RELATED VOCABULARY: Talking about education

Spread the love

In this lesson, we are focusing on vocabulary used to describe education – schools, teachers, subjects and more.
IELTS vocabulary for educationTake a look at the list below. How many words do you know? We will soon be adding vocabulary exercises to these pages, but for now, we hope the lists help!
Types of schools

  • Boarding school – where the students live, eat and sleep during the school term
  • Private school – where parents have to pay for their child to enrol
  • Public school [US English] – a school which is free and paid for by the government
  • Public school [UK English] – an exclusive, expensive school, run independently
  • Co-education – where male and female students study together (also referred to informally as a co-ed school)
  • Single-sex school – where only male or only female students attend

Types of education

  • Primary education
  • Secondary education
  • Tertiary education (also referred to as Higher education) – this is the first level of schooling that is not compuslory (you don’t have to go). This includes universities and colleges

Types of certification

  • A certificate – issued for a short course
  • A diploma – issued for a course that is shorter than a degree
  • A degree – issued by a university at the end of longer course of study
  • A masters (degree) – issued by a university when the students has completed further study beyond a degree (often in a more specialised field than a degree)
  • A doctorate – this is the highest level of study issued by a university

School behaviour / character types / types of student

  • to play truant – to be absent from class without permission from parents or teachers
  • a bookworm – an informal word for someone who spends a lot time reading / studying
  • an academic – someone who is more comfortable with studying and writing rather than working with their hands in a more practical application
  • a scholar – a relatively old fashioned word for an academic
  • a mature student – someone who is older than the average student, often having gone back to college or universities after working or having a family
  • a freshman [US English] – someone in their first year of university or college
  • a sophomore – someone in their second year of university or college
  • an undergraduate – someone who has not yet completed their degree
  • a graduate (also referred to as a postgraduate) – someone who has complete degree

Types of learning

  • Distance learning – this is done away from the school, where the student studies by themselves and rarely attends classes in a school building (lessons are sent by post or online)
  • Online learning – this is generally 100% online, where you will not physically meet a teacher or attend classes in a school building
  • Intensive courses – fast paced courses which give a lot of information quickly and in a short time
  • Rote learning – a teaching style used in some countries / subjects where students simply repeat what they are told until they have memorised it.
  • Lecture – often for larger groups of people, the focus is on hearing the teacher speak and making notes
  • Tutorial – smaller groups of students, where students can ask questions (often following a lecture)

The cost of education

  • tuition fees – the money paid for education
  • a grant – money given by the government to support a student while studying
  • a student loan – money which a student can borrow to while they are studying, but which has to be repaid
  • a scholarship – money (often given by the institution themselves) to support a student while studying

The language of studying / useful collocations

  • to revise – study or read something again in order to remember it better, often before exams
  • to concentrate – to focus your attention on something
  • to review – read over something again. Similar to revise, but more commonly done just after something and not in preparation for an exam
  • to plagiarise – to copy another persons work without giving them credit or identifying the course
  • to sit / take a test
  • to attend a class
  • to meet a deadline

Miscellaneous vocabulary for education

  • literacy – the ability to read and write
  • curriculum – the order in which subjects and topics are studied in a school (like a timetable)


Create your free membership!

Want to get the best out of our free site? Create a free membership now so you can keep a track of what you have studied and what you have left to complete. You’ll also get notified when new resources are added!

Create your FREE membership now!