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25 Most Educated Countries In the World

In this article, we will take a look at 25 of the most educated countries in the world. If you want to see some more of the world's most educated countries, go directly to 5 Most Educated Countries In the World.

Along with capital and labor, education is one of the key factors in developing an economy. With a highly educated workforce, companies can be more productive, and more products and services can be produced. With more products and services produced, GDP can increase. With more education, there can be more economic growth and less poverty.

Education can also increase incomes. According to the World Bank, the economic returns on average of a tertiary education is a 17% increase in earnings compared to a 10% increase for primary education and a 7% increase for a secondary education.

Copyright: demerzel21 / 123RF Stock Photo

Increasing Education

In terms of the most educated countries, many are in the West given that those countries have more money to spend on education. With money, it's possible to have more schools and more teachers.

Nevertheless, given the advances in technology, there is the hope that technology can help educate the population more cost effectively.

Many people in the world have access to the internet now, and through the internet, it is possible to deliver educational courses and tests that can improve the efficiency of existing educational systems around the world.

Companies

In terms of companies, some leading tech giants are helping lower the cost of getting a quality education.

Among them, Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) is an e-commerce giant that sells textbooks for tertiary education. Given how big its cloud operations are, Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) also helps provide the digital infrastructure for many of today's and potentially the future's online educational companies.

Furthermore, Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) is trying to make the internet more available by signing multi-billion dollar contracts to eventually help launch 3,236 satellites to low earth orbit with its Project Kuiper. According to the International Telecommunication Union, 37% of the world still has never used the internet with one reason being that it is too expensive to offer internet through traditional cable or fiber methods. With satellite internet and Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN)'s help, however, universal internet could one day be achievable and with universal internet, it could be easier for hundreds of millions of people to potentially realize a higher level of education.

Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) is another tech giant that has a growing cloud operation that powers many education technology companies. In addition, Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) makes productivity software given its Microsoft 365 Education software that helps make teachers in higher education potentially more effective. According to Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT), "Microsoft 365 Education offers school leaders, teachers, IT staff and students the software solutions they need to improve learning outcomes, fuel classroom efficiencies, achieve goals, and save time and money."

Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN), Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT), and other leading tech companies are also investing in developing AI and machine learning that could help make education more efficient. With AI, teachers could one day be more efficient at grading homework and chat-bots could one day provide personalized support for students who need it. Given that AI can be stored in the cloud and its services can be accessed anywhere with internet access, AI could also help improve the efficiency of attaining a cost effective education in the third world too.

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Methodology

When it comes to the most educated countries, we used the criteria of the countries that had the most tertiary education for the 25-64 year old demographic from the OECD.

Given the OECD doesn't include some countries, this list isn't a complete list, but it reflects generally the most educated countries in the world according to the OECD.

According to the OECD, "population with tertiary education is defined as those having completed the highest level of education, by age group. This includes both theoretical programmes leading to advanced research or high skill professions such as medicine and more vocational programmes leading to the labour market."

25 Most Educated Countries In the World

25. Latvia

Tertiary % of 25-64 Year Olds: 39%

Latvia is a country on the Baltic Sea with GDP per capita of $20,642.2, which is a substantial jump from the GDP per capita of less than $3,400 in 2000. One reason for the good performance could be that 39% of 25-64 year olds in Latvia have completed tertiary education.

24. Slovenia

Tertiary % of 25-64 Year Olds: 40.3%

Slovenia is a pretty small country with slightly over 7,800 square miles and a population of 2.1 million people. Nevertheless, Slovenia is a Schengen Area country so citizens of Slovenia can also freely travel to other Schengen Area countries. Slightly over 40% of the population of Slovenia aged 25-64 have completed tertiary education.

23. New Zealand

Tertiary % of 25-64 Year Olds: 40.49%

New Zealand isn't just a country with beautiful scenery and a pretty sparse population. New Zealand also ranks #23 on our list of the 25 Most Educated Countries In the World given over 40% of the 25-64 year olds have completed a tertiary education.

22. Spain

Tertiary % of 25-64 Year Olds: 40.7%

In addition to having the running of the bulls every year, Spain is one of the bigger EU countries that has an educated population. Almost 41% of the country's 25-64 demographic have a tertiary education and the country also has a GDP per capita of $30,115.7 as of 2021.

21. France

Tertiary % of 25-64 Year Olds: 40.7%

Known for being a tourism capital as well as home to many luxury powerhouse brands, France has one of the world's most educated populations. 40.7% of 25-64 year olds in France have completed tertiary education, ranking France #21 on our list of 25 Most Educated Countries In the World.

