Education authorities in China are using biometric recognition and other high-tech measures to catch cheaters in the country’s annual “gaokao” university entrance exams.
As Reuters reports, performance in these exams is thought to be critical to getting on track for a high-end job, hence the temptation to cheat. Exam centers are now implementing metal detectors and cellular signal blocking technology to stop students from smuggling in devices that could feed them answers, and are using fingerprint and facial recognition technologies to help ensure that test-takers are who they claim to be.
China isn’t the first country to take such measures. Authorities in Nigeria, for example, ordered Credence ID fingerprint scanners to authenticate students for state-administered exams in 2015. But there appears to be a broader biometric trend underway in China, with biometric technology finding an increasingly wide range of applications in everyday life, from securing dormitory facilities at a Beijing university to authenticating runners in a popular half marathon.
In the case of the gaokao exams, the biometric technology should help to weed out impostors who have been paid or otherwise persuaded to sit in for students, forcing would-be cheaters to confront essay prompts on topics like China’s ‘Belt and Road’ initiative, high-speed rail transit, and mobile payment systems.
June 9, 2017 – by Alex Perala