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Finland:Assessment in General Upper Secondary Education

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Finland:Early Childhood Education and Care

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Finland:Assessment in early childhood education and care other than pre-primary education

Finland:Organisation of pre-primary education

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Finland:Assessment in pre-primary education

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

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

Finland:Organisation of Single Structure Education

Finland:Teaching and Learning in Single Structure Education

Finland:Assessment in Single Structure Education

Finland:Organisational Variations and Alternative Structures in Single Structure Education

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

Finland:Organisation of General Upper Secondary Education

Finland:Teaching and Learning in General Upper Secondary Education

Finland:Assessment in General Upper Secondary Education

Finland:Organisation of Vocational and Technical Upper Secondary Education

Finland:Teaching and Learning in Vocational and Technical Upper Secondary Education

Finland:Assessment in Vocational and Technical Upper Secondary Education

Finland:Organisation of Post-Secondary Non-Tertiary Education

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

Finland:Assessment in Post-Secondary Non-Tertiary Education

Finland:Higher Education

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Finland:Validation of Non-formal and Informal Learning

Finland:Teachers and Education Staff

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

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

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

Finland:Initial Education for Academic Staff in Higher Education

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

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

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

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

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

Finland:Management and Other Education Staff

Finland:Management Staff for Early Childhood and School Education

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

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

Finland:Other Education Staff or Staff Working with Schools

Finland:Management Staff for Higher Education

Finland:Other Education Staff or Staff Working in Higher Education

Finland:Management Staff Working in Adult Education and Training

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

Finland:Quality Assurance

Finland:Quality Assurance in Early Childhood and School Education

Finland:Quality Assurance in Higher Education

Finland:Quality Assurance in Adult Education and Training

Finland:Educational Support and Guidance

Finland:Special Education Needs Provision within Mainstream Education

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

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

Finland:Guidance and Counselling in Early Childhood and School Education

Finland:Support Measures for Learners in Higher Education

Finland:Guidance and Counselling in Higher Education

Finland:Support Measures for Learners in Adult Education and Training

Finland:Guidance and Counselling in a Lifelong Learning Approach

Finland:Mobility and Internationalisation

Finland:Mobility in Early Childhood and School Education

Finland:Mobility in Higher Education

Finland:Mobility in Adult Education and Training

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

Finland:Other Dimensions of Internationalisation in Higher Education

Finland:Other Dimensions of Internationalisation in Adult Education and Training

Finland:Bilateral Agreements and Worldwide Cooperation

Finland:Ongoing Reforms and Policy Developments

Finland:National Reforms in Early Childhood Education and Care

Finland:National Reforms in School Education

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

Finland:National Reforms in Higher Education

Finland:National Reforms related to Transversal Skills and Employability

Finland:European Perspective

Finland:Legislation

Finland:Glossary


Student Assessment


According to the General Upper Secondary Schools Decree, the students and their parents or other guardians are to be provided with information concerning the individual students’ schoolwork and progress of studies at sufficiently frequent intervals. This provision of information is determined in more detail in the curriculum.


Assessment is based on the objectives defined in the curriculum. Each  course is assessed once it has been completed. The purpose of assessment is to give students feedback on how they have met the objectives of the course and on their progress in that subject.


The grade for the overall subject syllabus is basically determined as the mathematical average of the grade of the individual courses. A student who wants to raise a grade has to be given an opportunity to take a separate examination to raise the grade.


According to the General Upper Secondary Schools Decree, students’ knowledge and skills in each subject or subject group are assessed by the students’ teacher or, should there be several teachers, jointly by the teachers concerned. The final assessment is carried out by the principal together with these teachers.


The scale of grades used in numerical assessment is 4–10. Grades indicate following knowledge and skills

  • 5 adequate
  • 6 moderate
  • 7 satisfactory
  • 8 good
  • 9 very good
  • 10 excellent 


Grade 4 is reserved for a failed performance. Some courses are assessed with passed/failed. In some cases, numerical grades can be complemented and specified by written verbal assessment or oral feedback given in an assessment discussion.


Matriculation examination


At the end of general upper secondary education, students usually take the matriculation examination (Finnish: ylioppilastutkinto, Swedish: studentexamen). The examination consists of at least four tests; one of them, the test in the candidate’s mother tongue, is compulsory for all candidates. The candidate then chooses three other compulsory tests from among the following four tests: the test in the second national language, a foreign language test, the mathematics test, and one test in the general studies battery of tests (sciences and humanities). The candidate may include, in addition, as part of his or her examination, one or more optional tests.


According to the Ministry of Education and Culture's Education and Research Development plan 2011–2016, the matriculation examination will be developed to support the general education aims of the upper secondary school and to improve its usability in higher education admissions. The objective for the matriculation examination is to better measure whether students have acquired the information and skills of the upper secondary curriculum and achieved sufficient maturity and eligibility for further studies in accordance with the objectives. Preparations will be made for gradual adoption of ICT in the matriculation examination.


