Education in Taiwan (2023/2024)

Educat i on i s not the f i l l i ng of a pa i l , but the l i ght i ng of a f i re . —Wi l l i am But l er Yeat s 2023 2024 Mi n i s t ry of Educat i on Repub l i c of Ch i na EDUCATION IN TAIWAN

Educat i on i s not the f i l l i ng of a pa i l , but the l ight i ng of a f i re . —Wi l l i am But l er Yeat s 2023 2024 Mi n i s t ry of Educat i on Repub l i c of Ch i na EDUCATION IN TAIWAN

EDUCATION in TAIWAN 2023-2024 Contents 04 An Overview 07 Educational System 17 Senior Secondary Education 11 Preschool and Compulsory Education 42 Special Education 24 Technical and Vocational Education 31 Higher Education 38 Lifelong Education 55 Teacher and Arts Education 51 Youth Development Affairs 60 Digital, Technological and Environmental Education 64 Diverse Education 68 Study in Taiwan 75 Bilingual and International Education 77 Education Expenditures 78 Prospect 79 Statistics 46 Sports Affairs

An Overview 05 04 I Introduction As one of the Executive Yuan’s subordinate agencies, the Ministry of Education (MOE) is the highest supervisory body for Taiwan’s education. The MOE’s mission is to enhance education in the country (including preschool education, basic education, technical and vocational education, higher education, lifelong education, special education, teacher education, arts education, digital education, technological education, environmental education, diverse education and international talent cultivation), as well as to, promote sports and youth development affairs, and improve the general quality of education so as to increase competitiveness as a country. The An Overview MOE is led by the minister of education, who is supported by two political deputy ministers, one administrative deputy minister, and one chief secretary. TheMOE comprises eight departments, three administrations, along with the other subsidiary agencies. Together, they are committed to ensuring the quality of education in Taiwan. The MOE also supports municipal, county, and city governments in educational affairs. II SDG 4 “Quality Education” is the UN’s Sustainable Development Goal 4 (SDG 4), which aims to ensure inclusive and equitable quality education for all. SDG 4 is to make sure that by 2030, there will be equitable and high-quality education available to all children at the primary and secondary levels that generates learning outcomes regardless of gender, vocational education that is equitable and affordable, no disparities between genders, and equal access to quality higher education. III Major Education Policies at Present 1 Action Plan to Address the Trend of Fewer Children To address the issues arising from Taiwan’s sub-replacement fertility rate, reduce the financial burden on parents, and implement the policy of “Childcare Support for Children Aged 0-6,” the Executive Yuan on January 29, 2021, announced the amended “Action Plan to Address the Trend of Fewer Children” whose three main objectives are extending affordable educare services, reducing tuition and fees, and doubling childcare allowances, in order to achieve such goals as “more vacancies,” a “lighter burden,” and “more allowances.” This is the most comprehensive childcare support in Taiwan in years. 2 Curriculum Guidelines of 12-year Basic Education The new curricula kick-started in SY2019 center on students and emphasize situated cognition, integration, exploration, and hands-on experience. Students are encouraged to take the initiative, engage the public, and seek the common good. With the vision in mind of “accomplishments for every child - nurture by nature and lifelong learning,” students will acquire the knowledge, competence, and attitude needed to adapt to life and handle challenges in the future. 3 The New Southbound Talent Development Program The MOE has based its “New Southbound Talent Development Program” on “The New Southbound Policy.” This program provides quality education, bilateral training for professionals, and bilateral exchanges between the youth academics and students. In the meantime, it aims to promote cooperation in education between Taiwan and its Southbound Policy partners as a means of deepening bilateral relations. 4 Bilingual 2030 The Bilingual 2030 policy is aimed at cultivating the nation’s bilingual talents. Proficiency in English would help local talent broaden their worldview and enhance communication skills in an international environment. To that end, the policy presents a multifaceted approach,

