Numbering in the States (college)

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Numbering in the States (college)

Message  gerardM le Dim 13 Oct - 17:56

Hi everyone,

Instead of speaking about 1st-year student, 2nd-year... people often use other terms.

So, we often meet:
- a "freshman" is the name given to the 1st year person
- a "sophomore" is the name given to the 2nd year person
- ...
- "junior" is used for the penultimate year
- "senior" is used for the last year.

Well, my lines above are woolly; here's a bit more:
- the 4 terms are used in high-school and at college (high-school corresponds to 9th to 12th grades)
- "pupils" is not used in the States - they speak about "students"
- when there are only 4 years (most of colleges), my suspension points ("...") are useless, otherwise a student in 3rd out of 5 years is named middler; a student who has to repeat one of the years (eg not good enough marks) are said to have been "held back" or "kept back"
- synonyms for a 1st-year student are "fish", "new-g", "fresher", "frosh", "newbie", "freshie", "snotter", "fresh-meat", "skippie", etc
- an alternative to sophomore is "soph".
Etymologically, sophomore means 'wise fool' (from Greek "sophos", meaning "wise", and "moros" meaning "foolish"); thus the connotations "pretentious, bombastic, inflated in style or manner; immature, crude, superficial"
- students who exceptionally need more than 4 years are named "superseniors"
- "Underclassman" is used to refer collectively to Freshmen and Sophomores; Upperclassman to refer collectively to Juniors and Seniors
- a "Graduate" student is a student who goes on with their studies (law schooling, medical schooling, etc) leading to Master’s degree or Doctorate degree.
A "graduate" is also the name given to a student who just got their degree (the time of celebration)

I hope you like these 4 terms that are very often used throughout the States.
They are so common that we can meet them in sports, in politics, in music (and others) for the 2 first years of efforts - Freshman and Sophomore.
You might also find the word "rookie" for a sport Professional in their first year.
The last 2 ones (Junior and Senior) are used in firms not exactly the ways they are at school but they refer to good level and top level professionals.

HTH

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PS: Pls note that I chose American English for my vocabulary, grammar, spelling, culture, etc.  :-)
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gerardM

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