Mon, May 13, 2013 - Page 11 News List

Half as many university students in 15 years
人才危機 十五年後大學生源減半

University students teach calligraphy to seniors at a nursing home in Chiayi County on Jan. 5.
大學生一月五日於嘉義縣的療養院教老人書法。

Photo: Wang Shan-yen, Liberty Times
照片:自由時報記者王善嬿

In a report on talent development conducted by the Ministry of Education’s Talent Development Association, which is composed of Academia Sinica academician Liu Chao-han and other fellow researchers, it warns that after 2028 the number of students starting university will decrease by half to only around 167,000 students. Taiwan’s overall strength as a nation will diminish significantly in the future if university students’ productivity fails to go up 1.5 times higher. Coupled with an aging population — 20 percent of the population will be over the age of 65 by 2026 — in order for Taiwan to continue growing and developing as a nation, the productivity of Taiwanese university graduates must be at least twice as high as now in 15 years.

According to statistics from the Ministry of the Interior, more than 320,000 children were born each year in 1994 and 1995. Children born during these two years are the source of university students enrolling in college this year. However, the source of students starting university in 2028 are children born in 2009 and 2010, but only 190,000 and 160,000 were born during these two years respectively, which is little more than half the number of children being born 15 years ago. The social problems arising from a low fertility rate will become even more serious after 2028.

The report also says that the number of universities in Taiwan has seen a sharp increase, going from 51 in 1993 to 148 this year, and university admission departments are currently trying to enroll a total of 274,000 new students, which exceeds the number of students actually graduating from high school — 270,000. This means that every student has the opportunity to go to college, but it also means that colleges cannot enroll enough students to meet capacity. This will turn higher education into a form of universal education. When looking at the number of students enrolled in universities last year — 1.25 million — the amount of talent being developed is three times higher than it was 15 years ago, but still fails to meet societal and business demands.

(Liberty Times, Translated by Kyle Jeffcoat)

由中研院院士劉兆漢等學者專家組成的教育部人才培育指導會,在所提出的人才培育報告書中發出警訊,民國一一七年後,大學生源將降至今年的一半,只有十六萬七千人,未來大學生的生產力若不能提升一點五倍,則台灣整體國力將下降;加上高齡化、一一五年六十五歲以上人口將達百分之二十,估計十五年後大學畢業生的生產力必須是現在的兩倍以上,台灣才能持續發展。

據內政部統計,八十三、八十四年的新生兒出生人數均在三十二萬人以上,這兩年的出生人數決定今年的大學生源;而決定一一七年大學生源的出生年度則是九十八、九十九年,這兩年出生數分別是十九萬人、十六萬人,與十五年前相較減少近半,少子化帶來的社會問題將在一一七年後更加嚴重。

報告書也直指,台灣的大學校院由民國八十二年的五十一所,劇增到今年的一百四十八所,大學部新生總招生名額為廿七萬四千名,已超過高中職每年畢業生總人數廿七萬人,不只人人可以上大學,學校還招不滿,高等教育變成普及教育,但以一○一學年度總在學人數一百廿五萬人來看,培育多三倍的大學人力,卻未能反應社會與產業的需求。

(自由時報記者林曉雲)

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