In August 2018, Japanese officials at the Tokyo Medical University were forced to issue a public apology after it was reported the institution had been lowering test scores to prevent women from being admitted.

For a decade, the school had been doctoring women’s scores to keep the female admittance rate at around 30 per cent.

This marks the first year the university has stopped rigging scores, and women’s grades have surpassed their male counterparts.

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According to the Japan Times, 20.2 perc ent of female applicants passed the entrance exam for the 2019 school year, compared to 19.8 per cent of the males. The Times cites data released by the school on May 20 as its source. In an independent survey of medical school exam scores of 78 institutions, the Asahi Shimbun paper is reporting a slightly different ratio, reporting that 26.38 per cent of female applicants passed the exam, compared to 21.79 per cent of males.

In 2018, when test scores were still being rigged in Japan, the acceptance rate into medical school was 2.9 per cent for women and 9 per cent for men, according to Quartz. Ashai Shimbun says 2019 is the first year in seven years where the female acceptance rate exceeds 10 per cent.


Tokyo-based Jutendo University said in December its medical school doctored test results to keep admissions “fair”. Officials said women are more “mature” than men and tend to outperform in the interview portion of the process, Quartz reports.

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University officials also said the school didn’t have enough housing to accommodate more female students.

Approximately 21 per cent of doctors in Japan are female, one of the lowest for developed nations.