UP to 'reinvent' UPCAT for K to 12 graduates
MANILA, Philippines – As part of its K to 12 roadmap, the University of the Philippines (UP) is set to "reinvent" its College Admission Test (UPCAT) to assess higher skills of senior high school graduates.
"UPCAT, our admissions exam in UP, will be reinvented to be able to assess higher skills: knowledge, values, skills and competencies of our senior high school graduates from grade 12," UP Vice President for Academic Affairs Gisela Concepcion said on Tuesday, April 14.
UPCAT is considered one of the most competitive college entrance exams in the country, and tens of thousands of students each year vie for a coveted slot in the country's premier state university.
With the signing of the Enhanced Basic Education Act of 2013, two years have been added to the basic education system of the Philippines. (INFOGRAPHIC: 10 things about K to 12)
About 1.2 million to 1.6 million students under the program will enter senior high school's grade 11 in 2016, and grade 12 in 2017.
Because of this, higher education institutions expect a drop in enrollment during these two years all the way to school year 2021-2022 when things are expected to normalize.
The review of the admission system is one of the medium-term goals in UP's K to 12 roadmap.
During consultations with UP constituent units, the following suggestions on admission came up:
- Conduct a two-stage admission through UPCAT and a track test.
- Conduct a program-specific exam on top of the UPCAT.
- Prepare a position paper for the government to re-establish an assessment exam for K to 12 graduates beginning 2018
There is also a proposal from UP President Alfredo Pascual himself to review UPCAT and its questions to make it "less achievement-based and more aptitude-based to identify geniuses from all walks of life...the bright students from poor families."
It was announced in 2014 that UP will offer an online UPCAT review this year to give more aspiring Iskolar ng Bayan (state scholars) a chance to get quality state education.
Aside from its K to 12 roadmap, UP has also committed to help train public school teachers who will teach in senior high school starting 2016. – Rappler.com