01 Nov Finland, The 6th Country with the Best Education Quality in the World. What are Their Secrets?
Finland, the country with the sixth best education system and achievement in the world, is currently based on data from PISA (Program for International Student Assessment) 2018. Although some universities in Finland are still less well-known than universities in the UK and the United States, the overall education system in Finland, the country with 6 million people is still considered the best.
Of course, it is not without reason that Finland can be a country with the best education system in the world. One thing that stands out the most from this country, is that it is given the freedom of the ranks of educators to formulate curriculum and determine teaching, learning methods, and materials. This success has even attracted around 100 delegates from 40-45 countries around the world to visit the Finnish Ministry of Education during the 2005-2011 period and learn about the key to the success of the country’s education system.
Curious about how the country’s education system has become the top 10 countries with the best quality education in the world? Check out the article below so you don’t miss any useful information!
The Republic of Finland is a Nordic country located in Northern Europe and a member of the European Union. Finland has land borders with Sweden to the west, Norway to the north, and Russia to the east while its maritime boundaries are the Baltic Sea to the southwest, the Gulf of Finland to the south, and the Gulf of Bothnia to the west. Finland is part of the geographical area of Fennoscandia, which also includes Scandinavia and parts of Russia.
In 2013, Finland’s population was around 5.5 million and the majority lived in the south. In terms of area, this country occupies the eighth largest area in Europe and the country with the lowest population density in the European Union. Finland is a parliamentary republic with its central government in the capital Helsinki, local governments in 317 municipalities and the autonomous region of the land Islands.
PISA or The Program for International Student Assessment is a worldwide study by the Organization for Economic Co-Operation and Development (OECD) whether member and non-member nations intended to evaluate educational systems by measuring 15-year-old student performance on mathematics, science, and reading. This survey was first performed in 2000 and then repeated every three years. The objective is to provide comparable data with a view to enabling countries to improve their education policies and outcomes. It measures problem solving and cognition.
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Categories of Quality Education
There are 5 categories an education can be said quality based on working paper presented by UNICEF at the meeting of The International Working Group on Education Florence, Italy, June 2000, namely:
- There are learners or students who are healthy, well-nourished, ready to learn, and have a support in learning by their families and communities;
- Have a healthy, safe, protective and gender-sensitive environment, and also an environment that provides adequate resources and facilities;
- Content that is reflected in relevant curriculum and materials for the acquisition of basic skills, especially in the areas of literacy, numeracy, skills for life, and knowledge in such areas as gender, health, nutrition, HIV/AIDS prevention and peace;
- Processes through which trained teachers use child-centred teaching approaches in well-managed classrooms and skillful assessment to facilitate learning and reduce disparities;
- Outcomes that include knowledge, skills, attitudes, and are linked to national goals for education and positive participation in community.
Education System in Finland
Obligation to study from 7 years old
For this country, 7 years is considered the best age for a child to receive basic education. Because at the age of 7 years, children’s mental readiness has matured when entering the world of school. Although the age of 7 years is considered too late for education for some countries, but this does not make the children in these countries fall behind in learning.
This actually makes them more creative, even they are able to solve their own problems. This is evident from the test International Program for International Student Assessment (PISA) in 2000, where children in Finland ranked first and the sixth best in the world today based on data from the PISA (Program for International Student Assessment) 2018.
Free of charge
In Finland, all schools are considered equal, both public and private schools. If in some countries the gap between public and private schools is so clear, it is different in Finland which does not even recognize excellent or favorite schools. In this country, parents also do not need to think about the cost of education, which is usually the better the quality of the school, the more expensive it is. Because all costs associated with education in this country are free, including the cost of lunch, transportation, and health.
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Short school hours
In Finland, children who attend primary school are aware that they only spend about 4-5 hours a day in school, while junior and senior high school children have the same learning system as children who are in college, namely they only need to come to school at the time of the subject they choose.
This is different from some countries in Asia, such as South Korea, Indonesia, and others, which require students to spend more than half of their day at school. Finland chose to do the opposite. Children in this country are not forced to constantly learn without stopping. Thus, children have more time to play and do hobbies so that they can develop soft skills outside of the classroom.
What’s even more interesting is that students here get a break of about 1/3 of their study time. For example they study for 45 minutes for the first lesson, then they will get a break about 15 minutes before going to the next lesson. This is done because they believe that our brains need adequate rest in order to be more focused in absorbing lessons.
Effective Educational Curriculum
Most of Finland’s national curriculum is phenomenal learning and develops a unique learning experience through innovative teaching and technology. Also an education system that promotes lifelong learning where no matter what age a person is, they can always continue their education according to a flexible system.
In Finland, students are also not given homework. If there was, it would be very minimal. Compared to other countries, students in Finland have almost 3 times more rest time. Without homework, students are believed to be more free to do other things outside of education, whether it’s just resting, playing, or learning other things that become their hobbies. The government feels that the time for students to study at school is good enough.
The absence of standardized exams
Apart from having no homework and getting enough time to develop other talents, schools in this country also do not hold standardized exams. Student learning is assessed through a variety of qualitative methods that focus on overall student development and learning soft skills rather than memorization skills and quantitative scores.
The government also gives full trust to the teaching staff to evaluate the lessons of their students. Because the government believe that, only the teacher can assess 100% of each student’s ability. In accordance with this, it is not an exaggeration if Finland then applies very high standards for its teachers. In fact, most of the primary education teachers there are required to have a master’s degree.
Alright, that’s the secret why Finland can hold the first position according to PISA 2000 and still be in the top 10 according to PISA 2018. How about you, Comuniti friends? Interested to visit Finland and try the education right there? Or are you satisfied with the education system in your country? Whatever it is, we must always be grateful because we have been given the opportunity to receive education and must always be enthusiastic in gaining knowledge. Because knowledge and experience are the best teachers in life. That’s all for this article and See ya!