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On completion of lower secondary education, pupils can choose to pursue some form of vocational education and training after obtaining their Standard X diploma. There are various types of institutions where pupils can pursue study programmes, including industrial training institutes and polytechnics.

Types of study programmes

Vocational education and training study programmes vary in terms of their admission requirements, duration, content and transfer entitlements. You will need information about this in order to determine the level of a qualification. Some qualifications provide admission to bachelor’s programmes, while others do not. Moreover, the admission requirement is usually a Standard X diploma. On completion of lower secondary education, many pupils choose to pursue a Diploma study programme after obtaining their Standard X diploma.

Diploma study programmes

  • Duration: usually 3 years.
  • Inhoud: often technical study programmes (engineering) or (technology). Pupils sit exams from a state board (or an equivalent).
  • Admission requirements: usually a Standard X diploma (or an equivalent).
  • Diploma: Diploma in [specialisation], awarded by a state board (or an equivalent).

In terms of level, the Diploma awarded by a state board (or an equivalent) obtained after a Standard X diploma, is usually comparable to a MBO diploma at level 4.

Please note: there are also Diploma study programmes that pupils can pursue after obtaining the Standard XII diploma. In that case, they will have completed upper secondary education first. See Other diplomas in higher education for more information about these Diploma study programmes.

Board examinations

Occasionally, pupils sit examinations administered by a state board (or an equivalent) in a specific discipline. For technical study programmes offered in the state of Punjab, for instance, the board is called the Punjab State Board of Technical Education and Industrial Training. Pupils are then awarded a diploma from that board, rather than from the educational institution itself. This is often the case with technical and medical study programmes and study programmes that prepare pupils for a regulated profession.

For a credential evaluation, it is important to investigate whether pupils are required to sit an examination conducted by a state board (or an equivalent), and if so, which board that is. This information can be found online on:

  • the website of the stand-alone institution;
  • the website of the government of the Indian state (where the pupil is pursuing the study programme).

SBB, the Cooperation Organisation for Vocational Education, Training and the Labour Market

The Cooperation Organisation for Vocational Education, Training and the Labour Market (SBB), evaluates statements on foreign qualifications and training at VMBO and MBO level. The evaluation may vary if SBB evaluates the diploma for admission to VET schools or for work in the Netherlands.