Education Structure in the Faroe Islands

Primary and lower secondary education
Compulsory education in the Faroe Islands is provided for nine years from the age of 7 to 16. Primary education in the Faroe Islands commences at the beginning of the school year in the calendar year in which the child has reached the age of seven years. It is part of the compulsory education, and it lasts at least seven years, Primary education is provided by 51 Fólkaskúli and 3 Free Schools; some of these Fólkaskúli also provide optional preschool education. In 2014 there were 5,205 students attending primary education in the Faroe Islands.

Upon completion of the first seven years of primary education, students can continue their studies in lower secondary education in the 8th and 9th grade and if they wish to, they can also take the 10th year of Fólkaskúli. Two thirds of the pupils from the 9th grade chose to take the 10th grade of Fólkaskúlin also. Lower secondary education lasts two to three years and, as with primary education, it is provided by Fólkaskúli and is free of charge. The first two years are part of the compulsory education, while the third year is optional, though a prerequisite to continue to the upper high school. In 2014 there were 1,932 students in lower secondary education.

The final examination from the Fólkaskúli gives access to upper secondary education like "Studentaskúlin", "Fiskivinnuskúlin" or other similar secondary schools which takes three years or (Higher Preparatory Examination (HF)) which takes two years. It also gives access to the one year FHS Yrkisnám from Føroya Handilsskúli (Faroese business college) or the 3-year secondary education Búskaparbreytin (Economy secondary school) from Føroya Handilsskúli.

Upper secondary education
Upper secondary education is offered by eight schools that offer five different type of courses. The Studentaskúli is an academically oriented three-year-long school. Upon completion students can apply for admission in higher education institutions. This type of education is offered at three schools: Føroya Studentaskúli og HF-Skeið in Tórshavn, Studentaskúlin og HF-skeiðið í Eysturoy in Kambsdalur and Miðnámsskúlin í Suðuroy in Suðuroy. Another type of upper secondary education is HF, which is a 2-year academically oriented course for adults, that is offered at Føroya Studentaskúli og HF-Skeið and Studentaskúlin og HF-skeiðið í Eysturoy. The Business College (Faroese: Føroya Handilsskúli), also called FHS, offers a three-year curriculum and its completion allows its alumni to continue to higher education. It is also possible to take a one-year education from the Business College. There are two Business Colleges, one in Tórshavn and one Kambsdalur. The Technical college (Faroese: Tekniski skúlin) offers courses on several technical fields along with apprenticeship. It is offered in two schools, one in Tórshavn and one in Klaksvík. Its alumni can pursuit higher education in technical sciences or take higher education courses of the Technical College. The Fisheries College (Faroese: Fiskivinnuskúlin ) in Vestmanna. It focuses in the fishing industry and food science and upon its completion students can continue in higher education studies related to the fishing industry.

Vocational education
Maritime education

There are two vocational maritime schools in the Faroe Islands: The Centre of Maritime Studies and Engineering (Faroese: Vinnuháskúlin) in Tórshavn and the Sjónam Maritime School (Faroese: Sjónám) in Klaksvík.
Vinnuháskúlin offers three-year studies to become a shipmaster or a marine engineer, in addition to shorter versions of these, while it also offers a one and a half-year studies to become a captain and individual marine courses. In 2010 100% of the graduates for skipper, shipmaster, machinist and marine engineer were men. All graduates from Vinnuháskúlin in June 2015 were men.

Sjónam in Klaksvík offers a 1½ year shipmaster education, which qualifies its alumni to be either First Officer or Captain on merchant ships up to 3000 gross tonnage. In order to get access to the education, the applicants must fulfill the terms according to Ship Master Law (Kunngerð um skiparaútbúgving) number 107 of 20 September 2005, i.e. the applicants must have experience from working on board a ship which is at least 20 gross tonnage for at least 36 month, of which at least 18 months should be from a lager vessel of at least 200 gross tonnage. They should also have finished the nine years of compulsory primary and lower secondary school with at least "passed" results in Faroese, Danish, English, physics, chemistry and math.

