Ministry of Education
Department of Higher Education
(Lower Myanmar)

Education System in Myanmar :
Self-Evaluation and Future Plans

5. Evaluation of current implementation situation

When reviewing, the implementation of the long term education development plans and the short-term education development plans will be discussed as follows:

5.1 Regular System

The Myanmar higher education system consists of 3-1-2 structure – 3 years for the Bachelor Degree, 1 year for the Qualifying class and 2 years for the Master’s Degree. Starting from the 2011-2012 academic year, the 3-year degree courses will be expanded to 4-year-degree courses in all universities and colleges under the Ministry of Education. After obtaining a bachelor degree, those who are qualified can proceed to the Master’s Degree, and those who pass the PhD entrance examination can attend the PhD Preliminary course for one year and conduct researches for 4 years. As more programmes were initiated and the number of universities increases, more students have access to tertiary education. With an increasing number of universities, the number of ICT centres also increases. An increase in the number of ICT centres enables students to make use of ICT facilities. Moreover, arrangements have been made for students to participate in various sports competitions. As regards English language learning, English skills competitions are held for students and as a result, students who are quite proficient in English have opportunities to participate in competitions on public speaking such as impromptu talk competition, and debate competition and so their proficiency improved a great deal. With regard to the teaching learning approach, it can be seen that the teacher-centred approach is used by most teachers instead of the student-centered approach. As a result, the majority of students lack conceptual thinking skills. Moreover, the assessment system that requires students to reproduce what they have learnt by heart makes students more keen on rote-learning. Moreover, since some curriculums and syllabuses were not drawn up to reflect their professional needs, many graduates lack the specific skills they need in workplaces.

5.2 Distance Education System

The Myanmar higher education system consists of 3-1-2 structure – 3 years for the Bachelor Degree, 1 year for the Qualifying class and 2 years for the Master’s Degree. Starting from the 2011-2012 academic year, the 3-year degree courses will be expanded to 4-year-degree courses in all universities and colleges under the Ministry of Education. After obtaining a bachelor degree, those who are qualified can proceed to the Master’s Degree, and those who pass the PhD entrance examination can attend the PhD Preliminary course for one year and conduct researches for 4 years. As more programmes were initiated and the number of universities increases, more students have access to tertiary education. With an increasing number of universities, the number of ICT centres also increases. An increase in the number of ICT centres enables students to make use of ICT facilities. Moreover, arrangements have been made for students to participate in various sports competitions. As regards English language learning, English skills competitions are held for students and as a result, students who are quite proficient in English have opportunities to participate in competitions on public speaking such as impromptu talk competition, and debate competition and so their proficiency improved a great deal. With regard to the teaching learning approach, it can be seen that the teacher-centred approach is used by most teachers instead of the student-centered approach. As a result, the majority of students lack conceptual thinking skills. Moreover, the assessment system that requires students to reproduce what they have learnt by heart makes students more keen on rote-learning. Moreover, since some curriculums and syllabuses were not drawn up to reflect their professional needs, many graduates lack the specific skills they need in workplaces.

5.3 Special Courses (HRD Programmes)

Besides the regular education system and Distance Education System, special courses and on-demand human resource development courses that provide specialized skills and knowledge are also offered in higher education institutions. HRD courses are offered in parallel to the regular programmes at higher education institutions in order to produce highly qualified human resources needed by a modernizing economy. Master’s degree, degree, postgraduate and undergraduate diploma and certificate courses are offered and the number of HRD courses offered is 193. Morning, evening and weekend classes have been opened to cater to the professional needs of those in service.

5.4 Scholarship

With respect to scholarship programmes, the higher education sector promotes collaborations with foreign universities and institutions. In 2011, a total of 136 scholars were sent abroad: 9 scholars for PhD, 3 for research, 36 for training courses, 9 for study tour and 79 for attending seminars and workshops