06 including the establishment of bilingual benchmark schools and colleges, English instruction in certain disciplines at senior secondary schools or below, and the production and broadcast of online English programs. IV Future Prospects The COVID-19 pandemic has posed many challenges for the education sector. To lower the impact of the pandemic, allow students to learn in a healthy environment, and ensure the quality of education, the MOE implements the relief and stimulus program for anti-COVID measures on campuses as well as online learning measures. Furthermore, the MOE continues to expand its affordable education and care service, accelerate digital teaching implementation, and utilize talent from various disciplines, promoting policies including “The Digital Learning Enhancement Plan for Grades 1-12,” “National Key Fields IndustryUniversity Cooperation and Skilled Personnel Training,” and “Industry-Academia Cooperation/ Collaboration Project 2.0.” The Education Administration System Administration Line Guidance Line Executive Yuan (Cabinet) Ministry of Education County & City Governments Municipalities National Schools at All Levels Bureau/Department of Education Bureau of Education National Social Education Organizations County & City Schools at All Levels Municipal Schools at All Levels Private Universities, Colleges & Junior Colleges County & City Social Education Organizations Municipal Social Education Organizations Private Senior Secondary Schools Private Junior High Schools, Primary Schools & Preschools Private Secondary Schools, Primary Schools & Preschools Ministry of Education SDG 4 07 Educational System Educational System In Taiwan’s current education system, students may study for up to 20 years, which includes six years of primary education, three years of junior high school, three years of senior secondary school, four years of bachelor education, one to four years for a master’s degree, and two to seven years for a doctoral degree. I Preschool Education In the past, preschool education consisted of “kindergartens” and “child care centers,” which were under the jurisdiction of different competent authorities. Since 2012, kindergartens and child care centers have been consolidated into preschool, and children from the age of two to pre-elementary school are able to receive comprehensive education and care. The combination of preschool education and care into one administrative system allows for a strategy that centers on children and prioritizes children’s welfare. II Compulsory Education The nine-year compulsory education system, of which six years are for primary education and three years are for junior high school, was put into effect in SY1968. In order to offer more diverse development opportunities for junior high school students, technical education is included as well, in addition to the regular curriculum. Practical classes allow students to better understand vocational education and their future career choices.

Educational System 08 09 III Senior Secondary Education Senior secondary education consists of three years of schooling and includes “general senior high schools,” “skill-based senior high schools,” “comprehensive senior high schools,” and “specialized senior high schools.” IV Junior College Education Junior college education can be classified according to admission requirements into fiveyear junior colleges and two-year junior colleges. Five-year junior colleges admit graduates of junior high schools, whereas two-year junior colleges admit graduates of skill-based senior high schools. V Teacher Education The teacher education system is comprised of diversified, well-resourced, and selecting methods. Teachers who teach in preschools, primary schools, junior high schools, and senior secondary schools are trained in universities that cultivate teachers. These institutions are also responsible for providing professional development and guidance for local educators. As of February 1, 2018, the training of teachers uses qualification tests before conducting internships and selects a necessary number of students through exams with just the right qualities, thus implementing an education training system. VI University, College and Graduate School Education The maximum study period for bachelor’s degree candidates (including universities, colleges, universities of science and technology, and technical colleges) is four years (the Postbachelor Second Specialty Program is one to two years, while the two-year bachelor’s degree program is usually two years), and internships can last half a year to two years depending on the needs of the subject. For master’s degree candidates, the study period is limited to one to four years, and for doctoral degree candidates the range is two to seven years. VII Special Education Pre-tertiary level special education is divided into three stages: preschool, compulsory education, and senior secondary education. The special education stages provide education at corresponding stages and schools providing special education may set up special education classes. Independent special education schools may also be built to accommodate students with multiple disabilities that require special support. To best meet the educational needs of special education students, the education stages, assignment students to classes and grades, settings and ways of implementing education, courses, teaching materials, and teaching and assessment methods must always incorporate flexibility. And adaptability, individualization, socialization, accessibility, and inclusion must all be part of providing special education and associated service measures. VIII Arts Education The goals of arts education are to cultivate artistic talent, enrich the spiritual lives of citizens, and elevate cultural levels. Arts education in Taiwan can be divided into professional arts education offered at schools, general arts education offered at schools, and arts education offered to the public. IX Supplementary Education Supplementary education aim to supplement citizens’ factual knowledge about life, raise educational attainment, transfer practical skills, cultivate sound citizens, and help society to progress. This education system offers supplementary compulsory education, supplementary advanced education, and shortterm tutorial education: all citizens who are past school age but have not received the nine years of basic education shall receive supplementary compulsory education. Citizens who did receive the nine-year basic education may receive supplementary advanced education. Those who wish to improve their factual knowledge and life skills can also receive short-term tutorial education.

10 School Age Normal Age 24 29 Higher Education Doctoral Program 23 28 22 27 Master Program 21 26 Tech. & Jr. Col. Education 20 25 Dept. for PostBaccalaureate (1~4Yrs.) Doctoral Program 19 24 18 23 Dept. of Medicine Dept. of Dentist Master Program Open University Distance Education, Continuing & Supplementary Education 17 22 Dept. of Architecture 16 21 Technical College 15 20 (4Yrs.) (2Yrs.) 14 19 University & College Junior College Cont. College 13 18 (2Yrs.) (5 Yrs.) 12 17 Sr. Sec. Education Senior Secondary School Senior High & Vocational Special Education Cont. Sr. Sec. Education 11 16 1 9 0 1 1 4 5 Nine-Year Compulsory Education Junior High School Nine-Year Compulsory Education Junior High Supp. Jr. High School 8 7 1 1 3 2 6 11 Primary School Primary Supp. Primary School 5 4 1 9 0 3 2 8 7 1 5 6 Preschool Education Preschool Preschool Education Preschool 4 3 2 Note: The duration of master program is 1 to 4 years, doctoral program is 2 to 7 years. The duration of medicine school is shortened from 7 years to 6 years since SY2013. Including non-school mode of experimental education. The Current School System 11 Preschool and Compulsory Education I General Information The infrastructure of a country and the development of its economy are dependent on the country’s cultivation of manpower and talent. This requires long term, continued investment and needs to start from the very bottom. The government set the length of compulsory education at nine years in SY1968. In accordance with current trends and to provide young children with good preschool education, the Early Childhood Education and Care Act was promulgated on June 29, 2011 and became effective on Jan 1, 2012. II Preschool and Compulsory Education Structure The Early Childhood Education and Care Act is a revolutionary move in our preschool system. After the Act took effect on Jan 1, 2012, kindergartens and child care centers were redesignated “preschools,” in which children from the age of two onwards are given complete and thorough education and care until they enter Preschool and Compulsory Education