There is a separate assessment system for the matriculation examination. The tests are initially checked and assessed by each general upper secondary school’s teacher of the subject in question and finally by the Finnish Matriculation Examination Board. The Latin grades and the corresponding points given for the tests are: 

  • laudatur (Latin for "praised", 7),
  • eximia cum laude approbatur ("passed with exceptional praise", 6),
  • magna cum laude approbatur ("passed with much praise", 5),
  • cum laude approbatur ("passed with praise", 4),
  • lubenter approbatur ("satisfactorily passed", 3),
  • approbatur ("passed", 2), and
  • improbatur ("failed", 0).

Act on admissions register and matriculation examination register (1058/1998)
Act on the provision of matriculation examination (672/2005)
General Upper Secondary Schools Act (629/1998) 
Lukiokoulutuksen opetussuunnitelmien perusteet 2003 (National Core Curriculum for Upper Secondary Schools 2003) 
Education and Research. Development Plan 2011–2016

 
Progression of Students


The general upper secondary school syllabus consists of a minimum of 75 courses. The order of completion of the courses will be detailed within the upper secondary school's curriculum. The Upper Secondary Schools Decree prescribes that for each subject or subject group, the curriculum shall determine the courses which students are required to pass in order to progress in the subject or subject group concerned. A student who has not completed the aforementioned studies to an acceptable standard shall be given an opportunity to demonstrate that he or she has achieved sufficient knowledge and skills in order to progress in studies.


Since instruction in general upper secondary schools is not tied to year classes, students do not need to repeat a year class in case of grade retention. Teachers and principals decide upon students' grades. As regards the correction of the assessment, students have the right to know the assessment criteria applied to them. A student not satisfied with the assessment may request correction from the principal of the institution, from a teacher, or from a person who has committed the evaluation.  A student has to make a request for a reassessment within 14 days of having had the possibility of receiving the results.


The syllabus of a subject comprises compulsory and specialisation courses which a student has to study according to his or her individual study plan, and from applied courses that are closely related to them. Different students may have different syllabi in the same subject. The student’s study plan will become more focused during the studies. Formulating and following a study plan guides students towards goal-oriented course selections.


Studies completed at another educational institution may be accredited in the upper secondary school syllabus, provided that their objectives and core contents are equivalent to those set out in the upper secondary school curriculum.


There are no regulations regarding the number of attempts the student can make to redo a failed course.


Table 6.5 Discontinuation of education in upper secondary general education in academic years 2006–2013

2006
2008
2010
2013
%
%
%
%
General upper secondary education, total
4.2
4.5
4.0
3.4
Men
4.6
4.8
N/A
3.4
Women
3.9
4.3
N/A
3.3

Source FNBE 2014
 

Lukiokoulutuksen opetussuunnitelmien perusteet 2003 (National Core Curriculum for Upper Secondary Schools 2003)
General Upper Secondary Schools Act (629/1998)


Certification

A student who has completed the entire general upper secondary school syllabus shall be awarded a leaving certificate. A student who leaves school without completing the general upper secondary school syllabus shall receive a certificate of resignation containing marks for the studies completed. A student who has completed one or more subject syllabi shall receive a certificate on completion of a syllabus.


The following certificates are used at upper secondary school,

  • The general upper secondary school leaving certificate is awarded to a student who has completed the entire general upper secondary school syllabus.
  • The certificate for completion of a syllabus is given to a person who has completed the syllabus of one or more upper secondary school subjects.
  • The certificate for resignation from upper secondary school (certificate of resignation) is given to a student who leaves school before completing the entire general upper secondary school syllabus.


The general upper secondary school certificates must contain the following sections:

  • title of the certificate
  • name of the education provider
  • name of the educational institution
  • name and social security number of the student
  • completed studies
  • date of award of the certificate and the principal’s signature
  • information about the educational institution’s licence to award certificates
  • grading scale
  • specification of the language syllabi


The general upper secondary school leaving certificate and the certificate for completion of a syllabus will indicate the subjects studied, the number of courses completed within these subjects and the grade for each subject in words and numbers (such as: very good…9) or a mark for acceptable completion of the subject (passed).


The leaving certificate and the certificate for completion of a syllabus also include a section entitled "Further information". This section will be used to mark certification of additional proof of learning appended to and complementing the leaving certificate, such as the completed general upper secondary school diplomas and oral language proficiency tests and a specification of the studies completed at other educational institutions as part of the general upper secondary school syllabus, which are not included under subject syllabi.


If a student has completed more than half the courses in a subject syllabus in a language other than the school’s actual language of instruction, this must also be indicated on the certificate in the "Further information’ section.


The certificate for resignation from upper secondary school will indicate the subjects and courses completed, together with a grade or a pass/fail mark for each subject. Each upper secondary school will keep a record of students’ studies, which will indicate the courses completed and their grades. No overall grade will be awarded for completion of the entire general upper secondary school syllabus, either as an average of subject grades or in any other way. The certificate will indicate the total number of courses completed by the student.


Each general upper secondary education provider will decide on the layout of the certificates that it awards. The certificate of matriculation is awarded to a student who has acceptably passed the compulsory tests of the matriculation examination and who is awarded the upper secondary school certificate.

General Upper Secondary Schools Act (629/1998)
Lukiokoulutuksen opetussuunnitelmien perusteet 2003 (National Core Curriculum for Upper Secondary Schools 2003)