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Taiwan: University merger policy sets long-term goal for academia

National Taiwan University

Six local universities will merge into three due to the nation’s declining birth rate, the Ministry of Education (MOE) said.

The decreasing number of students led the MOE to downsize the number of universities and polytechnic institutes. The ministry has been reviewing the university enrollment system and has decided on the new admission policy targeting university amalgamation given the dramatic drop in college applicants.

Minster of Education Chiang Wei-ling said that the MOE is currently adjusting its college admission system and aims to merge six major universities into three universities.

The top six universities to undergo mergers are: National Taiwan University and National Taipei University of Education; National Tsing Hua University and National Hsinchu University of Education; and National Pingtung University of Education and National Pingtung Institute of Commerce.

The MOE is prioritizing local national universities that have less than 10,000 registered students. There are 53 national universities and polytechnics that currently have under 10,000 registered students. Legislators of the Education and Culture Committee of the Legislative Yuan announced the possibility that the annual education budget may be frozen.

Chiang said he anticipates that the process will be concluded during the 2013 academic year and that the mergers of university administrative networks and general knowledge courses can maximize the limited educational resources.

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