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26.03.2010

Changes to the rules for entering institutes

   

The Minister of Education Dmytro Tabachnyk on Thursday at a meeting of the Union of Deans of Higher Educational Institutions spelled out the changes to the rules for entering institutes. It is planned beginning from this year to have the tests for independent external assessment [ZNO] translated into the languages of national minorities. According to the newspaper Kommersant – Ukraine, the deans of the majority of institutes supported Tabachnyk’s initiatives and criticized the reforms of his predecessor, Ivan Vakarchuk.

According to the Minister, students’ knowledge will be assessed according to three components: the results of ZNO, the average mark on their school certificate, according to a 200 percent scale, and the assessment of the institute, according to an interview or test. Last year only ZNO was used.

Tabachnyk acknowledged that not all could be achieved this academic year due to lack of time, and suggested that the deans confine themselves to a “small level of modernization”.

Tabachnyk then went on to criticize his predecessor: “The Ministry’s previous management did not consider 1,600 applications from institutes to receive licences and State accreditation, while contracts with deans have been lying unsigned for 10 months. The absolutization of ZNO as a method of assessing knowledge is a profanation of reforms”.  The Minister’s words were apparently greeted with enthusiastic applause, and the deans not only supported Mr Tabachnyk’s position but criticized Ivan Vakarchuk’s reforms.

“The instructions of the former management of the ministry regarding baccalaureates and masters’ degrees within three to four years arouse doubts. What jobs can a graduate hold after three years of theoretical training? And why is a trajectory of free choice needed? That can be an additional service, but not the compulsory choice of each student. Which subjects can first year students choose?”, the Dean of the Odessa National Polytechnic University Valery Malakhov asked indignantly.

On the other hand, NaUMKA [the National University of the Kyiv Mohyla Academy] supports Ivan Vakarchuk’s reforms. The President of the Academy Serhiy Kvit believes that the rejection of the Bologne System will worsen the quality of Ukrainian education.

“Rejecting student mobility, a free trajectory of choice of subjects, from autonomy of institutes would mean rejecting integration into the European educational realm. In that case we won’t have education, but simply the sale of degrees”, he commented.

From information at http://www.kommersant.ua/doc.html?docId=1343216

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