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An Educational Overview


Students may study, under the current education system, for up to 22 years, which includes 2 years of preschool education, 6 years of primary education, 3 years of junior high school, 3 years of senior high school, 4 to 7 years of college or university, 1 to 4 years for a master’s degree and 2 to 7 years for a doctoral degree.

Compulsory Education
A 9-year Compulsory Education system was put into effect in 1968, of which 6 years are for elementary education and 3 years are for junior high school. To offer more diverse opportunities for junior high school students, technical arts education is included as well. Practical classes allow students to better understand future vocation and career choices. Compulsory education will be extended to twelve years in 2014.

Senior High School and Vocational Education
This category includes senior high schools and vocational high schools and consists of three years of schooling. Senior high school includes “ordinary senior high schools,” “comprehensive senior high schools,” “magnet senior high schools,” and “experimental senior high schools.” Vocational high schools offer a special curriculum with general high school courses as well as classes in practical skills, classes in industry-related subjects, and cooperative education programs, all designed in line with the various needs of students for a balanced vocational education.

Junior College Education
Vocational school education can be classified according to admission requirements into 5-year junior colleges and 2-year junior colleges. 5-year junior colleges admit graduates of junior high schools, whereas 2-year junior colleges admit graduates of vocational high schools.

Teacher Education Programs
The teacher education system, comprising multiple providers, serves to screen potential teacher candidates and establish a pool of prospective teachers. Teachers who teach kindergarten, primary school, junior high school, and senior high school are trained in teachers colleges or universities with teacher training programs or centers. These institutions are also responsible for providing in-service training and guidance for local education practitioners.

University/College and Graduate School Education
The maximum study period for university education (including universities, colleges, universities of technology, and technical colleges) is 4 years (the Post-bachelor Second Specialty Program is 1-2 years, while the Associate Degree offered by technical colleges is usually 2 years), and internships can last one-half to 2 years depending on the needs of the subject. For Master’s Degree candidates, the study period is 1-4 years and for Doctoral Degree candidates the duration is 2-7 years.

Special Education
Special education institutions are established for students with mental and/or physical disabilities, and offer education at the levels of kindergarten, primary school (6 years), junior high school (3 years), and senior or vocational high school (3 years). Moreover, schools not exclusively dedicated to special education may also offer special education classes. Additionally, there are also resource rooms in universities to guide and to support students with disabilities.

Supplementary and Continuing Education
Supplementary and continuing education institutions provide extensive and comprehensive learning opportunities for the general public. This kind of education can be divided into general supplementary education, continuing education, and short-term supplementary education.