Report on integration of biology and medicine

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Belarusian President Aleksandr Lukashenko heard out a report on the integration of biology and medicine on 16 June.

Taking part in the meeting were Healthcare Minister Dmitry Pinevich, Education Minister Andrei Ivanets, as well as Belarusian State University Rector Andrei Korol and Dean of the Faculty of Biology of this university Vadim Demidchik.

The participants of the meeting discussed ways to improve the form of admission tests to universities, since centralized testing has both advantages and disadvantages.

“This problem bothers me all the time. To be honest, I can’t sleep because of this centralized testing as I keep asking myself whether this is an efficient way to select the best enrollees. Frankly speaking, I’m very critical of this form of entrance exams for our young people. Yet, we see that centralized testing has a lot of strong sides. So what are we going to do now? This year we need to finally make up our mind,” the President said.

Aleksandr Lukashenko explained why he invited the rector of Belarusian State University and the dean of the Faculty of Biology to the meeting: “We tried (you were also involved in it, but we will not reveal the method we used yet) to select the best students to take up science, primarily, healthcare, biology, and other disciplines. We tried other methods, too. Naturally, we are talking about a small number of people. I am sure that the best of them made the cut. After all, those who were considered had already won various competitions in their subjects. These students are high-flyers. We should retain them for the country. The first results of the work are already available.”

According to the President, this experience is important because it helps build a better understanding of how to move on. “In other words, we should come up with the most optimal form of entrance examinations. We moved away from admission interviews (something that we had to take to get enrolled) and we arrived at centralized testing. We realized that each form of admission tests has its strong and weak sides. We should make up our mind about it by the end of the year and announce our decision to the public next year. University admission is a very important issue. It is very important to decide how we will approach it next year. You are involved in this matter, all four of you, more than anyone else. We need to bring in more experts, consult and make up our mind,” the Belarusian leader said.

Aleksandr Lukashenko asked for a brief report on the course of the admission process. “What is happening there at this stage, do you have any questions? Maybe someone has proposals in this regard? I know that about 62,000 people signed up for centralized testing,” he said.