On Oct. 4, the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology announced an FY 2017 overview guideline for enrollment in national and public universities. According to the ministry, a record number of universities plan to admit students next year based on Admission Office (AO) decisions or on recommendations.
168 (+2) schools and 579 departments (+4) will offer entrance examinations. The number of students they admit in total will increase by 167 to 124,920, of which national universities are expected to accept 95,448 and public universities, 29,472.
The total acceptance by either AO decision or recommendation will be 23,531, accounting for almost 20% of all admissions. A ministry official involved in preparations of the overview analyzes that the increase reflects that a growing number of universities prefer to evaluate students from many angles as a whole personality, instead of separating one student from another according to the difference of a single point in a test score. (Abridged)