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The statistics on final examinations present the various diplomas awarded to pupils and students at upper secondary and tertiary level. The results are presented by the socio-demographic aspects of these pupils and students and their distribution across the different fields, institutions and education levels.

The profile of qualification holders changes slightly by education level. Among foreign nationals awarded a qualification from a higher education institution, the vast majority of these come to Switzerland specifically to study (foreign nationals educated abroad). The proportion of Swiss-educated foreign nationals who obtain a first diploma is far higher in advanced professional education and training, general education courses and vocational education than in higher education institutions.

At a glance

Overview of diplomas
  2005 2010 2016 2017
Upper secondary level        
Vocational education and training (VET) 59 774 68 154 69 664 68 852
General education 30 266 36 364 40 351 40 689
Tertiary level        
Diplomas from professional education and training colleges (1) 4 163 8 211 9 841 10 165
Federal diplomas and advanced federal diplomas of professional education and training 14 807 16 304 17 542 17 402
Final examinations of other professional education and training programmes (1) 10 023 3 691  488 371
Bachelor's degree from a higher education institution (2) 11 499 24 125 31 237 32 459
Master's degree from a higher education institution (3) 10 477 13 368 17 765 18 452
Doctorate from a university / institute of technology 3 100 3 593 3 853 4 151
Further education, specialised and advanced training at a higher education institution 4 145 4 492 4 246 4 513
(1) Including postgraduate degrees
(2) Including UAS/UTE degrees
(3) Including licence/diplôme study at a university / institute of technology
Sources : FSO – Statistics on certificates (SBA), Vocational education and training statistics (SBG-SFPI), Students and degrees of higher education institutions (SHIS-studex)

Regardless of education level, there is a balanced distribution between the sexes. Generally, men are slightly more involved in professional training and education than women, with women more frequently represented in general education. If, at secondary level the differences are minimal, this is more obvious at tertiary level where it is mainly women who are awarded a bachelor or master degree from a university and make up the majority of holders of qualifications from universities of teacher education. They are less well-represented in diplomas of advanced professional education and training.

Further information



Federal Statistical Office Section Educational Processes
Espace de l'Europe 10
CH-2010 Neuchâtel
+41 58 463 60 11



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