Is a legally independent university ranking system needed in Vietnam?
Thirty tertiary education establishments in Vietnam and ASEAN have been ranked and rated with stars in accordance with the UPM (University Performance Metrics) system by a research team from the Hanoi National University.
This is a product of the National Science and Technology Program for Educational Science chaired by the Ministry of Education and Training (MOET).
Prof Nguyen Huu Duc, the founder of the UPM research team
According to Prof Nguyen Huu Duc, the founder of the UPM research team, there are many university rankings in the world, but they only focus on research-oriented universities and the world’s 1,000 leading universities, which means that only 3 percent of universities are ranked.
As such, the remaining 97 percent, or 28,000 schools, remain uncared for, and their contributions to socio-economic development cannot be measured and recognized.
Therefore, UPM is designed with an aim to access the majority of universities. What UPM strives for is not the ranking, but a tool for universities to compare standards.
According to Duc, in modern times, universities are not only establishments which provide human resources, teach students and produce graduates who work at companies, but also creative entrepreneurs who create jobs for society.
|Universities, which in the past only served as creative centers and knowledge transfer centers, have become places for both creation and implementation and exploitation of knowledge.|
Universities, which in the past only served as creative centers and knowledge transfer centers, have become places for both creation and implementation and exploitation of knowledge.
Unlike the other university rankings which rank schools once every year, UPM serves as a quality accreditation tool.
“UPM has software to manage criteria and indicators for schools to manage and compare themselves,” Duc explained.
“If schools want, UPM will give support, consultancy and assessment, and publish the results. However, they must provide sufficient figures and proof,” he said.
The Hanoi University of Pharmacy (HUP) was one of the 30 universities first assessed with the UPM system and it got 4 stars.
HUP’s Vice Rector Dinh Thi Thanh Hai said the rating is like an accreditation which helps the school detect its weak and strong points.
“I think the criteria set by UPM are really practical,” Hai said. “We are referring the standards and criteria that UPM sets to build the development strategy of the school."
Dr Vo Sy Manh from the Hanoi Foreign Trade University said shortcomings always exist in every ranking, but it is undeniable that UPM can bring specific value.
“UPM is a fairly close evaluation system that not only includes basic elements like the ones in existing ranking systems, but also attaches importance to future trends such as innovation, startup ecosystems and digital transformation,” he said.
Le Truong Tung, president of FPT University, suggested that the research team should set up a legal entity so that the rating has a higher legal level.
The agro-forestry faculty of Can Tho University was ranked first in Vietnam and in the 251-300 group of the QS World University Rankings by Subject.
The Vietnam National University-Hanoi (VNU) on August 18 launched a higher education comparative ranking system developed by Vietnam named “University Performance Metrics” (UPM).