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Bulgaria:Teaching and Learning in General Upper Secondary Education

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Overview Bulgaria

Contents

Bulgaria:Political, Social and Economic Background and Trends

Bulgaria:Historical Development

Bulgaria:Main Executive and Legislative Bodies

Bulgaria:Population: Demographic Situation, Languages and Religions

Bulgaria:Political and Economic Situation

Bulgaria:Organisation and Governance

Bulgaria:Fundamental Principles and National Policies

Bulgaria:Lifelong Learning Strategy

Bulgaria:Organisation of the Education System and of its Structure

Bulgaria:Organisation of Private Education

Bulgaria:National Qualifications Framework

Bulgaria:Administration and Governance at Central and/or Regional Level

Bulgaria:Administration and Governance at Local and/or Institutional Level

Bulgaria:Statistics on Organisation and Governance

Bulgaria:Funding in Education

Bulgaria:Early Childhood and School Education Funding

Bulgaria:Higher Education Funding

Bulgaria:Adult Education and Training Funding

Bulgaria:Early Childhood Education and Care

Bulgaria:Organisation of Early Childhood Education and Care

Bulgaria:Teaching and Learning in Early Childhood Education and Care

Bulgaria:Assessment in Early Childhood Education and Care

Bulgaria:Organisational Variations and Alternative Structures in Early Childhood Education and Care

Bulgaria:Single Structure Education (Integrated Primary and Lower Secondary Education)

Bulgaria:Organisation of Single Structure Education

Bulgaria:Teaching and Learning in Single Structure Education

Bulgaria:Assessment in Single Structure Education

Bulgaria:Organisational Variations and Alternative Structures in Single Structure Education

Bulgaria:Upper Secondary and Post-Secondary Non-Tertiary Education

Bulgaria:Organisation of General Upper Secondary Education

Bulgaria:Teaching and Learning in General Upper Secondary Education

Bulgaria:Assessment in General Upper Secondary Education

Bulgaria:Organisation of Vocational Lower Secondary Education

Bulgaria:Teaching and Learning in Vocational Lower Secondary Education

Bulgaria:Assessment in Vocational Lower Secondary Education

Bulgaria:Organisation of Vocational Upper Secondary Education

Bulgaria:Teaching and Learning in Vocational Upper Secondary Education

Bulgaria:Assessment in Vocational Upper Secondary Education

Bulgaria:Organisation of Post-Secondary Non-Tertiary Education

Bulgaria:Teaching and Learning in Post-Secondary Non-Tertiary Education

Bulgaria:Assessment in Post-Secondary Non-Tertiary Education

Bulgaria:Higher Education

Bulgaria:Types of Higher Education Institutions

Bulgaria:First Cycle Programmes

Bulgaria:Bachelor

Bulgaria:Short-Cycle Higher Education

Bulgaria:Second Cycle Programmes

Bulgaria:Programmes outside the Bachelor and Master Structure

Bulgaria:Third Cycle (PhD) Programmes

Bulgaria:Adult Education and Training

Bulgaria:Institutions Providing Adult Education and Training

Bulgaria:Main Programmes and Provision in Adult Education and Training

Bulgaria:Teachers and Education Staff

Bulgaria:Initial Education for Teachers Working in Early Childhood and School Education

Bulgaria:Conditions of Service for Teachers Working in Early Childhood and School Education

Bulgaria:Continuing Professional Development for Teachers Working in Early Childhood and School Education

Bulgaria:Initial Education for Academic Staff in Higher Education

Bulgaria:Conditions of Service for Academic Staff Working in Higher Education

Bulgaria:Continuing Professional Development for Academic Staff Working in Higher Education

Bulgaria:Initial Education for Teachers and Trainers Working in Adult Education and Training

Bulgaria:Conditions of Service for Teachers and Trainers Working in Adult Education and Training

Bulgaria:Continuing Professional Development for Teachers and Trainers Working in Adult Education and Training

