Guidance counselling in basic education

Your child will receive guidance counselling throughout basic education. In grades 1 and 3, the class teacher is primarily responsible for the accumulation of learning skills and for guidance counselling as well as cooperates closely with the home. In grades 3 to 6, the class teacher focuses their teaching, if necessary, on subject choices and study weightings as per the allocation of lesson hours in cooperation with the subject teachers and the guidance counsellor. In grades 7 to 9, guidance counselling is a separate subject taught by the guidance counsellor.

Guidance counselling includes an introduction to working life in grades 7 to 9. Schools have slightly different practices regarding the Introduction to working life periods. Usually, seventh graders get introduced to working life for one day (e.g. in the school canteen), eighth graders for 3 to 5 days and ninth graders for 10 days. During the Introduction to working life periods, your child will gain personal experiences from working life and professions in genuine working environments.

Guidance counselling supports personal growth and development in such a way that pupils’ study skills and social skills would develop and life management skills would increase. Guidance counselling provides you and your child with information on study skills, optional subjects and their significance for learning and the future, various professions as well as possibilities of further studies.

Guidance and the flow of information are particularly important in transition phases of studies, such as the transition from primary to secondary school and from basic education to upper secondary level.

Enhanced guidance counselling

Along with the extension of compulsory education, your child must apply for upper secondary education after basic education. Sometimes pupils need additional support and guidance in transitioning to further studies. In this case, your child has the right to receive enhanced individual guidance counselling in addition to guidance counselling in grades 8 and 9. The focus of enhanced individual guidance counselling is to develop the pupil’s further study skills as well as refer them to suitable further studies.

Use the service


Primarily, the guidance counsellor will assess the need for enhanced individual guidance counselling. The guidance counsellor guides your child and advises you in the joint application, if necessary. You can read more about the joint application and enhanced guidance counselling on the page Applying for further studies.

If necessary, contact your school’s guidance counsellor directly if you have questions related to guidance counselling, enhanced guidance counselling or the joint application. The contact information is available in Wilma and on the school’s website.

Payment information

The service is free of charge.

Service background

The pupils in basic education are entitled to guidance counselling. In addition to the guidance counsellor, the tasks of every teacher include guiding pupils in their studies and learning skills and proactively preventing problems related to studying.

Guidance counselling also includes supporting pupils’ self-confidence, personality growth, development and inclusion. Guidance is particularly vital at the transition points of education, in other words when moving from one school to another.

In lower comprehensive school, guidance counselling is usually provided in connection with other instruction and activities. In higher comprehensive school, the pupils have guidance counselling lessons, during which not only study skills and self-knowledge but also possibilities for further studies, occupations and working life are discussed. Each pupil also receives individual guidance on a one-to-one basis or in a small group.