Joint Programming Initiative

More Years, Better Lives

The Potential and Challenges of Demographic Change

Swedish Register of education
Utbildningsregistret (UREG)

Education and Learning
Relevance for this Topic
Country Sweden
More Topics


Contact information

Michael Karlsson
Statistics Sweden
Klostergatan 23
701 89 Örebro
Phone: +4619-17 64 81
Email: michael.karlsson(at)

Timeliness, transparency

Usually one year and two months.

Type of data


Type of Study

Longitude survey: long-term study of the same sample

Cohort study

Data gathering method


Access to data

Mainly through the MONA-system:

Conditions of access

The registry is the primary source. On a contract basis, scientists can after initial judgement get access to anonymised primary material for their own research. Statistics Sweden can also perform special processing on a contract basis. In general, there are certain legal and other constraints for international access to primary data. A server-based system for micro data access have high demands on security and availability. Security against unauthorized access / intrusion is assured through a VPN tunnel, security token and encryption. Availability is guaranteed through well-proven server-based technology currently used by many different organizations.

A new version of the Register of Education is normally published in April each year. At that time, data are put into the Statistical Databases of Sweden (SSD), which are free of charge and open for the public and available in an English version. SSD can be reached via the website of Statistics Sweden, (http:\\

Anonymised microdata; aggregated tables on request. The MONA-system covers most SCB datasets relevant for the project:

SCB mainly uses Excel, SAS, SPSS, STATA, (and other applications on request).

Data is available in both Swedish and English.


The Swedish Register of Education was established in 1985 at the request of the Government. Earlier registers of the population’s level of education had been produced in the 1930 and 1970 censuses. Besides, data about education had also been collected in different surveys, e.g. the Labour Force Survey and the Survey of Living Conditions. The register comprises the population aged 16-74 years old registered as a resident in Sweden on 1 January each year. On January 1, 2004, this included around 6.5 million inhabitants.

1985 (1930 and 1970)

Total registry of educational participation.

The whole country

16-74 years old

The register comprises the population aged 16-74 years old registered as resident in Sweden at 1 January each year, which was about 7 million inhabitants for UREG 2012 and 7.8 million for the whole population from 16 – and onwards. From 2007, information is also collected for the group 75+.

Data on educational attainment and alignment are reported to include OECD and Eurostat through the Labour Force Survey (LFS), which in turn retrieves information from the Register of Education. Statistics on population education is included in the Nordic Statistical Yearbook. The Swedish Register of Education can roughly be described as consisting of a base of graduation and educational background data from the 1990/1970 censuses, each year updated with graduation/examination data from regular educational institutions in Sweden, such as primary and secondary schools, universities, etc. The register contains an essential core of demographic and education data, in addition to the Personal Identification Number, necessary as a linking key in building and updating the register. The main demographic variables are: • Age • Sex • Municipality of residence • Country of birth The main variables concerning education are: • Highest education • Completion year Education covered are primarily secondary school education, adult education, undergraduate education and postgraduate education. It also includes the category "other students", a collective term for other courses where SCB has access to individual data for participants. This includes students in the technical base year of university / college students in so-called long courses in folk high schools, vocational training (KY) / people with financial aid from CSN for other studies and participants in labour market training.


For analysis on the regional level, special tables are produced. These can be ordered for counties, municipalities or even smaller areas. Data on highest education are delivered to international organisations (Eurostat, Unesco, OECD).

Good opportunities to link to other Swedish data sets.

Data quality

The register is updated annually using the registry used by SCB to other statistics. Variables such as gender, age, home county/municipality/church, place of birth and citizenship are taken from the register of total population, RTB. Data on completed education is reported continuously to the SCB from the country's schools. These are added after processing into the Register of Education at the annual update. Data from the population and housing census (Census 70 and Census 90) and administrative records outside SCB where educational background are also used as data sources. Data on immigrants' education comes primarily from surveys targeted to new immigrants born abroad who lacked tasks on education in Education Register, and from population and housing censuses.

1990: Educational data from the Population and Housing Census (FoB) 1990 was used to update the Register of Education in the 1990 version and has improved the quality considerably. We urge extra care to be taken when comparing previous versions of the register, dated from 1985 to 1989, with versions dated from 1990 and onwards, because of the better quality of the later versions. 2000: The 2000 version the Register of Education has undergone extensive quality improvements. This has led to a break in the time series and means that comparisons with versions before 2000 and version from 2000 onwards must be done with great care.

Statistics on population education based on individual register of population Education - colloquially referred to as Register of Education (UREG).UREG contains the highest level of training in Sweden registered people between the ages of 16 and 74 on January 1 of each year. UREG underwent to version 2001-01-01 extensive changes. Swedish educational nomenclature, SUN adapted by SUN 2000, the International Nomenclature 97 ISCED (International Standard Classification of Education). A number of new data sources were processed and coded according to SUN 2000 to later be used as input to UREG. This has meant that the level of education in the realm of UREG has greatly increased mainly due to the levels' three-year secondary 'and' tertiary education three years or longer.


Strengths: The registry has a wide range of applications. Statistics on population education is used as a basis for educational planning at both national and regional level. Statistics on population education in various regions require particular for an efficient allocation of society's educational resources. The statistics are also used for international comparisons and the international reporting. Annual joint processing with SCB's register-based Labour Market Statistics (RAMS) provides information on the educational situation in different parts of the labor market. Statistics on the population’s education also has a large general informational value. Users of statistics include: Ministry of Education, School Education, University Chancellor Board, SCB's forecasters, CSN, social organizations, county councils and municipalities. The population’s level of education has become an increasingly important factor, as the technological and internationalised society of today makes greater demand upon people’s knowledge. Educational background is also one of the strongest components in the concept ”social background”. Weaknesses: The register covers formal education at different levels. It is not possible to include informal learning, recognition of prior experiences or education from other countries that is not equalized with the ISCED-classification. Furthermore, it is difficult to include the expanding sector on informal learning, staff development programs or digital learning online.

  • The information about this dataset was compiled by the author:
  • Kenneth Abrahamsson
  • (see Partners)