This conversation is closed.

Is Korean Education Good?

Here in Korea, almost every student gets private education. Starting from preschool, they are sent to private academies. Many children go to these academies everyday, where they study and bring back large amounts of homework. The academies start as soon as the school ends and end at 10~11 pm. Every month, about $1000 is spent on a child's private education.
Students do not have time to get enough exercise because of all the homework and schoolwork. Even in P.E, we learn about sports and how to play sports with our textbook, but we never really get to play them. Of course, we learn a lot from this kind of education. I know a preschooler who is already studying middle school math by private tutoring. However, I want to know- IS THIS REALLY HELPFUL, IS THIS BENEFICIAL?

  • thumb
    Apr 14 2013: North or South?
    • Apr 21 2013: south, of course
      i'm afraid north korea does not have such a big academy industry
  • Apr 17 2013: Korea has very few nateral resources and is very populated leaving little space for farming. This meens the only way for the country to progress is by business and industy. Its also a seriously competative culture. Education seems to be similar to business in Korea that it is more about attendance than ability.

    I've seen many Korean students show up to their hagwon (after school academy) and just sit through the class half asleep till the end. Then I'd go to try and make a bank transfer and have to wait almost an hour while the half concious bank teller tries to work out how to do that. In Korea that bank teller got his job bassed 100% on his university degree and he got into that univerisity purely based on his high school grades... it applies all the way back to pre school. Once they have their degree their is actually no pressure at all to do well, because everything is based on that degree.

    I believe that without changing the culture it is benificial to the individule becuase getting that degree is so important to getting a good job in Korea. and in Korean someones status is directly related to how successful they are at work. I think it's stressful for the children but not as stressful as been an adult without a degree in Korea! The actual class time tends to be quite sociable and interactive (form my experience) Koreans tend to never be on their own and are always in a group having fun and class room is often not an exception. I remember one student been really suprised that I'd not want to spend all my time studying and I realised that to her, it was an enjoyable activity.

    For the country. I hear that although the average Korea works much longer hours they are less productive than the average European. And the students tend to all be higher graded at academic subjects like Maths and Science but have a hard time when it comes to creative thinking and forming their own judgements. With the exception of you of course CheEun!
  • Apr 16 2013: What do you want from your education system?

    If it is content knowledge and rote skills, then yes, the system is probably a good one. If you want higher level thinking strategies, then maybe it isn't so good.

    The academies now, by law, must close at 10 p.m. and send the kids home or they can get shut down. This was instituted because kids were staying at the academies at all hours of the night to be "successful". If that is the type of system we want to be successful then yes. I for one think that it is to focused on content and to little on higher level thinking skills.
  • Apr 14 2013: Sounds like what the Japanese do. It seems to be working pretty well, but I wouldn't want to do that to a kid. Sounds like you're seeking the kind of results that prep schools get in this country if the kid doesn't get a nervous breakdown. My suggestion is that a kid concentrate on what he does well but have a life too. I mean in all of America we only produce about 1,000 PhD's a year in each of mathematics, physics, and chemistry. What is the average bright kid going to do? Does he benefit from all that stress?
  • thumb
    Apr 14 2013: You might want to do an internet search for statistics comparing the academic achievement of Koream students in comparison to students in other countries. It is unlikely that anyone here is actually a specialist in education in Korea.

    My reading of research on learning suggests that students of any age need some downtime to consolidate what they know and deliver it efficiently into longterm memory. Creativity also depends on downtime. So my instinct would be that the amount of structured time you describe is excessive for learning and creativity.