Preschool and Compulsory Education 12 13 elementary school. This act integrates both the education and the care of young children into a single administrative system, putting into practice a toddler-centered strategy that focuses on the children’s best interests. Taiwan is also the first country in Asia to integrate the two systems. On April 26, 2017, the “Statute for Preschool Educators” was announced, clearly stating the rules for training, qualifications, rights and interests, administration, and appeals and dispute settlements in order to safeguard the rights of our country’s preschool educators. Kick-started in SY1968, Taiwan’s nine-year Compulsory Education system is mandatory, free, and obligatory. Citizens from the age of six to 15 are legally required to receive education. The compulsory education is divided into two stages — the first six years at the elementary school level and the latter three in a junior high school. III Preschool and Compulsory Education Policies In line with the Executive Yuan’s “Action Plan to Address the Issue of Fewer Children,” the MOE implements the policy of “Childcare Support for Children Aged 0-6” and has attained its goal of adding 3,000 classes to public preschools within eight years (between 2017-2024) ahead of schedule in 2022, marking the biggest increase throughout the years. As a result, in SY2021, combined student capacity at affordable public and quasi-public preschools could exceed 470,000. Since August 2022, parents have paid no more than NT$3,000 per month; there have been more benefits for families with two or more children; children from low- and middle-income families enjoy exemption from school fees; and childcare allowances have been doubled to NT$5,000 per month without a cap on the number of children in the family. These measures are to reduce the childcare burden on parents and to increase the overall enrollment rate. To enhance teaching effectiveness at elementary and junior high schools and promote effective learning, the MOE continuously helps local governments improve the quality of curricula and professional development mechanisms for teachers. Through subsidies, local governments hold seminars for teachers, develop flexible courses at schools, helping schools implement curriculum guidelines while providing innovative teaching. Teachers are encouraged to join professional learning groups to reinforce teaching knowledge and skills. The MOE provides tuition and miscellaneous fee exemption, bursaries, stipends, and other measures to assist underprivileged students with enrollment and protect students’ right to education. It promotes study aids for elementary and junior high school students to reduce academic gaps. Additionally, through the six tasks of “international testing trend development,” “competency teaching and assessment enhancement,” “promoting technological teaching and assessment,” “promoting student competency-enhancing learning activities,” “reinforcing help for underprivileged students,” and “tracking and guiding students with lowered

Preschool and Compulsory Education 14 15 motivation,” the MOE hopes to increase students’ learning abilities, reinforce help for underprivileged students, and improve students’ ability to work with information. Social development has caused the population of the cities to grow, while businesses and people continue to move out of remote areas. The local economy in these areas has slowed down, jobs are hard to find, and children are often left to the care of grandparents. Education is where the values of social equity and social justice should be embodied. To enable each and every child to enjoy equal opportunities of adaptive development, the president promulgated on December 6, 2017, the “Act for Education Development of Schools in Remote Areas.” The Act specifies the length of a full-time teacher’s service, a flexible mechanism for hiring acting teachers and contract-based teachers, rewards and incentives to encourage long terms of service, methods of recruiting teachers and guidance counselors where they are needed, the importance of simplifying the administrative burden on schools, professional development opportunities nearby for the teachers, a supply of diverse learning resources for the students, and the provision of necessary facilities and equipment to schools in order to safeguard the students’ right to education in remote areas. K-12 Education Administration Interviewee: Chang Shu-o 3ULQFLSDO :DLVKH 1RQSURͤW 3UHVFKRRO At Waishe Preschool, children grow and learn through nature’s rhythms With over 40 years of experience running the Ci-Xin Waldorf School in Yilan County, the Ci-Xin Children Education Foundation is dedicated to promoting Waldorf education, which is based on the philosophy of Rudorf Steiner, the founder of anthroposophy. By founding the Waishe Nonprofit Preschool, the foundation aims to provide parents with an affordable preschool education option and to understand children’s development indepth. The Waishe Nonprofit Preschool has the four core values of “equal and mutual respect,” “professional consolidation,” “public-private cooperation,” and “community interaction,” providing an authentic, simplistic, and warm learning environment that values nature. In line with Waldorf education principles, the school’s education focuses on “rhythms and repetition” as well as “role models and imitation” at the preschool stage and does not teach children to read, write, and do math. At Waishe, children enjoy ample time and space to develop their creativity within a routine of fixed rhythm. The school provides a learning environment that imbues children with a sense that the world is good and nurtures children’s senses as well as relationships based on love, respect, and care. The curriculum at Waishe follows the theme of the four seasons, allowing children to feel how theweather andenvironment changes throughout the year through circle time, stories, festivals, and walks within the community. The school also combines Taiwan’s traditional holidays and events such as the Lantern Festival, spring outings, Dragon Boat Festival, graduation, MidAutumn Festival, and Winter Solstice to let children experience life and local cultures,

