​​​Private universities urged to seek cooperation to improve quality hinh anh 1Minister of Education and Training Phung Xuan Nha, during a visit to Van Hien University in HCM City, encourages all universities to enhance their brand name by improving quality.(Photo: VNA)

HCM City (VNS/VNA) - The Association of Vietnam Universities and Colleges should become a link to connect private universities with each other and with public universities to help improve training quality.

Speaking at a conference on private universities’ existing problems, policies needing to be amended and co-operation chances held recently in Ho Chi Minh City, Prof. Dr. Tran Trung, Vice Rector of Hanoi-based Hoa Binh University, said private universities should cooperate with each other to improve their quality.

“There is currently no cooperation between universities, whether private or public. They, for instance, could cooperate in training programmes,” he said.

They should define their strengths and weaknesses and identify where to cooperate with each other, he added.

Dr. Truong Quang Mui, chairman of the board of directors of Sai Gon Technology University, said: “Cooperation is vital in current times to help develop a high-quality system of private universities. They should cooperate for a win-win situation.”

They could cooperate to help transfer their students between each other, he said.

Dr. Phan Ngoc Son, Rector of the Dong Nai Technology University, told Vietnam News: “Universities share their good professors with each other, meaning professors of one university are able to teach at another. It is wasteful for them to teach at only one university. A common target of the cooperation is to train students to meet enterprises’ requirements after graduating.”

Many universities have tied up with counterparts in other countries to exchange training programmes and lecturers while there is no such cooperation within the country, according to Son.

Online teaching makes such cooperation more convenient.

Hoang Van Cuong, director of the International Student Exchange Centre at FPT University, said universities, including private ones, should cooperate with those in other countries for student exchanges like his university.

The number of international students coming to the university had increased to 819 this year from 460 in 2016, he said.

"Public universities have strength in basic sciences and research and so they should focus on enrolment to these streams," they said.

They also called for enacting a law regulating private universities. 

According to Associate Prof. Dr. Tran Quang Quy, Vice Chairman of the Association of Vietnam Universities and Colleges, 30 years after the first private university was opened, the country now has 60 of them, or a quarter of the country’s total number. 

They have trained nearly 300,000 students, accounting for 15.7 percent of the total number.

The rate is expected to increase to 40 percent by 2020.-VNS/VNA