Sjónám also offers a shorter maritime education of six months. It is a ship assistant education (Faroese: skipsatstøðingur) which provides the students to be able to perform all kinds of work on deck and in the engine room on board a ship. The applicants must be at least 17 and a half years old and must have completed the 9 years of Fólkaskúlin. The applicants must also have a health certificate for seamen. This education together with 9 months which are required for becoming an able-bodied seaman, qualifies the alumni for the 1½ year long shipmaster education.

Public Health School
The Public Faroese Health School (Faroese: Heilsuskúli Føroya) in Suðuroy is a vocational school offering two types of education. The health care assistant education (Heilsuhjálpari) takes fifteen months. Following graduation, pupils can choose to leave the school and work in home care and retirement homes. Alternatively they can continue with another 22 months and become an assistant nurse (heilsurøktari). The assistant nurse can work in various places, mostly in retirement homes or hospitals. The graduates from the Health School are mainly women. In 2012 almost 90% of the School's graduates were women.

Other schools
The Faroe Music School (Faroese: Musikkskúlin) runs fourteen institutions around the islands that are responsible for teaching music in the Faroe Islands. The pupils pay between 1,200 and 1,600 DKK each year in order to get lessons, the price depends on which municipality the pupil lives in. In Tórshavn there are classes, called Musikkspælistova, for children up to 6 years costing 600 DKK for a year; it also offers a three-year musical education program in Tórshavn, which is a middle-range training for Faroese people aged 14 to 25, costing 2,400 DKK annually and admitting up to 8 pupils a year.

The Evening School (Faroese: Kvøldskúli or Frítíðarundirvísing), offers a variety of courses for everyone and Faroese language lessons for foreigners. Courses range from handicraft, music lessons, foreign languages to swimming. The courses are offered by the municipalities, with 50% of the teachers' wages paid by them and the rest paid by the Ministry of Culture and Education; the Ministry of Culture pays 100% of the wages in cases of disabled people.

Additionally there are the School of Home Economics (Faroese: Húsarhaldsskúli Føroya) and the Folk High School (Faroese: Føroya Fólkaháskúli) offering half-year courses in food and diet, hygiene, sowing, embroidering and humanities, arts and creative subjects respectively.

Higher education
Higher education in the Faroe Islands is mainly undertaken by the University of the Faroe Islands, a public research university granting academic degrees. Individual higher education courses are offered by The Business School. Many Faroese pursue higher education out of the islands, mainly in Denmark; in August 2015 a report showed 1,345 Faroese students in Denmark, 904 in the Faroe Islands and 182 in other countries. Studni, the Faroese Student Grant Fund, provides student grants and loans to Faroese students, to study either in the Faroe Islands or abroad.

University of the Faroe Islands
Higher education is offered by the, Tórshavn based, University of the Faroe Islands (Faroese: Fróðskaparsetur Føroya). It was founded in 1965, as Academia Færoensis, by members of the Faroese Academy of Sciences. The university is divided in two faculties: the Faculty of Humanities, Social Sciences and Education and the Faculty of Natural and Health Sciences, offering several B.Sc. degrees, M.Sc. degrees and Ph.D.s. It is publicly funded and in 2010 it received approximately 68 million DKK. Admission requirements include taking the upper secondary school leaving examination. Specific departments could place additional requirements, e.g. in 2015 the Software Engineering department required a grade of 6/13 in mathematics.

Higher education from the Business School
It is possible to take individual higher education courses in Commerce from the Business School in Kambsdalur and in Tórshavn. The alumni can work at the same time and take one course each semester. After three years they will have achieved 60 ECTS which is the same as the first part of the HD education. They can also take the second part of the HD education from the Business College, and they can also combine it with courses from the Aarhus University via distant education. If they wish to study further for at MBA they must take it from a university in Denmark, i.e. the Aarhus University.

Research in the Faroe Islands is administered by the Faroese Research Council (Faroese: Granskingarráðið). Each year the Parliament of the Faroe Islands allocates money to the Faroese Research Foundation, and it is the Faroese Research Council that decides its recipients. From 2002 to 2012 the Research Foundation had received over 70 million DKK. Research is conducted by several governmental institutions (i.e. museums, laboratories, hospitals, marine institutes) and the University of the Faroe Islands.