[How to prepare your child to study abroad?] Learn more about the UK, US & Canadian education systems

Learn more about the UK, US & Canadian education systems | American School Hong Kong

When it comes to studying abroad, the United Kingdom, United States, and Canada are definitely popular choices for Hong Kong parents. But what are the differences between the three countries when it comes to the education system, academic structure, and campus culture? Continue reading to find out more. 

Length of study

U.S. Education System: 12 years

The US provides 12 years of compulsory education, starting at the age of 6: elementary education (Grade 1 - 5), middle school (Grade 6 - 8), and high school (Grade 9 - 12). High school students will participate in the SAT (Standardized Test) prior to graduation. The test results will allow students to apply to universities in the US. SAT scores of 1400 or higher allow students to have a better chance of admission to top-tier universities. 

UK academic system: 13 years

The UK academic system adopts a 13-year education system, starting from the age of 5: Primary (Year 1-6) and Secondary (Year 7-13). In years 10 to 11, students will study for the General Certificate of Secondary Education (GCSE). Following GCSE would be A level study (Year 12 - 13) which will prepare students for university.

Canadian academic system: 12 years

In Canada, each province has its own education system and curriculum, parents should pay special attention to this. The entire Canadian education system runs based on a 12-year educational system, 6 years of elementary school, and 6 years of secondary school (except Quebec). Also, it is not required for students to take public exams prior to entering university.

The educational system in Canada is pretty much identical to Hong Kong. The only difference is that students in Hong Kong are required to take a public examination before entering university.  

The unique advantages of American School Hong Kong (ASHK)

Parents start to think about their child’s university pathway at a young age. However, with various education systems in the world, parents are often confused and unsure about which educational pathway their child should embark on. In this case, parents can consider enrolling their child in an international school that provides the IB programme. 

International Schools providing the IB programme

American School Hong Kong (ASHK) is an international school located in Tai Po, offering a through-train education, from KG to grade 12. ASHK is one of the selected international schools accredited by the IBO, offering the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme (IBDP) for students in grades 11 to 12. The IBDP nurtures students to become independent learners, critical thinkers, and global citizens and encourages them to understand cross-cultural differences. This programme is highly recognized by top-tier universities, prepares students for university-level study, and opens up unlimited possibilities for their future careers. 

A team of dedicated and professional teachers to support students and their learning

Teachers at ASHK actively engage students in an enriched American program characterized by its rigor, holistic approach, and inspirational nature. Our program is based on the US Common Core, the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS), and along with other best-practice international frameworks, which provide the foundation for learning. 

The curriculum is designed for students to acquire essential knowledge, skills, eager to learn attitudes and allow them to reach their full potential. ASHK utilizes STEAM to allow students to become independent, critical thinkers, and problem solvers. Teachers at ASHK realize the importance of accurately assessing each child’s needs - academically, socially, and emotionally - and providing specific support, guidance, and learning experiences aligned to these needs. By providing a personalized approach to teaching and learning, we nurture students to be IB learners at a young age and prepare them for success in the IBDP. 

 American School Hong Kong was established by Esol Education. With a legacy of excellence, schools under Esol Education have a long history of student achievement above world averages in the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme (IBDP) and other quality graduation programs. With some exceptional students achieving perfect scores, attained by only 0.32% of students worldwide.

The STEAM curriculum helps to enhance student’s creativity and innovative thinking.

Providing students with a strong learning foundation 

If you would like to learn more about the American School of Hong Kong, the IBDP, or the admissions process, feel free to contact our Admissions team. You can also join a School Tour to get a first-hand experience of our community and to learn more about our values.