The transition of modern economy to the economy based on knowledge and information makes human capital one of the main components for economic welfare. That is why I considered the problem of human capital growth as a very interesting object for my research. In this paper the human capital is represented only by tertiary education, namely by enrolled, graduated and admitted students in tertiary education institutions. This makes the problem of the research more limited and therefore clearer. A part of the paper describes the essence of human capital and its components to make it easier for the reader to understand the core of the research problem. The main question of the study is the influence of educational reforms on human capital growth. Thus, the paper studies educational reforms and other factors that influence on growth or decrease of the human capital. Spanish and Estonian higher education reforms carried out from 1983 till 2003 are studied in the paper in connection with the research problem. The results received in empirical analysis answer the main question and basing on them interesting conclusions are made.