When choosing an international school for your children, most parents tend to look at the curriculum used by the school. Naturally, parents hailing from the UK tend to choose schools that promote a British curriculum, as this is an easy transition for their children. The same is true for Australian and American parents. The American curriculum offers top-tier quality in terms of education and can help prepare your child for university in the future.
The Basics of the American Curriculum
The American curriculum is based on the Common Core State Standards, also called the CCSS. These standards are assessed for grades K-12, which starts from about 4-5 years old and ends at the end of high school for American students, typically 17-18 years old. After this, students prepare for university.
Education in the U.S. can vary state by state for multiple reasons. California, for example, has many standards that appeal to second-language learners, as there is a high population of Mexican students that attend schools in California, and English is perhaps not their first language.
Many states choose a standards-based grading, which means that students are assessed on a particular standard, rather than graded for a project as a whole. This helps to address specific issues that a student might have.
How the American Curriculum Prepares Your Child for University
There are classes offered within the American curriculum that are well-suited for students that plan to go to college. These are in the form of AP- Advanced Placement, or Honours.
- Honours classes: Honours classes are for students that are comfortable within a subject and want to push their boundaries. While the course will still operate under the CCSS, the content will be more difficult. Honours classes are great to have on transcripts when getting ready for higher education.
- AP classes: Advanced Placement is similar to honours classes but slightly more rigorous. If a student wants to enrol in an AP class in the states, they usually must apply and interview for a particular class. They will also need permission from their subject teacher the year before, stating they are ready for this level of coursework. Students that regularly take AP classes in a particular subject and pass may not need to take these courses again in university. These are university-level classes, and a great choice for transcripts.
The American curriculum can offer many benefits to students wishing to attend university. Standards-based grading can help target particular needs and strengths. If you’re looking for a great curriculum, look no further than the American one.