However, some tertiary education programs have their own admission examinations, and many use a mixture of both.
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In relation to mathematics, the second national language and foreign languages, a student can choose to study a curriculum from different levels of difficulty. Students choose their relevant levels at the beginning of school, when selecting appropriate courses, and at the end of school, when registering for the matriculation exam in order to receive the relevant exam paper. These two choices are not directly linked, but students generally keep the level the same for the matriculation exam.
One common exception to this rule of thumb occurs when a student has barely completed a higher level course and is unsure of their performance in the matriculation exam. In those cases, a student may elect to take an easier exam. In mathematics, the advanced level is in practice a prerequisite for the more competitive university science programs, such as those of the universities of technology , other university mathematical science programs, and medicine.
For example, assuming that the best mathematical students are selected first to the upper academic school and then to the advanced mathematics curriculum, the students achieving laudatur would comprise the mathematically best 0. Both primary and secondary teachers must have a master's degree to qualify.
Teaching is a respected profession and entrance to university programs is highly competitive. Admissions are based on the high school final GPA , the high school final exam the abitur , and the university entrance examinations. The selection process is fully transparent, merit-based, and objective; there are no application essays, no human factor in selection, no underrepresented minority support except for preset quotas for Swedish speakers , and no weight on extracurricular activities.
Moreover, the entrance examinations are rarely long multiple-choice exams, and instead consist of a smaller number of longer and more complicated questions that are supposed to test more than memorization and quick mechanical problem solving.
Therefore, the selection process is very different from many other countries. The focus for universities is research, and they give theoretical education.
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In many programs graduating with a master's degree is expected, with no separate admissions process between Bachelor and master's degrees. The universities of applied sciences focus more on responding to the needs of the world of work and they engage in industry development projects. The nature of research is more practical and theories are applied to advanced problem solving. For example, physicians are university graduates, whereas registered nurses and engineers graduate from universities of applied sciences.
However, universities also award degrees in Nursing Science and Engineering. The vocational schools and universities of applied sciences are governed by municipalities , or, in special cases, by private entities. As an exception to the rule, the Police College is governed by the Ministry of the Interior. All Finnish universities, on the other hand, were owned by the state until , after which they have been separated from the state into foundations or corporations under public law.
A bachelor's degree takes about three—four years. Depending on the programme, this may be the point of graduation, but it is usually only an intermediate step towards the master's degree. A bachelor's degree in a university of applied sciences a polytechnic degree , on the other hand, takes about 3,5—4,5 years.
Polytechnic degrees are generally accepted as lower university degrees. Graduates from universities and universities of applied sciences are able to continue their studies by applying to master's degree programmes in universities or universities of applied sciences. After bachelor's degree graduates have completed three years' work experience in their field, they are qualified to apply for master's degree programmes in universities of applied sciences which are work- and research-oriented.
Lower university degree graduates are also qualified to apply, but with additional studies.
The master's degree programme in universities of applied sciences takes two years and can be undertaken in conjunction with regular work. After the master's degree, the remaining degrees Licentiate and Doctor are available only in universities. All master's degrees qualify their recipients for graduate studies at doctoral level.
In universities, membership in the students' union is compulsory. Students' unions in universities of applied sciences are similarly recognized in the legislation, but membership is voluntary and does not include special university student health care which is organised and partly financed by the students' unions. Finnish students are entitled to a student benefit, which may be revoked if there is a persistent lack of progress in the studies.
Some universities provide professional degrees. They have additional requirements in addition to merely completing the studies, such as demonstrations of competence in practice. The Licentiate of Medicine is not equivalent to licentiate's degree in other fields, but to a master's degree. For this reason, no Licentiate's thesis is required unlike in other fields. The equivalent of a Medical Doctor in the U. A Licenciate programme has the same amount of theoretical education as a Doctor, but its dissertation work has fewer requirements.