16 helping them find a sense of belonging and security. As the school is located within the Linkou Forest Reserve and close to several farms, nature is easily accessible, and in spring, children join students from Waishe Elementary School on outings and hikes while in summer, they pick and dry silvery wormwood under the guidance of teachers to make fragrant sachets for Dragon Boat Festival. In the past three years, considering the time and space for children’s activities were greatly restricted due to COVID-19, teachers at Waishe take children out for walks at least twice a week not only for exercise but also to help them learn about the neighborhood they live in. Since its founding, Waishe has encouraged parents’ participation in school activities, holding three to four parenting seminars every year in addition to holiday, gardening, or handicraft workshops for parents, allowing the school to share its education beliefs and methods and stimulating interaction between families. The school has received much support from parents who expressed appreciation for the chance to grow with their children within nature. “Over these two years, as the world goes through the COVID-19 pandemic and confronts viral variants, I am glad my child and I can be immersed in the nurturing environment of Waldorf education. We grew and matured within nature, shirking the pursuit of convenient, advanced material life and trying our best to return to what’s authentic,” a parent wrote to the school. “Though we cannot completely escape our reliance on modern technology, we have transformed a part of our desire for material and results into spiritual peace and natural coexistence. This has helped us enhance our adaptability in a changeable and anxious environment.” 17 Senior Secondary Education Senior Secondary Education Senior secondary schools are designed to cultivate the minds and bodies of the youth, to foster healthy civic awareness, and to lay a sound foundation for academic research and professional training in later years. Senior secondary schools in Taiwan include “general senior secondary schools,” “skill-based senior secondary schools,” “comprehensive senior secondary schools,” and “specialized senior secondary schools.” Students who graduate from junior high school or have an equivalent education level can gain admission to senior secondary schools through methods such as open admission and specialty enrollment. Beginning from August 2014, the 12-year Basic Education is provided in two phases. The first phase is the 9-year National Education, which is based on the Primary and Junior High School Act and Compulsory Education Act and applies to citizens aged six to 15. National Education is universal, obligatory, compulsory, free of charge, government-run in principle, school districtbased, with open admission and single-type schools that offer general education. The second phase is the 3-year Senior Secondary Education, which his based on the Senior High School Education Act and applies to citizens

Senior Secondary Education 18 19 aged 15 years or above. Senior Secondary Education is universal, voluntary and noncompulsory, free of charge, government- and private-run, with generally open admission and various types of schools that offer general and vocational education. This chapter focuses on Senior Secondary Education. I Supportive Measures for New Curriculum Guideline Implementation at the Senior Secondary Education Level 1 Regulation Research, Amendment, and Introduction A. As the implementation of the new curriculum guidelines reaches its third year, the MOE shall continuously review the laws in effect as well as conduct research and make amendments. B. For SY2022, 95 senior and vocational high schools were approved as pioneering schools. The MOE assists these schools with developing and implementing the new curriculum guidelines. 2 Course and Teaching Improvement A. The MOE promotes the Senior and Vocational High School Enhancement Aid Program, which encourages schools to establish and promote professional groups for teachers by providing schools with resources. This is done in the spirit of the new curriculum guidelines to reinforce teachers’ professional competency in teaching, elevate teachers’ ability to teach flexibly, help teachers develop and improve courses, and cultivate students’ core competencies. B. By promoting work circles and subject centers through senior high school courses and integrating local governments’ course promotion teams, the MOE develops teaching materials and syllabi, builds professional development groups for teachers nationwide, and promotes region-based joint course preparation mechanisms, which have researcher teachers and seedling teachers lead teachers in jointly preparing courses in various districts. 3 Faculty Size and Ability Acquirement A. The MOE continues to replenish the number of teachers needed in senior high schools to promote the 2019 Curriculum Guidelines so schools have enough teachers with specific expertise. B. According to the “Senior High School Organization and Staffing Standards,” the MOE approves the adequate number of faculty members and encourages schools to actively and flexibly recruit teachers according to actual needs. To enhance course quality and provide students with adaptive education measures and diverse learning opportunities, the MOE also subsidizes schools in remote areas for recruiting substitute teachers and administrative staff members, having teachers elsewhere review elective courses, and other purposes. 4 Facilities and Infrastructure A. To improve and enhance teaching and internship infrastructure needed for the 2019 Curriculum Guidelines at schools, the MOE established the “Directions Governing MOE K-12 Education Administration Subsidies for Senior Secondary Schools to Improve Educational and Practical Training Facilities and Equipment” and assists schools with building professional classrooms, designing learning environments required for elective courses, and providing autonomous learning spaces and equipment for students. B. With funds provided through the “Improvement of Taiwan Academic Network in Senior Secondary Schools program” under the Forward-looking Infrastructure Development Program’s Digital Infrastructure plan, the MOE improves high school campus’ network infrastructure and increases the overall bandwidth at schools. Schools receive subsidies to increase their network bandwidth to 300 Mbps and update information equipment and learning tools needed for teaching. II Promotion of the Senior and Vocational High School Enhancement Guidance Program 1 Through the “Directions Governing MOE K-12 Education Administration Subsidies for Expenses Arising from the Equal Access to Adaptive Education and Community Education Resources for Senior Secondary Schools Implementation Plan,” the MOE connects universities within communities and junior high school education resources to form adaptive learning communities designed around geographical locations, social circles, and ease of commute. This creates an education environment for adaptive learning to offer students diverse and ample learning opportunities, bridging the gap between urban and rural education.

