The Vietnamese Ministry of Education and Training has issued an explanation for its decision to temporarily postpone all foreign language tests, including the IELTS exam, stating that the administration of such exams does not meet current Vietnamese regulations.
Nguyen Huu Do, deputy minister of Education and Training, said on Thursday afternoon that administration of foreign language certification exams in Vietnam has many shortcomings due to lack of quality control, particularly given the growing number of foreign language exams on offer in the country.
Both local and international journalists have pointed out several of these shortcomings, which include hiring other people to take the test and falsifying documents.
As a result, the public's perceptions of these tests, the rights of certificate holders, and the interests of organizations who administer these tests have been infringed upon.
The high number of tests on offer has also left individuals unsure of which test is best for them.
These shortcomings have also led to losses in government tax revenue and decreased transparency regarding corporate investment in Vietnam’s education industry.
In accordance with the present regulations, in order to organize an examination for the issuance of foreign language certificates, organizations are required to submit certain legal documents and obtain the approval from the Ministry of Education and Training.
These documents include an application form, an agreement or contract between the test organization in Vietnam and the foreign language competency assessment facility, a document testifying to the legal authority of the parties involved, and a plan detailing how the tests and foreign language certificates will be administered.
"If the legal documents [submitted by test-giving organizations] meet our standards, we will process them as soon as possible to ensure regulatory compliance, which takes about 20 days," Do said, adding that further information will be posted on the Ministry of Education and Training's website.