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Educational Curriculum in Finland
Educational Curriculum in Finland
Educational Curriculum in Finland
Educational Curriculum in Finland
Educational Curriculum in Finland
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Educational Curriculum in Finland

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  • 1. The Curriculum in Finland Researcher: Mark Ryan A. Lastrilla I. Brief Description With its high levels of educational achievement and attainment, Finland is regarded as one of the world’s most literate societies. More than 98% attend pre-school classes; 99 % complete compulsory basic education; and 94 % of those who start the academic strand of upper secondary school graduate. Completion rates in vocational upper secondary school also reach close to 90%(Statistics Finland, 2010; Välijärvi & Sahlberg, 2008). In Finland, education is free at all levels from pre-primary to higher education. In pre-primary and basic education the textbooks, daily meal and transportation for students living further away from the school are free for the parents. At secondary level and in higher education the students themselves or their parents purchase their own books. At secondary level the students have the right to a free meal and in higher education meals are subsidised by the state. Adult education is the only form of education that may require payment. To ensure the opportunities to study for everyone there is a well-developed system of study grants and loans. Financial aid can be awarded for full-time study in an upper secondary school, vocational institution, or institution of higher education. The current thinking in Finland is that the potential of each pupil should be maximised. Therefore, educational guidance is seen as essential. Guidance and counselling aims to support, help and guide pupils and students so that they can all perform as well as possible in their studies and be able to make correct and appropriate decisions concerning their education and careers. Guidance and counselling is seen as the work of all education personnel. Thus, teachers are required to treat the children and young people as individuals and help them to proceed according to their own capabilities. Learners should also experience success and joy of learning. Today all pupils and students have the right to educational support. This support can be remedial instruction or support for the pupil’s special needs. II. Educational aims and objectives. • The main objective of Finnish education policy is to offer all citizens equal opportunities to receive education, regardless of age, domicile, financial situation, sex or mother tongue. Education is considered to be one of the fundamental rights of all citizens. Firstly, provisions concerning fundamental educational rights guarantee everyone (not just Finnish citizens) the right to free basic education; the provisions also specify compulsory education. Secondly,
  • 2. the public authorities are also obligated to guarantee everyone an equal opportunity to obtain other education besides basic education according to their abilities and special needs, and to develop them without being prevented by economic hardship. • A major objective of Finnish education policy is to achieve as high a level of education and competence as possible for the whole population. One of the basic principles behind this has been to offer post-compulsory education to whole age groups III. What are the areas being studied? The core subjects taught to learners in the basic education syllabus are the mother tongue and literature (Finnish or Swedish), the other official language, one foreign language, environmental studies, health education, religion or ethics, history, social studies, mathematics, physics, chemistry, biology, geography, physical education, music, art and crafts, and home economics. Guidance counselling must also be provided for students. IV. What teaching methodologies or strategies are used? In instruction, methods characteristic of the subject are to be used, as are versatile working approaches that help support and guide the pupil's learning. The function of the working approaches is to develop social, learning, thinking, working, and problem- solving skills, and to foster active participation. The approaches must further the development of skills with information and communication technology. They must also provide opportunities for the creative activity, experiences, and play characteristic of the age group in question. The pupils' various learning styles and backgrounds, as well as the developmental differences between boys and girls and among individuals generally, must receive consideration. Alongside the traditional forms of teaching – lectures, demonstrations and examinations based on lectures and literature – instruction makes increasing use of other methods, such as essays, projects, seminar and group work. The use of new information technologies in instruction has also increased. The aim has been to increase students’ independent and self-motivated study. There are various forms of project and teamwork and studies have increasingly been transferred outside the institution. V. How are the educational institution/organization being administered? The Finnish Parliament decides on educational legislation and the general principles of education policy. The government, the Ministry of Education, and the Finnish National Board of Education are responsible for the implementation of this policy at the central administration level. The government participates in the costs of schools by paying the so-called statutory government transfer to the education provider. The role of the Ministry is to prepare strategic policy guidelines for education, to prepare and share
