Compare higher education in the US, Europe and Japan

Students rate Western schools to help them interact well with faculty, while universities in Japan do not do this well.

In early 2020, Times Higher Education (THE) published and analyzed the results of higher education surveys in the US, Europe and Japan based on the responses of hundreds of thousands of students for seven questions on issues such as : whether the school supports the development of critical thinking, supports teaching, creates relationships, opportunities to interact with teachers, opportunities for cooperation, challenges with students or the application of knowledge in practice .

About 170,000 students studying in the US, 125,000 students in Europe and 37,000 in Japan took part. The results show that students in three places have very different experiences.

For example, with the question of how the school provides learning opportunities, cooperation, and classroom challenges, US students rate schools with an average of 8.2 on a 10-point scale. Meanwhile, students in Japan do not get many opportunities and they only average 6.4 points. Students in Europe assess 7.3 points.

Looking broadly, the data shows the strengths and weaknesses of the higher education systems. For example, students in Europe and the United States often give high marks when it comes to the opportunity to interact with lecturers and staff, but evaluate their schools to be much worse at applying lectures to the world. real.

In contrast, Japanese students give the highest GPA for the practical application of knowledge, but underestimate the schools that help them develop critical thinking.

Du học sinh tại Mỹ. Ảnh: Shutterstock

International students in the US Photo: Shutterstock

Anne Colby, an Adjunct Professor at Stanford University’s School of Education, said the US survey is consistent with previous studies. It shows that American universities tend to do quite well in providing seminars, opportunities for students to interact with lecturers, have mentors outside the classroom and collaborative projects between lecturers and students. .

Kiyomi Horiuchi, a research assistant at the Higher Education Research Institute of Hiroshima University (Japan), explains the relatively high level of satisfaction of Japanese students in applying what is learned in practice. related to developments in practical research areas such as nursing, therapy, in this country. These disciplines are very popular and are guided by many parents and students because of the higher job opportunities and if they study will be easier to visualize when applying knowledge into practice.

Meanwhile, Japanese universities are underestimated in terms of critical thinking and relationship creation. Mr. Horiuchi said this comes from focusing on one-way lectures of education from elementary school to university, as well as the fact that there is very little cooperation between the individual departments at the university. While Japan’s Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology is urging universities to offer more classrooms in an active and interdisciplinary style of education, Horiuchi predicts a transition. Exchange will take time.

“College examinations, as well as regular exams taken in high school, often ask students simply what they learn from textbooks and lectures. Therefore, students tend to meet the This is only by acquiring knowledge from the course, “Mr. Horiuchi said, and suggested the introduction of future majors and the curriculum should be more flexible so that students can take courses outside of their field. them, help solve cognitive weaknesses.

Thomas Brotherhood, a graduate student at Oxford University and the Center for Global Higher Education, who has studied in both the UK and Japan, emphasized no matter where the university is, providing students with time rest, giving them the opportunity to participate in more social activities, and providing an educational environment consistent with the expectations of both students and future employers are important.

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