Book Review: ‘Uni In The USA’

‘Uni In The USA’ by John Wallis, Alice Fishburn, Anthony Nemecek and Anthony Seldon

Uni in the USA Book CoverLast week I brought to our younger readers’ attention the possibilities (and benefits) of achieving their higher education the USA. In the post – which you can read by clicking here – I recommended a book for anyone interested in taking this step further called ‘Uni In The USA.’

‘Uni In The USA’ has helped me, and thousands of other students, realize that moving to another country is not as scary as you might think. Although moving is a big change for anyone if you know enough about it, making the decision is much easier and this is why I’m writing about the book today.

The American education system proudly champions a breadth rather than a depth of knowledge, making it the perfect opportunity for a budding self-developer to make their way.

First Impressions

Most books revolving around education of any kind usually bombard the reader with facts and stats about Universities, endless lists of reasons as to why Ivy League schools are bigger and better than all the rest and basic mumblings about scholarships and funding.

They do not usually provide what we, as students, truly want to know. This book, as the title suggests, is much more geared towards the student than making the Universities look good. Although it provides crucial information to form the launch pad of your big move, it takes on a colloquial style whilst doing it; thus making the book easy to approach, follow and compare between schools.

Although the book does review over fifty different American Universities, the reviews tackle the character of the University and its students not just the physical achievements. Additionally it doesn’t just cover the basics of how to get to an American University – but why you’d want to get there and what to expect when you do too.

Related Reading: The Benefits of an American Education

What Does The Book Cover?

‘Uni in the USA’: Section One

All of the technical details – the skeletal outline of a university are available to anyone on university websites, Wikipedia pages and a range of other online resources. What is not available online is a real feel of a university: the experiences people have there, the everyday life of its students and the accompanying concerns and commendations they have.

The first section of the book discusses similar topics that I discussed in last week’s post – although in much more depth – about the benefits of the American education system. Through this section you’ll be made aware of what specific terminology means e.g. ‘the liberal arts system’, what entrance exams must be taken to go to an American University and why so many British students (in particular) are making the move to the USA.

USA-UK EducationThis section also draws the reader’s attention to funding – where to find it, how to get it – which, let’s face it, is the biggest concern foreign students have about going across the country for further education. It also draws your attention to further reading, useful contact and how to find schools and systems that are best for you – again crucial information that isn’t readily available to your average British student.

What makes this book different from the others is that, despite all this useful information, it also covers social issues that the student cares about such as how to deal with culture shock, long distance relationships and changes in social life. In this sense it covers all the questions you need to know, as well as all the questions you want to know as well.

This information is useful because it dispels any myths that we might have heard in our travels. Additionally, because it’s designed for the foreign student (who is alien to all of these processes) it is much more straight-forward to take the next step and actually apply to the Universities than it would have been with your standard University guide.

‘Uni in the USA’: Section Two

This guide is written by students for students. We have personally visited all the universities in the guide (except in rare cases, where noted), and have spoken with the people studying there.

The second section of the book allows you to compare the fifty plus universities that the writers explored whilst writing the book.


It is also the section that makes the book so different from other University guides because whilst most University guides focus on league tables, grades, classes and teachers when reviewing Universities, ‘Uni In The USA’ explores each of these universities from a student’s perspective instead, telling you what the campus looks like, what it’s students like to do and what there is to do outside of campus.

This information is vital when making such a big decision because by helping you get an accurate feel of the lifestyle over there, you can come to understand whether or not you’d fit in and enjoy it. And the point of the move is, after all, to improve yourself and make you an increasingly educated and well-rounded person.

What I like about this section, additionally, is that it doesn’t just look at the Ivy League Universities; your Yale, Princeton and so on. Instead the book explores a wide range of universities – old, modern, Ivy League, state owned – with a wide range of degrees on offer for a wide range of students at different academic levels. And what’s best about its form is that each University has been condensed down into a few pages of what you need to know; making it much quicker and easier to review all possibilities before deciding where you’ll be happiest.

Related Reading: The Benefits of an American Education

In conclusion: It’s all about you!

‘Uni in the USA’ provides you with a balanced and insightful perspective of what the American Education system has to offer you. Unlike most other University Guides, they are not trying to sell you the University… they are simply presenting you with all you need to know about what the American Education system can do for you, how you can get into the American Education System and what each University has to offer in order for you to make a decision that is best for you.

The book has helped me break down a big step in my life into manageable chunks; it built up my confidence and guided me through seemingly difficult positions. Therefore, if you are still interested in making the move I recommend you pick up this book over any other. And if you’re not interested, that’s fine; you can still use your knowledge of the American Education system to ensure you’re making the right choices wherever you go.

Good luck from me with whatever decisions you make!

 Wrote by Aimee Hall  –  Follow Us   -  Comment Your Thoughts Below!