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Schools and other local actors have little autonomy. In , the then-ruling military government ushered in a comprehensive higher education law. The council is responsible for planning, coordination, and governance of the higher education system. It sets university budgets, institutional enrollment and admission caps, and core curriculum guidelines.
It also appoints faculty heads.
As of , Turkey had public universities, with a total estimated enrollment of 5. Since then, private institutions have been allowed to operate, on a non-profit basis and under governmental supervision. The first foundation university, Bilkent University, opened in and has provided a successful Turkish model for private higher education.
As of , Turkey had 72 foundation universities , which enrolled a total of , students, representing 6. Foundation universities can be either research institutions or pure teaching institutions. The governance of these universities differs from that of public institutions in that they operate under less stringent government restrictions. Whereas the deans of public universities are directly appointed by the government, the deans of foundation universities are chosen by boards of trustees. Compared to public institutions, which are mostly government-funded and charge just a few hundred U.
Some 40 percent of their students are said to currently receive scholarships. Proponents of private education argue that foundation universities provide better education than public universities and should be considered a role model for other countries in the Middle East. Classes are often taught in English, and the teaching style tends to be less hierarchical, allowing for more open interactions between students and professors.
Critics, on the other hand, maintain that these institutions, deepen social divisions by creating an elitist from of education only accessible to wealthy segments of the society. Demographically, Turkey is an increasingly young and affluent country and, as such, has tremendous need for education. The country also has one of the youngest populations in the OECD, with the second-highest share of people under the age of 15 In elementary and junior secondary education, enrollment levels are relatively high, with 95 percent of children aged attending school in This compares to an OECD average of 98 percent.
At more advanced attainment levels, however, Turkey does not fare as well. The percentage of to year-olds without any upper-secondary education was 63 percent in — up from 72 percent in , but still the second-highest percentage in the OECD. The overall average in the OECD was 23 percent in The extension of compulsory education until grade 12 discussed below is expected to increase upper secondary-level enrollments going forward.
Tertiary-level attainment levels are also relatively low. In , only 18 percent of olds had any tertiary-level education up from 10 percent in compared to 35 percent in the OECD. Increased participation rates in higher education have had positive effects on income levels in Turkey. In , adults with tertiary education were much more likely to be employed than their less-educated peers, and earned an average 91 percent more than adults with upper secondary education, compared to 59 percent in the OECD.
Education is presently the biggest item on the Turkish government budget, and the Turkish Statistical Agency reports that direct and indirect expenditures on education increased by 54 percent between and , from UIS data , likewise, suggests that the percentage of education spending as part of the overall Turkish budget increased by one third between and , from 8.
Those increases notwithstanding, OECD reports indicate that the 4. Compulsory education in Turkey begins at age 5, and, as of , lasts through 12 th grade. It is free of charge. Pupils now complete four years of elementary education before entering middle school in the fifth grade. Four years of middle school are followed by four additional years at the upper-secondary level. See sidebar, below. As the Swedish scholar Svante E. In other words, [many] parents and students were forced to choose between vocational schools and religious schools. Under the new law, parents are allowed to home school their children after the first four years of elementary education.
I mam hatip schools are institutions devoted to the training of Muslim clergy imams and preachers. Specifically, the extension of elementary schooling to eight years by a secularist government in prevented pupils from enrolling in religious schools until grade 9, and resulted in a decrease of enrollments in these schools. Specifically, the reform created a need for new middle schools — a void that is partially being filled by a disproportionately high number of new imam hatips. According to some reports, the number of imam-hatip schools increased by 73 percent between and compared to 23 percent and 57 percent increases in the number of technical and general Anatolian high schools respectively.
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Accessed March Critics charge that it is a politically motivated attempt to advance the Islamization of education. This upper-secondary education lasts four years grades 9 through According to UIS data , the number of students enrolled at the upper-secondary level increased from 3.
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Further enrollment increases are expected going forward. Students who do not earn sufficiently high scores to get into their school of choice are assigned to schools nearest to their residence, including vocational schools, which generally do not require the TEOG exam for admission. In recent years, the selection process at the end of grade 8 has resulted in large numbers of students being involuntarily assigned to vocational imam hatip schools.
