Improve examsOnce again, controversy is growing over flaws in the essay section of the college entrance examination.
Test takers faced a few strange and difficult questions when taking the essay tests at major universities a few days ago.
Even teachers had criticism of the essay section:
“It exceeded the educational curriculum at high schools.”
“There was a university-level concept of the number theory in the examination.”
“There were in-depth questions that the textbook never taught.”
Some said that students weren’t prepared to cope with the test from their regular school education.
Twenty teachers on the public essay evaluation board responded.
Many said that school education is not enough to take the test, after reviewing the essay section at Seoul National University. We can imagine stakeholders’ disappointment on the essay test. Even essay preparatory teachers said, “If I were an examinee, I would apply to a university where students do not have to take the essay test.”
We are headed toward liberalization of the college entrance examination under the incoming Lee administration.
Universities are poised to drop the main exam that focuses on three subjects that need memorization ― Korean, English and math.
The question is this: If the essay test is considerably difficult hereafter, will it give rise to confusion among students, parents and teachers?
If so, schools may withdraw from the admission tests, and more students will be highly dependent on private tutoring.
The purpose of college exams is to recruit well-prepared talent that suits the characteristics of the university, rather than trip them with a tricky exam.
Therefore, we need to improve the system in a way that relieves people of this great mental burden.
The first and foremost step is to devise a recruiting process whereby students can be well-prepared by their school education.
The college entrance exam should not exceed the level of high school education. Universities should not impose admission systems under the banner of liberalization. Universities should make joint efforts to address essay problems.
In an era of liberalization, universities are responsible for the college entrance exam. We look forward to responsible measures to improve the system.