Educational structure of population

Updated: 5 Nov 2020
Next update: 5 Nov 2021

The statistics on the educational structure of the population describe the post-comprehensive school educational qualifications and degrees attained by the population aged 15 and over. One qualification or degree per person is included in statistics: vocational qualification attained at the highest level of education/most recently attained. In examining educational structure, it is important to take into consideration the relationship between the different levels of education and the broad educational entity formed by them. In order to function, society needs a diverse educational base and the expertise generated by different fields. Maintaining a broad spectrum of education is vital for an effective society. For the overall development of society, it is important that education policy is developed from the perspective of working life and that citizens continue to possess skills corresponding to the needs of work also in the future. Achieving this goal requires that working life skills requirements and educational provision match each other better.

The requirements of work are changing rapidly in the international market, which poses difficulties for educational planning and the coordination of different sectors. Meeting the challenges of work requires, both from the public sector and the business community, a future-oriented operating culture that encourages multidisciplinary education, labour market flexibility and re-training opportunities.


By the end of 2019, altogether 3,435,387 persons, or 74 per cent of the population aged 15 or over had completed a post-comprehensive level qualification. The share of persons with an educational qualification grew by one percentage point from the year before. Thirty-two per cent of the population had completed a tertiary level qualification.