Senior Secondary Education 20 21 Additionally, the MOE promotes junior high school teachers’ ability cultivation and joint course preparation development, holding “academic exploration” and “career exploration” courses and activities to provide adaptive learning opportunities for senior and vocational high school students within communities, thus achieving adaptive development goals. In SY2022, 297 senior high schools received subsidies. 2 The Senior and Vocational High School Enhancement Aid Program, by providing resources, creates counseling and professional growth mechanisms to stimulate members’ potential as well as enhance schools’ overall performance and strength development. This way, students may enroll in schools close to home, develop within adaptive courses with less pressure on academic advancement, and increase competency, helping steadily develop 12year Basic Education. In SY2022, 255 schools received subsidies. 3 The Vocational High School Enhancement Guidance Program helps technical high schools adopt the new curriculum guidelines and continue improving existing education resources. It guides schools in examining and expanding course analyses and achieving transformation and innovation in course implementation, thus improving the quality of schools’ services, teaching, and student learning and attaining the technical and vocational education goal of practicality. In SY2022, 197 schools received subsidies. III Science Education and Science Talent 1 Organizing and participating in domestic and international mathematics and science competitions: A. Organizing national senior secondary school mathematics, science, and information subject competitions as well as science fairs for elementary and junior high schools. The goal is to foster an appropriate attitude and concept about science among the students, to inspire interests in scientific research, and to improve the pedagogy and its effectiveness in senior high schools. B. Training and preparing students to participate in international Math and Science and in the Regeneron International Science and Engineering Fair. Establishing an incentive system. 2 Subsidizing “Science Education Projects for Elementary and Junior High Schools”: To improve science education in primary and secondary schools, in SY2022, 61 schools received subsidies for their efforts in science education research, promotion, training, and extracurricular assistance. 3 “Projects of Scientific Research Training for Senior Secondary School Students” provide school-year-based subsidies for high schools to foster talent in science, discover students with potential in science, and cultivate future scientific researchers. 4 Opening “science classes” in high schools: Designing and offering science courses where students can learn to do research on their own and be creative. The goal is for students to not only develop scientific expertise but also humanism, and ultimately, become high-quality workers in science and technology who help our country enhance national competitiveness. 5 Organizing the selection mechanism and entrance examination for France’s “Classes Préparatoires aux Grandes Ecoles”: Between 2006 and 2022, 53 high school students were sent to Classes Préparatoires aux Grandes Ecoles in France as an academic exchange between Taiwan and France. 6 Planning science education tours for girls’ schools and students: Outstanding, young female science award winners are invited to high schools to speak to the students so as to spark the students’ interest in basic science, to encourage them to learn more about science and plan for a career in scientific research, and to inherit the spirit and accomplishments of their female predecessors. IV Second Foreign Language Education and International Awareness 1 The main goals of the “Program of Promoting Second Foreign Language Education at Senior Secondary Schools” are as follows: A. Encouraging and subsidizing senior secondary and higher education schools to participate. B. Creating an effective promotion mechanism for the second foreign language education system. C. Creating a second foreign language learning environment. K-12 Education Administration

