US acadamic system???? I am a student of physics (Diplom) from Germany and I really don’t understand the US academic system! For example I don’t understand the Bachelor/Master System Some Universities here have Bachelor/Master too, but it is new. In Germany traditionally your first Degree in math or physics is the Diplom (after a minimum of five years of study including a minimum of one year research) which seem to be the aquivalent of the Master. In Germany the Master is often similar to the Diplom (they just changed the names and one ore two courses). The bachelor has no value (there are no jobs for academics with low qualification) and is only a step on the road to a Masters degree. So the names are equal to US or UK System, but I don’t think the programs are equal. There seems even to be differences between these two Systems (3- and 4-year Bachelors). For example there are no Degrees by coursework in Germany. It’s difficult to compare lectures and courses on paper, but you can compare for example books. At the first years most of the books are written by German authors (and some Russian and France). There are some classics like the books from Arnold Sommerfeld who was a famous lecturer (for example Werner Heisenberg, Wolfgang Pauli, Peter Debye and Hans Bethe were notable students) and influenced German authors like maybe Richard Feynman in the US. The coursebooks in physics are on a higher mathematical level. So most of the international books and series like Landau/Lifschitz, V.Arnold, Sakurai, Jackson, which are often called graduate books by Americans are used from the very beginning.You have things like symplectic manifolds, Tensor-analysis and forms in your second year mechanics and Electrodynamics courses. Some of our professors researched in the US for some years (for example at Calltech or Berkeley, which shall be good Universities most people say). They say that American math books are influenced more by Richard Courant and German books are more influenced by Bourbaki group and authors like French Jean Dieudonné (Elements d Analyse / Foundations of Modern Analysis) I have no idea. So a Bachelor in the United States must be another degree with another meaning and value than a German Bachelor (because I don’t think American students are less intelligent than Germans). But in my eyes there seem to be big differences between different American Universities, too. There are different curriculas and you have to pay a lot of money (It is a bit strange that you have to pay money for studies, here it’s free or costs a maximum of 1000 EUR per year.) at Universities with normal standard. Here the curriculas for the first two years are very similar at all Universities, so it is easy to change the location. So what knows the normal (statistical) American Bachelor and in contrast the normal British Bachelor. Another problem is the school systems. American students are much younger than German students (maybe that’s why the level in American math books is so low). But I don’t really understand what High school and College is (and my insider information is from Hollywood). What is the difference between University, US College, UK College??? The US College seems to be more like a school and the UK College like a part of a University, but what are the differences?? By the way: What is the definition of a University in the US? In contrast to Germany there are institutions called University, but have no PhD Programs. How much Linear Algebra and Analysis is teached on a normal American school? In Germany the system is much easier to overview . You have to go 13 years to school (and there is only one change after 4 years elementary school), get the Abitur and then you can go to University. I hope I can get some information from insiders. Greetings from Germany!