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2018-07-30 11:57:07

Secondary schools in Vienna for foreign students

Secondary schools in Vienna for foreign students

Secondary schools in Vienna are currently attracting many students from all over the world who are learning German - and this is not surprising, since high school education in Vienna allows you to get a certificate of secondary education in Europe, which opens the door to the world of higher education and the best higher education educational institutions around the world. Start planning an educational trip for your child right now, on SMAPSE website there is everything necessary for a low start!

Education in secondary school in Vienna is more available for foreign students than top secondary schools in UK. Secondary schools in Vienna accept for education students from the age of 10 years. First of all, it is worth noting that in Austria the education system requires compulsory education in primary and secondary schools for a total of 9 years. However, within the framework of this article, SMAPSE experts will concentrate on examining the features of education in secondary schools in Vienna.

Secondary education in Vienna's schools consists of 2 stages, the first of which involves the education of students aged 10 years (5th grade) and lasts 4 years. Secondary educational institutions are divided into the following main types:

  • The general secondary school (German Hauptschule, abbreviated HS) - teaching in similar educational institutions takes place according to an officially approved state educational program. Already in secondary school, a distinction is made between students in the streams (similar to university faculties) on the basis of interests and abilities: someone likes learning foreign languages or German, someone likes mathematics or the humanities. In addition, there are also secondary schools in Vienna with a bias in the sport or the musical sphere, creativity.
  • "Higher secondary" schools, or secondary schools with in-depth study of disciplines (German Allgemeinbildende höhere Schulen, abbreviated AHS) are educational institutions designed to intensively prepare students for university enrollment in the future. Such secondary schools are more prestigious and in demand, therefore only those students who have graduated from primary school with honors are accepted there.
  • Gymnasia (German Gymnasium) - educational institutions in which the disciplines are divided into 3 streams: exact sciences (students study physics, chemistry, mathematics, etc.), humanities (foreign languages, including ancient languages, such as Latin and Ancient Greek), as well as economics (which includes the economy itself, the basics of business, trade, etc.).
  • The so-called "new high school" (German Neue Mittelschule), which is a pilot state project of a new educational program. Such schools are only in Vienna and several other cities in Austria (since the project's effectiveness is still assessed). "New secondary schools" suggest different from standard teaching methods, as well as a more in-depth educational program.

By the way, the system of assessments in secondary schools in Vienna is the complete opposite of the evaluation system to which prople are all used since childhood: to get a five in a secondary school in Vienna means that the student has not learned the lesson; unit is here the best estimate. 

If considered the ratio between private and public secondary schools in Vienna, then private schools are much smaller - up to 10% of the number of public schools. In this vast majority of private schools officially adheres to Catholic Christianity, which sometimes reflects on the specifics of the construction of the learning process: as a rule, in such institutions more strict discipline. However, students' commitment to religion is optional, so do not be afraid if any educational institution works under the aegis of the Catholic Church.

The 7th and 8th grade of secondary school presupposes the choice of future specialization and the study of those disciplines that meet the interests of the student. Students attend a special course in choosing a future specialization, in which they get acquainted with different professions, visit production facilities, company offices, and attend practical education. Thus, by the time of admission to the 9th grade, students are already determined with their choice between obtaining a technical secondary education and completing their studies in an average educational institution, obtaining a full general secondary education and entering a higher education institution. By the way, more than 80% of students choose the first option, and in the 9th grade they transfer to polytechnic educational institutions (German Polytechnische Schule), where they complete nine years of compulsory education. Throughout this graduation year, students are engaged in practical activities, visit industrial plants, factories, offices of companies, which allows them to finally decide on their profession. Secondary technical education in Vienna can be done in the following formats:

  • Direct practice in the workplace presupposes the work of the student as an intern at any selected enterprise, combined with education after work in the evening. The program has a duration from 2 to 4 years;
  • Education in the technical school allows after its completion immediately begin work on specialization. The duration of this educational program can be from 3 to 4 years. During the summer holidays, students should practice, which, however, is paid;
  • Education in a medical college;
  • Education in colleges of different specializations, where students can get a technical or economic profession. The duration of the education is 5 years, after which the students take the final examination for a certificate of full secondary technical education.

In the case, if the student decides to complete secondary education and get a general secondary education, be it a gymnasium or a "higher middle school", then for another 4 years he will study various disciplines, including specialization subjects. In the 12th grade, students receive an even deeper academic specialization in the choice of economics and business, exact and natural sciences, humanities, etc.

In any case, at the end of the course, the students take the final exam, after successfully passing the so-called matura, which is a certificate of the receipt of a complete general or technical education, which already entrants can enter the higher educational institution of choice.

Thus, secondary school education in Vienna involves 2 stages of 4 years each, a choice of specialization and the gradual development of a profession. By the way, you can visit your favorite educational institution within the framework of an open house, which is usually held in February. Admission documents in the admissions office begins in March, and the academic year begins in October and ends in June.

In case you have any questions about secondary schools in Vienna, you can leave a request for a free consultation at the bottom of SMAPSE website - SMAPSE specialists with many years of experience in the field of foreign education are ready to contact you at any time convenient for you.

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Egor Eremeev
Current material has been prepared by Egor Eremeev
Education: Westminster University (Business & Management), London.
Egor studied and lived in the UK for 8 years and graduated from the university of Westminster. He is currently the co-founder and the director of business development at Smapse Education and personally visits foreign schools and universities, interviews students studying in those institutions.
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