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No Plans for Lax Supervising, Increase in Punishment for Test-takers

No Plans for Lax Supervising, Increase in Punishment for Test-takers

Posted March. 01, 2005 00:00,   


Students caught cheating in this year’s National Scholastic Ability Examinations will receive a zero for their exam and stripped of the opportunity to apply for the test for the following two years.

Metal detectors for cell phones will be distributed to supervisors at the hall, and a radio wave detector will be placed in each room.

The Ministry of Education and Human Resources Development provided the “Policy to Prevent Criminal Activity in the National Scholastic Ability Examinations” on February 28. After review, the policy will be included in the Specific Plan for the Scholastic Ability Test in March, to be applied in the exams to be held on November 23 this year.

Heavier Punishment for Cheating-

Current students caught cheating the exam will receive a zero. Starting from this year however, cheaters who are suspected of organized, pre-planned cheating will receive a zero in the year they take the exam, as well as denied from applying for the following year’s examination. Threatening a fellow student for answers will result in similar punishment. Should the student suspected of cheating be caught performing illegal activity a second time, the student may be stripped of the opportunity to retake the exam for the following two years.

Strengthening the Supervision Process-

Current plans include increasing the number of hall supervisors from one to two for every 10 classrooms, as well as distributing a metal detector for cell phones. The plan aims to detect cheating through cell phones. Failing to respond to the supervisor’s demand for investigation will also be considered as an act of illegal behavior.

After testing the radio wave detector to be placed in each classroom, the detection of radio waves will lead to further investigations using the metal detector. The radio wave detector will be tested first and then decided whether to implement it further.

The number of students will be reduced from 32 to 28 for each classroom, and middle schools will be utilized and middle school teachers recruited for this purpose.

Strengthening Plans to Prevent Proxy Exams-

Photos in application forms will be enlarged to passport-size photos, and short poem phrases or maxims will be written by hand on the exam papers to distinguish the student’s handwriting if necessary.

Application forms of the scholastic ability test will be sent to the respective colleges from the metropolitan and provincial educational offices of education for additional review, and will be stored for at least four years along with the other application forms.

The Ministry of Education and local offices of education will also install a “Report Center for Illegal Activities in Scholastic Ability Examinations” to be alerted in relevant activities, as well as creating a task force composed of police and respective agencies one month before the examination, sharing the reports.

Limits and Shortcomings-

The previously reported illegal activities were mostly detectable, but were missed by the supervisors. The Ministry of Education merely altered the main and deputy supervisor system to the first and second supervisor, dividing the role and responsibility of those in charge.

The lack of competence of the supervisors also did not lead to punitive actions for those in charge.

Plans to cut or delay text messaging services during examination were withdrawn for fear of causing communication problems, and legalizing the storage of text messages was rejected on the grounds of invasion of privacy.

The plan to install metal detectors in each classroom was considered unjust in considering all students as potential criminals, as well as considered a waste of time and money.

Seong-Chul Hong sungchul@donga.com