Tel Aviv University had been requiring prospective students to provide details about their army service when they apply for acceptance.
The candidates had to write down where they served and, if they were discharged early, for what reasons. They were not told how this information might affect their chances of acceptance, or why it was necessary.
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Other institutes of higher education do ask about the candidates’ army service, but answering the question is optional.
Ben-Gurion University stated that the information enables them to inform students about Defense Ministry scholarships, benefits for ex-combat soldiers and the like. At the Hebrew University in Jerusalem the question is optional.
TAU stated that the registration form was changed and the question was made optional after Haaretz’s inquiry, and that candidates now may opt not to answer.
“The form is for statistical purposes, and for assessing the assistance that eligible students will need,” TAU stated. “The questionnaire has no bearing on the chances of acceptance to the university, which are based on the criteria appearing on the registration website.”