Wes Fryer's post A contrary view of education and NCLB is a well articulated rebuttal to President Bush's remarks on education in his State of the Union address this week. I left a comment on Wes' post that contrasts the education systems here and there, in particular the emphasis on testing. ,I decided to pull together a few old posts in case people in the US wanted a little more information about the university entrance exams (ÖSS) here. Call it a distant mirror.
TED establishes foundation for a new university (Feb 2007). Far more university candidates than openings causes severe competition in the ÖSS, so that fractions of points can make or break a student's chance for the school or major of her choice.
Education news from Turkey (Dec 2006). Money spent on the entrance exam and in exam prep courses is nearly one-third of the amount spent on higher education itself, and that more and more high school students see secondary education as a vehicle to exam success rather than as education per se.
(Translated from Turkish) The value of a life gains 15 minutes (May 2006). Research by the Turkish Education Association shows that in the last nine years, the number of private ÖSS exam prep institutes increased by 154%, and the number of students enrolled in these institutes increased by 198%. Of these students, 43.7% considered the quality of instruction at these institutes to be acceptible, and 48.1% of students said that passing the ÖSS without attending one of these institutes would be very difficult.