Upper Secondary Education
Lukio, Finland’s own brand of prep high school. It cannot be directly compared to a US high school or UK grammar school. Lukio prepares students for higher education studies. After a maximum of four years of study, lukio students sit for the matriculation examination. Performance on these tests is critical for university admission. At present, students can only take the matriculation examination in Finnish and Swedish.
Ammattikoulu is Finland’s name for vocational education and training, or trade school. In ammattikoulu students study towards three different levels of vocational qualification. Vocational schools have expanded their selection of training options from the more traditional fields of health and welfare, technology and service industry positions to include subjects like ICT, entrepreneurship and the natural sciences.
South-Eastern University of Applied Sciences (Xamk) offers Bachelor’s and Master’s degree programmes in English. LUT Kouvola is a centre of expertise for industrial management in two primary fields: technology and business innovations and railway logistics. Kouvola Vocational Institute Ltd. (Eduko) offers a wide range of learning opportunities for individuals and work teams. The objective of studies can be either a vocational qualification (basic, advanced, or specialized) with duration of 1,5 – 3 years, continuous education for 3 – 9 months or a further training course or working life certificate. Additionally, Eduko offers language and integration training for immigrants and preparatory education for vocational training. Kouvolan iltalukio (Evening School) offers education for adults without basic education or even without sufficient reading or writing skills.
Finnish language skills
Approximately 87% of Finns speak Finnish as their native language. Approximately 5% of Finns speak Swedish. When you speak the language, you will become acclimatised more easily and will be more at home in Finland. It will be easier to attend to your affairs with authorities, keep abreast of the news, get to know people and make friends.
If you want to apply for Finnish citizenship, you must have at least a satisfactory command of Finnish, Swedish or Finnish/Finland-Swedish Sign Language. When you apply for citizenship, you need to attach a certificate of your language proficiency. For more information on language skill requirements, see the InfoFinland page Official certificate of language proficiency.
At most jobs, you need to know Finnish. If you want to study in Finland, you will probably need Finnish language skills.