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Education Systems

Degrees and education systems vary from country to country, with different programme structures, lengths of study, and processes, whether it is an undergraduate, postgraduate or doctoral degree. But don’t worry! Your Intake advisor can help you thanks to our considerable experience advising students on their overseas study plans. Let’s take a look at the differences between the education systems of different countries like the UK, US, Australia, Ireland and Canada.

Are you worried that you might not be able to apply directly to a bachelor’s programme overseas after you graduate from high school? At Intake, we have decades of experience consulting students regarding their plans to study abroad. Whether you want to study in the UK, the US, Australia, Ireland or Canada, we can help you understand the education systems in each country and apply for the course that suits you best. Let’s take a look at the different undergraduate degree courses in various countries, and if you have any related questions, please consult our Intake advisors for more details. 

Undergraduate Degrees intro

Undergraduate Degrees in the UK

UK universities provide a wide variety of bachelor’s programmes to satisfy students’ preferences. Undergraduate degree applications are made through UCAS (Universities and Colleges Admission Service). You will have a limit of universities to which you can apply and will have to pay a small application fee. Your Intake advisors can explain the details to you and recommend the most suitable programmes according to your academic background.


Undergraduate Courses

Most undergraduate courses in the UK will take three years to complete, with the average in Scotland being four. Some specific courses such as Medicine and Architecture take at least five years. In addition, a ‘sandwich course’ lasts four years instead of three, with the extra year being used for either a work placement or an exchange year abroad. Sandwich courses are popular with students who are studying hospitality, fashion design, and business courses.


Foundation Courses

As international students usually complete twelve years of education compared to the thirteen years a local UK student completes, most UK universities will often ask international students to complete a one-year foundation programme before they embark on their degree course to enhance their English ability and become more accustomed to the style of teaching in the UK. In rare scenarios direct entry into the undergraduate programmes will be allowed. Your Intake advisors will be able to provide more advice in this regard. 

Undergraduate Degrees in the UK

Undergraduate Degrees in the USA

Differing from Taiwan that students decide their major when they enter universities, students in the US can obtain bachelor’s degrees after they complete the major credits. The US undergraduate degree applications are made through UCAS, and applicators should pay a small fee to universities. In general, a four-year university offers a bachelor's degree and a few associate degrees, and community colleges only offer associate degrees. 


The main source of funding for public universities in the US is the government, and research funding is relatively stable, which can provide students with abundant practical research opportunities. Private universities are funded by fundraising, research grants, etc. Universities attract students with their high quality of campus life, expert professors, and the many creative and unique academic programs. The tuition of community colleges is cheaper than a traditional university, and programmes are generally completed in two years, providing foundational courses equivalent to the freshman and sophomore years at a university. After a student has completed these credits, colleges will award them an associate degree. If you want to continue your studies after this, you can transfer to your ideal university to complete junior and senior year credits; this is called a ‘2+2 program’ (University Transfer Program). 

Undergraduate Degrees in the Australia

Undergraduate Degrees in Australia

Australia is a country that respects professional and occupational equality. After graduating from high school, students can choose one of the following different programmes according to their interests and specialties. 


Vocational Educational Training (VET) 

VET programmes provide students with practical skills and hands-on experience. These programmes are offered by state government-funded technical and further education (TAFE) institutions or private vocational colleges.


Bachelor's Degree 

The length of time it takes to complete a bachelor’s degree depends on the programme and major. However, most bachelor's degrees can be completed in three years. 

Undergraduate Degrees in the USA

Undergraduate Degrees in Ireland

In Ireland, there are 34 higher education institutions offer an extensive range of programmes.


In addition to universities, Ireland’s third-level education is made up of the institutes of technology and colleges of education, all of which are substantially funded by the State. Universities which are autonomous and self-governing offer degree programmes at bachelor, masters and doctorate level. The technological sector includes technological universities (TUs) and institutes of technology (ITs) that provide programmes of education and training in areas such as business, science, engineering, linguistics and music to various degree levels. The colleges of education specialise in training for primary school teachers.


International students can apply directly to the universities in Ireland. The Irish government uses NFQ to classify the degree courses. In general, the duration of an ordinary bachelor's degree is 3 years and an honours bachelor degree is 3-4 years. Students can also do professional degrees (such as for pharmacy or engineering) which encompass bachelors and master’s degrees in 5 years.


There are a variety of courses to choose from. Let our Intake advisors help you find the most suitable programme!


Foundation Courses

Most Ireland universities often ask international students to complete a one-year foundation programme before they embark on their degree course to enhance their English ability and become more accustomed to the local style of teaching. In rare scenarios direct entry into the undergraduate programmes will be allowed. Your Intake advisors will be able to provide more advice in this regard.


Undergraduate Degrees in Canada


After graduating from high school, Canadian students are given the opportunity to apply to colleges and universities. College in Canada generally refers to a smaller community college or a specific trade school. Many students in Canada will attend colleges to further prepare themselves for university and obtain credits that can be transferred over (like the US junior colleges where students can get an associate degree). 



University in Canada is a place for higher education where academic degrees can be obtained in a wide variety of subjects in a similar structure to that of the United States, starting with a bachelor’s degree, then a master’s degree, and finally a PhD as the highest level of education.