The study is based on the Estonian national curriculum (GRÕK). According to the national curriculum, students have at least 96* courses in three years. A course is 35 academic hours long. In case of 75-minute-long lessons, it is 21 contact hours. 63 courses (for extensive mathematics, 69 courses) are mandatory. At Võru State Upper Secondary School, a student research or practical work course and, depending on the field of study, extra courses chosen by the school, are added to the mandatory courses.

Subject Number of courses (GRÕK) Number of courses (VG) 10 11 12
Estonian 6 6 2 2 2
Literature 5 6 2 2 2
Foreign language at B2 level (English) 5 11 4 4 3
Foreign language at B1 level (German/Russian) 5 7 3 3 1
Mathematics 8 or 14 15 5 5 5
Geography 3 3 3 - -
Biology 4 4 1 2 1
Chemisty 3 3 2 1 -
Physics 5 5 2 2 1
History 6 6 6 6 6
Human studies 1 1 - - 1
Social Studies 2 2 - - 2
Music 3 3 1 1 1
Art 2 2 1 1 -
Physical education 5 5 2 2 1
The basics of research 1 - 1 -
ICT 1 1 - -
The Academy of Johannes* 1* 1
Research or practical work 1 - 1 -
Total 63 or 69 82*


* As of 2017/2018, there are 97 courses, as there is an additional course, the Academy of Johannes, meant to improve students' study skills.

All the remaining courses are divided into seven courses per field and elective courses. Courses according to fields take place in forms 11 and 12.

Humanities Courses Natural sciences Courses Science Courses
Estonian language and literature 2 Biology 3 Physics 2
Study of religions 1 Chemistry 2 Economy 1
Philosophy 1 Physics 1 Mathematics 1
History 1 Geography 1 Technical drawing 1
Foreign language at B1 level 2 Programming 2
Total 7 7 7


Each one of the students has an opportunity to choose 8 elective courses: 3 in form 10, 3 in form 11 and 2 in form 12. Elective courses are for all students regardless of field and form. A foreign language at A1-A2-level is learned during the academic year. During the week of an elective course, students learn only one subject. Elective courses are taught by the teachers of Võru State Upper Secondary School or external specialists. The registration for the elective course takes place at the beginning of every school year.

The school may consider a student’s participation in hobby schools (for instance, studies in a music or art school) or any other extracurricular studies as part of regular studies, if the representative of the hobby school presents an application at the beginning of the school year, by October 1. The application has to include the data about the tutor (name of the organisation, tutor and their contacts) and information about the studies (name of the course, the time of classes, a short description of the studies, expected results). The headmaster makes the decision and approves the application after the school has evaluated it. In May, the representative of the hobby school has to issue a certificate to prove that the student has attended lessons.

Useful information
* At the end of every course (including elective courses) the student gets a course grade. The final grade of a subject is based on all course grades of the subject. The final grade is on the secondary school graduation certificate.
* The assessment is based on a five-point scale: 5 - “excellent”, 4 - “good”, 3 - “satisfactory”, 2 - “poor”, 1 - “unsatisfactory”.
* In the assessment of elective courses pass and fail marks are used.
* The student whose marks are at least satisfactory (a pass mark for an elective course), who has passed the three state exams (Estonian, mathematics and a foreign language) and completed a student research or practical work, will get the secondary school graduation certificate.
* Upper secondary school also takes into account extracurricular studies and activities (for example music school, participation in the University of Tartu Youth Academy programs, doing sport, etc).
* Two foreign languages have to be learned at upper secondary school. In three years the student has to reach respectively B1 or B2 language level in mandatory languages.