Many secondary school students often have difficulties in choosing which education pathway to take upon receiving their ‘O’ level examination results. A student might waver endlessly between a polytechnic education and a junior college education. The differences between the two educations systems are so vast that people often debate over which is the superior one. Statistics have shown that more students prefer to opt for a polytechnic education whereas some students prefer the latter. (Education Statistics Digest 2012) The purpose of this study is to examine the differences between the education system of a polytechnic and a junior college. This paper will cover the teaching methodology, affordability and campus environment of the two different education systems.
2 Teaching Methodology
There is a great dissimilarity in the way students are being taught in both polytechnic and junior college. Students in both institutions learn different things within different timespans. Their exposure to society and the method of assessment are not similar.
2.1 Duration of course
Students in both institution study for a different period of time. A student in polytechnic will have to study for three years, a far cry from a junior college student who only has to study for two years. Polytechnic also splits up their year into semesters. Therefore, a polytechnic student has to go through six semesters before graduating. Every semester, a polytechnic student will take up different modules. On the contrary, a junior college student learns a number of same subjects throughout the three years of their education, much like what they have done in secondary school.
2.2 Learning objectives and scope
One important difference between polytechnic and junior college is the things that they learn. Polytechnic teaches their students’ knowledge that is relevant to their course of study. For example, students taking diploma in Information Technology will only learn things relevant to their course and not unnecessary things as such Chemistry. Students will be able to learn things that they actually want to learn. On the other hand, what a junior college student learns consists of Mathematics, General Paper, Economics, and Sciences and so on. The subjects are also split into two different kind of level, mainly H1 and H2, with H2 being the higher level of the subject.
2.3 Interactions and opportunities with external societies Polytechnic and junior college students are exposed to different things. Some junior college has cultural exchange, whereby the school plays as a host to students from other country. Sometimes the junior college might also send students out for overseas cultural exchange trip. While in polytechnic, students may also go on such trips but polytechnics does not act as a host for other country’s student. A polytechnic on the other hand, sends their final year students for internship, where they get to gain experience in the job field that they will be specialising in in the future. A junior college student does not have this kind of privilege. This gives polytechnic student an edge in the future when they step out to the working society as they are equipped with valuable experiences.
2.4 Varying methods of assessment
Students are assessed differently in polytechnics and junior college. In polytechnics, students do not have to go through a national level examination and are graded based on their daily assignments and normal examinations. Hence, a polytechnic student will have to put in much effort in every piece of work they are submitting. They are then assessed based on their Grade Point Average, with 4 being the perfect score. Universities will look at a polytechnic student’s Grade Point Average if the student wish to move on to the university. On the other hand, a junior college student would have to...