United States is the ability to explore your interests before committing to an academic degree program. Whether you wish to pursue your studies with a specified major or as an undeclared major, US institutions allow you the time and space to do so.

USA Educational Structure

 For international students, the US education system offers a variety of options. Early childhood education is followed in the United States by primary school (also known as elementary school), middle school, secondary school (also known as high school in the United States), and post-secondary education. Many students pursuing higher education in the United States must be startled to learn that the country lacks an educational system. The federal government can only affect education by the budget it provides, which is limited.

However, before beginning the search for the greatest educational institution for their child, an individual should be aware of tutoring in the United States. This will assist parents in planning their children's education accordingly. The United States is one of the best destinations to pursue higher education, yet, selecting the ideal institution for your study is critical.

The US education system is divided into the following categories:

Elementary or primary school - Six-year-old youngsters in the United States start primary school and stay for five or six years.

Secondary school is divided into two parts: Junior or middle school and high school. Children in the United States who complete elementary school join secondary school and receive a certificate or diploma upon graduation from high school (12th grade).

Higher Education - post-high school, students in the United States can enrol in a college or university, which is referred to as "Higher Education." In the United States, higher education is further classified as follows:

Associate degree - This is a two-year program that prepares students for employment. This corresponds to the first 2 years of a four-year Bachelor's degree program. This program is open to students who have completed high school.

Bachelor's Degree - A three or four-year undergraduate program that includes core courses, electives, majors, and minors. Students who have completed high school may apply for this degree.

Master's Degree - There are two types of Master's degrees in the United States: Academic Master's and Professional Master's. The Professional Master's program lasts one to three years, whereas the Academic Master's program lasts two years. The academic Master's degree is conferred in traditional fields such as the arts, humanities, and science. As part of their curriculum, students enrolled in a Master's program must produce a research paper. Students with an Academic Master's degree can apply for a Doctoral program in the United States. The professional Master's degree, on the other hand, prepares students to enter a certain job by providing them with specialised expertise in a field.

The education system in India vs the USA


Education system in India

Education system in the USA


Mandatory from age 6

Mandatory from age 5-18

Grading system



University Admission

Entrance exam

Standardised test

Special Education



Mode of Education 

Hindi, English(mainly)


Accreditation of USA

The US Education System uses accreditation to verify that institutes meet and maintain the minimum requirement of excellent education. Accreditation is done by schools, post-secondary institutions, and other organisations. Accreditation is recognised by federal and state governments as a component that ensures institutional and automatic validity. In other words, certification from a recognised accrediting organisation is acknowledged as evidence of the United States' similarity to other countries around the world.

Accreditation Types in the United States

  • Accreditation at the Elementary and Secondary Levels
  • Accreditation for Postsecondary Education
  • Diploma Mills & Fraud Under Federal Recognition & Approval
  • Other Quality Assurance Measures

Different types of higher education institutions in USA education system

Universities in the Ivy League

These are the most well-known American institutions, which were founded with eight private universities as an athletic conference of sports teams headquartered in the US Northeast. These universities are known for their undergraduate liberal arts education, as well as various professional and graduate schools. Furthermore, admittance to these universities is highly competitive, with high tuition prices. Universities that are members include:

  • Harvard College
  • Princeton College
  • University of Yale
  • The University of Columbia Cornell
  • College Penn State University
  • Brown College
  • Dartmouth University

Universities open to the public

These universities are state-affiliated and are sometimes referred to as state universities because they are funded by public funds. Public universities are frequently, but not always, part of a state university system, which is a group of public institutions that operate independently in different states but share management and administration. Furthermore, all courses and degrees are available at various post-secondary levels. International students pay slightly greater tuition than regular students but less than private universities. The following are the Education system in USA  most well-known public universities:

  • Texas A&M University
  • The Michigan State University
  • Florida State University
  • Pennsylvania State University is a public university in Pennsylvania.
  • California State University

Private colleges and universities

The government does not subsidise or assist these universities. They are supported privately by academic research grants, alumni donations, and tuition fees. Nonetheless, they get public money in the form of tax breaks, government student loans, and grants. These universities' tuition fees are slightly more than those of public universities, but they stay the same for both domestic and international students. According to THE Rankings 2021, popular private universities include:

  • Harvard College
  • The University of Stanford
  • University of Yale
  • MIT stands for Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • The University of Duke
  • Brown College

Still unclear about anything? Well, not to worry. Contact AECC and get your queries answered today! AECC is one of the world's leading educational consultancies, with versatile expert professionals ready to help you with any queries you may have. Contact us so we can be of assistance to you in your journey to achieving your dream.


4. Does a US degree have value in India?

Yes, a degree from a recognised and accredited university in the United States is widely recognised and valued in India.

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