The objectives and statistics of VET in Finland
The purpose of vocational education and training (VET) is to increase and maintain the vocational skills of the population, develop commerce and industry, and respond to its competence needs.
VET supports lifelong learning and students’ development as human beings and members of society. It provides students with knowledge and skills necessary in further studies and promotes employment. In Finland, around half of the students completing their basic education continue to VET instead of general upper secondary education. Vocational education also enables pupils to continue their studies in higher education.
In 2018, there were 322.300 VET students, of which 52% were 15-24 years of age, and 48% over 24. About 79.600 students completed a VET degree: 54.500 vocational upper secondary qualifications, 17.200 further vocational qualifications, and 7.900 specialist vocational qualifications. Of all completed degrees 55% were completed by women, 45% by men.
Most youngsters graduating from basic education apply to VET in a joint application system during February - March. It is possible to apply also through a continuing application system around the year.
The diversity of VET is great, and there are 164 vocational qualifications available. In 2018, the biggest numbers of students were in:
- Vocational Qualification in Social and Health Care, 42.900 students
- Vocational Qualification in Business (29.800)
- Vocational Qualification in Electrical Engineering and Automation Technology (13.600)
- Vocational Qualification in Construction (13.000)
- Vocational Qualification in Logistics (12.100)
- Vocational Qualification in the Vehicle Sector (10.500)
- Vocational Qualification in Restaurant and Catering Services (9.800)
In VET training, students can complete an entire qualification, several parts or just one part of a qualification, whatever their needs are.