Thu, Feb 27, 2003 - Page 4 News List

China-bound students warned of hidden problems

By Crystal Hsu  /  STAFF REPORTER WITH CNA

With incresing numbers of students seeking higher education across the Strait, education officials took steps yesterday to reminded students that the country has no intention of recognizing Chinese college diplomas any time soon.

The officials said that China-bound students should take care to gather as information as possible about prospective schools, noting that some Chinese college degrees are rejected by the international communities.

When completing their college education, students must obtain two certificates, one from the university and the other from the Chinese education ministry, Liu Chi-feng (劉吉豐), president of Taiwan's Health Care Promotion Association, told a news conference in Taipei.

"Otherwise, students who graduate from a Chinese university will have problem having any other country recognize their degrees," Liu said.

Over 4,000 local students are pursing higher education in such places as Shanghai, Beijing and Fujian, according to official statistics there. The figure exceeds 10,000 if students not seeking formal degrees are also included.

DPP lawmaker Chiu Yeong-jen (邱永仁) advised Taiwanese students intent on entering Chinese universities to take admission tests which may not be skipped as some broker institutes have advertised.

Chinese colleges admitting students without tests are considered below par, he said, adding that their diplomas are of no use in landing jobs in the real world.

Tseng Wen-chang (曾文昌), an official at the Ministry of Education, reiterated Taiwan has no plan to acknowledge any Chinese college diplomas in the foreseeable future.

Tseng attributed the policy stand in part to the fact that many Chinese college diplomas can be purchased with little or no study.

He added that Taiwan does not accredit diplomas issued by schools across the Strait. This is mainly due to poor cross-strait relations but also because the academic levels of those Chinese colleges and universities have yet to be assessed, and because the government is concerned about the effect that accrediting Chinese degrees would have on Taiwan's schools and human resources market, Tseng said.

Chiu said that it is easier to obtain a license to practice Chinese herbal medicine in China than in Taiwan, which is why many students prefer to go there.

He pointed out, however, that the herbal medicine market in China is chaotic and that there are no controls to limit the number of practitioners.

He urged the public to learn more about education regulations before studying in China.

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