VietNamNet Bridge – National universities have decided to apply the “direct entry” in enrolling students in an effort to attract excellent students to the schools. However, experts believe that the new mechanism will not help much.
Gifted students do not like national universities
The fact that the HCM City National University has announced the “direct entry” mechanism applied to the students of gifted high schools (students of gifted high schools who can meet set requirements will be enrolled to the school without having to take the national university entrance exams) has caught the special attention of the public.
The new mechanism is a part of the policy aiming to attract talented students to the national university. However, according to Vo Anh Dung, Headmaster of the Le Hong Phong High School for the Gifted in HCM City, said that the problem lies in the fact that if students want to study at national universities after they finish high schools or not.
Nguyen Vu Luong, Headmaster of the High School for the Gifted in Natural Sciences under the Hanoi National University, admitted that most of his students do not want to study at the Hanoi National University, because they do not want to follow basic science studies.
“Good students always plan to go studying abroad after finishing schools, either with scholarships or with their own money,” Luong said. “Other students rush to register to study at other domestic universities such as the Foreign Trade University, National Economics University, Banking Academy, or Medical University, the schools which allow them to find jobs more easily after the graduation”.
“Very few students want to study at pedagogical universities,” he added.
The literature majoring class of the Tran Phu High School for the Gifted in Hai Phong City, has seven students who got high prizes at the national competition for excellent students, and all the seven students have decided to study at the Hanoi Foreign Trade University. Meanwhile, 10 national excellent students in literature and geography of the High School for the Gifted under the Hanoi University of Education have registered to sit the entrance exams to the foreign trade, journalism or law schools.
Foreign schools appear to be redoubtable rivals
Education experts have pointed out that it is very difficult for national universities to attract excellent students with a “direct entry” mechanism, because the domestic schools have to compete fiercely with foreign universities, especially Singaporean ones.
In recent years, Singaporean schools send staff to Vietnam every year to seek excellent Vietnamese students. According to Dung from Le Hong Phong School, it is estimated that 100 out of 600 students of the school goes to Singapore every year, and most of them stay working in Singapore after they finish schools.
Especially, the percentage of students of the Hanoi-Amsterdam High School for the Gifted, the most famous school in Hanoi, who say “no” to domestic schools, is very high.
Thanh Nga, a student of the English majoring class of the school said that at first, her class had 50 students. Then 20 students left for studying abroad after they finished the 10th and 11th grades. After that, 15-20 more students left after they finished the 12th grade. And finally, only 10 students have been left, who apply for domestic universities.
Nga said that even the students, who apply for domestic universities, cherish the plan to go studying abroad later if they can get scholarship. The most favorite destinations are the UK, US, France and Singapore.
A paradox exists that while national universities, which train bachelors in basic sciences, need excellent students, they cannot attract excellent students, because the students would rather head for other schools. That explains why national universities have to set up easy conditions on candidates to enroll enough students. Examinees just need to have 17-18 scores from the university entrance exams to be able to enroll to the school. Meanwhile, other “hot” universities require 22-23 scores.
Nguyen Huong – Huong Giang