Qualifications Frameworks

The Finnish National Agency for Education is the National Co-ordination Point for the European Qualifications Framework. Its tasks include informing people about matters that relate to the national qualifications framework and the European Qualifications Framework.

European Qualifications Framework

The European Parliament and the Council adopted the Recommendation on the European Qualifications Framework for Lifelong Learning (EQF) in 2008. The Recommendation was updated in 2017.

The purpose of the EQF is to ease comparison of qualifications and qualification levels of different countries and to promote mobility and lifelong learning.

In the EQF, qualifications and competences are allocated on eight levels. Each level is provided with a description of the knowledge, understanding and practical capability achieved at that level.

National Framework for Qualifications and Other Competence Modules in Finland


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Provisions on the National Framework for Qualifications and Other Competence Modules (FiNQF) are laid down in Act and Government Decree on the National Framework for Qualifications and Other Competence Modules. The framework enables overall scrutiny of the Finnish qualifications system, because it includes general education, vocational education and higher education qualifications. The framework and its competence-based descriptions of qualifications support lifelong learning, improve the clarity and effectiveness of the Finnish system of qualifications, increase qualifications’ national and international transparency and comparability and further national and international mobility.

In this the FiNQF, the qualifications, syllabi and other extensive competence modules of the Finnish national education system are classified into eight levels, based on the requirements. Statutory regulations on the level descriptors and the positioning of qualifications, syllabi and extensive competence modules on the framework levels are enacted by a Government Decree.

Finnish qualifications, syllabi and other extensive competence modules are placed, according to the Government Decree, at the following levels of the FiNQF:

  • Basic education syllabus at level 2
  • The Matriculation Examination and the general upper secondary school syllabus at level 4
  • Upper secondary vocational qualifications and further vocational qualifications, Basic Examination in Prison Services, Fire Fighter Qualification, and Emergency Response Centre Operator Qualification at level 4
  • Specialist vocational qualifications, the Sub-Officer Qualification (Fire and Rescue Services) and the Vocational Qualification in Air Traffic Control at level 5
  • Bachelor’s degrees (universities of applied sciences) and Bachelor’s degrees (universities)at level 6
  • Master’s degrees (universities of applied sciences) and Master’s degrees (universities) at level 7
  • Universities’ and National Defence University scientific and artistic postgraduate degrees (licentiate and doctor degrees), the General Staff Officer’s Degree, the Specialist Degree in Veterinary Medicine, and Specialist training in medicine and Specialist training in dentistry at level 8