Decreasing admission rates in ‘good’ public universities becoming a problem: CHED

Commission on Higher Education Chairman Popoy De Vera on Monday, Sept. 18, said that the decreasing admission rates in “good” public higher education institutions (HEIs) are becoming a “problem” as the country endeavors to address issues on access to quality tertiary education.

(Courtesy of CHED) 

“Ang problema na natin ngayon, yung admission rate ng magagaling na public universities ay pababa ng pababa kasi dumadami yung gustong mag-exam, gustong mag-enroll pero yung capacity nila na tumanggap ng mga freshman ay limitado (The problem we are facing now is that the admission rate of excellent public universities is decreasing because more and more people want to take the entrance exam and enroll, but their capacity to accept freshmen is limited),” De Vera said in the Bagong Pilipinas Ngayon public briefing.

De Vera cited the University of the Philippines College Admission Test (UPCAT), for instance, wherein at least 100,000 students apply but only 14,500 are accepted.

The same trend is also observed in the Polytechnic University of the Philippines (PUP) wherein 15 to 20 percent of those who took the entrance test are accepted.

“Yung magagaling natin na public schools in different parts of the country, less than 50 percent na ang natatanggap (Our excellent public schools in different parts of the country are now accepting less than 50 percent of applicants),” he added.

This trend, he noted, reflects that the message of the government and CHED that young people can pursue higher education “is now a reality for most Filipinos.”

Meanwhile, De Vera shared CHED’s accomplishments, especially in the implementation of the Universal Access to Quality Tertiary Education Act (UAQTEA) or Free Higher Education.

“Before, the participation rate or the percentage of university-aged students who are actually enrolled in universities was only 32 percent,” De Vera said. “We’ve increased that to 41 percent because of free higher ed,” he added.


With this, De Vera said that the Philippines is “now comparable to other countries in the region” because access to higher education is no longer an issue. What the country needs to focus on, he added, is “access to quality education.”