'in a university' or 'at a university'

tulipflower

Member
Joined
Mar 4, 2014
Member Type
Teacher (Other)
Native Language
Persian
Home Country
Iran
Current Location
Iran
Is there any difference between 'in a university' or 'at a university'?
 

emsr2d2

Moderator
Staff member
Joined
Jul 28, 2009
Member Type
English Teacher
Native Language
British English
Home Country
UK
Current Location
UK
As always, please give us a complete sentence.
 

tulipflower

Member
Joined
Mar 4, 2014
Member Type
Teacher (Other)
Native Language
Persian
Home Country
Iran
Current Location
Iran
As always, please give us a complete sentence.

Which one is correct?
I'm studying art in the university.
I'm studying art at the university.
 

emsr2d2

Moderator
Staff member
Joined
Jul 28, 2009
Member Type
English Teacher
Native Language
British English
Home Country
UK
Current Location
UK
Which one is correct?
I'm studying art in the university. ❌
I'm studying art at the university. ❌

They're both wrong, unfortunately. The correct version is "I'm studying art at university". (Don't use the definite article before "university" in this context.)
 

SoothingDave

VIP Member
Joined
Apr 17, 2009
Member Type
Interested in Language
Native Language
American English
Home Country
United States
Current Location
United States
"At the university" would work if it was known which university was being referred to. Like there is an understanding or just one school at a place.

What are you doing in Ithica? Oh, studying art at the university.
 

tulipflower

Member
Joined
Mar 4, 2014
Member Type
Teacher (Other)
Native Language
Persian
Home Country
Iran
Current Location
Iran
What about following answer to the question?
Where are you?
I'm in the university.
 

SoothingDave

VIP Member
Joined
Apr 17, 2009
Member Type
Interested in Language
Native Language
American English
Home Country
United States
Current Location
United States
That wouldn't make any sense. A university is a collection of buildings and grounds. You can't be "in" that.

If you ask for my location, it would either be I'm "at" the university, "on" campus or "in" a particular building.
 
Top