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Polytechnic Education in Finland

Polytechnic Education in Finland by Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development
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In the early 1990s, in the midst of a major economic slump, the Finnish government embarked on a strategy to re-mold Finland into a knowledge society. A key element in this strategy was to raise the knowledge and skill levels of the population by doubling higher education enrolments by the end of the century. Recognising that it would be neither affordable nor desirable to double traditional university enrolments, the government created a new sector of higher education with a different content, degree structure, and governance from universities -- the "Ammattikorkeakoulut" (polytechnics).

This report prepared for the OECD by an independent group of experts suggests that the strategy is likely to pay off. The "AMK sector" is distinct, highly regarded, and currently enrols three-fifths of students entering higher education. The report raises issues of fees for higher education, examines strategies for internationalisation of higher education, addresses issues of governance and accountability in higher education and offers advice on how the new system could be strengthened further. Finland has a record of heeding the advice of past OECD education reviews. This review seems likely to continue that pattern, helping to shape the future growth of a dynamic new education sector.

Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development; January 2003
232 pages; ISBN 9789264199408
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Title: Polytechnic Education in Finland
Author: Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development