Children climb a rope in a playground at Taipei Municipal Hushan Elementary School. (Chuang Kung-ju)
- Taiwan has implemented a 12-year compulsory education system since the 2014 school year.
- There are 144 universities and colleges in Taiwan.
Education is an important component of government policymaking and accounts for a large portion of the budget. With an increasing emphasis on attaining tertiary education, those with a technical college or university degree account for 45 percent of Taiwan’s population aged 15 and above, a 10 percentage point increase over the past decade.
To offer students a longer period of basic learning, the Ministry of Education extended compulsory education in Taiwan from nine to 12 years beginning in 2014. Every year in competitions such as the International Science Olympiad, young students from Taiwan win distinctions in biology, chemistry, earth sciences, mathematics and physics. The talent in Taiwan’s workforce has contributed tremendously to enhancing economic prosperity and quality of life.
In 2013, the MOE assumed responsibility for the Sports Affairs Council as part of the government’s efforts to better promote sport for all. Taipei hosted the 2017 Summer Universiade, one of the biggest sporting events ever staged in Taiwan.
Both government and university scholarships are available for international students. The Taiwan Scholarship Program, for instance, offers grants to students interested in Chinese studies, as well as those who wish to pursue undergraduate or graduate degrees in diverse fields. Interested applicants can contact the country’s embassies and representative offices or visit the MOE’s website: www.edu.tw
To encourage international students to learn Mandarin in Taiwan, the MOE established the Huayu Enrichment Scholarship. This program enables foreign students to undertake Mandarin courses at affiliated language training centers around the nation, while also boosting international awareness and understanding of Taiwan culture and society.
A list of university Mandarin training centers and information on learning the language in Taiwan can be found on the websites of the MOE, Study in Taiwan (www.studyintaiwan.org
) and the Office of Global Mandarin Education (ogme.edu.tw