Cultivation of Future Talent with Creative Education

  • Cultivating One-million-strong Digital Talent
    • To cultivate key talent equipped with digital and AI skills in the fields of new industries and leading-edge technologies in a timely manner
    • To create an educational environment conducive to software computing, AI and digital technology in the face of the 4th Industrial Revolution
    Programs & Activities
    • Cultivation of Digital Talent:

      Human capital both in and out of universities and colleges will be utilized to nurture talent in the fields of digital technology, metaverse and semi-conductors.

      • Leading-edge departments and courses will be wither launched or expanded by diverting the unfilled vacancies in college enrollment quota; the standard for graduate school enrollment quota will be adjusted more flexibly; and a basic plan for human resources development in newly emerging fields will be developed, responsive to higher education policies.
      • In order to support college students who aspire to work in the digital sector, intensive boot camps will be offered on campus; interdisciplinary courses will be developed, tailored to various industrial demands; and university networks will be activated.
    • Teacher Capacity-Building in Software Computing and AI:

      AI-focused initial teacher training curricula will be developed for pre-service teachers; in-service teacher training will be revised to reflect different life cycle needs; and teacher supply and demand for ICT subjects will be adjusted to be kept at an appropriate level.

      • In order to keep the number of teachers to the most desirable level in line with demand for ICT subjects and to make good use of ICT experts, initial teacher training courses and programs will be revised for improvement.
    • Mainstreaming Software Computing and AI Education in Primary and Secondary School Curricula:

      The school curricula will be fully revised to introduce digital-based education, including by expanding lesson hours for ICT education, encouraging the use of edu-tech, and developing educational content which incorporates leading-edge technologies.

      • Schools for the gifted will begin operation, focusing on educating those excel in software computing and AI; and more Meister High Schools will be open.
    • Narrowing Digital Education Gaps:

      Digital Tutors will be available to help narrow educational gaps in students from as early as the primary education level, and "Digital Trouble-shooting Centers (tbc)" will be operated to help students upgrade their digital skills throughout their life cycle.

      • K-MOOC will be expanded to cover a broader range of fields such as AI, multi-literacy education, and software computing and AI education for the gifted students from low-income households.
    • Infrastructure for Digital Talent Development:

      To transform school facilities to a smart learning environment, an integrated digital teaching and learning platform will be created, and Digital Badge will be granted to allow learners to keep their records of education, experience and qualifications more conveniently.

      • The National Plan for Human Resources Development will be established (and the Human Resources Development Committee will also be created), and data relevance and infrastructure pertinent to statistics will be further improved across all ministries.
    • Strengthening Public-Private Partnership:

      The formation of "Digital Talent Alliance" will encourage private companies to develop educational programs connected to employment. In addition, K-Digital Global Networks will be formed by tapping into the great pool of both domestic and international talent.

    Expected Outcomes
    • By 2027, one-million digital talent will be cultivated to contribute to further advancing the national competitiveness.
    • All citizens will be equipped with digital and AI capabilities to acclimate to the new digital society.
  • Learning Innovation to Foster All as Future Talent
    • To train and produce future talent equipped with key future skills by innovating education with state-of-the-art technologies such as AI.
    • To better support the learning process of individual students, the government will take up a stronger sense of responsibility to help lay out their pathways for career-building in the future.
    Programs & Activities
    • Reforming College Admissions Scheme:

      A department will be newly established, dedicated to probing incongruities in college admissions to counteract any cases of malpractice, and the college admissions pathways will be simplified to be conducted in a balanced manner.

      • The college admissions system will be revised to fully reflect various educational demands and societal changes (by Feb. 2024).
    • Curriculum Reform to Cultivate All Students as Key Future Talent:

      The national curricula for primary and secondary education will be reformed to put emphasis on key skills of the future, such as creativity, digital literacy, and problem-solving ability.

      • The progress of the High School Credit System will be closely monitored and additional measures will be devised to further improve the system; "Online High School (tbc)" will be open to offer programs difficult to be provided by brick-and-mortar schools.
      • Along with the efforts to diversify school curricula, the entire high school system will be reformed to bring a variety of schools into play.
    • Advancement of Basic Academic Skills Based on AI:

      AI-powered customized learning and academic diagnosis tools will become available for students, and each student will receive customized academic support in alignment with their own characteristics.

