Mon, Oct 24, 2016 - Page 3 News List

NTU to offer all-English undergraduate program

By Lee Ying-chien and William Hetherington  /  Staff reporter, with staff writer

National Taiwan University (NTU) on Saturday announced that it is to offer an all-English four-year undergraduate program aimed at attracting international students as well as Taiwanese.

The all-English program, which is to accept 120 students, including 80 foreigners, when it begins in August next year, comes with an annual tuition of NT$630,000.

The university said the program will build on its existing international studies courses.

It said it hopes to attract applications from Taiwanese high-school seniors who are preparing to study abroad, but that admission is to be granted on the basis of the SATs, ACT and other standard international tests, rather than on the national university entrance examination.

Deputy director of student affairs Kang Shih-chung (康仕仲) said that improving cross-cultural knowledge is crucial to cultivating a mobile international workforce, adding that Taiwan’s current education system does not attach much value to those skills.

The new program will be taught by both current and new professors hired from Taiwanese and international institutions, Kang said.

“The first two years will be about self-discovery and in the third year students will choose a major from the humanities, business management, science and engineering, and health and life sciences,” Kang said.

One large sticking point in the university’s planning is a lack of student residence facilities at its social sciences campus on Taipei’s Xuzhou Road, where the program is to be centered.

The school is looking to resolve the issue in a way that would not affect current students, Kang said.

Nicole Lee (李彥儀), director of the Ministry of Education’s Department of Higher Education, said she is concerned that the program’s enrollment method for local students could affect recruitment for other programs.

The school should continue to have Taiwanese applicants apply through the standard channels and then choose contenders for the new program from among successful applicants, she said.

University director of student affairs Kuo Hung-chi (郭鴻基) said the school would accept input on the issue from the ministry, but that it would not make any decisions until after it studies the documents.

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