Upper Secondary School Studies

General upper secondary education is a channel to universities, universities of applied sciences and vocational education based on upper secondary school syllabus.

There are no classes in upper secondary school, but there are teaching groups. Each student progresses at their own pace accordingly to their own study plan. Upper secondary school can be completed in 2–4 years. Three years is the most common completion time.

Teaching is free of charge in upper secondary schools, as well as learning materials and the necessary terminal devices. Participating in the matriculation examination is also free of charge for the first five exams.

Students receive a free meal during school days. School healthcare is also free of charge. However, upper secondary education may also include study visits that are subject to a charge.

The right to free upper secondary education ends at the end of the calendar year the student turns 20 years of age.

School year divided into five periods and studies into study units

The school year in upper secondary school is divided into periods. The school year in Oulu upper secondary schools is divided into five periods, each of which has its own timetable. The students' workload varies depending on the period and the selected study units.

The scope of upper secondary school studies is 150 credits. The studies consist of compulsory and national elective studies. View the compulsory and elective studies in upper secondary school in the lesson distribution table. The syllabus may also include upper secondary school diplomas and other elective studies. You may read more about upper secondary schools' study selections on the individual Oulu upper secondary school websites.

Studies are offered to students as study units. Study units are built from modules, and one study unit can include modules from one or more subjects.

Each study unit is assessed as a separate entity. The grade is based on any possible written and oral tests as well as a diverse assessment of the learned knowledge, skills and work. On a shared study unit of several subjects, each subject is given its own grade. 

Institutional collaboration and exchange periods

Upper secondary schools collaborate with other upper secondary schools, vocational schools, universities of applied sciences, universities and higher education institutions, as well as international partners.

Upper secondary school students can also include peek courses offered by higher education institutions in their studies. Read more below by clicking the Studies in Other Educational Institutions link.

In other upper secondary school in Oulu, you can study either individual study units or conduct an exchange period.

Some upper secondary school studies can also be completed independently. Independent studies include separate work, such as project working under a teacher's guidance.

You can receive more information about school collaboration and how to incorporate collaboration into your studies when planning your curriculum on individual upper secondary school websites, from the principals of the upper secondary schools and from their guidance counsellors.

Final grade and final certificate

The final grade of a subject is determined by the student's average grade of the compulsory and national elective studies. The final grade may be raised in separate examination or due to other additional evidence.

The final certificate is admitted to a student who has completed the upper secondary school syllabus.