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High-school finals: one exam, two purposes

Last update: 09:44 | 04/07/2018

VietNamNet Bridge - While The Ministry of Education and Training insists on the 2-in-1 exam model, education experts doubt its feasibility, saying that it is unreasonable to merge two exams with different purposes – high school finals and university entrance exams.


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MOET insists on the 2-in-1 exam model



A teacher at Trung Vuong High School in HCMC commented that many students do not know what they need to study for. Unlike previously, when it was difficult to pass the exams to enter university, it is easy now to obtain a bachelor’s degree. 

Nearly anyone can enroll in a university after finishing high school. Thus, students do not think they have to make an effort to study.

Instead of two separate national exams, MOET believes that it would be better to organize one exam for two purposes – recognizing students’ graduation of high school and choosing the best students for universities. 

However, Pham Thai Son from the HCMC Food Industry University commented that it is too difficult to design exam questions that can serve both purposes. 

The questions must be easy enough for the majority of students to solve, and must also be difficult enough to identify the best students for universities.

Also, socio-economic conditions differ, which influence teaching and learning quality. However, exam questions must fit all students from different areas.

Instead of two separate national exams, MOET believes that it would be better to organize one exam for two purposes – recognizing students’ graduation of high school and choosing the best students for universities. 

Hoang Ngoc Vinh, former director of the MOET’s Professional Education Department, thinks MOET should not organize a national 2-in-1 exams. It would be better if local education departments organize high school finals with exam questions designed by an institution specializing in exam services.

Meanwhile, universities need to be given autonomy in implementing their enrollment 
plans. Schools themselves could organize university entrance exams, or use the results of high school finals organized by local education departments.

The International University, for example, has been organizing ability tests for the last two years. It is expected that 65 percent of students will be selected through ability tests in 2018.

Ho Thanh Phong, former rector of the International University, commented that the ability tests have many good points which allow the school to choose students more effectively than national high school finals.

Nguyen Duc Nghia, former deputy director of the HCMC National University, also commented that it is difficult to pursue two purposes in one exam.

At present, schools still need to use the results of the high school finals to choose students, but this should be considered a temporary solution.

“In the long term, universities need to think of organizing one more exam themselves to be able to find the excellent students they want,” Nghia said.


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