At general upper secondary school learning is seen as a consequence of the students’ active and goal-oriented work. During the learning process, the students interpret, analyse, and assess data, information or knowledge presented in different formats on the basis of their previous experiences and knowledge. They are encouraged to create and develop solutions by combining knowledge and skills in new ways. Constructive feedback and guidance, experiences of success, strengthen the students’ belief in their possibilities and inspire them to a journey of life-long learning.
The structure of general upper secondary consists of 150 credits, composed of compulsory and national optional studies. The studies are based on study units, which enable the construction of study entities to fit a desired context and purpose. Study units may include multiple modules, which act as basic elements when designing study units. The scope of modules and study units is expressed in credits. A study unit may comprise of multiple (intertwined) subjects’ modules, in which case these are graded separately.
The optional studies depend on the educational provider; however, the scope should be a minimum of 20 credits.
The subjects of general upper secondary are:
- Mother tongue and literature
- Second national language and foreign languages
- Maths and natural sciences (physics, chemistry, biology, geography)
- Humanities and social studies (philosophy, history, social studies, psychology)
- Religion and worldview studies
- Physical education, other arts and skills subjects and health education
Guidance counselling is a part of the syllabus.
Transversal competences are a key part of both subject-specific studies and those integrating different subjects. Each subject approaches transversal competences from their own fields of knowledge and science.
Transversal competences in the 2019 national core curriculum are:
- Well-being competence
- Interaction competence
- Multidisciplinary and creative competence
- Societal competence
- Ethical and environmental competence
- Global and cultural competence