      • Supporting personnel will be available to help students with both on- and offline basic education, and more schools will allow cooperative classes, and multi-layered support teams will also be more widely available.
    • Producing Multi-Disciplinary Future Talent:

      Liberal arts programs at college will be innovated and multi-disciplinary research will be expanded. In addition, integrated educational programs which converge software computing and AI will be developed to train and produce multi-disciplinary talent of the future.

      • The international competitiveness of Korean higher education institutions will be advanced, while more international students will be attracted to study in Korean universities as a means of training and producing future global talent.
    • Bringing Down Private Tutoring and Learning Gaps:

      With the use of AI-driven learning systems and metaverse which offer customized learning experience to users, private tutoring will be curtailed and the learning loss caused by the COVID-19 pandemic will also be alleviated.

    • Establishment of Platforms to Manage Personal Learning Experience:

      Personal learning portfolio which allows students to keep their records of career exploration, learning history and job-seeking efforts will all be managed under one platform, "My Portfolio (tbc)".

    Expected Outcomes
    • The education system will be shifted toward the future in ways that support the growth of all students with the provision of tailored learning opportunities.
  • Greater College Autonomy Leads to Dynamic Innovation Hubs
    • To successfully respond to the 4th Industrial Revolution with autonomous innovation and flexible management of academic systems by higher education institutions
    • To create a startup-friendly environment in colleges with the use of their own technological resources, and to strengthen entrepreneurship education on campus.
    Programs & Activities
    • University Regulation Reform:

      University evaluation systems will be revised to facilitate their autonomous development, while regulations on the four major issues in the higher education sector (i.e. school building, land, faculty and permanent property for profit) will be reformed in an innovative fashion.

      • A committee will be created to continue to explore and further improve university regulation.
    • Flexible academic systems:

      The following programs will be created to offer tailored academic experience to meet individual student demands: online undergraduate courses in the fields of leading-edge technologies in general colleges; integrated courses of bachelor's, master's, and doctoral programs; fast-track courses for bachelor's and master's programs; and micro ("nano") degree courses.

      • Leading universities will be selected and supported to serve as innovation centers for multi-disciplinary education and human resources development as they run their academic programs flexibly and relevant to student needs; and policies will be introduced to widely promote the "recognition of prior learning" by colleges for adult learners.
    • Startup-Friendly Environment on Campus:

      Universities will be used as local startup outposts by designating "hub universities for entrepreneurial education" and "leading universities for startup lab activities".

      • Entrepreneurship will be promoted on campus by laying the startup-conducive foundation: technology development → technology sophistication → commercialization; an office, equipment and funding for starting up a business will be provided; and platforms for online startup education will be established.
    • Improving Substandard Higher Education Institutions:

      By carrying out financial evaluation on higher education institutions, at-risk universities can be detected and supported to help improve their finance by introducing a special new law on supporting structural improvement of private universities.

      • The higher education system will be improved to quickly normalize those higher education institutions that are currently run by provisional executive directors due to their substandard operational practices.
    Expected Outcomes
    • The higher education system will be shifted toward innovation to flexibly respond to societal and technological changes.
    • On-campus startups will be reinvigorated to contribute to the creation of new values and societal development
  • Greater Government Responsibility over Education to Resolve Educational Gaps
    • To increase the government's responsibility for education and childcare to guarantee the happiness and growth of all children.
    • To resolve educational gaps by offering tailored education for all citizens without anyone being left out and providing lifelong learning opportunities.
    Programs & Activities
    • Integration of early childhood education and childcare:

      A supporting group will be created consisting of relevant ministries to phase in the integration of early childhood education and childcare, and a wider range of after-school programs will become available (i.e. childcare programs) to cover more hours (i.e. weekends and evenings, etc).

      • The treatment for teachers will be improved at private kindergartens, and the link between the curricula at kindergartens and primary schools will be strengthened to increase relevance.
    • Introduction of All-Day Primary School Education:

      "All-day primary schools" will begin to allow all students to participate in after-school educational activities, and the working hours of after-school childcare classes will be expanded to 8pm.

