South Korea threatens to punish universities over admissions tests

Ministry says 11 universities breached regulations by asking questions not covered in school curriculum

September 19, 2017
South Korea government assembly
Source: iStock

The South Korean government has ordered 11 universities to change their admissions tests as part of a clamp down on excessive tutoring and elite private schools.

The education ministry told the institutions to remove content that was not covered in the high school curriculum, claiming that it violates regulations intended to strengthen public education and reduce students’ reliance on private education, according to the Korea Times.

The government is also looking into the possibility of punishing repeat offenders by reducing the number of students they are allowed to recruit for the 2019 academic year and by decreasing subsidies for university projects, according to the paper.

The Korea Institute for Curriculum and Evaluation analysed 2,294 admissions questions for the 2017 academic year at 57 universities.

It found that 11 universities violated government regulations by asking excessively advanced questions in maths and science, and two of these had done so for the second year in a row.

The ministry has ordered the universities to submit plans in order to prevent them from including such questions in their admissions tests for next year, according to the paper. 

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