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Educational attainment, Cameroon

Codes and Frequencies

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EDUCCM indicates the person's educational attainment in Cameroon in terms of the level of schooling completed.

Comparability — General

In Cameroon two education systems coexist:

  • The French-speaking education system has a 6-4-3 structure. Primary is organized into three sub-cycles of 2 years each one: language initiation (SIL)/preparatory (CP), elementary (CE), and intermediate (CM). Completion of primary is awarded with the primary studies certificate (CEP). Secondary has a first cycle of 4 years that leads to the BEPC and a second cycle of 3 years that requires obtaining a probation certificate and leads to the award of a baccalaureat degree. Technical secondary has two cycles of similar duration to the general track, leading to equivalent technical degrees.
  • The English-speaking education system has a 7-5-2 structure. Primary has 7 years and graduates receive the first school-leaving certificate (FSLC). Secondary is organized in two cycles: the first, of 5 years, leads to the general certificate of education - ordinary level (GCE O-level) and the second, 2 years, leading to the GCE advanced level (GCE A-level). Technical secondary has two cycles of 4 and 3 years leading to equivalent technical degrees.

The French and English education systems are separately identified in 1976 and 1987, but they are coded together in the 2005 sample. All samples include technical secondary tracks and other technical studies, which are identified by their entry requirement. In the 1976 sample, secondary technical in the English-speaking system is top-coded at grade 5; and this sample has categories for teacher training and higher specialized education (which requires baccalaureate or equivalent for entry). The university category in the 2005 sample includes other institutions of higher education. Koranic school (religious-based education) is coded as other type of education.

In Cameroon 2005 one year of education was subtracted for persons currently enrolled in school, given that instructions required registering the current year attending for this group. The previous Cameroon samples do not have specific instructions on this matter.

There are minor changes in the universe for this variable: persons age 4 or more in 1976 and persons age 3 or more in 1987 and 2005.

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

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


  • Cameroon 1976: Persons age 4+
  • Cameroon 1987: Persons age 3+
  • Cameroon 2005: Persons age 3+


  • Cameroon: 1976, 1987, 2005