      • An integrated platform will be established to effectively connect the information on childcare programs available at kindergartens and primary schools, and to provide services (starting in 2024).
    • Tackling Blind Spots in Education:

      Students will be offered consolidated support to meet their needs, and their individual cases will be managed systematically by 2026 (e.g. educational welfare, basic academic levels, identifying and helping at-risk students, etc.).

      • When it comes to students who require more specific assistance, for example students with disabilities, students with multicultural backgrounds and North Korean defectors, they will be offered more fine-tuned support to cater to their specific needs.
    • Reducing Teachers' Workload:

      The overall amount of administrative workload will be reduced by readjusting the role of schools and provincial offices of education, and by establishing integrated support centers to have them assist various educational activities taking place in schools.

      • A mid- to long-term plan for teacher supply and demand will be devised, which is required to implement new educational policies, including the training of digital talent and narrowing educational gaps as well as improving the system of leading teachers and expanding their appointment.
    • Guaranteeing Lifelong Learning Opportunities:

      An innovation plan for developing all citizens' lifelong learning capacity will be developed by 2022, and the lifelong education vouchers will be expanded to cover all citizens by 2027.

      • "Citizens' Lifelong Learning Site (tbc)" will be created to help adult learners manage their track records of learning, qualifications and career paths.
    Expected Outcomes
    • All children and youth will be given quality educational opportunity and childcare burden on parents will also be reduced.
    • A flexible lifelong learning environment will be created in alignment with societal changes of the future.
  • The Era of Local Universities and Colleges
    • To create a conducive environment for fostering local talent and regional development by linking local communities and higher education institutions to promote stronger cooperation.
    • To stimulate lifelong and vocational education to allow every citizen to continue to develop their capacities throughout their lives.
    Programs & Activities
    • Greater Authority for Local Governments:

      More autonomy and responsibility will given to local governments over the operation of local colleges.

      • The administrative and financial authority over local colleges will be shifted from the central government to local governments, and local higher education committees (tbc) will be created, in which local governments, local colleges, and local industries will participate.
    • Investment Contract System for Local Talent Development:

      Investment contracts to cultivate local talent will be signed between the central government and local government, under which local industries, colleges and provincial offices of education will cooperate for the development of local human resource, starting in 2023.

      • More regional innovation platforms will be created around the country, based on cooperation between local governments and local colleges, and "Higher Education Innovation Specialized Regions" will also be created, especially in non-metropolitan areas. The Specialized Regions will preferentially allow the easing of regulations in consideration of the specificities of different regions.
    • Demand-Responsive Education:

      A one-stop service model ("WE-Meet") which encompasses career exploration, education and training, and job-seeking activities will be established to offer support responsive to local industrial demands; and "vocational education innovation zones" will be created to cultivate local high school graduates into highly-skilled workforce (i.e. 17 zones by 2026).

    • Promotion of Local Hub Universities (and Graduate Schools):

      Local universities and colleges will be encouraged to serve as research hubs, from which a pool of outstanding researchers can be cultivated locally; and the role of national university hospitals will be highlighted as the leading local public medical service providers.

    • Academic-Industry Cooperation and Lifelong Education:

      Contract-to-hire courses will be expanded to stimulate early employment; and community-based lifelong learning and vocational education will be provided on a cyclical manner at local colleges.

    • Greater Role of 2-year Colleges as Lifelong Education Institutions:

      Two-year colleges will be designated and operated as vocational education institutions to produce highly-skilled workforce (2023); and Meister Colleges will receive increased support.

      • Junior college co-ops will be expanded and revised for more effective academic lessons and field-based training; and integrated curricula of vocational high schools and junior colleges will serve as a fast-track to working in newly-emerging fields of technology.
    Expected Outcomes
    • Regional crisis will be overcome and local talent will be secured based on cooperation among colleges, local governments and industries.
    • Difficulties experienced by both job-seekers and those employed will be addressed, and capacity for new technologies will be strengthened at the turn of a major industrial transition.