Senior Secondary Education 22 23 Interviewee: Chou Ku-yu Teacher, National Xinying Industrial Vocational High School Students learn through practice, practice through learning in Practical Skill Program Centered on students and based in schools, the Practical Skill Program emphasizes students’ diverse and adaptive development by creating a strong foundation in practical skills training and highlighting each school’s strengths. The educational goal of the program is to hone students’ basic professional skills in various subject groups and teach skills applicable to employment, allowing students to prioritize career building while still getting their education. Curricula under the Practical Skill Program are designed to focus on specific skills each school year. Courses are practical, and students are guided to take skill evaluations and obtain certifications needed for work. The program is an extension of technical education at the junior high school level under 12-year Basic Education with the objective of realizing “learn through practice, practice through learning.” Not only are schools engaged, but businesses also actively join to help nurture indemand entry-level technical talent in various industries. In the Practical Skill Program, schools plan career experience courses for students to visit businesses in person. Working professionals are also introduced to join course instruction, reinforcing the connection between schools and industries so students can learn professional knowledge and skills currently in demand within the industry. The National Xinying Industrial Vocational High School offers the program in four departments under four subject groups. Each department has comprehensive professional equipment, teaching space, and faculty and provides students with remedial teaching, learning aid, career development, instruction by working professionals, certification awards, interdepartmental transfers, and Star Plan quotas. The school also offers students academic, skill-based, physical, and service-based clubs for students to learn diverse knowledge and skills through group activities and teamwork. Furthermore, considering that the school, its students, and their parents share close relationships in education, the school’s counseling office serves students as well as parents in an effort to consolidate resources at school and at home. One of the Practical Skill Program’s biggest strengths is the interdisciplinary knowledge students are able to gain while learning. Students can expand the scope of their education and vision in the program while discovering their interests and talents. By getting a head start in accumulating practical experience, students in the program also develop an interest and passion for learning through hands-on courses. As they learn valuable skills and explore their talents, they also grow confidence and drive, forging a path that leads to their dreams. Talent cultivation must be geared toward industry demands, and businesses nowadays prefer diverse, agile, and passionate employees. Therefore, while practical training is important, students’ character and health, as well as oftenoverlooked skills such as emotional management and interpersonal skills, are also essential and should be considered for inclusion in the curriculum.

Technical and Vocational Education 25 24 Technical and Vocational Education I An Overview The MOE has formed a Department of Technical and Vocational Education that is responsible for technical and vocational educational affairs in Taiwan and directly oversees and guides universities of science and technology as well as technology colleges and junior colleges. The education departments of municipalities are responsible for supervising technical and vocational educational affairs in secondary schools. The MOE’s K-12 Education Administration supervises national senior secondary schools, affiliated junior high schools, and private senior secondary schools outside of the municipalities. County and city education departments are in charge of supervising the vocational education affairs of county or city senior secondary schools and the technology education affairs of junior high schools in their jurisdiction. Technical and vocational education in Taiwan is provided in both secondary and higher education. At the secondary level, besides technical and vocational courses that are taught in junior high schools, there are also skill-based senior high schools, as well as technical and vocational courses in general senior high schools and comprehensive senior high schools. At the higher level, there are junior colleges (two-year and five-year), technology colleges, and universities of science and technology (two-year and four-year). These colleges and universities may recruit students for associate-degree programs, bachelor programs, master’s degree programs, and doctoral degree programs. II Development of Technical and Vocational Education 1 Secondary Education A. Characteristics i. Complete structure and system. ii. Students study in private schools is more than in public schools. iii. Adaptive school system and subject courses. iv. Job-oriented courses with hands-on training. B. Key points to be strengthened i. Suitable concern for disadvantaged students. ii. Open admission and specialty enrollment. iii. Actively improve the quality of teaching. iv. Promote industry-academia collaboration. v. Cultivate talent with high technical quality. vi. Stress the creative research and development of industry-academia cooperation. 2 Youth Education and Employment Savings Account Program To encourage general and vocational high school students to explore professional opportunities at work and internationally and to learn more about future goals, the MOE launched the “Youth Education and Employment Savings Account Program” in 2017. This project comprises two parts: the “Youth Employment Pilot Program” and the “Youth Experiential Learning Program.” With the former, recipients will receive a monthly subsidy of NT$10,000 for no more than three years as a form of support in employment, education, or starting up a business. Applicants to the “Youth Experiential Learning Program” will have the opportunity to explore life’s paths by volunteering and travelling. 3 Industry-Academia Cooperation Program 2.0 To combine technical and vocational education’s academic advancement and employment channels, the MOE works with the Ministry of Labor and Ministry of Economic Affairs to expand and promote the “IndustryAcademia Cooperation Program 2.0.” The program has technical and vocational high schools, technical colleges, and enterprises work together, consolidating rewards and resources while providing incentives such as funding and student scholarships and stipends to encourage technical and vocational high school students to enroll in technical colleges and become employees, achieving the goal of having enterprises and schools jointly cultivate talent. 4 Higher Technical and Vocational Education A. Characteristics i. Flexible study and recurrent education: there needs to be the

