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How can I say that 'Before the next start of the academic year.'. Is 'next' a good word to use? Basically, if it's January at the moment of writing and I want to say when the next year of school starts.

Does the 'academic year' means when the college/school/university starts their lessons, after the holiday, usually September/30 August? If you could clarify that, I would be really grateful.

P.S. I'm writing a formal letter to a college

  • Can I say: 'Thirty minutes away by foot'? How to write this sentence properly? – Saras Jan 17 '12 at 23:12
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You can indeed say "before the next start of the academic year" and be perfectly understood to refer to the start of classes at the end of summertime.

It is more common (idiomatic) to write "before the start of the next academic year". That is what you will see in print: Google Ngram Viewer

To be absolutely sure of no misunderstanding, you could of course refer to a particular date, or a generality such as "fall of 2012".

  • I also agree with "before the start of the next academic year" as being more commonly used. – tcrosley Jan 17 '12 at 23:16
  • @MetaEd Thank you. One more small question, can I use: 'Thirty minutes away by foot'? Or how should I write this sentence properly? I want to say that: 'I will be living less than thirty minutes away, by bicycle or by (foot/walking), from the college'? – Saras Jan 17 '12 at 23:27
  • @tcrosley Thank you for clarifying, could you help me out with the question I have posted above, because I would like to send it to the college. Thanks again. – Saras Jan 17 '12 at 23:57
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    For this site to be useful to everyone, please post a new question. – MetaEd Jan 18 '12 at 0:06
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I think it is correct to write as: "Before the start of next academic year". But may be if the college or university admits students twice a year you may write: "Before the start of oncoming academic sessions" or more unambiguously "Before the start of academic sessions starting XXXXX". Very often academic year means from August - May of next calendar year. And if you are a student admitted in the academic year say: February - November, it can lead to confusion. Generally academic year is not a full 12-month year. It will end once the exams are over and before the start of the vacation. In India students are admitted only once a year, starting August. But in US universities they also admit students in Spring sessions. Hence the suggestion.

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