The International Classification of Fields of Education and Training

The most recent classification developed for measuring and coding fields of education and training for cross-national comparisons is UNESCO's International Standard Classification of Education on Fields of Education and Training (ISCED-F). It builds on an earlier version of ISCED as well as work done at Statistics Sweden for Cedefop and Eurostat in the 1990s. ISCED-F was developed by UNESCO Institute for Statistics (UIS) in 2013 and aims to describe and classify fields of education and training at the secondary, post-secondary non-tertiary and tertiary education levels (UNESCO-UIS, 2014, 2015). It was developed by UNESCO Institute for Statistics (UIS) in 2013 and describes and categorise different fields of education and training of secondary, post-secondary non-tertiary and tertiary educational (UNESCO-UIS, 2014, 2015).

The units of the ISCED-F classification are the same as in the related classifications of educational programmes and educational attainment. Fields of education and training are defined across levels of educational levels so the same field can exist at several levels. The most recent version of ISCED-F distinguishes between 11 broad fields of education on the first digit, 29 narrow fields on the second digit and about 80 detailed fields on the third digit. Detailed fields are grouped into narrow fields and narrow fields into broad fields based on the similarity of content covered in the respective programme. This structure is adopted for the search tree in the surveycodings fields of education tool, assuming that content similarity of different fields will also guide respondents when browsing the search tree.

Further readings:

UNESCO-UIS. (2014). ISCED Fields of Education and Training 2013 (ISCED-F 2013). Montreal: UNESCO Institute for Statistics.

UNESCO-UIS. (2015). International Standard Classification of Education. Fields of education and training 2013 (ISCED-F 2013) - Detailed field description. Montreal: UNESCO Institute for Statistics.

UNESCO. (2006). International Standard Classification of Education ISCED 1997.

Eurostat. (1999). Fields of Education and Training - Manual.

Table of Fields of Education and Training (ISCED-F 2013)

Broad field Narrow field Detailed field
00 Generic programmes and qualifications 001 Basic programmes and qualifications 0011 Basic programmes and qualifications
002 Literacy and numeracy 0021 Literacy and numeracy
003 Personal skills and development 0031 Personal skills and development
01 Education 011 Education 0111 Education science
0112 Training for pre-school teachers
0113 Teacher training without subject specialisation
0114 Teacher training with subject specialisation
02 Arts and humanities 021 Arts 0211 Audio-visual techniques and media production
0212 Fashion, interior and industrial design
0213 Fine arts
0214 Handicrafts
0215 Music and performing arts
022 Humanities (except languages) 0221 Religion and theology
0222 History and archaeology
0223 Philosophy and ethics
023 Languages 0231 Language acquisition
0232 Literature and linguistics
03 Social sciences, journalism and information 031 Social and behavioural sciences 0311 Economics
0312 Political sciences and civics
0313 Psychology
0314Sociology and cultural studies
032 Journalism and information 0321 Journalism and reporting
0322 Library, information and archival studies
04 Business, administration and law 041 Business and administration 0411 Accounting and taxation
0412 Finance, banking and insurance
0413 Management and administration
0414 Marketing and advertising
0415 Secretarial and office work
0416 Wholesale and retail sales
0417 Work skills
042 Law 0421 Law
05 Natural sciences, mathematics and statistics 051 Biological and related sciences 0511 Biology
0512 Biochemistry
052 Environment 0521 Environmental sciences
0522 Natural environments and wildlife
053 Physical sciences 0531 Chemistry
0532 Earth sciences
0533 Physics
054 Mathematics and statistics 0541 Mathematics
0542 Statistics
06 Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) 061 Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) 0611 Computer use
0612 Database and network design and administration
0613 Software and applications development and analysis
07 Engineering, manufacturing and construction 071 Engineering and engineering trades 0711 Chemical engineering and processes
0712 Environmental protection technology
0713 Electricity and energy
0714 Electronics and automation
0715 Mechanics and metal trades
0716 Motor vehicles, ships and aircraft
072 Manufacturing and processing 0721 Food processing
0722 Materials (glass, paper, plastic and wood)
0723 Textiles (clothes, footwear and leather)
0724 Mining and extraction
073 Architecture and construction 0731 Architecture and town planning
0732 Building and civil engineering
08 Agriculture, forestry, fisheries and veterinary 081 Agriculture 0811 Crop and livestock production
0812 Horticulture
082 Forestry 0821 Forestry
083 Fisheries 0831 Fisheries
084 Veterinary 0841 Veterinary
09 Health and welfare 091 Health 0911 Dental studies
0912 Medicine
0913 Nursing and midwifery
0914 Medical diagnostic and treatment technology
0915 Therapy and rehabilitation
0916 Pharmacy
0917 Traditional and complementary medicine and therapy
092 Welfare 0921 Care of the elderly and of disabled adults
0922 Child care and youth services
0923 Social work and counselling
10 Services 101 Personal services 1011 Domestic services
1012 Hair and beauty services
1013 Hotel, restaurants and catering
1014 Sports
1015 Travel, tourism and leisure
102 Hygiene and occupational health services 1021 Community sanitation
1022 Occupational health and safety
103 Security services 1031 Military and defence
1032 Protection of persons and property
104 Transport services 1041 Transport services