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Medical schools in Japan discriminate against applicants based on gender and age

Medical schools in Japan discriminate against applicants based on gender and age

Posted October. 23, 2018 07:19,   

Updated October. 23, 2018 07:19


Medical schools in some Japanese universities have been caught discriminating against female applicants and re-takers of college entrance examination in admitting students. According to a report by Yomiuri Shimbun on Monday, Juntendo University School of Medicine in Tokyo is suspected of discriminating against female applicants and male students who had failed entrance examinations for more than two times.

In the first test, which measures students’ academic achievement, the university failed re-takers first out of the students whose grades were below a certain level. In the second test, which is an essay and interview, they set a higher cutoff score for female applicants than their male counterparts.

Juntendo University was the third university whose real name was made public for discriminating against applicants based on their gender and age. On October 15, it was reported that Showa University School of Medicine was found to have discriminated against applicants who had failed the entrance exam for more than two times, and have given extra points to children of Showa alumni. The university has discriminated against third-time or higher test-takers by awarding additional points to high school students and second-time test-takers. The university came under fire for saying, “High school students grow after entering college. We do not regard it as an illicit admissions practice.”

The improper practices in medical school admissions came to light in Japan when it was revealed in August that Tokyo Medical University deducted points from the entrance exam score of all female applicants and students who had failed the entrance exam for more than two times. The university made an excuse for the improper admissions practice by saying that women are likely to quit their job after marriage and giving birth to a baby and older students tend to do poorly at school. Some said that the practice was a last resort to address the problem of understaffed hospitals. But the university’s explanation only intensified public criticism of the “unfair discrimination.”

Following the revelations about Tokyo Medical University, the Education Ministry of Japan began a survey of 81 universities with schools of medicine nationwide. The survey found that admission practices had been rigged to the disadvantage of older students in two more private colleges in the Kanto region.

Young-A Soh sya@donga.com