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확대축소프린트
 Kang Ill-gu
CBNU’s Direction After the Announcement of the Reform Plan
제 146 호    발행일 : 2014.03.03 


 
  An announcement from the MOE(Ministry of Education) on January 29 has confused all universities in Korea. Although the announcement from the MOE was expected because of the decreasing number of eligible students for university entrance, it shocked universities. Following the MOE’s outline, the decreasing number of students will not only lead to a rapid decrease of university financial resources, but it will also have an influence on the quality of university education. Therefore, the MOE said through the outline, “An aggressive restructuring plan for improving university competitiveness needs not only to make a higher quality of education in universities but also to be ready for the drastically reduced scale of size.” According to the outline, university enrollment will be reduced by 40,000 by 2017, 50,000 by 2020 and then 70,000 by 2023. Moreover, the core of the outline is that the MOE will split university evaluations into five levels according to each universities’ restructured performance. They are also going to apply differential reductions of the numbers of students from each university and limitations on universities from participating in any government-funded research projects. Additionally, the MOE is going to cut off all general financial subsidies and support for student financial aid. Also, if a college receives the lowest score two consecutive times, it will be forced to close.
  Concerning the MOE’s announcement, the CBNU academic affairs officer, Hong Sung-gil, said, “Now is too soon for making a specific plan since the MOE’s announcement. CBNU is gradually preparing for it. Now, CBNU made an 11-member committee, named as Promotion Committee for University Restructure Reform. The committee is going to do research about closing departments, reducing the number of students and reestablishing CBNU’s educational philosophy, and they are going to submit a research report in early May. Until that time, the CBNU administration has a plan to hold a public hearing for students because collecting opinions of students is really important.”
  Some organizations and groups related with university education pointed out about the MOE’s announcement, “Isn’t it killing local universities?” However, the MOE said, “The previous administration only evaluated all universities using just one standard, quantitative data: the ratio of getting jobs. However, now the MOE is going to take into account both qualitative data, such as students’ opinions of courses, and quantitative assessments to make fair evaluations.”
  However, the Korea Higher Education Research Institute commented about the explanation, “Qualitative data and specialization data are difficult to quantify, and evaluation by qualitative data is so subjective. Then, there is the big question. The question is, ‘Can it lower the gap between the local universities and the universities Seoul metropolitan area by applying qualitative evaluation?’ Also, there is another question whether the openness of the educational policy will be obeyed or not by applying the vague evaluation.”
  About the policy by the MOE, Prof. Seo Gwan-mo(Dept. of Sociology) said, “The MOE’s policy didn’t approach solving fundamental problems. There is no concern about educational openness in the outline. According to the outline, the MOE’s policy is just focusing on the reduction of students rather than making specialized universities.”
  Additionally, he suggested, “Now, local private universities and national universities have a department store format. As I said about the outline, there is no concern about specialization of universities but only a focusing on reduction of students. If restructuring is going to continue this way, the department store format of universities will remain. We cannot solve those fundamental problems. Therefore, if the MOE really hopes to make specialized universities, local national universities should be specialized by obeying educational publicness, and local private universities should be highly specialized in only one area, which absolutely needs strong support from the government.”

By Kang Ill-gu
ig33@cbnu.ac.kr

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