USNEWS:美国的“学院”与“大学”有什么区别?

布朗大学(Brown University, Providence, R.I.)
2019年1月13日
公立学区:梭伦市学区(Solon City School District, Solon, OH)
2019年1月14日
显示所有

By Kelly Mae Ross

USNEWS是美国最重要的教育、医疗相关新闻媒体,尤其出名的就是每年各行各业的排名榜,已经让USNEWS成为全世界瞩目的地方;当然,这也是基于其相对公正的排名体系,才获得了全球的认可。对于中国留学生来说,最重要的排名就是其每年颁布的教育排名。其排名分类之细、排名依据之繁复,让很多中国学生感到困惑。比如其发布的美国大学排行榜与全球大学排行榜,如果把后者中的非美国大学排除后,两个榜中的美国大学排行竟然不一致!是不是很神奇!其实,在早期,美国大学排行榜其原名为美国大学学院排行榜。但随着时间的推移,这个排行榜进行了一系列的改革,大学学院排行榜也变更为大学排行榜。但实质上,其仍然将很多专门的文理学院另成一个排名,而不在这个排名之列。

原来的美国大学学院排行榜,一般来说,是将大学中的本科学院进行排名;其主要比较的是一些本科教育相关的指标。而全球大学排行榜,不仅包括本科教学,也包括研究生教学,尤其重要的是学校的科研水平及成果。因此,才会有种说法是,大学提供本科和研究生课程,而许多学院只专注于本科生。也因此,才会出现两个不同的排行榜。

实际上,这里的美国大学排行榜还是将大学的本科教育与专门的本科教育机构-“文理学院(Liberal Arts Colleges)”区分开了,后者也有一个专门的排行榜。但看看前者榜中的一些公立研究型大学的排名明显较全球大学排行榜靠后,说明美国大学排行榜中的评价指标还是偏重于本科教学。当然我们还是比较认可这个评价,就是“美国的大学是由本科生与研究生共同来分配资源,而文理学院的资源基本都给了本科生”!

还是来看一下最专业的USNEWS的教育专栏作家如何评价美国大学与学院的不同吧。

The difference between a college and a university in the U.S. may not always be apparent to students who grew up in other parts of the world. The word “college” doesn’t have the same meaning in every country, which can create confusion for prospective international students interested in studying in the U.S.

“In Spanish, ‘colegio’ means high school,” says George DaPonte, director of international admissions at the University of Tampa in Florida, citing one example.

For this and other reasons, some prospective students may pass over U.S. schools that have “college” instead of “university” in their name, admissions experts say. By doing so, students could miss out on a school that may have been a good fit.

While some four-year postsecondary institutions in the U.S. have “college” in their name and others have “university,” both types grant undergraduate degrees. Here are some things to keep in mind when researching U.S. institutions that call themselves colleges and those that identify as universities.

What Is a College?

Oftentimes schools with “college” in their name are smaller institutions that emphasize undergraduate education, Johanna Fishbein, head of university advising at the United World College of South East Asia’s Dover Campus, an international school, said by email. This is not a strict rule, since there are a number of exceptions.

Some colleges, known as liberal arts colleges, give students an education in a broad range of academic areas as opposed to having them specialize early in one particular subject.

Since liberal arts colleges are uncommon outside the U.S., prospective international students aren’t always familiar with them, says Carly Mankus, senior assistant dean of international admission at Franklin and Marshall College, a liberal arts school in Pennsylvania.

Prospective students may also sometimes mistakenly believe liberal arts institutions only focus on the humanities, admissions experts say. But many of these schools offer degrees in science fields too.

Another common misconception is that schools with “college” in their name don’t offer much in the way of research opportunities, said Fishbein, who serves as president of the International Association for College Admission Counseling. But, for example, 65 percent of Franklin and Marshall students participate in research before they graduate, Mankus says.

Another type of school in the U.S. with “college” in its name is a community college. These are two-year schools that grant associate degrees and career-related certificates. Community colleges vary in enrollment size – some are large, despite having “college” in their name.

Some students begin their education at a community college and then transfer to a four-year college or university to complete a bachelor’s degree.

What Is a University?

Many schools with “university” in their name are larger institutions that offer a variety of both undergraduate and graduate degree programs.

Public universities are some of the most sizable schools, sometimes enrolling tens of thousands of students. These schools are also highly committed to producing research.

But it is a misconception that all schools with “university” in their name are big, says Chelsea Keeney, assistant director of international student recruitment at the University of Minnesota—Twin Cities.

Some are relatively small, such as Marymount California University, which had a total enrollment of 985 students in fall 2016, per U.S. News data.

Also, not all universities are public. Private universities include, among many institutions, some of the Ivy League schools, like Princeton University.

Sometimes adding to the confusion for international students, Keeney says, is the fact that large universities are often made up of smaller divisions called colleges. Each of these colleges has a specific academic focus, such as business, engineering or social work.

And liberal arts-type study is not exclusive to small colleges. Some, but not all, universities have a core curriculum for undergraduates, meaning students take a variety of general education courses before focusing on their major.

By nature of their size, large universities tend to offer a wider array of research opportunities than small colleges. “But undergraduate students may need to compete with graduate students for resources and opportunities,” Fishbein said.

Which Type of School Is Right for You?

Mankus from Franklin and Marshall says prospective international students may want to keep their options open by applying to different types of institutions in the U.S. She says students often learn new things about themselves and their options later in the application process.

“If some place really interests you or some place just sounds so tantalizing, even if it’s not that same type that you think you might want when you start out, keep it in the mix,” Mankus says. “What harm could it do?”

发表评论