One Story, Differently Told: What Went Wrong in the Competence-Based Schools

Sunday, 10 July 2016: 11:09
Location: Hörsaal 47 (Main Building)
Oral Presentation
Chun-wen LIN, National Chiayi University, Taiwan
For many years in educational systems worldwide, not falling behind, if not standing out, in global economy competition has been attached a highest priority. Taiwan made no exception; however, in the ‘competence’ rush came the dilemmas. For one thing, educational equality has been compromised to the extent that the competent students, very often from upper-middle classes, got a lot more so, and the incompetent even more incompetent in, say, communication (in foreign language and in mother tongue as well) and leadership. For the other, due to the emphasis on competition, the once long-held Confucian values, for example, humility and benevolence, have been greatly eroded. Students nowadays have become success-driven and for that matter, individualistic.

This study took a look at how 20 Taiwan college students, at the age of twenty or so, have seen themselves changed by the schooling that focused on competence and competition, among many others of course. To do that, biographic interviews have been made, with questions like 1) how do you evaluate your academic performances and make future study/career plans accordingly? And 2) what do you foresee yourself after another two years, 2016 to be specific? Based on the interview results, what and how students have had in competition-filled schools (all the way from junior high and senior high) would be delineated, and some moral significances of social class proposed.