Jiamin Lai, Postgraduate Student,
Belarusian State Pedagogical University,
In the past, many people had the unequal concept of vocational education being inferior to others, and some even thought that students who read vocational education were students with poor grades or poor family conditions, so they needed to get employment as soon as possible after graduation to subsidize their family expenses. Every year, vocational education outputs a large number of excellent skilled talents for the rapid development of urban economic construction. These talents are not inferior to those who graduated from higher education after graduating from general high school. Secondary vocational students could only study in higher vocational colleges after graduating from secondary vocational schools. If they want to enter universities for higher education, they have to take the entrance examination after graduating from higher vocational colleges and pass the examination before they can enter universities for higher education. This system reduces the chances for vocational education students to study in higher education establishments. In order to change this situation, China has introduced a series of measures to promote the reform of vocational education, such as the National Vocational Education Reform Implementation Plan.
The promulgation of this policy has brought the development of vocational education to a new level. Local education departments have carried out a series of cooperation to promote the development of vocational education, such as the five-year linking-up training of secondary and higher vocational education, school-enterprise cooperation training, apprenticeship training and vocational education poverty alleviation in Tibet, etc. These researches on vocational education reform and innovation have played a role in promoting the development of vocational education .
Since the 18th National Congress of the Communist Party of China, especially since the promulgation of the National Vocational Education Reform Implementation Plan, it has been clearly stated in the plan that vocational education and general education have the same important status, and vocational education is a ‘type education’ different from ordinary education. Since 2019, vocational education at the undergraduate level has developed rapidly, breaking the ceiling that vocational education stops at the specialist level. Many students studying vocational education have more opportunities to receive higher undergraduate education, and even rank among the first-class universities in China. In 2020, all provinces in China have successively established the college entrance examination system for vocational education, and colleges and universities have increased the undergraduate enrollment plan for the college entrance examination for vocational education. Some provinces and cities have already started to try out the college entrance examination scheme for vocational education .
On April 12–13, 2021, the National Vocational Education Conference was held in Beijing, which ushered in another spring of vocational education development. At the meeting, General Secretary Xi Jinping gave work instructions to “speed up the construction of modern vocational education system and train more high-quality technical and technical talents”, and emphasized that the development prospect of vocational education is “promising and demanded” . However, compared with compulsory education and higher education with perfect education system, the structural system of vocational education is still in an imperfect state, especially the college entrance examination system of vocational education. In 2020, the implementation plan of vocational education reform in Sichuan Province was introduced and the system of vocational college entrance examination was be established improving the examination enrollment method of “cultural quality + vocational skills”.
In China, Cultural quality examination is a written test on one of theoretical subjects, like GCSE in the UK or SATs in the USA. China’s entrance examination method based on “cultural quality + vocational skills” actually has the same examination method in the college entrance examination for arts and sports . The cultural examination of art college entrance examination is the same as that of ordinary college entrance examination in June every year, and the content and difficulty of cultural examination are the same as those of ordinary liberal arts and science college entrance examination students. The art skill test has also become a unified art test, from December of the year before the college entrance examination to January of the year of the college entrance examination. Art candidates can know their art test scores about one month after taking the unified art test. If they are satisfied with their scores, they can go back to their high schools to study culture courses seriously. If they are dissatisfied with their scores or have a favorite university, they can take the school recruitment test organized by the university in March of the year of the college entrance examination, also known as single test and single move. However, different from the single examination in secondary vocational schools, the single examination in art schools has an undergraduate level, and does not need to take cultural courses. As long as the school examination time does not conflict, a student can apply for the single examination in many schools. However, secondary vocational school students currently take part in the school examination, which has great limitations. Taking Sichuan Province as an example, a secondary vocational school student can only apply for one school examination, which requires both written examination of cultural quality and skill interview. The written test of cultural quality is usually written by the school independently, and the examination subjects are Chinese, mathematics and English; Skills interview can be divided into structured interview and skills interview. Most students who apply for the same major examine their professional skills or ask questions about their major. For students who apply for the cross-major, structured interview is usually used to examine them. As far as Sichuan Province is concerned, most of the single examinations are limited to the college level, and there is no single examination at the undergraduate level.
Therefore, we claim that the vocational college entrance examination system in Sichuan Province can be established with reference to the art college entrance examination system. In order to promote the establishment of the college entrance examination system for vocational education in Sichuan Province, the following suggestions can be put forward: to establish a unified cultural quality examination “Chinese, Mathematics, Foreign Language + Professional Theory”; to establish and improve the skills test mode, the venues, facilities and equipment for skills examinations; to establish and improve the single test single move; to improve the admission and training policy.
1) A unified cultural quality examination “Chinese, Mathematics, Foreign Language+Professional Theory” mode. Compared with the previous secondary vocational schools, which only tested English and Chinese in a single exam, higher-level undergraduate education should pay more attention to students' professional cultural and theoretical knowledge. Colleges and universities should not only train skilled talents, but also hope to train dual-type talents with “skills+research”. The examination of vocational education should be different from the examination of pure culture in general high schools. It can adopt the cultural quality examination of “Chinese, Mathematics, Foreign Language + Professional Theory”, and participate in the national unified college entrance examination at the same time as ordinary high school students. It can also become an important basis for people to change their attitude towards vocational education.
2) The skills test mode. The college entrance examination of vocational education skills can be conducted in advance, and the unified examination of professional skills can be organized at the end of the first semester of Senior Three of secondary vocational school students. Because students studying in vocational education have different majors, they can formulate different skills examination systems according to different majors and score on the spot. And whether the candidates take the exam individually or collectively should be considered according to the nature of each professional skill. According to the survey, Hubei Province has carried out the pilot test of the college entrance examination for skills in 2011, taking the mechanical specialty as the reform pilot, holding the unified entrance examination for the whole province, and the cultural examination is synchronized with the ordinary college entrance examination, accounting for 30% of the scores. The examination content of skills major is turning, milling and fitter, accounting for 70% of the grade. In 2013, Hubei Province has increased to six majors, and the trial results can be seen .
3) The venues, facilities and equipment for skills examinations. In order to support the college entrance examination of vocational education skills, we first need to build venues that can provide examinations for various majors, which can set up examination venues and set up facilities and equipment for various majors in local secondary and higher vocational colleges. Some special majors can also cooperate with enterprises or factories, which provide venues and facilities and equipment for examinations.
4) Single test single move. According to the survey, there are no undergraduate colleges for secondary vocational school students who can take a single exam and recruit only. According to the spirit of General Secretary Xi Jinping’s important instructions on vocational education, it is pointed out that under the premise of consolidating the basic position of secondary vocational education, the main position of vocational education at the junior college level should be strengthened, and the pilot of vocational education at the undergraduate level should be steadily promoted . Therefore, it is in line with the development trend of vocational education reform to promote the single examination and single recruitment at the undergraduate level. Sichuan Province can combine the actual situation of the province, give priority to the unified examination of the whole province, and take the single examination and single recruitment as an auxiliary. Colleges and universities can take measures such as enrolling students in advance, training through middle and high schools, and increasing the enrollment plan of vocational college entrance examination, so that more secondary vocational students can attend ideal universities through vocational college entrance examination and promote the optimization of educational structure.
5) Entrance examination plus points or avoid admission policy. For some skilled talents in secondary vocational schools, such as students who have won awards in vocational skills competitions of municipal, provincial and national secondary vocational colleges, policy encouragement should be given, such as giving policy support to the total scores of college entrance examinations, and students who have won outstanding awards in national competitions can also connect with institutions of higher learning and be exempted from admission.
6) Promoting the medium and high vocational and medium undergraduate through training. At present, there have been much educational cooperation between secondary vocational schools and higher vocational colleges in Sichuan Province. For some majors, 3+2 secondary vocational schools have been trained for five years, while 3+4 secondary vocational schools and undergraduate courses are rarely trained. Therefore, we should promote applied undergraduate education based on long-term professional training, and improve the “3+4” counterpart training mode between vocational colleges and undergraduate universities and “3+2” counterpart training mode between secondary vocational schools and higher vocational schools.
Conclusion. China is in the early stage of vocational education reform, and it is necessary to constantly improve the vocational education system through exploration and practice. According to the national education system of Belarus, the vocational college entrance examination system has not been studied and implemented in Belarus. Therefore, we need to compare and learn from the merits of foreign vocational education college entrance examination system, grasp the future development direction of vocational education, build type education, deepen vocational education reform, and deeply study how to establish an effective, reasonable and feasible vocational education college entrance examination system in China, and gradually form a vocational education examination enrollment system with classified examination, comprehensive evaluation and multiple admissions.
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