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Sweden Education Profile

In Sweden, where democracy, equality, and children’s rights are treasured, schooling is always a hot topic. Issues, for instance, the growth of private schools, awarding grades to elementary school children, and education for the children of recent immigrants are hardly ever out of the headlines.

The Swedish education system encompasses several different schooling and education, designed for students of different age groups and with differing abilities and requirements. Lets read through the basic info about Sweden as a European country: 

Capital: Stockholm
Area: 174,000 sq mi (450,000 sq km)
Population: 9.5 million
Language: Swedish (English spoken by most people)
Currency: Swedish krona (SEK)
Political System: Parliamentary democracy

Sweden is a safe and modern country in northern Europe, and it has gained a magnificent reputation as an innovator and a creative force. The country strives to be one of the most innovative and research-intensive nations in the world. Nearly 4% of Sweden’s GDP goes near research and development – one of the maximum rates in the world. Sweden has a reputation for being a luxurious country to live in, and when it comes to groceries and alcohol it certainly lives up to its reputation. But when it comes to education, the country is altogether at the other end of the spectrum.

History of Education System

Sweden has an extensive and proud history of educational brilliance, with stupendous universities dating back to the 15th century. Sweden is the domicile of the Nobel Prize, the world's most prominent academic distinction. With a population no more than of a large city; Sweden’s reputation for innovation is built on close collaboration between industry and academics. In terms of education and businesses, Sweden has a long spread boundary. For instance, renowned corporate brands - like Volvo, Ericsson, Ikea, H&M and Saab – complement its cultural brands - like Abba, Bergman, Bjorn Borg, Astrid Lindgren, Strindberg and Garbo.

Being one of the richest nations in the world, Sweden has publicly funded healthcare systems for all and is known for its sense of communal justice, gender equality and even-handedness. Besides its beautiful landscape, Sweden also offers education for free to EU students (fees for non-EU students were introduced recently).

Compulsory Education in Sweden

In Sweden, attending school is compulsory for all children aged 7-16. The age when children may begin school is flexible: a child can start going to school at the age of 6, 7 or 8 years. Compulsory school is free of cost. The same standard of education is to be provided throughout the country and is to provide a platform for further studies.

The school (academic) year begins at the end of August and runs to the beginning of June the subsequent year, encompassing a total of around 40 weeks. The regular school week is five days long, Monday through Friday. A longer holiday on account of Christmas is taken from around the 20th December to the beginning of January. Homeschooling is also closely supervised by the government and very limited.

Leaving certificates are issued when a student finishes compulsory schooling. Students are no longer obliged to be present at school after the end of the spring term of the calendar year wherein they turn 16.

Swedish Education System

The Swedish education system encompasses several different schooling and education, designed for students of different age groups and with differing abilities and requirements. The Swedish education system is divided into:
  • Preschool: While studying in Preschool, kids get the opportunity of learning through playing, creating and exploring – in groups, on their own, and together with adults.
  • Compulsory Education: Children are required to star attending school from the autumn term in the year as and when they turn 7 till the year they turn 16. 
  • Upper Secondary Education: Upper secondary education provides a sound foundation for further studies and other vocational activities, for personal development and active partaking in the social life.
  • Adult Education: Formal adult education is performed as a system for adults to constantly develop and reorient their education on the basis of varying individual needs.
  • Higher Vocational Education: A higher vocational educational institution offers post-secondary school education. The curriculum is designed in discussion with employees and is modified to meet the manpower requirements of the labour market and lead to sound professional careers.
  • Universities and University Colleges: Swedish universities and university colleges offer a large number of study programmes and specialised courses. The training is divided into three different levels: Basic level which lasts for three years, Advanced level lasts for one to two years, and Research level which lasts for two to four years.
Swedish education boasts of an open and safe society with a long tradition of teamwork and co-creation in an absolutely relaxed environment. Well knit relationship involving private sector and higher education provides a platform to the students to apply their theoretical knowledge to real-world problems.

Swedish universities are well-known for their analytical research and autonomous thinking, and this reputation is lined with meticulous quality control and nationally certified degrees. Sweden offers one of the most motivated educational evaluation programmes in Europe, intended for maintaining this competitive edge.

Programmes are planned in response to the student requirements – the outcome is a student-centric education system, with open, relaxed relations between students and teachers, and where personal initiative and critical thought are valued. Studying here means - being encouraged to think creatively, individually and critically. Students are continuously encouraged to work closely with teachers and students from many different backgrounds in an informal atmosphere where everyone’s opinion counts.

Sweden’s education system usually reflects what the workplace will look like once you finish your education. Many projects are given to the students for practice and feel of how a real work environment will be. It is through understanding team work at school that will give you the experience for a workplace. At the same time more emphasis is laid on working independently, you learn time management which is important for a successful career.

Education Position

Sweden, a nation whose economy is driven by science and technology make you wonder what it's colleges and universities are like? The answer is very good! Five of its eight ranked institutions make the top 200 of the 2012/13 QS World University Rankings, led by Lund University and Uppsala University at 71 and 81. Beyond the ranked institutions, the Karolinska Institute, a specialist medical school, and the Stockholm School of Economics are both highly regarded in their fields.

Standardised Tests in Sweden

  1. Swedish Scholastic Aptitude Test: The Swedish Scholastic Aptitude Test or SweSAT is a standardized test used as one of the means to gain admission to higher education institutions in Sweden.
  2. IELTS/ TOEFL: It is one of the most popular English language ability tests for overseas students wishing to study in Sweden.
  3. PIL: It is the test and interview, used by the Karolinska Institute in Sweden for admission to some of its study programmes.

International Students

Sweden has always been a great place to attract a lot of students around the globe. It is a well-established higher education destination for numerous students with a well-established global reputation for research, strong presence in the QS World University Rankings,a highly developed education system.
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