Exam body tests ways of speeding up results
published by Dimitar Kakalov
Wednesday, March 07, 2012
Having stand-ins take public exams is almost unheard of among local students, the Hong Kong Examinations and Assessment Authority said.
This comes after three mainlanders last week got 10 months in jail each for using doctored passports to sit the TOEFL examination at a Lai King test center.
The lone local case of such cheating was recorded in 2006, the authority said, voicing confidence in its deterrent measures.
Not only are students' photos in admission documents sealed to prevent tampering, each candidate is allocated a barcode that must be scanned by invigilators.
The authority's remarks come amid preparations for the first edition of the new public examination system - the Hong Kong Diploma of Secondary Education. Oral exams for Form Six students are already under way.
The authority will ask local schools for the use of 400 halls and 2,100 classrooms for the exam, while more than 5,700 academics will mark the papers.
It also started consulting schools yesterday on ways to release results earlier from next year.
Secretary general Tong Chong-sze said this aims to accommodate requests from tertiary institutions for more time to handle admissions and enrollment-related paperwork after public exam results are declared. Seven measures suggested by the authority on Monday include allocating a day for each of the compulsory subjects of Chinese, English and mathematics, instead of two - as it is this year.
Students will then sit a five- hour exam for the three English- language papers of reading, writing and listening. Mathematics and Chinese language exams will take six and about five hours, respectively.
The authority also proposes to bring forward Chinese and English oral tests to February 25, schedule two or more exams a day and allow examiners to mark papers on teaching days.
Tong does not think the proposals will pile on the pressure for students, and noted that they are based on the current practice of the Hong Kong Advanced Level Examination.
"Students taking the HKALE are now required to sit more than five or even six hours while the new proposal is just suggesting four to five hours for a single exam," Tong said.
But concern group Education Convergence opposes the proposals, saying they will eat into teaching hours and build pressure on the teaching schedule.
They are also seen as too stressful and demanding for students who would have to take five- or six-hour compulsory exams three days in a row.
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