The Reflection of Potential Sexist in Japan

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In “The Tokyo Medical University entrance exam scandal: lessons learned,” the author Greg Wheeler disclosed that The Tokyo Medical University (TMU) cut women applicants’ exam scores to curb the number of female students and boost the number of male students, which was attributed to the women’s short-term work life after the graduation. In addition, the competition in Japanese medical university is fierce, in which the applicants become more and more, and the enrollment scores become higher and higher. In this article, the author showed how the officials in TMU manipulates the female applicants’ grades in many ways such as the two stages of exams. Moreover, the author analyzed the reason why the manipulation of scores remained undiscovered more than 10 years in TMU. Some possible means such as offering the female students whose grades have been lowered another chance to enter TMU or giving them an express pass to enter the second stage directly in next application of TMU, and reducing fees were suggested.

Wheeler mentioned that TMU reduced female’s grades because most females didn’t plan to practice medicine for long after graduation. On the one hand, TMU’s behavior not only brings prejudice and discrimination, but also has an impact on the future medical treatment of patients. One article put it this way “any practice, bias, or treatment that keeps women from entering and advancing in medicine is actually denying patients opportunities to receive higher-quality care.” (Myers& Sutcliffe,2018) By this token, female doctors have no problems in working. In other words, women can also care for and treating patients well. On the other hand, women take on too much pressure and personal attacks because of the responsibility, which increases inequality and unbalance, and cause discrimination.

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Women should enjoy the same right to receive an education and choose own jobs as men. On a technical level, women are not worse than men, even better than men. “For example, one study of over 1.5 million Medicare patients found that those who were treated by a female physician were less likely to die or be readmitted to the hospital within 30 days than those patients treated by a male physician.” (Myers& Sutcliffe,2018) Restricting women’s access to schools also stops women from getting jobs, which is not good news for patients, and creates an imbalance between men and women in the workplace. Women should be given access to education and jobs.

The author recommended some methods such as returning the application’s fee to the female students whose grades were lowered, offer a new chance to enter the second stage directly to alleviate the situation of female doctors leaving their jobs prematurely. However, these measures can only make up for the unfair treatment of female students but can’t change anything fundamentally. Some measures like making the university entrance exam more transparent, and those who decide whether students are admitted should be screened more strictly can be considered. Due to gender discrimination also causes that women are not valued in the workplace, and most positions of women aren’t high, which hold women back. “Firms rely on temporary workers, who are overwhelmingly women with the latter receiving lower pay and few promotion opportunities.” (Utrata,2018) Women are freer to leave because of their low status at work. Therefore, rules that allow capable women to reach high positions should also be enforced.

According to the article, TMU’s is the ugly specter of gender discrimination, a practice commonly considered to be rampant in Japanese society, which has caused the greatest uproar” (Wheeler,2018) This is also why the government and the media pay so much attention to TMU’s incident. In addition, the reason given by TMU reflect not only the problems of the school but also the problems of the women themselves.“Some female doctors felt guilty because their work styles that prioritized being mothers and limited their working time created a sense of inequality of workload among their colleagues.”(Matsui, Sato, Kato, & Nashiri, 2019) Namely, women themselves focus more on family instead of work, which causes leave jobs early, and create a burden on colleagues. Women should learn how to balance their work and family rather than leave their jobs as soon as they get married and have children. Marriage should not be a constraint on women’s ability to work, and men should take responsibility, and put some energy into the family too.

In conclusion, some defects in the educational system of gender inequality and the legal compensation mechanism in Japan through the scandal of TMU have been exposed. The impact of early female departures on colleagues and patients has also been exposed. Division of labor in Japanese society, and people’s conception lead to this discrimination phenomenon. Eliminate sexism and achieve gender equality are a long process in modern society, which are to launch a shock to the traditional concept. After the basic fairness has been achieved, other aspects of fairness will follow. When the state promulgated laws and regulations in this respect, the public begins to pay attention to this issue. the concept of gender equality is deeply rooted in the people, it is not far from achieving gender equality.

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The reflection of potential sexist in Japan. (2019, Aug 27). Retrieved from