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Seven Misunderstandings About This Year’s Scholastic Ability Test

Seven Misunderstandings About This Year’s Scholastic Ability Test

Posted June. 09, 2004 20:56,   


-- Verbal Ability Has Many Unfamiliar Examples

There were many unfamiliar literature pieces out of textbooks in the literature section of the verbal ability of the College Scholastic Ability Tests in the past. Therefore, students tended to ignore the example literature in the textbook or from past tests. However, this mock exam contained many works from the literature textbook and the past tests such as “Fisherman’s Short Song” by Lee Hyun-bo, “With a Jar on the My Side” by Kim Young-ran, “Family” by Park Mok-Wal, and others.

-- Math Inquiry Questions Do Not Cover the First Grade of High School

This year, materials from the first grade of high school, part of the national common curriculum, were not included in the test. Therefore, students are mistaken to think that the “Math 10 – Ga & Na” that they learned in their first grade of high school will not be included in the test. This mock test included nine questions with material adapted from the “Math 10 – Ga & Na” and three questions that students would have hard time solving if they do not understand the “Math 10 – Ga & Na” among all the 60 questions of the Ga and Na type math inquiry.

-- Foreign Languages (English) Are Easy

Until now, the foreign language section was relatively easier, but the things will change this year. The questions in the test until last year were at the level of first graders in high school, but the level was adjusted to meet that of third graders, the seniors. The level of vocabulary and phrases has been heightened, and there were quite a few questions of grammar questions in which the answer was difficult to find.

-- You Have to Choose a Difficult Subject in the Social & Science Studies Inquiry

This year’s test adapts the standardized score system, so most students perceive that choosing a difficult subject in the social and science studies inquiry will give them an advantage. However, the mock test administered by the Korea Institute of Curriculum & Evaluation (KICE), and other mock tests held by provincial and municipal educational offices revealed that the level of difficulty of the subjects differs on each test. Also, various factors influence the score distribution such as the size of population, the character of test takers, and others in the standardized system.

-- You Can Study Less for the Social and Science Studies Inquiry

It is easy to misunderstand on this point because the first grade material was excluded and the range of materials covered in the test has narrowed. The students’ work did not decrease because the questions get more difficult when the test only covers more advanced materials from the second and the third grade. This mock test also included some difficult questions, which had higher marks of three each.

-- Current Affairs Will Only Be Part of Social & Science Studies Inquiry

This mock test included current affairs issues and questions related to real life in all sections. Emphasis on appearances and the history of Goguryeo in verbal ability; computer’s mistaken transfer of files and construction cost calculation in math; computer screensaver and electronic business in English; plastic recycling and drug misuse and overuse in science are the examples.

-- The Test Will Be Made Up by EBS

The KICE plans to reflect the courses of EBS in this year’s test to the same degree as in this mock test. However, as Chung Kang-jung, head of KICE, said, it is highly likely that the test covers the contents that make up the core of school lessons as well as that are covered in the EBS lectures. Therefore, the best studying material for the test is the textbooks.

Seong-Chul Hong sungchul@donga.com