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Sweden:Teaching and Learning in Single Structure Education

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Overview Sweden

Contents

Sweden:Political, Social and Economic Background and Trends

Sweden:Historical Development

Sweden:Main Executive and Legislative Bodies

Sweden:Population: Demographic Situation, Languages and Religions

Sweden:Political and Economic Situation

Sweden:Organisation and Governance

Sweden:Fundamental Principles and National Policies

Sweden:Lifelong Learning Strategy

Sweden:Organisation of the Education System and of its Structure

Sweden:Organisation of Private Education

Sweden:National Qualifications Framework

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

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

Sweden:Statistics on Organisation and Governance

Sweden:Funding in Education

Sweden:Early Childhood and School Education Funding

Sweden:Higher Education Funding

Sweden:Adult Education and Training Funding

Sweden:Early Childhood Education and Care

Sweden:Organisation of Programmes for Pre-Primary Education

Sweden:Teaching and Learning in Programmes for Pre-Primary Education

Sweden:Assessment in Programmes for Pre-Primary Education

Sweden:Organisation of the Pre-Primary Class

Sweden:Teaching and Learning in the Pre-Primary Class

Sweden:Assessment in the Pre-Primary Class

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

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

Sweden:Organisation of Single Structure Education

Sweden:Teaching and Learning in Single Structure Education

Sweden:Assessment in Single Structure Education

Sweden:Organisational Variations and Alternative Structures in Single Structure Education

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

Sweden:Organisation of Upper General and Vocational Secondary Education

Sweden:Teaching and Learning in Upper General and Vocational Secondary Education

Sweden:Assessment in Upper General and Vocational Secondary Education

Sweden:Organisation of Post-Secondary Non-Tertiary Education

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

Sweden:Assessment in Post-Secondary Non-Tertiary Education

Sweden:Higher Education

Sweden:Types of Higher Education Institutions

Sweden:First Cycle Programmes

Sweden:Bachelor

Sweden:Short-Cycle Higher Education

Sweden:Second Cycle Programmes

Sweden:Programmes outside the Bachelor and Master Structure

Sweden:Third Cycle (PhD) Programmes

Sweden:Adult Education and Training

Sweden:Distribution of Responsibilities

Sweden:Developments and Current Policy Priorities

Sweden:Main Providers

Sweden:Main Types of Provision

Sweden:Validation of Non-formal and Informal Learning

Sweden:Teachers and Education Staff

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

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

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

Sweden:Initial Education for Academic Staff in Higher Education

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

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

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

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

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

Sweden:Management and Other Education Staff

Sweden:Management Staff for Early Childhood and School Education

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

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

Sweden:Other Education Staff or Staff Working with Schools

Sweden:Management Staff for Higher Education

Sweden:Other Education Staff or Staff Working in Higher Education

Sweden:Management Staff Working in Adult Education and Training

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

Sweden:Quality Assurance

Sweden:Quality Assurance in Early Childhood and School Education

Sweden:Quality Assurance in Higher Education

Sweden:Quality Assurance in Adult Education and Training

Sweden:Educational Support and Guidance

Sweden:Special Education Needs Provision within Mainstream Education

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

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

Sweden:Guidance and Counselling in Early Childhood and School Education

Sweden:Support Measures for Learners in Higher Education

Sweden:Guidance and Counselling in Higher Education

Sweden:Support Measures for Learners in Adult Education and Training

Sweden:Guidance and Counselling in a Lifelong Learning Approach

Sweden:Mobility and Internationalisation

Sweden:Mobility in Early Childhood and School Education

Sweden:Mobility in Higher Education

Sweden:Mobility in Adult Education and Training

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

Sweden:Other Dimensions of Internationalisation in Higher Education

Sweden:Other Dimensions of Internationalisation in Adult Education and Training

Sweden:Bilateral Agreements and Worldwide Cooperation

Sweden:Ongoing Reforms and Policy Developments

Sweden:National Reforms in Early Childhood Education and Care

Sweden:National Reforms in School Education

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

Sweden:National Reforms in Higher Education

Sweden:National Reforms related to Transversal Skills and Employability

Sweden:European Perspective

Sweden:Legislation

Sweden:Institutions

Sweden:Glossary

Curriculum, Subjects, Number of Hours

The curriculum for the compulsory school, preschool class and the leisure-time centre (Läroplan för grundskolan, förskoleklassen och fritidshemmet) came into force in the autumn 2011. The curriculum sets out the goals and general principles. The goals are of two kinds: a) goals to aim for and b) goals to attain. The goals to aim for state the direction of the school's work and thus the desired quality development. The goals to be attained are an expression of the minimum pupil attainment required when leaving school. It is the responsibility of the school to ensure that pupils are given the necessary support to reach these goals.

