Education system in China and USA



Education is the basis for all developed and developing countries. Education systems vary from country to country. The differences may be negligible since they are more similar than different. The education system in China and USA, for example, are different in some ways yet similar in others. Both of these countries are careful about being left behind in higher education ranking. People may end up asking “which system is better?” or “where should I go for advancing my studies?”. USA system takes a shorter time compared to China even if the content learnt is the same. I am going to compare the two systems of education, student life, and the college campuses

The mission of the institutions in both China and the USA are similar in that they focus on teaching, research and development. Education in both is highly valued by the government a key to boosting the economy. Though differently structured, 1st – 12th grade are the basic education in both China and the USA. Higher education are bachelor’s degree, masters’ degree and doctorate. When it comes to student life on campus, even after considering china’s population, schools are well spaced with recreational facilities like gymnasiums, games and such. There are shopping centers within the campus and students seem to be living there (Fallows, 2015).

These education systems though having those similarities have some few things that make them different for one another. In China, school days go for longer hours than in the United States. Students in China study for 10 hours or more whereas students in the USA study for less than 8. Students in China study in the same class all day with the same set of classmates every day while students in the USA take their classes in different rooms with different sets of classmates. In addition to this, the number of students in one class in China is over fifty while in the USA is below 25 (Grace, 2009).

The fact that both systems consider 1st – 12th grade as basic schooling, they are structured differently. In China, kindergarten – 6th grade is the elementary school and 7th – 12th grade is middle

school different from the USA where kindergarten – 5th grade is elementary, 6th – 8th grade is junior high and 9th – 12th grade is high school (Grace, 2009).

When it comes to college admission, these two countries operate very differently. In the USA, college entry follows accounts of high school grades, extracurricular activities, standardized test scores, teacher recommendation application letters and even personal interviews with the institution registrar applied by the student. In China, a whole different set of steps is followed. College entry is determined by a standard test administered once at the end of every final year in a student’s high school years. This brings healthy competition among students (Dalian, 2007).

When it comes to how content is passed from teacher to student, these two countries differ vastly. In China, information is taught on a lecturing basis where the students keep quiet and listen to the lecturer from beginning to end. This minimizes teacher-student interaction and maintains the respect between them. In the USA, this same information is acquired through discussion. The teacher and the students engage in a discussion and through this participation, they strengthen the teacher-student relationship. Well…to some extent it also leads to disrespect since the system encourages freedom of speech and expression (Grace, 2009).


Personally, Education is paramount. School equips students with the skills they’ll need in their lives and careers as they grow. USA and China are not that different. USA system takes a shorter period to finish a particular course and China takes longer in the same course. China emphasis is on the moral values like respect. Not that the USA doesn’t have the same, but it does this in a different way like guidance and counselling sessions and such. Though these two countries have some differences in their schooling systems, the basic mission of the school is the same throughout. Teaching, Research and Innovative development.



Dalian. (2007, June 1). Dalian Diary. Retrieved from 12 Differences between Chinese education and American education | DALIAN DIARY:

Fallows, J. (2015, November 15). Chinese and American education: compare and contrast. Retrieved from Chinese and American schools compared-The Atlantic:

Grace, R. (2009, July 2). China insight. Retrieved from Home|China insight:

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