China Education System Needs to Be Changed on College Entrance Exam

Topics: Education in the People's Republic of China, High school, Higher education Pages: 10 (3825 words) Published: August 26, 2013
China Education System Needs to be Changed on College Entrance Exam Introduction
Getting up at 6 a.m. in the morning, after breakfast, then go to school to begin reading books or reciting textbooks. This was how I began my school life when I was in high school. I start my school life and study at 7 a.m. in the morning and until 9 p.m in the evening. When all my classes were over I could back home, but it did not mean that I can relax and go to bed. When I back home take a shower and continue studying until midnight. When I start our second year in high school, I need to choose a major: arts or science. I choose arts in high school, so except Chinese, math and English, which everyone need to learn, I also needed to take politics, history and geography class. For students who chose science, they need to take physics, biology and chemistry class instead. All Chinese students have to study so hard for a reason: the college entrance exam, also called “gaokao” in Chinese. There are over ten million students taking this exam every year in China. Only a small group of students can pass this exam to get into the top university and get further education. When we take the college entrance exam, and students in different majors need to take different exams. There are two different tests, one for arts and one for sciences. And students who major in arts need to remember lots of information; students who major in science need to lots of homework. Many students who cannot pass it may continue studying and take gaokao the next year or just go to a university that is not so good. As our parents say, this is an exam that decides our whole life. So, it is easy to know how much pressure we have when we face this exam. I want to argue in this essay that I think China should provide the college entrance exam twice a year and, furthermore, should avoid using the exam alone to determine which students can attend the best colleges. Making these changes can reduce the pressure on students so that they can enjoy themselves and pursue other academic and non-academic interests. Some Background about "Gaokao"

The gaokao that we take today was began at 1978. At first it was held in July every year, from 2003 it begins hold in June every year because July is too hot. In China, the Compulsory Education Law that every single child must receive education at least for nine years. They need to start learning in kindergarten between age three to six. After three years in kindergarten, they need continue through primary school, middle school and then, for some people who have privilege to get higher education. There are two different levels of Chinese universities. The first category awards undergraduate diplomas and bachelor degrees following four years of study, whereas the second group awards undergraduate diplomas after two or three years. To enter these universities students must sit the gaokao. According to an author Davey, "The exam in China is ultimately under the control of the National Examination Authority within the Ministry of Education. The Ministry of Education co-ordinates and oversees the writing of exam questions, whereas lower-level government is responsible for printing and delivering the exam papers, as well as arranging exam centers, marking and reporting results "(Davey, 387). After several decades gaokao has become the most important exam for all China students. Every year in June 7 and 8, two days that gaokao hold, it is just like a festival for examination. Students take exam in local schools but not the school where they take class every day. When we enter the examination hall we cannot bring anything but a pen and student card. There is no calculator and dictionary when we take exam. On the first day of exam, we take Chinese test in the morning for two and half hours. In the afternoon we take the mathematics for two hours. It is a hard time when we finish our first day of exam. I remember when I finished the first...

References: Siegel, Benjamin. "Stressful Times for Chinese Students." Hong Kong Tuesday, June 12, 2007
http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/dispatches/2008/06/chinas_sat.single.html
Sile, Guo. "The Setting of Questions in the College Entrance Examination and the Objective of Quality Education in the Middle Schools." Guangzhou, no. 4, 1991, pp. 43-45, 61.
Weichen, Fan. "A Gaokao Examinee Jump over a Build end His Life" Souhu Education, May 14, 2011.
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