Emirates Education Platform

British VS US curriculum

The British and American educational systems have some key differences, although there are also some similarities.

One of the main differences between the two systems is the structure of the curriculum. In the United States, the curriculum is typically determined at the state or local level, whereas in the United Kingdom, the national government sets the curriculum guidelines. This means that there is more variation in the curriculum and teaching methods within the United States compared to the United Kingdom.

Another key difference is the emphasis placed on standardized testing. In the United States, there is a heavy emphasis on standardized testing and the results of these tests are often used to measure the performance of both students and schools. In contrast, standardized testing is not as prevalent in the United Kingdom and results are not typically used to make high-stakes decisions about students or schools.

In terms of the curriculum itself, there are also some notable differences. For example, in the United States, students typically take more elective courses and have more opportunities to specialize in certain subjects, whereas in the United Kingdom, the curriculum is more condensed and standardized, with less room for electives or specialization.

A subject that is mandatory on the British Curriculum is “PSHE” Personal, Social, Health and Economic education, that US has not as mandatory and varies on the state level.

In the US, the education system is divided into the following levels:

Early childhood education (generally from 3 to 5 years old)
Primary education (kindergarten through to 5th or 6th grade)
Middle school (6th or 7th through to 8th grade)
High school (9th through 12th grade)
Higher education (colleges and universities)


In terms of Math Education, both systems have basic similarities but the depth of coverage, pace, and focus of the topics can differ between the two systems. In the United States, math education is often seen as separate from other subjects, whereas in the UK, math is often integrated with other subjects, such as science and engineering. In higher education level, in the US there is a clear distinction between Applied and Pure Mathematics, while in the UK the distinction is not as clear-cut and the curriculum is more flexible

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