On the other hand, the requirements for a doctoral dissertation are a little bit higher than in other countries. The most typical Finnish doctoral degree is Doctor of Philosophy filosofian tohtori , filosofie doktorsexamen. However, universities of technology award the title Doctor of Science Technology , tekniikan tohtori , teknologie doktorsexamen and there are several branch-specific titles, e. Up until , public universities in Finland did not collect tuition fees. The students' organisations have opposed those plans.
Since the autumn semester , students from outside the EEA have to pay tuition fees of at least 1, euros per year to study in Finland, while students from the EEA continue to study for free. Completing secondary school on a vocational programme with full classes on a three-year curriculum provides a formal qualification for further studies. However, it may prove necessary to obtain post-secondary education before being admitted to a university, as the entrance examinations require a relatively high level of knowledge.
Post-secondary education is provided by municipal schools or independent 'adult education centres', which can give either vocational education or teaching at comprehensive or upper secondary school levels. It is possible to obtain the matriculation diploma, or to better the comprehensive school grades, in these programmes. A new trade can also be learned by an adult at an adult education centre aikuiskoulutuskeskus , vuxenutbildningscenter , for example, if structural change of the economy has made the old trade redundant.
There are no requirements, but there is a modest tuition fee e. While "Open University" students cannot pursue studies towards a degree, they may, after passing a sufficient number of separately determined courses with a sufficiently high grade point average, be eligible for transfer into an undergraduate degree program. Alternatively, a few institutions offer foreign qualifications, such as the private Helsinki School of Business , which offers the UK-accredited Higher National Diploma , enabling graduates to earn an undergraduate degree after completing a top-up year abroad.
This is formed by the partially state-funded, independent educational institutes offering diverse courses varying in length and academic level. The purpose of the "Free Education" is not to provide professional or degree-oriented education but to "support the multi-faceted development of personality, the ability to act in the community and to pursue the fulfilment of democracy, equality and diversity in the society. The "Free Education" is offered by . These are mostly evening-type municipal institutions offering language, handicraft and humanities courses.
The academic level varies strongly, and many courses do not require any requisite knowledge. The kansanopistos , on the other hand, are boarding-schools, often maintained by associations with either a strong ideological or religious mission. Also here, the academic level varies strongly. In all these institutions, the courses carry a modest tuition.
The Sports' training centers are institutions for the professional or semi-professional sportsmen's training, while Summer universities and study centers are auxiliary bodies for the organization of Free Education. The Minister of Education has the responsibility of electronically preserving and distributing public domain works. Finland has millions of public domain works books, pictures, music and films and views access to them as a basic human right of access to science and culture.
The ongoing Bologna Process blurs the distinction between vocational and academic qualifications. In some fields, new postgraduate degrees have been introduced. Co-operation between the different systems is rising and some integration will occur although not without a substantial amount of pressure.
In recent years, a cut in the number of new student places has often been called for by the economic sphere, as well as trade and student unions, because of an ongoing trend of rising academic unemployment, which is interpreted as a result of the steep increase in student places in higher education in the s.
It is still largely undecided whether and when some of those cuts could be redistributed to areas in need of a more highly educated work force.
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In and , university graduates had a 3. An increase in vocational school student places might be preferred, as a shortage of basic workforce such as plumbers and construction workers is widely acknowledged in Finland. It should also be noted that retiring age groups are bigger than the ones entering higher education in Finland at present and for quite some time into the foreseeable future. Due to globalization and increasing competition for diminishing younger age groups, system-wide restructuring has been called for by the Ministry of Education. Since all institutions of higher education have been sharing methods of cooperation.
The total number of institutions is expected to drop significantly within 10—15 years. The process within universities began with merger of the University of Kuopio and the University of Joensuu into the University of Eastern Finland in Also several universities of applied sciences have announced mergers such as Haaga and Helia, which merged into Haaga-Helia in New methods of cooperation such as consortia and federations have been introduced within universities e.
Partnerships between traditional universities and universities of applied sciences are also developing e. An agency must be open for one year before it is eligible to receive stars. Go to TN. Print This Page. Go to Search. Child Care Report Card The quality of child care has a direct impact on a child's ability to learn, to build healthy relationships, and to become the best they can be.
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Section 09 - Glossary of Terms
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