I'm not sure about Q 1. It's probably different in the US.Please help me with the following in bold.
1. Depending on the subject matter or level you plan to teach, this could involve completing up to sixty semester credit hours of education classes. Included in the academic program is clinical experience of ten semester hours.....
Does "60 semester credit hours" mean "60 credit hours per semester?" And does "ten semester hours" mean "ten hours per semester?" If I complete 60 credit hours per semester, does this mean I get 60 credits? Are semester credit hour and semester hour the same?
2. There isn't consistency from one state to another in setting proficiency standards under No Child Left Behind. An eight-grade student in Wisconsin, for example, would pass the reading test at the 14th percentile, whereas his counterpart in South Carolina must score in the 71st percentile.
I'm not quite sure of the concept of "percentile." Why do they say "14th percentile," not "14 percentile"?
It's a level, not an amount, like 'the 5th level'.
It seems to be different from "14 percent." Does this mean the student would pass the reading test when there are 86 students (100-14) who got lower scores than he, in other words, when he belongs to the best 14 students?
No, it means he has to belong to the top 86%. It is only the bottom 14% (who are below the 14th percentile) who fail.
And what about the student in South Carolina? Is that saying he must belong to the best 29 students (100-71) to pass the test?
You'll note that you've worked out the right meaning for South Carolina and the wrong meaning for Wisconsin.
Also, the wording of the sentence suggests that it is harder to pass in South Carolina, so that should give you a clue.