Interview with Yoo Ji-beom, President of Sungkyunkwan University
The government has announced that it will reform the entrance exam and education, including the exclusion of ‘killer questions’ in the CSAT. Admission is an issue directly related to university education. University competitiveness determines future talent development. A series of interviews with university presidents across the country will seek ways to innovate our education from the ground up, such as entrance exams and university reform.
Yoo Ji-beom, president of Sungkyunkwan University, said in an먹튀검증 interview with this magazine on the 8th, “The Ministry of Education has tried to normalize public education by reorganizing the entrance examination system for the past 30 years, but now it seems to have reached its limit.” (Occasionally) must be normalized to save school classrooms.” He said, “All faculty members know that student grades and CSAT scores are unrelated after entering university.”
– There was a lot of controversy about the ‘killer question’ in the college entrance exam.
“As the CSAT lasted for 30 years, the method of setting questions and analyzing trends ended. However, as some top universities increase the proportion of regular admissions (centered on the CSAT), the ability to differentiate the CSAT has become important. This is because in order to select students based on their SAT scores, their ranks must come out. As a result, the side effect of distinguishing between how quickly and accurately the middle-ranked students solve the CSAT problems and the high-ranking students as ‘killer questions’ has arisen. These harms can be solved only by changing the entrance examination system itself, which evaluates students with a single standard called the CSAT.”
– Right now, vocal colleges have to take 40% of freshmen unconditionally.
“Yes. This regulation came about after several scandals in the entrance examination of some social leaders. This is because social distrust of student department-centered selection has grown too much. The life record system itself, which records the student’s three years of high school, has become ‘half’. I understand that you don’t write down your internships and thesis presentations you did outside of school. However, isn’t it a problem to not list all of the school clubs, after-school volunteer activities, and school awards? In terms of companies, it is like asking new employees to be recruited through a ‘blind test’.”
– There is also a perception that the entrance exam has become fairer due to the expansion of the selection for the CSAT.
“40% on-time means that students should be selected based only on their SAT scores. But if you teach students, you know. How many college entrance exam questions were corrected or whether a student graduated from a special purpose high school is not a big factor in a college student’s academic achievement or advancement into society. Among students who were born and raised in Daechi-dong, Seoul, and scored 80 points out of 100 in math, and students who studied alone in the mountains and got a math score of 70, the current part-time system is fair only if they score 80 points unconditionally. But who really has more potential among the two? As the door to the simple admissions system of college entrance exam scores has widened, it has become easier for large private education companies to respond. It has become more advantageous for students who can afford expensive private education expenses and N students. Many people doubt that an increase in admissions benefits only the children of influential people in society. When such problems arise, the government can uncover them through audits and hold them accountable.”
-10% of the vocal cords were selected through the regional balance system.
“We have been selecting 10% of the quota for the third year under the ‘regional balance’ system based on school performance. It is a system that selects students who have worked hard in school at local schools. Since the introduction, the number of high schools with freshmen has increased by about 50. This year, 180 students will be selected through the ‘incumbent screening’, which selects students who have worked for more than three years after graduating from high school. Like former President Roh Moo-hyun, among students who entered society at an early age, they thought that there was a ‘stone’ that universities wanted, so they widened the door. I want to select such diverse students when the uniform entrance exam regulations such as 40% of regular exams (CSAT) are eliminated. I also desperately want to select students with merits other than grades based on student records.”
– Why is freshman diversity important?
“Even in the early 2000s, the ratio of students from the metropolitan area and the provinces was half. Recently, however, the ratio has slanted in the metropolitan area at around 70:30. It is not that students who live in the metropolitan area, are in a certain financial situation, and have good grades in the SAT are bad. If there are too many such students, it will not help the development of both the university and the students. It is the university’s job to bring out the potential of students who were in difficult circumstances.”
– How should I change my entrance exam?
“The CSAT should be changed to a test that asks for college entrance qualifications, and school student record records should be normalized. At least, how the student went through school life should be faithfully recorded, and the university should be able to select based on that. Sungkyunkwan University’s admissions staff visits 700 high schools nationwide every year. What high school teachers have recently pointed out is the students’ loss of motivation and insincerity. In the current entrance exam, there is no incentive for students to be sincere in their school life. No one knows what kind of activities or volunteering you do after school according to your interests or interests. It is not recorded in the record of life. Students also have to go ‘all-in’ to college entrance examinations if they want to go to college through the CSAT, and to go to the school entrance examinations if they want to go through the school entrance examination. Teachers have also lost their authority to guide learning and life. The system introduced for fairness in admissions is rather fueling the collapse of public education.”
– The Ministry of Education always says that it changes the entrance exam to ‘normalize public education’.
“Over the past 30 years, the Ministry of Education has changed the entrance examination system in various ways, focusing on frequent and on-time, but looking at the results today, it seems that we have reached the limit. The burden of private education expenses is breaking all-time highs every year. Isn’t the idea that the Ministry of Education will control all college entrance exams one by one and affect the entire secondary education itself, which is unrealizable? In fact, about 200 four-year universities in Korea have their own rankings or preferences. Even parents have different stances on the entrance exam system depending on their child’s grades and circumstances when taking the first entrance exam and the second entrance exam. A single institution, the Ministry of Education, cannot create an entrance examination system that will alleviate the dissatisfaction of all universities, students, and parents, and even control private tutoring. If the Ministry of Education presents a direction, it is appropriate for universities to research and develop the entrance examination system in accordance with the founding ideology. We can create various entrance exam routes.”
– These days, everyone is in a frenzy about going to medical school.
“The preference for medical school is not a problem unique to our country. Isn’t that just a bit of a difference? In any country, many of the children of families with affordable housing enter prestigious universities and then go on to medical and law graduate schools. This is because doctors and lawyers have a higher guaranteed “minimum income level” compared to other occupations. In Korea, all resources are now focused on medical school, but a balance will be found in the future when chat GPT appears. What our society needs to think about is how to nurture the bio industry by utilizing talented people who have entered the medical field and how to support basic medical research.”
– What is the biggest obstacle to education reform?
“High schools across the country are too obsessed with numbers such as the number of prestigious universities that can be put on a placard, and universities are too obsessed with numbers such as employment rates and university evaluations. Policy authorities are also busy with pending issues, such as what to do with what percentage of new students in a few years from now, rather than from the perspective of a ‘hundred-year plan’. Many of the average students do not get attention and lose their motivation. I hope to establish the idea that education is not for achieving certain results.”
☞President Yoo Ji-beom
graduated from Seoul National University and received a Ph.D. in materials science and engineering from Stanford University in the United States. Since 1994 he has been a professor at the Department of Materials Science and Engineering at Sungkyunkwan University. He took office as the president of Sungkyunkwan University in January after serving as the dean of Sungkyunkwan University’s College of Engineering, vice president of the Natural Sciences Campus and head of industry-university cooperation.