Cash Poor, Humanity Rich: Finland's Brilliant Education System
The Finnish system spends about one-quarter less money per pupil than the American system, yet student achievement remains high.
What's the Latest Development?
Consistently retaining its spot at the top of international testing standards, Finland's education system attracts many foreign observers each year who hope to better understand what makes this humble system so effective. "Finnish schools don’t promote competition. There are no marks given for the first few years of a student’s schooling, and no national exams conclude the school year. 'It’s up to them to decide if they do their homework,' says Zakik, the teacher. Teaching expert Mikko Myllykoski says that other countries place too much importance on tests. 'The secret is freedom.' And yet, results count."
What's the Big Idea?
The Finnish system spends about one-quarter less money per pupil than the American system, yet student achievement remains high. "Finland has no diamonds, no oil, no coal. So our politicians decided that we had to invest in human capital." said teacher Ritva Semi. It may be the high social status afforded to teachers of all levels that attracts committed and talented individuals to the profession: "They trust us," says Omaia Zakik, who teaches French and English to teenage students in Espoo, Finland’s second city. "We have a lot of freedom in the way we teach. I chose the textbooks and the methodology. Nobody controls what I do," she said.
Photo credit: Shutterstock.com
The bold technique involves surgically implanting a so-called microneedle patch directly onto the heart.
- Heart attacks leave scar tissue on the heart, which can reduce the organ's ability to pump blood throughout the body.
- The microneedle patch aims to deliver therapeutic cells directly to the damaged tissue.
- It hasn't been tested on humans yet, but the method has shown promising signs in research on animals.
Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs is updated for the 21st century in a new study.
- Maslow's famous "Hierarchy of Needs" describes different levels of human motivation.
- A new study updates the hierarchy through modern methods.
- The research shows that self-actualized people share 10 specific traits.
Breakthrough Starshot is moving ahead with an audacious vision for space exploration.
- The Breakthrough Starshot initiative was co-founded by Stephen Hawking.
- The project raised $100 million and is moving ahead with extensive research.
- The goal of Starshot is to send tiny "StarChip" spacecraft to explore neighboring star systems.
SMARTER FASTER trademarks owned by The Big Think, Inc. All rights reserved.