There is a difference. A college offers various degrees but is a self-contained institution. A university is a collection of colleges, each of which offers a degree in its specific field.
Tufts University includes The College of Arts and Sciences, The Engineering School, The Veterinary School, and The Medical School. When referring to the university, you are talking about all of the schools.
I always knew there was a difference, but it was never clearly explained in my head. Good to know now.
- Barney: I mean… all right, fine, the stripper at Stuart’s bachelor party was a 15.
- Ted: She was FIFTEEN?
- Barney: No, a 15. Like in blackjack.
- Ted: As in… not sure whether you’d hit it?
- Barney: Exactly.
How I Met Your Mother doesn’t fully live up to my impossibly high expectations—yes, I’m looking at you guys, Arrested Development, Dexter, Mad Men, Flight of the Conchords… yeah, you get the idea—but Barney gets some hilarious lines.