The innovation in educational assessments will make a breakthrough for education renewal, said Nguyen Minh Hien, Deputy Minister of Education and Training, during an online discussion.

The online talk, held by the Vietnam Government Portal on December 4, focused on creating new examinations and solutions for extra-classes.

Deputy Minister Hien said the innovation in education assessments will include new examination methods to be applied for entire education system and new quality evaluations in provinces and training units.

He said such innovation will, in return, have effects on teaching methods. "Changes in examination methods will result in changes in teaching and learning methods," he said.

The current education assessments still have many shortcomings, the deputy minister added, saying that it forces students to memorise knowledge, rather than critical thinking.

Regarding the new method for university entrance exams, Dinh Xuan Khoa, Head of Vinh University in central Vinh city, said such methods will be of practical benefit for both students and universities.

Under the plan being drafted by the Ministry of Education and Training, universities would themselves decide whether to organise entrance exams, or they would enroll students after considering their learning records.

"The reform method will save us from 70 to 100 billion VND (up to 4.7 million USD)," Khoa said.

Van Nhu Cuong, headmaster of Luong The Vinh Private High School, said such methods should have been applied earlier.

Many participants at the discussion also expressed their prefered open tests, saying that such tests will encourage students to improve their comprehensive skills.

Regarding the issue of extra-classes, Deputy Minister Hien confirmed extra-class will still exist due to demand from students.

He added that open exams, along with changes in training methods, will gradually eliminate useless extra-classes.

Van Nhu Cuong said extra-classes have their own positive impacts, but useless extra-classes must be eliminated and useful ones encouraged.

He said a survey needed to be carried out to determine the demand for extra-classes and who wants them.

Once students acquired all necessary knowledge at school, they won't have the need to have extra-classes, Cuong said.

Last month, the Communist Party of Vietnam Central Committee adopted a resolution on the fundamental and comprehensive reform of education and training.

The resolution covers a wide range of renovations relating to all educational activities. The key measures cover education management, developing teaching staff and renovating testing and assessment methods.

Renovation of testing and assessments is considered a breakthrough measure because it will control and change all other educational activities ./.-VNA