Bulgaria:Management and Other Education Staff

Bulgaria:Management Staff for Early Childhood and School Education

Bulgaria:Staff Involved in Monitoring Educational Quality for Early Childhood and School Education

Bulgaria:Education Staff Responsible for Guidance in Early Childhood and School Education

Bulgaria:Other Education Staff or Staff Working with Schools

Bulgaria:Management Staff for Higher Education

Bulgaria:Other Education Staff or Staff Working in Higher Education

Bulgaria:Management Staff Working in Adult Education and Training

Bulgaria:Other Education Staff or Staff Working in Adult Education and Training

Bulgaria:Quality Assurance

Bulgaria:Quality Assurance in Early Childhood and School Education

Bulgaria:Quality Assurance in Higher Education

Bulgaria:Quality Assurance in Adult Education and Training

Bulgaria:Educational Support and Guidance

Bulgaria:Special Education Needs Provision within Mainstream Education

Bulgaria:Separate Special Education Needs Provision in Early Childhood and School Education

Bulgaria:Support Measures for Learners in Early Childhood and School Education

Bulgaria:Guidance and Counselling in Early Childhood and School Education

Bulgaria:Support Measures for Learners in Higher Education

Bulgaria:Guidance and Counselling in Higher Education

Bulgaria:Support Measures for Learners in Adult Education and Training

Bulgaria:Guidance and Counselling in a Lifelong Learning Approach

Bulgaria:Mobility and Internationalisation

Bulgaria:Mobility in Early Childhood and School Education

Bulgaria:Mobility in Higher Education

Bulgaria:Mobility in Adult Education and Training

Bulgaria:Other Dimensions of Internationalisation in Early Childhood and School Education

Bulgaria:Other Dimensions of Internationalisation in Higher Education

Bulgaria:Other Dimensions of Internationalisation in Adult Education and Training

Bulgaria:Bilateral Agreements and Worldwide Cooperation

Bulgaria:Ongoing Reforms and Policy Developments

Bulgaria:National Reforms in Early Childhood Education and Care

Bulgaria:National Reforms in School Education

Bulgaria:National Reforms in Vocational Education and Training and Adult Learning

Bulgaria:National Reforms in Higher Education

Bulgaria:National Reforms related to Transversal Skills and Employability

Bulgaria:European Perspective

Bulgaria:Legislation

Bulgaria:Institutions

Bulgaria:Bibliography

Bulgaria:Glossary


Curriculum, Subjects, Number of Hours

The curriculum is comprised of compulsory, core curriculum optional and free elective study courses.

Compulsory education provides the attainment of the general education minimum, which is compulsory for all schools and is the basis of general education.

Core curriculum optional education provides additional instruction within the subjects from the cultural and educational areas corresponding to the interest and individual abilities of students. The share of core curriculum optional education at upper secondary level is between 45% and 80% of the classes. Academic time for core curriculum optional education at upper secondary is used for general, specialized or vocational training. In sports and arts schools core curriculum optional education is devoted to profile education in the respective sports and arts.

Free elective education provides instruction in areas and activities offered by the school and chosen by students, which may be outside the cultural and educational areas. Its duration is up to four hours per week for all classes in accordance with the curriculum and is not compulsory for students.
Compulsory teaching hours include compulsory and core curriculum optional education – at upper secondary level they can be not more than 32 per week. Core curriculum optional and free elective hours are allotted to subjects according to every school opportunities and students’ choices.

Since August 1, 2016 a new educational law on pre-school and school education has been force in Bulgaria. It gives a new structure of the Bulgarian educational system. 

  • general education (grades 1-7): 
    • primary education (grades 1-4) 
    • lower-secondary education (grades 5-7) 
  • upper-secondary education (grades 8-12):
    • first stage of upper-secondary education (grades 8-10)
    • second stage of upper-secondary education (grades 11-12)  

The law defines 24 types of curricula, depending on the type of school. Most curricula are based on the type of studying a foreign language. The school education is general, expanded and specialized.

