DEFINITIONS

Levels of education

Bachelor’s study – studies at the first level of higher education during which a student improves his or her general educational knowledge and acquires the basic knowledge and skills of a speciality and the knowledge and skills necessary for Master's studies and to commence work. The prerequisite for enrolment is the completion of secondary education or equivalent vocational education, or an equivalent qualification from a foreign country. The completion of Bachelor’s studies is, in turn, the prerequisite for enrolment in Master’s studies.

Basic school level – the three stages of study of basic schools: stage I – grades 1–3; stage II – grades 4–6; stage III – grades 7–9 (until 1989 the grades 1–8).

Diploma study professionally oriented first level of higher education; ISCED 5B. Admittance until 2002. Qualification is equivalent to Professional higher education.

Doctoral study – studies at the highest level of higher education during which a student acquires the knowledge and skills necessary for independent research, development or professional creative activity. The prerequisite for enrolment is a Master’s degree or an equivalent qualification.

Formal education – acquired education in formal education system.

Gymnasium level – the grades from 10 to 12 of general education school (until 1989 the grades from 9 to 11).

Integrated Bachelor’s/Master’s study – studies based on the integrated study programmes of Bachelor’s and Master’s studies, which include both initial training and specialised training. Single-step Bachelor’s/Master’s studies include medicine, veterinary medicine, pharmacy, dentistry, architecture, civil engineering and grade teacher studies. A graduate of pharmacy, architecture, civil engineering and grade teacher studies is awarded a Master’s degree. A graduate of medicine, dentistry and veterinary medicine is correspondingly awarded a Degree in Medicine, a Degree in Dentistry and a Degree in Veterinary Medicine. The qualification awarded upon completion of an integrated Bachelor’s or Master’s study programme entitles the graduate to apply for doctoral programmes. The prerequisite for enrolment is the completion of secondary education or equivalent vocational education.

Master’s study – studies at the second level of higher education during which a student improves his or her knowledge and skills in his or her speciality and acquires the knowledge and skills necessary for independent work and Doctoral studies. The prerequisite for enrolment is a Bachelor’s degree or an equivalent level of education.

Pre-primary education – a set of knowledge, skills, experience and behavioural rules which provides the prerequisites for coping successfully in everyday life and at school. Pre-school education is acquired at a child care institution.

Professional higher education – studies at the first level of higher education during which a student acquires the competence necessary for employment in a particular profession or for enrolment in Master's studies. The prerequisite for commencing studies of professional higher education is the completion of secondary education or an equivalent qualification from a foreign country. A graduate of professional higher education is entitled to continue his or her studies in Master’s studies according to the condition and procedure established by the supervisory board of the educational institution.

Secondary vocational education a set of requirements established by the vocational education standard and the national curricula for vocations or professions. The acquisition of secondary vocational education provides the prerequisites and grants the right to start working in the acquired vocation or profession or to continue studies to acquire higher education.

Vocational courses after basic education vocational education based on basic education, vocational training on the basis of basic education, vocational and secondary education based on basic education, vocational secondary education based on based education, vocational secondary education, professional secondary education based on basic education. Since the academic year 2014/15, new categories have been added: fourth-level vocational courses which include fourth-level initial vocational education (vocational upper secondary education), fourth-level initial vocational education and fourth-level continuing vocational education (admittance to all categories available since 01.09.2013).

Vocational courses after secondary education vocational secondary education based on secondary education, vocational courses based on secondary education, professional secondary education based on secondary education. Since the academic year 2014/15, new categories have been added: fifth-level vocational courses which include fifth-level initial vocational education and fifth-level continuing vocational education (admittance to both categories available since 01.09.2013).

Vocational courses with non-defined basic education vocational education for young people with special needs and without basic education, vocational training for persons beyond minimum school-leaving age who lack basic education. Since the academic year 2014/15, new categories have been added: second-level vocational education, third-level vocational education (admittance to both categories available since 01.09.2013). The completion of any other level of education is not a prerequisite for admittance.

Vocational higher education vocational secondary education based on secondary education, vocational courses based on secondary education, professional secondary education based on secondary education.

 

Educational institutions (incl. pre-school child care institutions)

Basic school – a school which provides students with opportunities to acquire basic education and fulfil the obligation to attend school. In 2010 primary schools were replaced by basic schools. There are three stages of study in basic schools: stage I – grades 1–3; stage II – grades 4–6; stage III – grades 7–9. Studies can be offered at stages I, II and III; only at stage I; or at stages I and II, whereas the studies at stage II do not need to be offered across all grades of stage II. A basic school may be combined with a preschool institution (operating as a single institution).

Evening school – a general education school for persons who have exceeded the compulsory school age. The primary study forms are evening and correspondence studies.

General education school – an educational institution for obtaining general education. The concept does not comprise evening schools.

Gymnasium a general education school which provides students with opportunities to acquire general secondary education. School  must have grades from 10 to 12 (until 1989 the grades from 9 to 11), but may have Basic school’s grades from 1 to 9. The concept does not comprise evening schools nor schools for children with special needs, if not denoted differently.

High school – an alternative name for a gymnasium.

Kindergarten – a preschool institution for children of up to 7 years of age.

