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School Curricula Guides

US HS Diploma

There is no such thing as a US education in the way there is, for example, an English National Curriculum - the requirements to get a US High School Diploma vary considerably from state to state.

At the end of school life, those attending US schools leave with a High School Diploma, which is a reflection the 14 years of work proceeding it. 

Having a high school diploma is essential for university entrance, but also in some ways also irrelevant. Getting into US university is not based on a final grade at high school. Rather US universities take a distinctly less academic view, looking at your profile as a whole: The number of courses you have taken (how academically interested are you), how you're expected to do in those courses (US universities will offer you a place before you sit your final exams), and your extra curricular activities (what are you going to contribute to college life, not just your course).

The US is also less focused on what you have studied. To some degree this reflects the fact that you don’t usually decide what your main focus at a US college until the end of your second year. In the UK, and Europe as a whole, you focus almost immediately on one subject.

Finally, perhaps the "real" exam or pass you are looking for for for US universities is not the US high school diploma, but your SAT, or “Scholastic Assessment Test”. This is a compulsory test, and determines your abilities in writing, mathematics and “critical reading” or reasoning. 

In other words your high school diploma matters only in as much it reflects what you have done with your time at school, which in turn will reflect how a university sees you as a human being. It will be one facet of what a college will be looking for.

This for example is what Columbia University says matters:

  1. The student’s curriculum and grades - we hope to see that a student is challenging herself or himself with a rigorous course load
  2. The context of a particular candidate, including family circumstances, secondary school, community, interests and access to resources
  3. The quality of a student’s involvement in activities beyond the classroom
  4. The character and personality of a candidate, and the impact she or he will make on our diverse, residential campus
  5. The candidate’s fit for the distinctive Columbia experience, which includes the Core Curriculum; a both traditionally collegiate and unmistakably urban campus life; and an Ivy League school where curious thinkers come to grow
  6. Recommendations - which provide evidence of intellectual curiosity and promise, classroom and school and community participation, and overall potential for the candidate to make an impact at Columbia, in the classroom and beyond

Criteria to actually obtain your high school diploma will vary from state to state - one of the reasons why talking about a "US education" or curriculum is difficult. It will require at a minimum the continued study of core subjects and a minimum grade point average.

Note: Academically gifted students at US high schools will also look to take Advanced Placement (AP) exams. Again, how well you do at these exams will not determine your success or otherwise in university admission. It will however send a statement regarding how much you challenge yourself academically, your intellectual ambition, and perhaps your overall potential. Students capable of doing well at the AP exam will also take it because it will give you college credit.

 

55 UAE Schools offering US HS Diploma

School name Community Emirate
Abu Dhabi International School Mohammed Bin Zayed City Abu Dhabi
ADNOC Schools, Abu Dhabi Umm Al Nar Abu Dhabi
ADNOC Schools, Ruwais Branch, Abu Dhabi Ruwais Abu Dhabi
Ajman Modern School Al Bustan Ajman
Al Dhafra Private School Al Dhafrah Abu Dhabi
Al Ittihad Private School Jumeirah Al Safa Dubai
Al Ittihad Private School Mamzar Al Mamzar Dubai
Al Khaleej National School Garhoud Dubai
Al Mawakeb School Al Barsha Al Barsha Dubai
Al Mawakeb School Al Garhoud Garhoud Dubai
Al Mizhar American Academy Mirdif Dubai
Al Worood Nursery Al Rehan Abu Dhabi
Al Yasat Private School, Abu Dhabi Al Shamkha Abu Dhabi
American Community School Abu Dhabi Khalidiya Abu Dhabi
American International School Abu Dhabi Al Reehan Abu Dhabi
American International School Dubai Al Qusais Dubai
American School of Creative Science Al Jurainah Sharjah
American School of Dubai Al Barsha Dubai
Bradenton Prep Academy Dubai Sports City Dubai
Clarion School Al Quoz Dubai
Collegiate American School Umm Suqeim 2 Dubai
Dawha School Sharjah Al Azra Sharjah
De La Salle Montessori Nursery Al Mankhool Dubai
Dubai American Academy Al Barsha Dubai
Dubai American Scientific School Al Quoz Dubai
Dubai Arab American School Al Muhaisnah Dubai
Dubai First School Al Quoz Dubai
Dubai International School Al Quoz Al Quoz Dubai
Dubai International School Garhoud Garhoud Dubai
Dubai Modern Education School Al Mizhar Dubai
Dubai National School Al Barsha Al Barsha Dubai
Dubai National School Al Twar Al Twar Dubai
Dwight School Dubai Al Barsha Dubai
GEMS American Academy Khalifa City A Abu Dhabi
GEMS Education Al Quoz Dubai
GEMS Nations Academy Al Barsha Dubai
Glenelg School Madinat Zayed Madinat Zayed Abu Dhabi
Greenwood International School Muhaisna 1 Dubai
ICademy Knowledge Village Dubai
Institute of Applied Technology Al Ain Al Foua Al Ain
Institute of Applied Technology Dubai Al Qusais Dubai
Institute of Applied Technology RAK Digdaga Ras al-Khaimah
International Academic School Abu Dhabi Shakhbout City Abu Dhabi
International Academic School Dubai Al Warqa Dubai
International Community School Mushrif Al Mushrif Abu Dhabi
International Jubilee Private School Al Danah Abu Dhabi
International School of Arts and Sciences Al Warqa Dubai
Iqraa International School Muweilah Sharjah
Next Generation School Al Barsha Dubai
Omadaa International School Al Jurf Ajman
Philadelphia Private School Al Qusais Dubai
Taaleem Jumeirah 1 Dubai
Universal American School Festival City Dubai
Virginia International Private School Shakhbout City Abu Dhabi
West Yas Academy Yas West Abu Dhabi

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