According to the data of the 2011 Population and Housing Census (PHC 2011), 34% of the Estonian population aged 20 and over have higher education, 45% have upper secondary education and 21% have lower secondary education or less.
Compared to the previous census of 2000, the share of persons with higher education has increased by eight percentage points, the share of persons with upper secondary education has remained the same and the share of persons with lower secondary education or less has decreased by seven percentage points. Among the population aged 20 and over, 342,289 persons had higher education in 2011, 455,280 had upper secondary education and 214,076 had lower secondary education or less. The level of education was unknown in case of 1.5% of the population aged 20 and over.
Among males aged 20 and over, 27% had higher education, 49% had upper secondary education and 24% had lower secondary education or less – the respective shares among females were 39%, 42% and 19%. Compared to the previous census, there has been an increase in the share of males and females with higher education and a decrease in the share of males and females with lower secondary education or less.
The results of the 2000 census showed that people with a higher level of education tended to live in cities. This trend had changed by the time of the 2011 census, although the urban population still had a higher share of people with higher education. Among the rural population, the share of persons with higher education was 26% (16% in the 2000 census) and the share of persons with lower secondary education or less was 29% (42% in the 2000 census).
In both 2011 and 2000, 99% of 7–14-year-olds were studying. In other age groups, the share of persons studying was higher in 2011 than in the 2000 census. Their share was 89% among 15–19-years-olds (85% in 2000), 45% among 20–24-year-olds (33% in 2000), 17% among 25–30-year-olds (10% in 2000) and 2% among those aged over 30 (1% in 2000).
Higher education – professional higher education, Bachelor’s degree, higher education obtained on the basis of a curriculum used before 1992, Master’s degree or equivalent, doctorate (incl. former Candidate of Sciences).
Upper secondary education – upper secondary education, upper secondary education with vocational education, post-secondary non-tertiary education.
Lower secondary education or less – less than primary education, primary education, vocational education without lower secondary education, lower secondary education, lower secondary education with vocational education.
The schedule of publication of the results of PHC 2011 is available on the website www.stat.ee/phc2011.
The eleventh population census in Estonia was conducted from 31 December 2011 until 31 March 2012. Previous censuses were carried out in 1881, 1897, 1922, 1934, 1941, 1959, 1970, 1979, 1989 and 2000. The next population census in Estonia will be conducted in 2020/2021.
For further information:
More detailed data can be found in the Statistical Database.
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