More than 690,000 high school students and graduates took the state-administered annual college entrance exam on Thursday, a crucial test seen as a deciding factor in an applicant’s choice of college and subsequent career.
The number of test takers dropped 2.6 percent from last year to 693,634, of which about three-quarters were high school students and 22 percent were graduates, the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology said. The test were administered at 1,207 centers nationwide.
The standardized College Scholastic Ability Test ran nine hours through 5:35 p.m., including lunch and breaks, and consisted of five sections ― Korean language, mathematics, English, social and natural sciences, and a second foreign language.
As in previous years, the government enforced traffic control and anti-noise measures to ensure optimal conditions for taking the exam.
The subway ran more frequently in the morning rush hour, traffic was banned within 200 meters of test centers, while government offices and enterprises in nearby areas delayed their opening by one hour to 10 a.m. Police operated a temporary call center to take calls from students wishing to ride in a patrol car or on the back of a motorcycle to reach their test centers.
Flight landings and takeoffs were banned during a listening test in the morning, and will be banned again during a listening exam in the afternoon.
Students will be individually notified of their test results on Nov. 30, the ministry said.