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The population may be classified by the language1 or dialect2 habitually spoken. A distinction is drawn between an individual’s mother language3 or mother tongue3 which is the language spoken in his home in his earliest childhood, and his usual language4, which is the language customarily used by him. The distinction between the two is not always very easy among people who are bilingual5 or multilingual5.
- 1. language n. — linguistic adj.
Religious statistics1 divide the population by religious affiliation. A distinction is generally drawn between the major religions2 and their principal denominations3, rites4 or sects5 . Persons who have no religion may describe themselves as agnostics6, freethinkers6 or atheists6.
- 4. rite n. may also be used in the sense of a religious ceremony.
The population is also often classified by educational status1. A person who can neither read nor write is called illiterate2. A literate3 person is one who is able both to read and to write. A person who is able only to read but not to write may be called semi-literate4 and such persons are sometimes classed with the literate and at other times with the illiterate population. The term "semi-literate" is also used colloquially to denote a person who can read or write only with difficulty. Statistics dealing with these groups of persons are called literacy statistics5. Educational status is, however, also often expressed in terms of years of schooling completed6 or in terms of the highest certificate7 or diploma7 or degree7 awarded. Such certificates will vary with the educational system8 of each country.
- 2. illiterate adj. — illiteracy n.
- 3. literate adj. — literacy n.
It is usual to distinguish between three levels of education1 or stages of education1 which are in ascending order: primary education2, secondary education3 and higher education4. The nomenclature for the educational institutions5 in which these different stages of education are provided differs between different countries, but generally primary education is given in primary schools6 (344 B) or elementary schools6, secondary education in secondary schools7 and the most advanced form of higher education in universities8.
A. In Great Britain, a grammar school provides secondary education with an academic bias, a different kind of secondary education is provided in a modern school. A public school is one of a body of select secondary schools outside the state educational system altogether. Higher education below university level may be provided in technical colleges or continuation colleges. The term college is used in a variety of senses. A college may be the constituent part of a university, or it may be a secondary school, or even a professional body such as the Royal College of Physicians. A university college is an institution which has not full university status or it may be a constituent college of a university.
B. In the United States elementary schools are known as primary schools (343-6), grade schools or grammar schools, secondary schools are known as high schools. A public school is any school administered by a public authority; in contrast a parochial school is administered by a religious organization, frequently the Roman Catholic Church.
A class1 (cf. 130-8) is a group of pupils2 with the same teacher3 who meet in the same class-room4 and are generally instructed simultaneously. A group of pupils who are at the same level of educational advancement are said to be in the same grade5 in the United States of America, or in the same class5 or form5 (cf. 206-1), in Great Britain. The term student6 is generally used for those receiving higher education, but is also interchangeable with "pupil" at the secondary level.
- 2. A scholar in Britain is generally a pupil or student who has been given a scholarship from public or private funds; the use of the term as a synonym for pupil is archaic. In the United States of America such a student would be called a scholarship holder or scholarship student.
- 6. A university student who has not yet taken his first degree is an undergraduate. A graduate (cf. 151-1*) in Great Britain is the holder of a university degree; in the United States of America the term may be used for anyone completing his studies at the university, high school, or even primary school.
Current school statistics1 may distinguish between the number of pupils enrolled2 and the number of pupils in attendance3. A comparison of these two figures gives an attendance ratio4. Compulsory education5 implies the existence of a range of ages where school attendance is obligatory by law. This makes it possible to specify the number of children of school age6 or the school age population7 according to a legal criterion.
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