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Educational attainment, Bangladesh

Codes and Frequencies

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EDUCBD indicates the person's educational attainment in Bangladesh in terms of the level of schooling completed.

Comparability — General

Bangladesh has a 5-3-2-2 system comprising 5 grades of primary (class I-V), 3 years of junior secondary (class VI-VIII), 2 years of secondary (class IX-X), and 2 years of higher secondary (class XI-XII). By the end of class X students take the secondary school certificate (SSC) examination (required for higher secondary) and by the end of class XII they take the higher secondary certificate (HSC) examination (required for higher education).

Technical and vocational education is offered after junior secondary and includes tracks leading to technical SSC or HSC or diplomas (of varying duration). The Bangladesh 1991-2001 samples have categories for training and diploma, interpreted here as technical education, with an entry requirement of junior secondary for the former and SSC for the latter. Higher education requires the HSC and offers 3-years bachelor, 4-years bachelor honors, 1 or 2 years masters, and doctorate degrees.

The Madrasah education system is parallel to its general education counterpart and emphasizes religious education. Thus, studies are organized in a similar manner to the general education system: 5 years of primary (class I-V, ebtedayee), 5 years of junior secondary and secondary (class VI-X, dakhil), and 2 years of higher secondary (class XI-XII, alim). Students also take examinations after completion of class X and class XII. Tertiary includes 2-years of fazil level education (which requires alim) and 2-years of kamil level education (which requires fazil).

The variable is comparable across samples apart from a minor change in the age universe.

In addition to EDUCBD, the 1991-2011 samples include related unharmonized source variables indicating the field of study, which is classified into general, vocational/technical, or religious.

A harmonized international classification of educational attainment is available in EDATTAIN, which imposes a number of compromises to regularize the data across countries. EDUCBD retains the full detail on educational attainment for the Bangladesh samples.

The number of years of schooling completed is available separately in YRSCHOOL.


  • Bangladesh 1991: Persons age 5+
  • Bangladesh 2001: Persons age 6+
  • Bangladesh 2011: Persons age 7+


  • Bangladesh: 1991, 2001, 2011