See sidebar, above. Four years in length, technical and vocational high school programs can be divided into four main types: industrial and technical; commerce, tourism and communication; social services; and religious services. The diplomas in both streams grant access to university entrance examinations although most students typically continue to study at higher vocational schools.
Vocational schools include a wide variety of specializations, ranging from electronics to chemistry, automotive technology, construction, public health schools, religion, agriculture, and more. The curriculum at technical and vocational high schools typically incorporates practical skills training in addition to the general academic core curriculum.
Graduates from both types of schools can apply for admission to post-secondary higher vocational schools, or can transition into the workforce upon graduation. There are several different types of schools in the general academic high school stream. These include foreign language high schools Yabanci Dil Agirlikli Lise , science high schools Fen Lisesi , and so-called Anatolian high schools Anadolu Lisesi , which are selective schools that use a foreign language medium, typically English, for instruction in some subjects.
All of these schools are academically focused and prepare students for higher education. The curriculum in general academic programs is common to all students in the first year of study and includes biology, chemistry, foreign language, geography, health, history, mathematics, military science, philosophy, physical education, physics, religious education and ethics, and Turkish language and literature.
In grade 10, students declare a concentration in one of several different streams such as natural sciences, literature and mathematics, social sciences, art, foreign languages and mathematics.https://scenalmufucin.cf
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In grades 10, 11 and 12, all students attend common courses, but the bulk of time is devoted to elective concentration subjects. Overall, students spend a minimum of 30 hours a week in the classroom, regardless of concentration. Programs conclude with final high school examinations.
As in previous PISA studies, the test results were not kind to Turkey, and indicated continued weaknesses in Turkish schooling.
On the upside, Turkey scored above OECD average in social equality indicators impact of social status on performance , and gender equity impact of gender on performance. At the secondary level, most schools follow the ministry-approved grading scale.
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Grading in Turkish secondary education is somewhat stringent, and grades tend to cluster in the twos and threes. Typically, university entry is reserved for students who graduate from the general academic secondary branch. Graduates of technical and vocational schools typically pursue further studies at technical institutes. The number of Turkish students who sit for the admissions examinations has grown considerably in recent years and exceeds the number of available seats at Turkish universities.
In March of , more than 2. Placement in university programs is competitive and based on demand and test performance. Overall tertiary graduation rates have increased in recent years as well: the gross graduation ratio in tertiary first degree programs was The public Anadolu University was the first of these institutions and is today the largest open education provider in the country.
There is always a correlation between educational attainment and success in the labor market and salary level, hence self-sufficiency for women. Between and , the percentage of Turkish women who were neither employed, nor in education or training NEETs was 50 percent — more than twice that of men, among whom 20 percent of were neither employed, nor in education or training. Graduation rates are increasing at some advanced levels and decreasing at others. At the doctoral level, it fell by 45 percent UIS. As of , Turkey had state universities and 72 private foundation universities, as well as a number police and military academies, and eight self-standing post-secondary vocational institutes.
Other vocational institutes are housed within universities. While enrollments at private universities are generally rising, overall tertiary enrollment in Turkey continues to be predominantly concentrated in the public sector — only 6. A large number of the by Turkish standards very expensive private foundation universities are located in Istanbul; most others are clustered around major population centers as well. Even though Turkey signed the Bologna declarations in , the country has so far been slow to adopt external program accreditation on a significant scale or implement other external quality assurance mechanisms, which are key concepts of the Bologna reforms.
In the years since, however, Turkish universities have dropped again. Turkey has a U. Turkey has made other changes in order to comply with the Bologna process. The language of instruction at universities is Turkish, although some programs are taught in English, and very rarely, in German or French. Turkish Degree certificates may be issued with either a Turkish or English degree name.
Undergraduate curricula tend to be specialized, with limited elective course options. Programs may include a practical training component, and are generally offered in applied fields intended to prepare students for employment. Some universities may have additional entrance examinations. Omar, 13, arrived from Damascus with his family in Istanbul at the end of when he was in the middle of fifth grade.
Unlike most Syrian refugee households, his family had a residency permit, and he was able to enroll in a Turkish school immediately at his grade level. However, he struggled to learn a new language while adapting to a new environment, and his classmates often mocked him for his difficulty speaking Turkish, he said. His mother Rana told Human Rights Watch,.
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