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Vietnam merges high school graduation and university entrance exams

Thursday, September 11, 2014, 19:08 GMT+7
Vietnam merges high school graduation and university entrance exams
Students attending the 2014 university entrance exam at the Ho Chi Minh City University of Social Sciences and Humanities

Vietnam’s Minister of Education and Training (MoET) approved on Tuesday a plan regarding the high school graduation and university entrance exams from the academic year of 2015. One part of the plan includes merging the two exams into one national exam to be held every June.

According to Decision No. 3538/QĐ-BGDĐT, as of 2015, students will only take a national exam, also called the national high school exam, instead of the traditionally separated high school graduation and university entrance exams.

The results of the national exam will be used for both high school graduation and university admission.

Previously, students who had finished 12th grade had to take a high school graduation exam with MoET tests on mathematics, literature and two other optional subjects.

About a month after the graduation exam, they would then take the university entrance exam, held by the same education ministry.

The exam was scheduled to take place on July 4 and 5 or July 9 and 10, with tests chosen from mathematics, physics, chemistry, biology, literature, history, geography, and foreign languages, depending on the major.   

The same procedure would be applied later, on July 15 and 16, for the junior college entrance exam.

Under the new regulation, the national exam will be organized around mid-June every year. In 2015, it will take place from June 9 to 12.

Students will have to take tests on four subjects, including three compulsory subjects of mathematics, literature, and a foreign language; as well as one optional subject taken from physics, chemistry, biology, history, and geography.

They can also take extra tests on other subjects for a better chance to get into their favorite universities and colleges.

The mathematics, literature, history and geography tests will be given under the form of constructed responses and must be completed in 180 minutes; while the tests on physics, chemistry, biology and foreign languages will be multiple-choice over 90 minutes.

The MoET also requested that universities and colleges publicize their method of using results of the new national exam for their enrolment before January 1 every year.

In addition, local departments of education and training are required to organize exam registration for students in the middle of March and transfer student data to the ministry in mid-April every year.

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