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Back to School English Review: Vocabulary for College

Back to School English Review: Vocabulary for College

You’ve raised your English proficiency to a high level and now you are entering an American college or university. Congratulations! But wait—as you enter college, you now you have to deal with a whole new set of confusing terms that professors and students are throwing around on campus. To help you transition into college with ease and keep up with your classmates, here is a quick vocab guide to five English words used almost exclusively in college.

RA:This stands for Resident Advisor or Resident Assistant. The RA is a trained peer leader who supervises the students who live in the college dorms. If you are living on-campus, you will most likely have an RA to whom you can go with any issues related to your roommate, dorm policies or other on-campus housing concerns.

Dean:A college dean is the head and spokesperson of a college department. There is a dean for every college department, whether it is a specific academic department (such as the Dean of the College of Business) or a general department for student life (such as the Dean of Students).

GPA:This stands for grade point average. Your GPA is measured on a scale from 1.0 to 4.0 and is the total of your grades from each of your classes, divided by the number of classes you have. GPA is one of the best ways to measure how well you are doing college. In fact, some students may need to maintain a certain GPA to keep receiving a financial scholarship. Generally speaking, most students strive for a GPA of 3.0 or higher.

Honor Roll :The honor roll is a list of academically exceptional, or “honored,” students who have finished the semester with a high GPA. In most colleges, students “make the honor roll” by earning a GPA of 3.5 higher for a given term.

Semester:A semester is half of the school year, or about 15-18 weeks. The first semester of the school year is called the Fall Semester; it starts around August and ends before the winter holidays in December or January. The second semester, called the Spring Semester, starts in January and ends around May. At university, most degrees can be finished in roughly 8 semesters. Also note: most universities offer short Summer Semesters as well.

Do you have any questions about college vocab?Comment below and tell us what you want to learn!


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