General education at the primary level of education is the same for all types of schools and is acquired by studying the same general subjects with the same number of hours for each of them. 

Exceptions on the number of hours through which the different subjects are studies, are allowed for innovative schools. 

General education covers the following groups of key competences:
1. Bulgarian language competences;
2. Foreign language communication skills ;
3. mathematical competence and basic copetences in science and technology;
4. digital competence;
5. learning skills;
6. social and civic competences;
7. initiative and entrepreneurship;
8. cultural competence and expression through creativity skills;
9.  sustainable development support and healthy lifestyle and sport skills

Expanded studies covers competences developing and improving particular competences of general education. Subjects through which expanded studies at a particular school shall are outlined by the school curriculum according to students' interests and the teaching potentialities of the school. The content of expanded studies in a subject for each particular grade, with the exception of subjects like mother tongue, choreography, foreign languages and religion is outlined in curricula approved by the school principal.

Specialized studies is acquired in the second phase of upper-secondary education by studying profile subjects included in the respective profile. The profile is a set of profiling subjects, two of which are set out and the rest is determined by the school in the school curriculum and are the same for grades 11 and 12. Each profile subject consists of compulsory and optional modules.

The profiles are: 

1. Foreign languages– two  foreign languages, studied at school
2. Humanities - Bulgarian Language and Literature  and History and Civilizations or  Bulgarian Language and Literature and Philosophy 
3. Social studies - Geography and Economy and History and Civilizations or History and Civilizations and Philosophy;
4. Economic development - Geography and Economy and Mathematic or Geography and Economy and Foreign Language; 
5. Software and hardware Sciences - software and hardware Sciences and Informatics and Information Technologies; 
6. Entrepreneurship - entrepreneurships and Information Technologies or Entrepreneurships and Geography and Economy; 
7. Mathematics - Mathematic and Informatics or  Mathematic and Physic and Astronomy; 
8. Natural sciences - Biology  and Hеalth Education and Chemistry and  Environment Protection or  Chemistry and  Environment Protectionand  and Physic and Astronomy; 
9. Arts - Arts and Foreign Language, in the first phase of upper-secondary education, or Arts and Information Technologies; 
10. Music - Music and Foreign Language, studied at school , or Music and Information Technologies;  
11. Physical Education and Sports - Physical Education and Sports and Biology and Hеalth Education;

Additional studies include competences that meet the interests of students and support the development of their talents. The subjects, modules and activities through which additional studies are organised are offered by the school, depending on its teaching potential and are chosen by students according to their interests as outlined in the school curricula. The contents of additional studies, except for the subjects   mother tongue, choreography, foreign language and religion, is specified in curricula approved by the principal of the school.

 

Teaching Methods and Materials

Upper secondary students possess a higher level of intellectual development, knowledge and skill formation, which facilitates the application of more various methods of education.

The most widely spread methods of education at the upper secondary level of education in Bulgarian schools are:

  • Presentation of the study material by the teacher – narrative, explanation, lecture, combined with the use of visual aids and technical means; 
  • Discourse methods of education – talk, discussion, debate, which stimulate students’ reasoning;
  • Individual work on literary text;
  • Direct study of the real world – observation, school experiment, research of documents;
  • Indirect study – demonstration, modelling;
  • Practical activities – exercise, situational, laboratory and practical work topics development; 
  • Situational and role play methods.

Bringing teaching methods up-to-date at upper secondary level is done in two ways: 

  • Giving ‘ready-made knowledge’ is replaced with more active methods, provoking independence, creativity and developing students’ skills to make independent decisions; 
  • Greater use of ICT in education. 

Teachers are also an inseparable part of the selection process of all textbooks. Each year three textbooks per subject are approved by the Minister of Education, Youth and Science. Once the textbooks are approved schools and teachers choose the corresponding textbook as well as supplementary materials.