Kindergarten for children with special needs a preschool institution for children with special needs who are of up to 7 years of age.

Kindergarten-basic school – an institution where basic school is combined with a kindergarten.

Kindergarten-primary school (until year 2009) – an institution where primary school is combined with a kindergarten.

Other institution with general education class(es) a vocational education school that offers general education without specialization to some vocation.

Pre-school child care institution – an educational institution providing care and pre-school education for pre-school children.

Primary school – a general education school that enables basic education up to 6th grade, also kindergarten-primary school and primary school for children with special needs (until year 2009). Starting 2010 primary schools were replaced by basic schools where studies are pursued at stage I or at stages I and II of basic school, whereas the studies at stage II do not need to be offered across all grades of stage II.

NB! In the sub-field “General data of education” (tables ESG01 etc.), the concept may comprise schools for children with special needs. In the sub-field “General education” (tables ES12 etc.), the concept does not comprise schools for children with special needs, unless noted otherwise.

Private school a basic or secondary school enacting as a juridical entity according to the private law.

Rural school a school that is situated in a rural settlement (a small town or village).

Rural pre-school institution – a pre-school institution  that is situated in a rural settlement (a small town or village).

School for children with special needs a school for children with a physical, speech and/or mental disorder or for children needing special conditions for upbringing. Compared to regular schools, adaptions and alterations are made in the curriculum and/or the learning environment (the form of learning, rooms, study groups, methods, language, teachers with special training, supportive personnel etc).

Urban pre-school institution – a pre-school institution that is situated in an urban settlement (a city, a city without municipal status or a town).

Urban school a school that is situated in an urban settlement (a city, a city without municipal status or a town).

Vocational education institution – an educational institution where the knowledge, skills and attitudes for the performance of a skilled trade in a vocation or profession are acquired.

 

Other definitions

Child with special needs a child with a physical, speech and/or mental disorder who is enrolled in the school for children with special needs.

Correspondence study a study form, in which case the studies are organized in sessions, the emphasis is on independent work. The concept comprises external studies.

Discontinuer in the years 1995–2003, a discontinuer is a student whose studies discontinue before the successful completion of the study programme. The reasons may be economic (including employment), expulsion, death, illness, family or other similar reasons. The concept does not include pupils who left Estonia or continued their studies in a different school. Starting from 2006, the term ‘discontinuer’ no longer includes pupils whose reasons for discontinuing studies include death or moving abroad.

Evening study a study form in which case the study takes place in the evening time. It is oriented to grownups who are working.

Full-time classes – a study form in which case the study takes place with the study load prescribed in the curriculum.

Full-time study a study load that permits completing cumulatively at least 75 per cent of the studies, which, according to the curriculum, must be completed by the end of each academic year.

Grade repeaters pupils who are repeating a certain grade in the given academic year (including the students who were to repeat the grade but who changed the school during the summer break). The concept comprises the students who had discontinued their studies but returned to continue their studies in the next academic year.

Net enrolment rate in formal education system – the proportion of pupils of a given age to the population of the same age. The population number based on the 2000 Population Census has been used, which undercoverage in age groups can be 1.2% on average. Therefore, for some age groups the rate exceeds 100%.

Part-time study a study load that permits completing cumulatively less than 75 per cent of the studies, which, according to the curriculum, must be completed by the end of each academic year.

Pedagogue a person who is working at school in the field of teaching, including teachers at the primary level and teachers of subjects, speech therapists, principals of schools, headmasters and their aids.

School life expectancy – the expected average number of years of schooling in formal education system. The total number of years of schooling which a child can expect to receive, assuming that the probability of his or her being enrolled in school at any particular future age is equal to the current enrolment ratio at that age. The school life expectancy is calculated as the sum of enrolment rates of pupils that is divided by 100.

METHODOLOGY

The statistical data on formal education are collected and processed by Estonian Ministry of Education and Research and Statistics Estonia and are based on total surveys (include all educational institutions that have an activity license for providing corresponding education regardless of their ownership). Since academic year 2005/2006 the statistical data on general, vocational and higher education are based on Estonian Educational Information System (EHIS). It is a national register that converges the data of national education system.

The revised age distribution of the population based on the 2000 Population Census is used for computing education indicators (until 2011). The revised age distribution of the population based on the 2011 Population Census is used for computing education indicators data for years since 2012.

CLASSIFICATIONS

International Standard Classification of Education

International Standard Classification of Education

The comparison of the 1997 and 2011 versions of ISCED (International Standard Classification of Education) is presented: Comparison of ISCED97 and ISCED 2011

Classification of Estonian administrative units and settlements (EHAK)

The Classification of Estonian administrative units and settlements is available on the website of Statistics Estonia at www.stat.ee/metadata under the heading “List of classifications”.

MORE DATA

Eesti statistika aastaraamat. Statistical Yearbook of Estonia

Eesti piirkondlik statistika. Regional Statistics of Estonia. Yearbook

Kutseharidus. 1996–2006. Vocational Education

Kõrgharidus. 1993–2003. Higher Education

CONTACT PERSON

Kaire Raasik

Methodology and Analysis Department

Tel +372 625 8483

kaire.raasik@stat.ee

Updated: 12.12.2016