  • 3. budget and to prepare educational laws. The main responsibility of NBE is to prepare and decide about the National Core Curriculum for the Comprehensive School, for Upper Secondary General and Vocational Education and for Adult Education. NBE is also responsible for the development of the Finnish education system. Universities have autonomy and they are guided straight by the Ministry of Education. The Basic Education Act (628/1998) and Basic Education Decree (852/1998) and the Government Decree on the General National Objectives and Distribution of Les-son Hours in Basic Education (1435/2001) govern basic education. These regulations stipulate such matters as the core subjects taught to all pupils, and the distribution of teaching hours between various subjects. VI. Compare the curriculum with the Philippine basic education curriculum. Comparison between Finland curriculum and Philippine Basic Education Curriculum Table 1. Finland Philippines(2002 BEC) 1.Educational aims and objectives 1.Offer all citizens equal opportunities to receive education, regardless of age, domicile, financial situation, sex or mother tongue. 2.Achieve as high a level of education and competence as possible for the whole population 1.To provide knowledge and develop skills, attitudes, and values essential to personal development and necessary for living in and contributing to a developing and changing society. 2. Provide learning experiences which increase the child awareness of and responsiveness to the changes in society; 3. Promote and intensify knowledge, identification with and love for the nation and the people to which s/he belongs; and 4. Promote work experiences, which develop orientation to the world of work and prepare the learner to engage in honest and gainful work. 2.The areas being Studied *Mother tongue and literature (Finnish or Swedish) *The other official language *One foreign language *Environmental studies *Health education *Religion or ethics, *History *Social studies *Mathematics The CORE SUBJECTS:Filipino; English; Math; Science (Science and Health for Elem.); Science and Technology for Secondary The Experiential Area: Makabayan: Araling Panlipunan; MAPEH (Music, Arts, PE and health); TLE; Edukasyon sa Pagpapahalaga (the practice
  • 4. *Physics *Chemistry *Biology *Geography *Physical education *Music *Art and crafts *Home economics environment for holistic learning to develop a healthy personal and national self-identity”. 3.Teaching methodologies used. *Traditional forms of teaching -lectures -demonstrations -examinations based on lectures -literature *Instruction makes increasing use of other methods, such as -essays -projects -seminar -group work *Thematic Teaching *Content-Based Instruction *Focusing Inquiry *Demonstration 4. How are the educational institution/ organization being administered. * The Finnish Parliament decides on educational legislation and the general principles of education policy. The government, the Ministry of Education, and the Finnish National Board of Education are responsible for the implementation of this policy at the central administration level. The government participates in the costs of schools by paying the so-called statutory government transfer to the education provider. The role of the Ministry is to prepare strategic policy guidelines for education, to prepare and share budget and to prepare educational laws. The main responsibility of NBE is to prepare and decide about the National Core Curriculum for the Comprehensive School, for Upper Secondary General and *Administrative structures of curriculum development Development of the basic education level curriculum is the responsibility of the Central Office Bureau of Elementary and Secondary Education, Curriculum Development Divisions. This bureau defines the learning competencies for the different subject areas; conceptualizes the structure of the curriculum; formulates national curricular policies. These functions are exercised in consultation with other agencies and sectors of society (e.g. industry, socio-civic groups, teacher-training institutions, professional organizations, school administrators, parents, students, etc.). The subject offerings, credit points, and time allotments for the different subject areas are also determined at the national level. In this sense, a national curriculum exists in the Philippines. However, while curriculum implementation
  • 5. Vocational Education and for Adult Education. NBE is also responsible for the development of the Finnish education system. Universities have autonomy and they are guided straight by the Ministry of Education. guidelines are issued at the national level, the actual implementation is left to schoolteachers. They determine the resources to be used; teaching and assessment strategies and other processes. Furthermore, schools have the option to modify the national curriculum (e.g. content, sequence and teaching strategies) in order to ensure that the curriculum responds to local concerns. References: Books; Cf. Bilbao,et.al., Curriculum Development. Lorimar: QC. 2008 PDF; Aho, E., Pitkänen, K. & Sahlberg, P. (2006). Policy development and reform principles of basic and secondary education in Finland since 1968. Washington, DC: World Bank. Ditapat, Maria, Pelagia, Mariñas, Bella O., Philippines Curriculum Development. FINLAND Regional Preparatory Workshop on Inclusive Education Eastern and South Eastern Europe, Sinaia, Romania, 14 – 16 June 2007 OAJ (2008). Teacher education in Finland. Helsinki: The trade union of education in Finland. Sahlberg, P. (2007). Education policies for raising student learning: The Finnish approach. Journal of Education Policy, 22(2), 147-171. Finnish Curriculum System Tähkä, Tiina, Vitikka, Erja, Curriculum Unit, Finnish National Board of Education Websites; Statistics Finland (2010). Education. Retrieved September 4, 2010 from http://www.stat.fi/til/kou_en.html. www.studyinfinland.fi/destination_finland/education_system/secondary_education

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