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Structure of Austria Education

Full-time education is compulsory for every child in Austria between the ages of 6 and 14. After reaching 14, students can opt for further education like upper secondary levels or tertiary level education depending upon the interest.

Levels and Duration of Study in Austria:

Primary Education

  • School Type: Elementary School (Volksschule)
  • Duration: 4 years
  • Age group: 6 years to 9 years

Secondary Education

Secondary Education includes 
  • Lower Secondary Schools
  • Academic Secondary Schools
  • Upper Secondary education

Lower Secondary Level:

  • School Type: Secondary School (Hauptschule)
  • Duration: 4 years
  • Age group: 10 to 13

Academic Secondary Level:

  • School Type: General Education Higher Schools (Allgemeinbildende hohere Schulen), Gymnasium
  • Duration: 8 years
  • Age group: 10 to 17
  • Credential Awarded: Reifeprufung Certificate

Upper Secondary Level:

  • School Type: High School (Oberstufenrealgymnasium)
  • Duration: 4 years
  • Age group: 14 to 17
  • Credential: Reifeprufung Certificate or Matura

Pre-Vocational Study

  • Duration: 1 year
  • Age group: 14 to 15

Vocational Study

  • Duration: 5 years
  • Age group: 14 to 18
  • Credential Awarded: School leaving examination Certificate or Matura/ TVE Diploma

Tertiary Education

Tertiary Education is for students aged over 18 and includes Universities such as Universities of Applied Sciences, Universities of Arts, Private Universities, and University College of teacher training.
  • Age group: 18 and above
Tertiary Education includes bachelor’s, Master’s and Doctorate study.
  • Bachelor’s programs: A bachelor degree program lasts for 3 years, and consists of 6-8 semesters. It is the initial level of study and prepares students for higher level education.
  • Master’s programs:  A Master’s degree program lasts between 2-4 semesters. The duration is 2 years. It is the second level of study wherein students can develop work-related skills.
  • Doctoral/PhD programs: The Doctoral program has at least 6 semesters. It is the highest level of study wherein students focus on the particular subject/profession or research in a particular area of interest.
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