About VAKAVA

VAKAVA is a national selection cooperation network in the field of education. It draws up and organises the written VAKAVA examination, which enables prospective students to apply to all the degree programmes participating in the network.

The network encompasses the University of Helsinki, University of Eastern Finland, University of Jyväskylä, University of Lapland, University of Oulu, University of Tampere and University of Turku.

VAKAVA entrance examination enables prospective students to simultaneously apply to seven universities and 35 degree programmes in education. Applicants may apply to a maximum of six degree programmes nationwide.

The participating programmes are: Class Teacher Education (several), Class and Subject Teacher Education, Kindergarten Teacher and Early Childhood Education (several), Special Education (several), Education and Adult Education (several), Craft Studies and Craft Teacher Education (several), Home Economics and Home Economics Teacher Education (several and Career Counselling.

The VAKAVA examination is a part of the selection procedure in all the programmes listed above. In some of the programmes, such as teacher education, the points earned from the examination are used as the basis for selecting applicants for an aptitude test. In other programmes, such as the educational sciences, the exam points are considered a part of the final selection score.

JOINT SE­LEC­TION FOR CLASS TEACHER EDU­CA­TION

The joint selection for class teacher education comprises nine class teacher programmes in different universities. Applicants may apply to a maximum of three programmes, which they list in order of preference on the application form. The selection process has two phases, the first of which consists of the VAKAVA examination. Applicants who achieve a high enough score for their first choice are invited to the second phase (an aptitude test) in their first-choice programme. If not, the score is compared to that required for the second choice and finally the third choice.

Applicants are invited to the aptitude test in only one of the class teacher degree programmes included in the joint selection process. Even if the points earned were high enough to grant an invitation to all three choices, applicants will only be invited to take the test in their first-choice programme. This also means that applicants can only be admitted to their first choice in the final selection, since they have not participated in the whole entrance examination for other choices.

Since each university makes individual decisions concerning the aptitude test, university-specific differences may be noted in the second phase of the selection process. Aptitude tests may include an interview, group exercise and different types of written tests.

JOINT SE­LEC­TION FOR KINDER­GARTEN TEACHER AND EARLY CHILD­HOOD EDU­CA­TION

The joint selection for kindergarten teacher and early childhood education comprises six programmes at different universities. The selection process for these corresponds to that of the joint selection for class teacher education.

SUB­JECT TEACHER EDU­CA­TION

Students study the subject they intend to teach as their major in their home faculty. As a minor subject they need to complete the pedagogical studies for teachers in the faculty of education. Combined with a second-cycle university degree, these studies provide qualifications as a subject teacher. The faculty of education selects students for pedagogical studies.

VAKAVA entrance examination enables prospective students to simultaneously apply to seven universities and 3 degree programmes in education. Applicants may apply to a maximum of six degree programmes nationwide.

There are seven universities participating in the VAKAVA-network: University of Helsinki, University of Eastern Finland, University of Jyväskylä, University of Lapland, University of Oulu, University of Tampere and University of Turku.

The participating programmes are:

  • Class Teacher Education (several)
  • Class and Subject Teacher Education
  • Kindergarten Teacher and Early Childhood Education (several)
  • Special Education (several)
  • Education and Adult Education (several)
  • Craft Studies and Craft Teacher Education (several)
  • Home Economics and Home Economics Teacher Education (several)
  • Career Counselling

The VAKAVA examination is based on material published approximately five weeks before the exam. The publication date is set for the end of March, after the spring matriculation examination, to ensure that new secondary-school graduates are on an equal footing with other applicants. The material typically consists of 4-6 scholarly articles in the field of education.

The VAKAVA examination results are used to evaluate the applicant’s academic study skills needed in educational sciences. The exam consists of multiple-choice questions.

The examination is arranged annually in April/May, simultaneously in several localities. Applicants may choose where they take the exam from the locations on offer.

VAKAVA, total 2014 2015 2016
Applications 32327 24466 23172
Applicants 11402 10058 9511
Examination participants 7469 7243 6975
Students who started studies in VAKAVA programmes 1757 1741 1760
Percentage of applicants who participated in the examination 66 72 73
Percentage of exam participants who started their studies in a VAKAVA programme 23,5 24,0 25,2