A collective groan from millions of high school students echoed across China yesterday as the gaokao, the country’s college entrance exam, kicked off. The test has become notorious for its intensity and its challenging questions, and this year’s gaokao is no exception. From philosophical quotes to the meaning of a buzzword, these essay questions are designed to test not only students’ language abilities and knowledge, but also their creativity, experience and wisdom. Once again, we’ve compiled a list of essay questions that students across China faced during their exams this year. Think you can handle them?
- Topic: “A father was talking on the phone while driving on a highway. His daughter reminded him repeatedly to stop doing this, but her father would not listen. The daughter called the police and reported her father at last. When the police arrived, the father was reprimanded. This generated heated debate among the public.” Write a letter of 800 words to either the father, the daughter or the police officer.
(Test Paper National I. Applicable to: Henan, Hebei, Shanxi, Jiangxi, Shaanxi)
- Topic: Who do you admire the most? A biotechnology researcher, a welding engineering technician or a photographer?
Biotechnology researcher: Mr. Lee led the company to a globalized market.
Welding engineering technician : Mr. Wang was an ordinary welding engineering technician, and through perseverance, has become a world-renowned craftsman.
Photographer: The photographer posted a collection of his photos to his blog and was well-received online.
(Test Paper National II. Applicable to Qinghai, Tibet , Gansu, Guizhou , Inner Mongolia, Xinjiang , Ningxia , Jilin , Heilongjiang , Yunnan , Guangxi, Liaoning , Hainan)
- Topic: Roads
Based on the three given uses of ‘road’, write an essay.
1. “The Earth had no roads to begin with, but when many men passed one way, a road was made.” —Lu Hsun (Lu Xun)
2. There is no such thing as a road that dare not to be walked, only people who dare not to walk it.
3. You may take the wrong road sometimes, but if you keep walking, it will become a brand new road.
- Topic: Do butterfly wings have colors?
“A teacher asked the students to look at butterflies under a microscope. At first, they thought the butterflies were colorful, but when they looked at them closely, they realized that they were actually colorless.” Based on this story, write an essay.
- Topic: What is “Fan’er”
The buzzword “Fan’er” is popularly used to refer to a person, group or country’s “style”. Draw from personal experiences to describe your feelings about the word.