Skip to main content
European Commission logo
EACEA National Policies Platform:Eurydice
Organisational Variations and Alternative Structures


6.Upper secondary and post-secondary non-tertiary Education

6.10Organisational Variations and Alternative Structures

Last update: 27 November 2023

Vocational secondary schools in Serbia with alternative structure include education institutions for students of different age than in regular schools or alternative grouping of students, organization of school day and week, curriculum or program structure. These forms of alteration are present mostly in international upper secondary schools and private vocational secondary schools in Serbia.

International upper secondary schools

Curricula of international upper secondary schools in Serbia are based on international programs such as British National Curriculum or Cambridge Assessment International Education. In these programs, upper secondary education is just one step in continuous education. In these kinds of programs, after Key Stage 2 and Key Stage 3 (primary school), students enroll in the final two stages of schooling (Key Stage 4 and 5). Students usually enter international upper secondary school at the age of 15 and finish the program at the age of 18.

During Key Stage 4 (10th and 11th year of education, for students of 15 and 16 years), students study core subjects and choose compulsory options. This two-year program can culminate in students’ acquiring some of the certificates recognized by educational systems and employers abroad.

Key Stage 5 refers to a two-year program (students between the ages of 17 and 18 and 12th and 13th year of education). Students choose more compulsory options than in the previous stage. This program also culminates in students’ acquiring some of the international certificates important for university applications.

These international schools can also be accredited by the Serbian Ministry of Education, Science and Technological Development as international schools. Some of them are also accredited as examination centres by Cambridge and by the Ministry of Education, Science and Technological Development of Serbia.

Private vocational secondary schools

Private vocational upper secondary schools in Serbia provide educational programs for different fields of work: media and culture, electrotechnics, health care, pharmacy, business, law, administration etc. Private vocational schools are accredited by the Ministry of Education, Science and Technological Development of Serbia as vocational secondary schools. They provide 3-year vocational programs, 4- year vocational programs, part-time education, retraining and additional vocational training programs.

Alternative structure in private vocational secondary schools refers to an alternative program structure, a grouping of students and type of instruction.

  • Alternative program structure refers to parallel education (students are involved in two vocational orientation at the same time) or distance education (online).
  • Alternative grouping of students refers to smaller groups (up to 15 students) or individual approach or individual instruction (individualized approach for students with special abilities or interests such as sport).
  • Alternative type of instruction refers to college-instruction (individual instruction as an additional type apart from regular group instruction) or mentoring.

Also, some vocational upper secondary schools provide particular alternative activities and services such as:

  • conducting first steps of the procedure of foreign diploma nostrification
  • providing specialized certificates
  • organizing thematic conferences, etc.