20. Estonia

Tertiary % of 25-64 Year Olds: 41.23%

In addition to its lush forests, Estonia is another Baltic country with an educated population given its Tertiary % of 25-64 year old ratio of 41.23%. In 2021, Estonia also had a GDP per capita of $27,280.7.

19. Denmark

Tertiary % of 25-64 Year Olds: 41.88%

Denmark isn't just a country with substantial green energy and high GDP per capita, the country also has one of the most educated workforces in Europe. According to the latest OECD data, almost 42% of the 25-64 year olds in Denmark have a tertiary education.

18. Finland

Tertiary % of 25-64 Year Olds: 42.33%

Finland ranks #18 on our list of 25 Most Educated Countries In the World given over 42% of the 25-64 year olds in the country have completed a tertiary education. Finland has a GDP per capita of almost $54,000. The country also has a strong secondary education system.

17. Netherlands

Tertiary % of 25-64 Year Olds: 43.06%

Slightly over 43% of 25-64 year olds in the Netherlands have a tertiary education, making the country one of the most educated in the world. Given the Netherlands is a Schengen Area country, citizens of the Netherlands can freely travel to other Schengen Area  countries as well.

16. Iceland

Tertiary % of 25-64 Year Olds: 43.06%

Iceland is a very small country given its population of 366,425 as of 2020. Iceland is also a very educated country given that over 43% of the country's 25-64 year olds have a tertiary education.

15. Belgium

Tertiary % of 25-64 Year Olds: 44.87%

In 2021, Belgium had a GDP per capita of $51,767.8, making it one of the wealthier countries in the EU. Not surprisingly, Belgium is also one of the most educated given that almost 45% of the country's 25-64 year olds have completed a tertiary education.

14. Switzerland

Tertiary % of 25-64 Year Olds: 45%

Switzerland is one of the wealthiest countries in the world given its GDP per capita of $93,457.4. In addition to having the Alps and beautiful scenery, the citizens of Switzerland also have a pretty good education system given 45% of the country's 25-64 year olds have completed a tertiary education.

13. Lithuania

Tertiary % of 25-64 Year Olds: 45.34%

Lithuania is another pretty small country given its area of 25,200 square miles and population of 2.8 million. Like some other Baltic nations, Lithuania's GDP per capita has increased substantially since 2000 given the rise from under $3,300 in 2000 to $23,433.4 in 2021. One reason could be Lithuania's highly educated workforce given the country's Tertiary % of 25-64 Year Olds ratio of 45.34%.

12. Sweden

Tertiary % of 25-64 Year Olds: 46.65%

Sweden also has a highly educated workforce with over 46% of 25-64 year olds in the country having completed a tertiary education. In 2021, Sweden had a GDP per capita of $60,239 which makes the country one of the wealthier countries in the world.

11. Norway

Tertiary % of 25-64 Year Olds: 47.22%

Norway has a highly educated workforce and also one of the world's highest GDP per capita at $89,202.8 in 2021. The main reason for the wealth gap between Norway and neighboring Sweden, which also has a highly educated workforce, is that Norway has substantial oil and gas assets in the North Sea.

10. Israel

Tertiary % of 25-64 Year Olds: 49.69%

Almost 50% of the people aged from 25 to 64 in Israel have completed a tertiary education, making it one of the most educated nations in the world. In 2021, Israel also had a GDP per capita of $51,430.1, making it one of the wealthier nations in the world.

9. Australia

Tertiary % of 25-64 Year Olds: 49.77%

Australia is a country blessed with substantial land and also very scenic beaches. In addition to having a high quality of life, Australia also has a highly educated workforce which can help it grow in the future.

8. United Kingdom

Tertiary % of 25-64 Year Olds: 50.15%

Over 50% of the people aged from 25-64 in the United Kingdom have a tertiary education, ranking the country #8 on our list of 25 Most Educated Countries In the World. While it left the EU, the United Kingdom citizens can still travel to many places in the world without having to jump through too many hoops.

7. Luxembourg

Tertiary % of 25-64 Year Olds: 50.30%

Luxembourg is another small country with a population of just 632,275 in 2020 and an area of under 1,000 square miles. Bordering Belgium and Germany, Luxembourg has one of the highest GDP per capita at $135,682.8 in 2021. One reason could be its highly educated workforce.

6. United States

Tertiary % of 25-64 Year Olds: 50.32%

Over half of the 25-64 year olds in the United States have a tertiary education, ranking the country #6 on our list of 25 Most Educated Countries In the World. Given its technology industry, some leading companies in the United States will likely help lower the cost of education and make it more widely available for the world in the future.

Click to continue reading and see 5 Most Educated Countries In the World.

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Disclosure: None. 25 Most Educated Countries In the World is originally published on Insider Monkey.