Turkish Education System

The Turkish education system is divided into three stages as 12 years of compulsory education. The first level is four-year primary school (1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th grades), the second level is four-year secondary school (5th, 6th, 7th and 8th grades), and the third level is four-year high school (9. 10. 11 . and 12th grade) was organized as. Primary education consists of four-year compulsory primary schools, four-year compulsory secondary schools and imam-hatip secondary schools that allow choice between different programs. In secondary schools and imam-hatip secondary schools, elective courses are created according to the abilities, development and preferences of the students in a way to support high school education.

It covers all general, vocational and technical education institutions based on primary education, providing four-year compulsory, formal or non-formal education. Those who graduate from these schools are given a secondary education diploma. Secondary education consists of high schools that implement various programs. Schools that focus on a certain program are given names that determine the branches of education such as high school, technical high school and agricultural vocational high school.

Secondary education institutions providing education in different categories in Turkey are as follows:

General High School:

All students who have completed eight years of secondary education can attend these schools. High school graduates take the Higher Education Institutions Exam (YKS), which consists of the Basic Proficiency Test (TYT), and optionally the Field Proficiency Test (AYT) and Foreign Language Test (YDT) sessions to be placed in universities.

Vocational High School:

Vocational high school graduates can attend vocational high schools without examination. Vocational high schools can be grouped as Technical, Communication, Health, Hotel Management and Tourism, Teacher, Maritime Vocational High Schools. These high schools may require plus one more year of study.

Anatolian High School:

These are high schools where foreign language courses are given predominantly and foreign language preparatory class is taught for one year in some Anatolian high schools. Course hours are higher than in regular high schools; There are options for a second foreign language. Like Galatasaray High School, Kadıköy Anatolian High School, Istanbul High School (Istanbul Boys High School).

Science High School:

These are high schools for students with special interests and talents in Science. In these schools, students are trained to place them in the Science fields of universities.

Imam-Hatip High School:

They are educational institutions that apply both vocational and higher education preparatory programs within the secondary education system opened by the Ministry of National Education in order to train the personnel responsible for the fulfillment of religious services such as imamate, oratorship and Quran course teaching.

Fine Arts High School:

These are high schools opened to raise children with special interests and skills in Fine Arts from an early age.

Private high school:

Also called colleges, some of them are foreign-based high schools such as Robert College, Saint Joseph High School, Austrian High School, where education is in a foreign language in courses such as Mathematics and Science, the tuition fee is high and admission is difficult.

Those who have completed high school or its equivalent are eligible to be candidates for entry to higher education institutions. In order to enter the university, students are required to get a certain score from the Higher Education Entrance Examination (YGS) and Undergraduate Placement Examination (LYS) conducted by the Measurement Selection and Placement Center (ÖSYM) and the Higher Education Institution (YÖK). The scores obtained from the YGS and LYS exams and the total score obtained from the high school grade point averages are the determining factors in their placement in undergraduate programs. After entering YGS, some universities sometimes hold a special talent exam. However, this requirement may vary by university and faculty.

The higher education system in Turkey consists of universities, high technology institutes, vocational higher schools and other education institutes (military and police academies):

Associate Degree

Vocational high school graduates can transfer to vocational higher schools without examination. However, in order to transfer from regular high schools to vocational higher schools, it is necessary to get a certain score from the Higher Education Transition Examination (YGS). The education period of vocational high schools is two years. Some vocational schools have foreign language preparatory classes. Students who successfully complete their two-year education can pass the Vertical Transfer Exam (DGS) and transfer to universities that offer four-year undergraduate education.

To earn a bachelor's degree, it is necessary to complete four years of study at a university. However, for professional branches such as Medicine, Dentistry, Pharmacy, Law and Veterinary, it is necessary to complete a training period ranging from five to six years.

Master's Degree

Upon completion of undergraduate education, students who complete a two-year master's program with or without thesis are awarded a master's degree. Master's programs with thesis generally require at least 21 credits and writing a thesis. Non-thesis master's programs are programs that can be completed in 1.5 years, require at least 30 credits and a term project.

PhD Degree

Those who have a bachelor's or master's degree can apply to doctoral programs. In doctoral programs, it is necessary to take at least 7 courses and 21 credits and pass the proficiency exam. Students who successfully pass their courses and proficiency exam write a thesis and defend their thesis orally before the thesis committee.

Specialization in Medicine

Medical specialization degree is a doctorate-equivalent specialization degree obtained in medical faculties, hospitals and research hospitals. Graduates of medical faculties take the Medical Specialization Examination (TUS) in different branches of medicine to become specialists in medicine. Specialist candidates are required to present a thesis and defend their thesis before the committee.

Proficiency in Art

It is a degree equivalent to a doctorate, which is attained after graduating from a faculty or college, by taking an exam in that branch of art and producing a work of art and a scientific work.

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