The American Advantage in Education

What makes an education legitimate, and who decides what is a legitimate education?  


While the American system is perceived as the most reputable, British schools are better utilizing their  brand advantage  to develop international collaborations and partnership schools.

While the American system is perceived as the most reputable, British schools are better utilizing their brand advantage to develop international collaborations and partnership schools.

The hard truth is that the U.S. education system is not among the top performing nations in any academic subject; however, the American Secondary and College diploma remains the most sought after in the world. But why? Granted, with 16 of the top 20 ranked universities in the world located within the United States, American schools deserve full credit for providing diverse learning environments, superior career outlooks, and groundbreaking research. However, the demand for U.S. education is realistically not based on pedagogical research or test results, but rather is a testament to America’s global influence — i.e., (1) economic-political power, (2) dominant culture-soft power, (3) perceived quality of education, & (4) the use and the role of English in the globalized economy. This is what truly drives the international student to pursue an American diploma.

Using this metric, the status of American education can only be rivaled by fellow Western powers of England, Australia, and Canada. As leaders in the market, they collectively shape and influence what is considered a legitimate education. The U.S. system, which unquestionably sits atop of the global educational hierarchy, is therefore the ultimate authority in the market. The desire for benchmarking, curriculum validation, and quality assurance by the foreign consumers only reinforces the American brand.

In an era of declining enrollments and tightening budgets, the sustainability of the American private school may hinge on one simple fact: it’s American. While the American brand has drawn international students to secondary boarding/homestay programs and colleges campuses for a long time, reliance on in-bound international students is proving to be an unsustainable model. So, the question remains as to how can U.S. private schools generate additional exposure, enrollment, and revenue — especially as in-bound international market sharply declines.

Learn more at UScurriculum.com

Matthew Neeb