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The VET training system in Germany

Compulsory education in Germany starts at the age of six and consists of primary school, Sekundarbereich I and Sekundarbereich II. Depending on the federal state (Bundesland) at stake, primary school lasts five or six years. After finalising primary school, pupils have the choice between different types of schools, such as Hauptschule, Realschule, Gesamtschule or Gymnasium.

What initial vocational education and training is concerned, the basic distinction is between the dual apprenticeship programme and school-based full-time IVET.

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Basic information about mobility of apprentices in Germany

Who is concerned?
The dual vocational training system – part-time training in companies and part time in vocational schools – is the most popular type of initial vocational education and training (VET) in Germany. Apprenticeship training is provided in about 340 recognized occupations. The duration of the training varies – depending on the occupation – from 2- 3.5 years. The practical training takes place in recognized learning companies on the basis of national training regulations and is supervised by the chambers of skilled crafts and chambers of industry and commerce, which are the competent institutions for VET in Germany. The theoretical training takes place in vocational schools and comprises about 20% of the total curricular time.


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