Friday, November 16, 2007

Cheering on the test takers

I thought I heard some jets flying overhead this evening, but it may have been the sound of 584,934 test takers collectively sighing in relief.

A few years ago I walked by a nearby high school on the night before the suneung, or university entrance exam, and saw several students sitting in front of the school's gate. I didn't have a camera at the time, but I found photos online which depicted the same sort of thing:

I decided to walk by that school last night to see the students at work again, but instead...

I'm not sure why this was. Perhaps the schools chosen to 'host' the test change every year? Cheering for test takers took place elsewhere, as this photo from Myeongdong shows.

There's a more enthusiastic cheering section (complete with drums) pictured in this post. The Joongang Ilbo reported on some new guidelines for test monitors:
At today’s national College Scholastic Ability Test, female proctors have been asked not to do anything ― or wear anything ― that might distract anxious students from the difficult task at hand, according to the Education Ministry. Test takers in the past complained that they could not fully concentrate on the crucial test due to the distracting sound of clacking high heels and the smell of thick perfume, the ministry said.
I wonder if the smoke from this presumed electrical fire at a school in Daegu was distracting? If it was just an accident, then wow, what a terrible day for it to occur. The reporters were also out for the obligatory photos of students being escorted by the police to test sites, and of celebrity test takers (two years ago it was Moon Geun-young, this year it was two members of the Wondergirls).

One of the more worthwhile explorations of test day is the Metropolitician's video from last year.

No comments: