Finnish vocational education and training (VET) ensures that there are skilled professionals for all sectors, supports job creation through entrepreneurship and offers possibilities for lifelong learning. VET offers qualifications at European Qualifications Framework levels 4 and 5. There are upskilling and reskilling options for young people without upper secondary qualifications as well as training for adults throughout their careers. VET provides students with strong general and vocational competence. Another key principle is continuous competence development. All qualifications are based on a national level competence framework, updated regularly together with the industry. VET is organised mainly through institutions, but always includes learning and assessment at a workplace. A vocational qualification gives general eligibility for continuing studies at a university of applied sciences and university studies.
Finnish Vocational Qualifications
- Modular and competency-based qualifications
- Built around professional processes
- Recognize prior learning
- Adhere to national learning outcomes and competencies
- Must include work-based learning
- Must be assessed combining theory and practice by two assessors in authentic work tasks
- Offer individual flexible learning opportunities
- Offer access to higher education
- Cover EQF4 and 5 levels
Implementing Finnish Qualifications Internationally
- Non-EU citizens can complete Finnish VET qualifications or modules through different types of arrangements; third party sponsored commissioned training or as a self-paying student studying outside of the EU. Currently there is no Finnish government funding available to sponsor international VET students.
- All Finnish VET qualifications and modules (initial, further and specialist vocational qualifications) can be tailored for international markets, however some contents are specific to Finnish needs and cannot be offered as a part of the internationalized Finnish VET qualifications.
- As the national qualification authority, the Finnish National Agency for Education (EDUFI) decides how Finnish VET qualifications’ competence requirements will be modified for international markets. Typically, modifications relate to language requirements and other specifics related to Finland. All Finnish qualifications must be offered by or through a partnership with a licensed Finnish VET training provider. The operating license must be granted by the Ministry of Education and Culture.
- A Finnish VET training provider interested in offering qualifications to non-EU citizens must apply for a permit to do so. Every qualification requires its’ own application and permit. The application is sent to EDUFI and will be addressed by EDUFI and VETQA in the next possible meeting. VETQA meetings take place every other month. After the VETQA consultation, EDUFI makes the final decision on granting the permit.
- The licensed VET provider tailors the training provided to the partner country’s and customer’s local needs. The Finnish VET provider is responsible for overseeing the quality of all Finnish VET qualification related training abroad. Regular monitoring and reporting is required.
- Currently legislation does not allow for EU citizens to complete Finnish VET qualifications unless residing in Finland and qualifying as a local student.
For more information on fee-based or commissioned training leading to VET qualification please contact: Tutkintovienti [at] oph.fi
What is VETQA?
VETQA has a maximum of 9 members and is appointed by EDUFI for three-year periods. VETQA is the official partner to EDUFI to ensure the high quality of Finnish VET qualifications internationally.
VETQA duties and responsibilities:
- Quality assurance related to Finnish vocational qualifications implemented internationally, including signing memorandum of understandings with relevant partner country authorities.
- Advise EDUFI on VET qualifications’ competence modifications required for international implementation.
- Participate in EDUFI licensing process for Finnish training providers offering qualifications internationally.