Tougher University Entrance Exam Puts Students on Hold

  • By Choi Eun-kyung

    December 08, 2023 11:42

    This year's university entrance exam scores published on Friday suggest the test was indeed more difficult than last year even without so-called "killer questions" that require expensive crammer-drilling.
    Pundits expect that more students will try their luck again next year, and private crammers say they are already getting more inquiries from candidates and their parents.
    The Korean, English and math sections were all difficult, and only a single student achieved a perfect score.
    One education advisor said, "Many students were so thrown by the difficulty of the Korean language section in the morning that they couldn't perform at their best for the remainder of the exam. There has been an increase in candidates who signed up for private crammers to take another crack at the exam next year."
    Students look at their scores in the university entrance exam at a high school in Suwon, Gyeonggi Province on Friday. /News1
    Another factor that persuades them to take a year out is that the admissions quota for medical schools is expected to be raised by some 1,000 next year. If more top students apply to medical schools, lower-scoring candidates get a better chance at admission to better universities in other subjects.
    This year already saw a large proportion of candidates who had waited a year -- 35.3 percent (157,368) -- retake the test.
    "Many of them decided to retake the test after the government eliminated killer questions because they hoped for an easier ride, but their scores are likely to have been a disappointment," an education consultant said.
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