At this time many Indonesian students continue the higher education in various universities in Australia to obtain academic degrees such as Bachelor, Master or Doctorate. My three cousin and several other relatives also continue the higher education in Australia after finished Senior High School in Indonesia.
But I was startled after knowing the news from Antara News that the policy of Directorate General of Higher Education (Department of National Education) is to equalize Bachelor degree from several universities in Australia only equal to the Diploma 3 degree (D-3) in Indonesia. This policy was determined on 01 July 2009 within the Peraturan Direktur Jendral Pendidikan Tinggi (regulation of Directorate General of Higher Education) Nomor:82/DIKTI/Kep/2009 concerning the certificate assessment guidelines of foreign college graduate. This regulation was followed up with the surat edaran Direktur Akademik (circularize letter from Academic Director) No: 1850.1/D2.5/2009. At point no.2 of the letter was mentioned the list of the certificate equivalency of foreign college graduate. Click here to download these list from the website of Directorat Jendral Pendidikan Tinggi (Directorate General of Higher Education). Most Bachelor degree which it considered equivalent to the Diploma 3 degree (D-3) in Indonesia are Bachelor of Business, Bachelor of Commerce, Bachelor of Economics, Bachelor of Science, Bachelor of Nursing, Bachelor of Agricultural Science, Bachelor of Arts.
"Equalize graduated scholar from Australian with graduated Diploma 3 (D-3) in Indonesia is clearly disadvantage and unfair", said Anggraito Danangjoyo, an Indonesian student who studying psychology in University of Queensland. And according to Antara News, this was an injustice form of Indonesian government against thousands of Indonesian students who studying in Australia. Interestingly, this news also republished (but in Indonesian language) in NEWS BULLETIN in the websites of Embassy of the Republic of Indonesia in Australia, with the title "PEMERINTAH RI TAK ADIL PADA SARJANA LULUSAN AUSTRALIA" (English: Indonesian government is unfair to the Australian graduate scholar / by mean: unfair to the Indonesian scholar who graduated in Australia). When I told this issue to some of my friends who got their Bachelor of Business in Australia, they were also startled and asked whether the quality of education in Australia worse than Indonesia?
== Postscript ==
I noted some interesting readers reactions regarding to this post, namely:
1) From Rummuser, retired Management Professional from India, said:
"I am not qualified enough to comment on this without having more information. Jim perhaps will. What I do know is that there are a number of fly by night institutions in Australia that rip off unsuspecting overseas students by promising a lot, but not delivering. This is a matter of great concern here in India too. Many of our students go to Australia and return with qualifications that do not compare in quality to their literal equivalents in India."
2) From Bayu Dardias, as written on his profile is an Indonesian student who has completed Graduate Diploma in Public Administration (Grad.Dip Pub.Admin) from Australian National University and is pursuing Master of Public Policy (M.P.P) in there, said:
"In PPIA mailing list, this topic has been intensively discussed lately."
3) From Jim Belshaw, a manager and strategic consultant from Australia, within his posting titled "Indonesian Government downgrades certain Australian degrees to diploma status", said:
"The issue appears to have been ignored by both the Australian media and local bloggers. I say this with a little caution since it is based on just my own reading/watching. I find this a little remarkable, given the importance of education as an export sector."
"I will watch the response to Tikno's post with interest. I may make the issue a central point in my next week's column in the Armidale Express."
4) From MiChi, a beautiful teacher from Malaysia, said:
"I agree with Rummuser... Even in Malaysia, this thing do happen. Therefore, I always encourage my students to go to Public Universities, which is a better guarantee... really have to be careful when choosing university."
For other related sources in English click here; in Indonesian language click here.