The Differences Between UK Universities and US Universities

Nowadays, more and more students choose to study abroad for better education. UK and US are two of countries that accept most international students in the world. At the same time, this 2 countries are good choices for students among the world. However, which country is better? It is a difficult question to answer because both of UK and US have their own advantages and drawbacks. UK is seen as a traditional country and US means more free and open. So, in fact, there are some differences between UK and US about universities.

This essay will examine the differences in terms of application, life of students, teachers, students, accommodation, degree and some academic questions.


First of all, this essay will consider the application process. Different people assessing your application in these two countries. In the UK, students’ application will be assessed by a member of academic teaching staff and these people would be teaching you if you were to be given a place.

However , in the US, admissions office people were just managers and would not affect the decisions. It means students have two kinds of audiences to appeal to. Second, UK students must write a personal statement and US students must write a “College Application Essay”. But there are some differences between statement and essay. The personal statement is subject-focused, showcasing your interest in the subject, your academic knowledge and your ability to think in the right way about it. It explains your desire to study the subject and how it fits in with your long-term aims.

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Also, it shows what you’ve done to pursue your interest in the subject beyond the classroom and avoid humour. In comparison, College application essay shows more students’ personality, background and non-academic accomplishments. It’s entertaining and interesting, displaying more self-confidence than a UK personal statement. It focuses on why you want to study at that named institution. (Oxford-Royale)

Life of Students

The life of these two countries students are very different. For example, when you start your first week in us universities, you may go to parties with your roommates whether you like them or not. Also, you can sigh up so many clubs you like, anyway ,you can do many things if you would like to. It means you can have a best week ever. But if you do not like these activities, it’s okay because you can find friends later. In UK, you may not have many lectures to attend or events to focus on. Besides, you can just choose those clubs you like and them will send you e-mails for three years… On the other hand, UK and US students can do a variety of activities after classes such as basketball, football, tennis and so on. By the way, US students may prefer basketball and UK students prefer football.

Teachers and Students

“In US , all teachers are called professors even if you’re being taught by a graduate student, you probably call them professor. Basically in American universities, you really throw this term around.” (BuzzfeeD, September 2, 2015) However, in UK, the title is totally different. We call those people who do teaching and research as “academic staff” and if they did a good job for a few years, they can be promoted to “reader”. Later on, they would be called “professor” if they did really very well. That is a long process. In 2016-2017, 81% of students studying in HE in the UK are from the UK. 6% are from the rest of the EU and 13% are from the rest of the world. (UKCISA). US is a popular choice for students, too. Last year, more than 1 million international students went to us universities.


The difference of UK and US universities is quite different. In the US , it’s very normally to share your room with 2 or 3 students. If you got a single room, you are very lucky. But in the UK, everyone can have their own rooms without share. We can’t say which one is better because both of them have advantages and drawbacks. Now, UK students are required to pay up to £9250 per year. In US, average accommodation cost is $9800 per year at public four-year colleges and $11,100 per year at private four-year colleges.


Every students attach great importance to this part because it prove how much you paid and what you can got. In US, you need four years to get Bachelor’s Degrees, two years for Master’s Degrees and five to seven years for Doctoral Degrees. But in the UK, you need three years for Bachelor’s Degrees, one year for Master’s Degrees and three years for Doctoral Degrees. Generally, the cost of time in UK is less, so some people say that UK degree may not good enough then.


There is a big different of first year study between uk universities and us universities. If you are a student in UK, you must choose a specific subject which you want to study during your next four-year. However, in US, you don’t need to choose a subject and you can study a general subject. You can make the subject decision when you start your second year study in universities. It means you can have enough time to choose which subject is your favourite.

There are some questions deserve to discuss.

What kinds of students are suitable to UK universities and what kind is suitable to US universities?

It is undeniable that study abroad is a very special experience for students cause they can live in a different country, to know more people with different skins and know about the country well. Britain has a deep cultural heritage. It suit to those who want pursue high-quality education instead of living abroad, because it’s hard for other countries’ people to immigrant. Also, it is suitable for some people want to get degree in a short term. America is the most developed country around the world, so the technology is very leading. If some students want to have a achievement in some area or do some deeply research. it’s better for them to study in US.

Does the universities have any problems?

Obviously, the cost is a big problem for students. For normal family, maybe it’s uneasy to let child to study abroad. For example, if a student live in London, only the fee of accommodation is very high, so before we study abroad, we should think about the economical problem. On the other hand, for students, it may be the first time they leave parents for such a long time. Without care of parents, can we live and study well? Will we be addicted to alcohol or games? It is a problem we can not ignore.

In conclusion, UK universities and us universities are quite different in many ways. So, it means we would get different knowledge, friends, life and so on. It may change our future life and our personalities probably. Every students, especially international students should think about it very deeply and then choose which kind of universities is better to them.

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The Differences Between UK Universities and US Universities. (2021, Apr 21). Retrieved from

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