Tag Archives: finnish education

About school at school

Our fourth meeting took place at TAMK since our subject for the meeting was school and education. We taught each other how the school systems in our countries work. We also talked about different student benefits and expenses as a student.

In the Netherlands the primary school starts at age 4 and if you’re born at the end of the year you might have to retake the first year since you’d be missing too much. That differs from the Finnish system where everyone starts school at the same time in mid-August in the year they turn 7. Before primary school the kids might go to a kindergarten but it’s not mandatory like it’s not in Finland either.

Primary school lasts for 8 years so when going to secondary education they are usually age 12. In secondary education there are three different choices for high schools that are VMBO, HAVO and VWO. The choice is made based on test results from primary school.

VMBO (”preparatory middle-level applied education” or pre-vocational education) lasts for four years and it has four different levels (TL, GL, KBL and BBL). The levels go from most theoretical path (TL) to the path that emphasizes vocational training the most (BBL). After VMBO the student might go to work or continue studying at MBO. MBO (”middle-level applied education” or secondary vocational education) lasts for 2 to 4 years depending on the level. Students in MBO can choose a more school-based path where training within a company takes 20-60 % of the time or an apprenticeship education where training is more than 60 % of the study time. After MBO the student can enter the job market or continue studying in HBO.

HAVO (”higher general continued education” or general secondary education) lasts for five years. The first three years all students study the same subjects and after that they enter the second phase where they have to choose a profile. The different profiles are Culture&Society, Economy&Society, Nature&Health and Nature&Technology. A HAVO diploma provides access to HBO. HBO (”higher professional education” or polytechnic / university of applied sciences) usually takes 4 years (bachelor) and after that you may apply for a master’s program or enter the job market.

VWO (”preparatory scientific education” or pre-university education) lasts for six years and it is the highest variant in the secondary education level. The studies in VWO go on similar way as in HAVO but the difficulty level is higher. In VWO students also have to choose between the four profiles. With a VWO diploma a student can continue in WO (”scientific education”) that is only taught in research universities. WO also has a bachelor’s (normally 3 years) and a master’s (1-3 years) programme. After a master’s degree it’s possible to apply for a PhD candidate position at a university.

Although the school systems have similarities there are also a lot of differences. In Dutch school system are three options for secondary education where there are only two options in Finland. Also, the compulsory education in Finland ends after comprehensive school (or when it has passed 10 years since the beginning of comprehensive school, at age 17) and in the Netherlands it ends when you’re 18 so for example after VMBO a student must go at least two years to MBO.

In the Dutch system there is a possibility to “level up” after for example finishing at HAVO you can take final year of VWO and apply for WO. And it is also possible to go from HAVO to MBO. Usually students just follow the path as it is planned. It seems a bit weird because secondary education starts as early as age 12 and I know that many Finnish people who finish high school at around age 18 still don’t know what to do in the future. In Finland both high school and vocational school are equal when applying to a university or polytechnic (depending on the degree of course).

In Finland the education is free at all levels. Of course there are some private schools too that have tuition fees but they are not very common. In the Netherlands the education costs after secondary education. In the Netherlands students don’t get a student benefit from the government but they can apply for a cheap loan. In Finland a student can get student benefit from the age 17 on (depending on parents income and other things). In higher education parents’ income can’t decrease the amount of the money anymore but there are many other factors that affect the amount of money that you can get. Finnish students can also apply for a loan.

I find different education systems interesting as you may have realised from the length of this post. It’s interesting that even though we’re all students in TAMK at the moment we come from different study backgrounds.

No.2_IT BEGINS

Miss me already?

Good news is … I am back 🙂

This time our group decided to meet again at Tuuli’s apartment. We studied lots of new words in both German and Finnish. I would like to share with you guys some few things that we had done so far.

1, Learning new words: Learning theme was food and clothes.

2, Culture exchange:

I have to say that I was quite amazed at how things working here in Europe. We discussed the Finnish schooling system, different types of high schools in Tampere and very interesting topic: kindergarten fee. It surprised me since I thought that it was very expensive to pay for kids in kindergarten here in Finland, however, it turned out that it would depend on parental income. We actually googled that and found out that the fee was actually not that high! German kindergarten also shared quite same system. I assume that it is standard system in Europe?

Siinä kaikki! This is all we did for the second gathering!

Third meeting :) Welcome to Lapinkaari

 

I invited my team mate to my dormitory, Lapinkaari. It was the first time we met at someone’s house.

I prepared some Korean traditional home food, which are rice with soi sauce and sesami oil, and seaweed soup. These food are really common.

We always eat seaweed soup on birthday. Because seaweed is very good to the health of the mother, the mother after the birth of their child ate seaweed soup. So eating seaweed soup on your birthday morning is tradition of Korea.

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And I got a lot of Korean cookies from my boyfriend. It’s much amount I cannot eat alone,  and I want them to experience Korean snack taste and culture:D

Red one is a chocolate pie, very old sweets. Especially the soldiers eat a lot. Sometimes we fail to prepare the cake for someone, we amass this cookies as cake. (Actually I don’t like this sweets)

Fernando and Tuija didn’t like Korean sausage(gold one). They said its taste is weird. I think its taste is not suitable for foreign, but they really like another sweet cookies!

Korean cookies
Korean cookies

After eating earlier dinner, we talked about wild animal and education. Because Tuija’s uncle is hunter, she knew well about finnish wild animal.  She told to us about wild deer and moose. In Korea,  Hunting wild animals is illegal, because of the lack of wild animals.  So first time I listend about hunting deer and moose, I was really surprised. I’ve never watched and done hunting. If I have the opportunity to watch hunting, It will  be perfect experience for me.

Also, we talked about our own contry’s education. In face, USA’s is almost same with Korean, except price. University tuition fee of USA is famous for their high price. Actually Korean fee is also expensive, but we can’t compare to USA.

So Finnish education is really different including education method, curriculum, welfare, and tuition fee.  I always envy finnish students.

It was so nice time to spend time together. I can’t believe that only about 1 month remains.