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32. 1997 Economic Census
NA Not available. X Not applicable. Z Less than 0.5 percent.
1 This level straddles the boundary between upper secondary and post-secondary education from an international point of view, even though it might clearly be considered upper secondary or post-secondary in a national context. Although the content may not be significantly more advanced than upper secondary programs, it serves to broaden the knowledge of participants who have already gained an upper secondary qualification.
2 These programs focus on practical, technical, or occupational skills for direct entry into the labor market, although some theoretical foundations may be covered. They have a minimum duration of two years full-time equivalent at the tertiary level.
3 Post-secondary non-tertiary included in upper secondary.
4 Lower secondary included in pre-primary and primary education.
5 Data for 1997.
6 Post-secondary nontertiary included in upper secondary and non-university tertiary.nn
7 Included in university-level.
8 Part of upper secondary included in lower secondary.
9 Post-secondary non-tertiary included in non-university tertiary.
Source: Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, Paris, France, Education at a Glance, annual, (copyright).
Levels of education
Pre-primary level of education (ISCED 0)
Pre-primary education serves the dual purpose of giving the child daily care while the parents are at work and contributing towards the child's social and intellectual development in keeping with the rules and guidelines of the pre-primary curriculum.
The standard starting age at the pre-primary level is age three. Children two or older, however, are also included in the statistics if they are enrolled in programmes that are considered educational by the country concerned.
Primary level of education (ISCED 1)
Primary education usually begins at age 5, 6, or 7 and lasts for 4 to 6 years (the mode of the OECD countries is 6 years). Programmes at the primary level generally require no previous formal education.
The coverage at the primary level corresponds to ISCED 1, except that an upper threshold is specified as follows: in countries where basic education covers the entire compulsory school period (i.e. where there is no systems break between primary and lower secondary education) and where in such cases basic education lasts for more than 6 years, only the first 6 years following pre-primary education are counted as primary education.
Lower secondary level of education (ISCED 2)
The core of lower secondary education continues the basic programmes of the primary level but usually in a more subject-oriented manner. This usually consists of 2 to 6 years of schooling (the mode of OECD countries is 3 years). The common feature of lower secondary programmes is their entrance requirement, i.e. a minimum of primary education completed or demonstrable ability to benefit from participation in the program.
Upper secondary level of education (ISCED 3)
This level usually consists of 2 to 5 years of schooling. Admission into educational programmes at the upper secondary level requires the completion of the lower secondary level of education, or a combination of basic education and vocational experience that demonstrates an ability to handle the subject matter. Upper secondary education may either be terminal (i.e. preparing the students for entry directly into working life) and/or preparatory (i.e. preparing students for tertiary education).
Post-secondary non-tertiary level of education (ISCED 4)
This level straddles the boundary between upper secondary and post-secondary education from an international point of view, even though it might clearly be considered upper secondary or post-secondary in a national context. Although the content may not be significantly more advanced than upper secondary programs, it serves to broaden the knowledge of participants who have already gained an upper secondary qualification.
First stage of tertiary education (ISCED 5)
These programs have an educational content more advanced than those offered at Levels 3 or 4. Entry normally requires the completion of ISCED Levels 3 or 4. Programs must have a cumulative theoretical duration of at least 2 years from the beginning of Level 5.
ISCED 5A programs are largely theory-based and are designed to provide sufficient qualifications for entry to advanced research programs and professions with high skill requirements. They have a minimum theoretical duration of three years' full-time equivalent.
ISCED 5B programs are typically shorter than those of tertiary-type A and focus on practical, technical, or occupational skills for direct entry into the labor market, although some theoretical foundations may be covered. They have a minimum duration of two years full-time equivalent at the tertiary level.
Advanced Research Qualification (ISCED 6)
This level is reserved for tertiary programs that lead directly to the award of an advanced research qualification, e.g. PhD. The theoretical duration of these programs is 3 years full-time in most countries. The programs are devoted to advanced study and original research.
These tables are based on figures supplied by the United States Census Bureau, U.S. Department of Commerce and are subject to revision by the Census Bureau.
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