Go to contents

Study Shows Disparity in Admission to Seoul Univs.

Posted August. 03, 2010 10:11,   


What class rank does a high school student need to enter one of the top 10 universities in Seoul?

Students in the upscale Gangnam district can enter with a class rank of 78th or higher, but one who is fifth in the Geumcheon district can hardly be assured of admission.

A survey has shown a significant gap in educational performance based on region. The Dong-A Ilbo conducted the study jointly with Hanul Education, a professional college entrance consulting company, on students who scored at Level 2 out of nine levels in the language, mathematics and foreign language sections of this year’s college entrance test.

Hanul director Lim Sung-ho said, “Level 2 in the three categories on average is a grade that enables a student to enter a major university in Seoul without much difficulty.”

The Gangnam district had the largest number of students in Level 2 with 1,249. The district has 16 general high schools and students who rank 78th or higher at a school can enter a major university in Seoul.

In contrast, 27 of the country’s cities, counties and districts nationwide failed to produce even one Level 2 student, and as many as 13 had just one.

There was also a significant gap by district within the same cities and provinces. Three Seoul districts south of the Han River – Gangnam, Seocho (638) and Songpa (599) -- and Nowon (559) and Yangcheon (557) had a combined 3,602 Level 2 students. This figure was far more than the combined figure for the city’s remaining 20 districts (2,559).

Geumcheon had 22 students who scored at Level 2 on average in the three categories, or 1/50th of Gangnam’s level.

Choi Mi-suk, head of "Haksamo (Group of Parents who Love Schools)," said, “My child was third in overall academic performance when graduating from Geumcheon High School, but failed to meet our expectations in the college entrance test.”

“Education authorities should invest more to reduce the educational gap rather than offer free school meals. After all, it’s more important to teach students how to fish rather than fish for them.”

Only two students scored a Level 2 on average among last year’s graduates of Geumcheon High School.

kini@donga.com baron@donga.com