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Is There any Difference Between High School and College? (Spoiler: YES)

Before I entered college and started working for the great academic writing service, I had the same question appearing in my mind. Can college life have much difference compared to a high school? Well, there are similar things like textbooks, extracurriculars, classes, other students, and so on. It seemed pretty likely to a high school.


High school difference


These thoughts returned to my head constantly weeks before I left high school and arrived at the college in another state of our country. I have never had someone to help me prepare for such life or to share their priceless experience with me while studying at a high school. As a result, August came rapidly, and then I found myself at the college dorm threshold. I only had my stuff packed into several paper boxes and absolutely no clue about things expecting me in the next four years.

Flash-forward: as you might understand, I survived my education, passed through the graduation ceremony, and then got my job at the writing service.

So, now I would like to assist future students (those entering colleges in 2020, most probably) with high school and college experience. I shaped it as the article on the topic of differences between college and high school. In case you don’t have people to give some tips or tell some stories, or you just look for a fresh viewpoint, I hope my text will be useful for you.

The text reveals two major subtopics of differences between high school and college.

The first part is about the academic difference. Here I’ll let you catch up with the college organizational processes, loads, features, and grades. 

The second part of the article comes up with lifestyle differences between college and high school.

Don’t be too scared at once. Things frequently sound much more fearful than they actually are.

Let’s roll!

Academic Differences between High School and College

Your future studying won’t be easy. But you’ll feel it more comfortable and simple to prepare when knowing about things expecting you during the first studying semester. The primary data will make a massive difference between you and other first-year students coming to the college unprepared. 

So, here is the list of 5 main academic differences between college and high school.

1. Class Timing Difference

The usual high school schedule of students can mostly be compared to working at a full-time position. From day to day, you are in the same building for seven to eight hours. 

In colleges, students can expect to have 50% of that time devoted to classes. Full-time college students usually spend 3-4 hours daily in classes. Summing things up, you get nearly fifteen to twenty hours weekly.

Now, you are thinking that’s going to be an easy deal, aren't you? Not so fast! Lecturers will try to put as many learning materials into each lecture or class as possible. Lectures can last from fifty minutes to three hours, but the time gaps will still want you to go in for sufficient time management. At first, it seems that all the time is available for you. Don’t let this feeling trick you. Deadlines will catch you up suddenly if you don't control them.

2. A Difference in The Amount of Work to Do

Well, let me admit. In high school, I could just dodge the homework. It was quite easy to get good enough grades through scanning books quickly and making cribs ten minutes before the exam. If a task had a deadline on a Thursday, I have never begun completing it earlier than on a Wednesday evening.

In college, things changed a lot.

The first thing you understand there is that 20 hours of classes do not obligatory mean the same 20 working hours. Students spend less time in real classrooms when in college than in high school. However, they have to devote additional hours to complete homework, group projects, essays, research papers, and dozens of other academic assignments.

The good news is that they give you the complete syllabus containing the data on every task and exam during the semester. As a result, students have enough time to get ready for everything despite the significant increase in the workload. 

3. A Difference in The Textbooks and Their Necessity

While studying in high schools, students get all the required textbooks free or for a little cost. The only thing depending on you here is to choose: will you read them to gain additional knowledge?

On the other hand, colleges are much more severe in this regard. The professor will most likely just notify you about the required books. From here, the way you get those learning materials is your call (unless they want you to pay for a digital access code with a brand new book).

Here’s the point: publishers do not care about your learning progress and academic achievements. Their goal is to earn funds by selling their books. So, there exist many ways to use some tricks against the industry. Getting some cheap textbooks, for instance, can save hundreds or even thousands of dollars throughout your college studies.


High school grades


4. A Difference of Grade Boosting Possibilities

Probably the worst thing about the college grades is when you need to hit the threshold of the professor’s cabinet during the final semester days hoping to get some additional credit for yourself. It may turn out that you’re only 0.3% away from the top grade. Alternatively, you may lack a 0.1% difference to pass the semester on the subject. No matter what, the easiest choice to deal with such issues beforehand is obvious. You should dash ahead of the GPA right after the semester begins.

The high school system gives you many possibilities to maintain your academic level. There are homework assignments appearing regularly, topical tests, revisions, credits gained for the constant presence, etc.

However, there is bad news: in college, you mostly won’t have those possibilities. Just be ready, and start working on your grades and reputation without postponing your tasks unlike you did in high school. 

High School vs. College: Lifestyle Difference


High school dorm difference


Most of your college life will belong to the places beyond classrooms. Therefore, here below, I mentioned three significant changes that definitely will happen to your lifestyle as differences between high school and college realities.

1. Dormitory Routine: Life Difference

I was the only son of my parents, so I felt enough doubts when faced with the need to share the room with three more boys I have never met before. Nevertheless, looking back on those years, I can say confidently that my life in a student dorm was a funny period. Moreover, it was a time that changed me a lot. Maybe, it influenced my personality even more than the entire college practice and experience did.

Most probably, you’ll face all kinds of difficult learning materials when in classrooms. Along with that, the experience of living among other young students will raise your social intelligence level and knowledge. Some people may argue my words, but I think that when it comes to long-term achievements, the skill of social interaction and negotiations can be even more critical than all the academic experience.

Numerous scary tales travel across the Internet about irritating roommates or communal toilet conditions. It is impossible to avoid such issues with a 100% guarantee. Still, the main tip here is simple: perceive every difference and each aspect of your dormitory life in college as a new experience. 

In a dorm, you will learn your personality as you never did before. Your self-discipline preferences, organization, the skill of dealing with in-house conflicts, etc. Everything there prepares you for adult life. Settling in will take you a couple of weeks, but finally, you’ll enjoy the new journey.

2. A Difference in Finance Questions

A common stereotype about college students is that they’re broke all the time. As a former college student, I can say: things can have differences.

One of the greatest features differing college from high school is the massively expanded variety of possibilities to earn funds.

Unless you’ve got an inexhaustible source of finances falling onto your bank account, you’ll need more money to spend. So, check the above link carefully. Then google some more opportunities to consider. You’ll find something suitable pretty soon. Just don’t stop searching.


High school schedule


3. Healthcare and Regime Difference

Have you heard of freshman 15? Students consider that happening unavoidable. However, it is more a matter of self-discipline.

You will continuously hear cool stories about the difficulties or prices of staying within a suitable diet or regular exercising. The fact that you accept gaining weight as a norm will follow.

No way. You have a choice. And you can make a difference.

Keeping shape at college may not be as hard as it seems. Remember that nothing, nothing can justify your laziness about your health. I bet the healthy body matters a lot more than any successful studying.

When speaking of physical exercises, group sports, intramurals, and other college sports activities are fine to replace your regular active measures in high school. Additionally, you’ll make new contacts with people when attending some sports groups for sure.

Keep in mind that your regular diet is not limited by the deliverable pizza or fast-food dishes from McD’s. Really, cooking healthy food by oneself is significantly cheaper than a meal plan of the college or visiting outside cafes.

Being Aware of the Difference Is Not Enough

You should notice that the difference between college and high school is enormous. Still, the regular understanding and awareness of perspectives itself do not guarantee you success. Challenges will appear. The way you deal with them will determine the heights you’ll be able to reach.

Studentship years will pass very quickly, and maybe you’ll write your own article to help former high school students.

Have good luck, and never stop believing in yourself.

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