Bill passes to ease university admission for naturalized citizens

11/26/2019 08:26 PM
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CNA file photo for illustrative purposes only
CNA file photo for illustrative purposes only

Taipei, Nov. 26 (CNA) An amendment to the University Act that would allow naturalized Taiwanese citizens to apply to universities under a special admissions system similar to the one for overseas Chinese or foreign students passed the Legislative Yuan Tuesday.

According to the author of the legislation, ruling Democratic Progressive Party lawmaker Lee Li-feng (李麗芬), naturalized citizens who take Taiwan's standardized university entrance exams are often at a disadvantage because they might lack Chinese language ability.

Currently, under Article 25 of the University Act, certain categories of students, such as overseas Chinese and foreign students, can be admitted to local universities with exemptions from the entrance requirements that govern the admissions process for Taiwanese students.

Students in such categories are handled according to separate Ministry of Education (MOE) regulations.

However, the law does not offer such exemptions to naturalized citizens, resulting in what Lee called the "very strange situation" in which it is more difficult for immigrants to get into university once they become Taiwanese citizens.

The version of the bill passed Tuesday would extend the Article 25 exemptions to those who have received approval to be naturalized as citizens, while specifics, including admission procedures, quotas and requirements, would be set by the MOE.

(By Fan Cheng-hsiang and Matthew Mazzetta)

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