S-Space College of Social Sciences (사회과학대학) Institute for Social Development and Policy Research (사회발전연구소) Development and Society Development and Society Vol.44 No.1/3 (2015)
The Irony of the Unchecked Growth of Higher Education in South Korea: Crystallization of Class Cleavages and Intensifying Status Competition
- Kim, Doohwan; Choi, Yool
- Issue Date
- Institute for Social Development and Policy Research, Center for Social Sciences, Seoul National University
- Development and Society, Vol.44 No.3, pp. 435-463
- inequality in higher education; higher education expansion; politicization of education; deregulation; educational stratification
- This study raises questions about the discrepancy between the praise for Korean education by international organizations and Koreans dissatisfaction with their education. First, the study identifies the main reason for the discrepancy as inequality at the level of higher education. To track down the formation of the current problem of educational inequality and excessive competition for status, the study evaluates the historical changes in South Koreas education system in the past several decades, focusing on the unchecked expansion of higher education. In doing so, the study shows how the aggregate decisions made by individuals and families, and the political dynamics of the past five decades have affected broad policy regarding educational stratification in South Korea. In the last section, the study presents what has been an empirical pattern of educational stratification in Korea reflecting all these social changes during the past five decades in Korea.