Dramatic changes ahead for Korean universities

After a period of impressive expansion, it now appears that South Korea will soon reach a point where it has many more university spaces than it needs.

South Korea’s education minister is now forecasting that student enrolment at Korean universities will fall by 40 percent over the next 12 years, with the number of high-school graduates dropping from 670,000 in 2012 to 410,000 in 2024.

As early as 2016, there will already be more university places than students, owing largely to the fact that South Korea boasts one of the world’s highest university enrolment rates but also one of the world lowest birthrates, and this is expected to trigger a round of downsizing in the country’s higher education system.

“We estimate that by 2040 around 100 universities will have to close,” says Yu Hyunsook, director general of the Korean Educational Development Institute.

Source: Chronicle for Higher Education



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