According to Dictionary.com, education is the act or process of imparting or acquiring general knowledge, developing the powers of reasoning and judgment, and preparing oneself or others intellectually for mature life. Scholarly institutions, such as universities and public schools, are typically used to administer education.
Education has played an important role in the development of modern society, explains Psychology Today. Through education, people gain knowledge and skills, enabling them to become productive members of society. Formal education usually starts at the pre-school level and continues until college. The distinction between formal and informal education is that the former is education mandated through institutions, the latter is education acquired through individual effort or personal experience.
In a formal education system, the ability to grasp concepts and apply learned topics in various situations is determined through the use of exams. Degrees, such as Bachelor's Degrees, Master's Degrees and PhDs, are means of evaluating the extent of formal education in a particular subject. Whether formal or informal, education is beneficial in developing the ability to think critically and make sound judgements. An educated person is also more likely to enjoy a higher standard of living and quality of life than a person with minimal education.