Technical and Vocational Education 26 27 possibility for flexible switching vertically and horizontally between school systems, while channels must be kept open for those who want to return to school. Both the youth and those who have already entered the workforce should be able at any stage find ways of studying on a level suitable for their specialized skills. ii. Private schools should be excellent and active: private schools play an important role in the development of Taiwan’s technical and vocational education system, as they realize an even closer integration between technical and vocational education on the one hand and business on the other. iii. Multiple school systems in close touch with industry: in addition to junior colleges, technical colleges and universities of science and technology (including graduate schools), the higher technical and vocational education system also includes continuing education departments, in-service education programs and continuing schools, showing the diversity and flexibility of this kind of education. iv. Practicality and usefulness of schooling: technical and vocational education give the most weight to the practical spirit. There are multiple means of admission, such as special achievement-based admission, and recommendation and screeningbased admission, which encourage talented students with technical superiority to continue their studies. v. Outstanding performance in international competitions: a characteristic of technical and vocational education is “learning from doing.” Hands-on practice enables the students to accumulate experience, as theory and practice are equally important. B. Key points to be strengthened i. Care of disadvantaged students ii. Admission quota control and multichannel admission iii. Actively raise the quality of teaching iv. Launch the evaluation of technical and vocational schools v. Cultivate talent with high technical quality vi. Stress the creative research and development of industry-academia cooperation vii. Promote the “Sustained Progress and Rise of Universities in Taiwan” and develop the diverse characteristics of schools viii. Encourage universities to implement their social responsibility decisions ix. Establish incubators for regional industries and technologies to promote cooperation between academia and industry x. Develop international cooperation and exchanges III Future Prospects Secondary and higher technical and vocational education should emphasize studying with practical action as its main element, offering the abilities necessary for practical work in the job market and linking up with local industries, cultivating relevant talent to promote local development and extension toward the international scene, and exchanging experiences and cooperating with the technical and vocational education systems of other countries. In addition, the education must take root, as well as implement the professional knowledge and curiosity of elementary and junior high schools in order to raise the attractiveness of technical and vocational education. The description is as follows: 1 To expand professional interest downward: Junior high schools can organize field trips and introduce the students to the workplace. They can also work with technical and vocational colleges and training institutions to open new courses. 2 To strengthen professional capabilities by practical orientation: The European Union (EU) and the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) promote learning with work as the main focus. This type of learning focuses on technical practice, and its core spirit stands close to professional practice. In other words, this type of learning integrates the resources of business and strengthens the concept of businesses and schools nurturing talent together. They can organize technical and vocational education together to make students understand what practical abilities are necessary, and they will supply the students with high-quality and highly relevant professional abilities. 3 To localize technical and vocational education and continuing education: the promotion of localized technical and vocational education should link up with local industry in order to cultivate the fit talent needed, which will in turn invigorate the development of local industry.

Technical and Vocational Education 28 29 4 Reach out into Southeast Asia and move on to the global scene: international exchanges and cooperation in technical and vocational education can develop separately from the national, local, and school levels. On the national level, one needs first to collect and analyze information systematically about the area or country that one wants to communicate with before establishing cooperative relations. At the local level, exchanges can begin from the characteristics of local industry. As for the school level, the main emphasis should be on encouraging local students to expand their international perspective and achieve fulfillment. Since 2017, the MOE has responded to the “New Southbound Policy” by expanding its training of technical and vocational talent from the relevant countries, encouraging bilateral exchanges, launching the “IndustryAcademia Collaboration Program for International Students,” the “Short-term Program of Technical Training for Foreign Youths,” and the “Short-term Program of Enhancing Professional Skills for Foreign Youths” from New Southbound Policy countries. Young students from the New Southbound Policy countries are being accepted within the excellent domain of domestic technical and vocational schools to accompany the country’s development in order to cultivate the necessary talent. In addition, the MOE rolled out “Credit Courses and Programs on Southeast Asian Languages and Industries,” “Professional Skills Improvement Training for Children of New Immigrants,” and “Southeast Asian Language Courses” that recruit domestic and international students. The students will have the ability in language of New Southbound countries, professional English, global views, business management and trade abilities, and other professional knowledge needed by industry so that they will be pioneers of cross-cultural exchange with New Southbound countries. Technical and Vocational Education in Taiwan Republic of China Interviewee: Cheng Ching-min Dean, College of Technology and Engineering, National Taiwan Normal University Industry-Academia Cooperation Programgives students hands-on training, work experience at enterprises The “Industry-Academia Cooperation/ Collaboration Project” had its origins in 2006. At the time the Ministry of Education (MOE) combined the education channels of technical high schools and colleges and worked with the industrial sector to provide a solution to issues in educational advancement for technical school students as well as the lack of human resources within the industry. The program cultivates technical talent that met industry needs, forging an education model with a basis that encompassed student education and careers. In 2019, under the MOE’s guidance, the Taiwan Casting Industry Association worked with National Huwei Agricultural and Industrial Vocational Senior High School, National Siluo Agricultural Industrial High School, and National Yunlin University of Science and Technology to establish the “Project of Intelligent Casting.” The program’s success led the association to propose doing the same in north Taiwan to cultivate casting talent. National Taiwan Normal University’s (NTNU) Department of Mechatronic Engineering became responsible for the program, making the school

