Working life continues to require new kinds of competences, while there are fewer financial resources available for education. VET has to respond more swiftly to changes in work life and operating environment, and to adapt to individual competence needs. One element of the reform is renewal of the qualification structures. The Finnish National Board of Education is drawing up new qualification requirements based on qualification structure. In the future there will be fewer, more wide-ranging qualifications.
The education ministry, on 15 April 2015, appointed a steering group on working life to reform the qualification structure of vocational education and training. The working group examined changes in working life and their relationship to the present qualification structure. The analysis led the steering group to propose a new qualification structure for vocational education and training, composed of broader qualifications that provide individual students with better opportunities to target their competence development in a flexible way and meet the changing demands of working life.
The steering group proposes changes to the structure of further vocational qualification and specialist vocational qualification, as well as the vocational upper secondary qualification. It suggests the number of vocational qualifications should be 166 as opposed to 351today. The steering group has also made a proposal for measuring the scope of vocational qualifications.
The plan is to introduce the new qualification requirements from the beginning of 2019.