The syllabi are written by the Swedish National Agency for Education (Skolverket), and decided upon by the government. The syllabus gives each subject its general orientation and nature, and sets out the goals to aim for in the subject and the goals to be attained by years three, five and nine. There is no regulation on teaching methods or on which kind of pedagogical tools (books, computers etc) to be used.

The timetable, which forms part of the Education Act, states the guaranteed total number of hours of tuition (6 785 hours) for the nine years of compulsory schooling. The schools themselves decide how the teaching time is allocated over the nine years of schooling and also when a subject is introduced. The timetable also provides scope for the pupil's own options and those of the school. Around 13 per cent of the total time available is set aside for such options. Decisions on the distribution of the number of hours between subjects, groups of subjects, choice of languages and the pupil's own options are made by the school board. The school head makes decisions on the school’s choices, which may cover a maximum of 20 per cent of a subject or group of subjects, and establishes the local timetable.

Timetable for the compulsory school - guaranteed minimum number of teaching hours (= 60 minutes) for subjects and subject groups:

Art

230

Crafts

330

English

480

Home and Consumer studies

118

Language options

320

Mathematics

1020

Music

230

Physical Education and Health

500

Swedish/Swedish as a second language

1 490

Geography, History, Religion, Social studies; Together:

885

Biology, Chemistry, Technology, Physics; Together:

800

Pupil's option 382
Total guaranteed hours 6 785

Pupil options enable pupils to deepen and broaden their knowledge in one or more subjects. Of the total guaranteed number of hours (6 785), 600 hours may be used for school specific options. The school can decide to use hours from all subjects in the compulsory school in order to develop its own specific profile. However, no subject or group of subjects may be reduced by more than 20 per cent. Common school profiles are to focus on music, culture, sport, science and languages.

There are a number of obligaroty national tests in year three, six and nine. Pupils in year three have national tests in Swedish/Swedish as a second language and mathematics. Pupils in year six have national tests in Swedish/Swedish as a second language, mathematics and English. In year nine the pupils do national tests in Swedish/Swedish as a second language, mathematics, English, one of the social science subjects (geography, history, religious studies or social science) and in one of the natural science subjects (physics, chemistry or biology).

‘Swedish as a second language’ is regarded as a subject in its own right at all levels of school. Pupils with immigrant background can, if they need and wish so, study ‘Swedish as a second language’ instead of regular Swedish.

English is the first compulsory foreign language. Each municipality determines when to start teaching English, but is governed by the goals to be achieved by the fifth year. Consequently many pupils start English tuition in the first school year. All pupils must choose another second language in addition to English; German, French and Spanish are the most common. Municipalities must offer the choice of at least two of these languages. In addition, other languages may be offered. As an alternative to foreign languages, pupils may choose sign language, the language spoken at home, a deepening of their knowledge of Swedish/Swedish as a second language or English. The schools decide when to begin instruction in a second foreign language. Around 70 per cent of the pupils study a second foreign language in year six. A third foreign language may be offered as a pupil option or as a school option.

The syllabi link the core values of the curriculum with the contents of subjects and knowledge to be acquired. Teachers and pupils choose materials and methods. It is crucial that syllabi are interpreted in the school and that pupils are involved in this work. The syllabi also contains goals that describe how pupils can exercise influence over the work at school.

Teaching Methods and Materials

There is no regulation on teaching methods, but the curriculum recommends learning by discovery approaches and the trend is towards more pupil-centred methods, topic-based and interdisciplinary teaching. An example of the current trend is that pupils choose their own tasks and methods within their own individual study plan. In some schools alternative methods such as Montessori and Waldorf are used. The curriculum underlines that interaction between different subjects is important but this regulation is not detailed. Pupils may be taught in groups of the same age or as mixed-age groups. Under the Education Act teachers must be properly qualified to teach their main subjects. Exceptions can be made if qualified staff is not available.

At compulsory level the teachers are free to make their own decisions and choices of teaching material such as books, audio-visual materials, ICT etc. There is no list of compulsory reading materials. The schools purchase teaching material from various publishers and distribute it to pupils free of charge. ICT is used as a tool for all learning and as an aid to develop teaching. Several online tools for teachers are made available free of charge at the website of the Swedish National Agency for Education for those teachers who wish to use them. This includes tools for on-going short-time programmes when the agency has received specific funds for a subject or for the professional development programme the Boost for Teachers (Lärarlyftet). 

There is no authority that makes teaching material for the regular compulsory school system, but the National Agency for Special Needs Education and Schools (Specialpedagogiska skolmyndigheten) develops and produces special needs education teaching materials, primarily for pupils with disabilities. The agency also adapt regular commercial publishers' products to give students with different forms of reading disabilities the possibility to use the materials. The agency has the responsibility for coordinating state support to teaching materials for Special Needs Education.

There is no regulations on the amount of, or the frequency of homework, this is decided locally at each school, or by the teachers.

The Swedish National Agency for Education (Skolverket)