the first non-technology university to offer a Smart Casting Industry-Academia Cooperation Program. To encourage students to participate in the Industry-Academia Cooperation Program 2.0, the full-time vocational high school students can receive a scholarship of NT$5,000 per month, and the receiving time is equal to the period of their corporate internship. The program also requires participating enterprises to hire students as employees rather than interns in order to ensure students’ benefits and continued employment at the same enterprise. To ensure students are equipped with technical skills in-demand within the industry, participating schools are required to plan curricula specifically around required knowledge and skills. To simplify the application process, the program consolidates the Ministry of Labor’s (MOL) “Dual System of Vocational Training Program” and “Industry-Academia-Training Cooperation Training Program ” as well as the K-12 Education Administration’s “Career-oriented Program.” Meanwhile, enterprises in the program receive training subsidies from the MOL, as well as extra points when the Ministry of Economic Affairs considers them for subsidies. According to Cheng, NTNU admitted 34 students in the 2021, from the New Taipei City Municipal New Taipei Industrial Vocational High School, New Taipei San-chung Commercial and Industrial Vocation High School, New Taipei Municipal Jui-Fang Industrial High School, Taipei Municipal Nangang Vocational High School, and Taipei Municipal Muzha Vocational High School. The Smart Casting Industry-Academia Cooperation Program’s structure had students working at enterprises from Monday to Thursday and attending classes on Friday and Saturday. One of the biggest challenges the school encountered while running the program was a gap in academic performance, Cheng said. Though students were first recommended by their high schools then interviewed by the Department of Mechatronic Engineering faculty and participating enterprises, the removal of an academic exam from the process meant their grades were not on par with students admitted to NTNU via college entrance exams. Despite a prior understanding of the circumstances, instructors still faced difficulty teaching and had to adjust the content and teachingmethods of courses. Still, some students had to exit the program after falling behind academically. So far, NTNU has run the pioneering Smart Casting Industry-Academia Cooperation Program under the MOE’s instruction twice, during the 2021 and 2023. As the school strives to help nurture talents in Taiwan and bridge the gap between academic studies and hands-on experience, it will continue working with the MOE to conduct the program with the goal of promoting local education, employment, and development. Higher Education I An Overview 1 Higher Education System Taiwan has excellent global competitiveness in spite of limited land and natural resources. The key reason is its quality human resources and higher education. Higher education institutions in Taiwan include two-year junior colleges, fiveyear junior colleges, and universities. Like most countries, the study period is four years for an undergraduate university degree, one to a maximum of four years for a master’s degree, and two to a maximum of seven years for a doctoral degree. 2 Faculty and Students The popularization of education has led to a rapid increase in the number of universities, colleges and students, although the figure has leveled off in recent decades. In SY2021, there were 149 universities, colleges and junior colleges, totaling 1,185,830 students. Reforms in teacher training have played an important part in the popularization of higher education. 30 31 Higher Education

Significant improvements in teacher quality can be attributed to policy adaptations and the newly implemented evaluation system. Currently, PhD degree holders account for over 80% of faculty in universities. II Expenditure To maintain competitiveness, Taiwan’s government has invested more than US$700 million in higher education annually over the past five years to encourage universities to enhance the quality of research and teaching. The results have been remarkable. III Major Objectives 26 of Taiwan’s universities were listed in the Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) World University Rankings 2022, with 10 listed among the top 500. Times Higher Education (THE) Ranking 2022 listed 43 universities in Taiwan, with seven universities ranking in top 500 in the past five years. According to the Essential Science Indicators (ESI) rankings in 2022, 52 universities in Taiwan entered the list of the world's top 1% of institutions (accounting for 32.7% of universities and colleges in Taiwan), spanning 20 research areas, which demonstrates that higher education in Taiwan is world-class. To spur universities to develop their individual characteristics, the MOE has actively promoted diversity and flexibility in higher education. Universities must cultivate, retain, and recruit top talent. Our international competitiveness will be increased by improving the quality of higher education and make great effort to diversify research areas. Bridging the gap between industry and academia and connection with local communities will enhance universities’ competence in R&D and encourage them to adhere to their social responsibilities. With the more flexible multiple entrance program in place, higher education is an extension of the 12-year Basic Education. The entrance program has been adjusted in order to adapt to self-directed and diversified learning. As the international competition for talent intensifies, the MOE has launched several projects to raise the overall quality of higher education and encourage the diversified development of universities: 1 Higher Education Sprout Project, equal emphasis on teaching and research: The government plans to invest NT$83.6 billion over five years in this project as a way to encourage universities to develop their own characteristics and innovative teaching techniques. This will assist universities to establish first-class research centers, become more reputable in the global academic community within their forte, and enjoywider-reaching influence internationally. 2 Yushan Project, incentives for top talent: The three measures under Yushan Project are “Yushan Fellows”, “Flexible wage payments,” and “10% Research Pay Raise for Full-time Higher Education 32 33