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July 25, 2005

Listening Test Audio Devices Unveiled

The audio devices which will be used from next January in the English test of the national university entrance exams were recently unveiled. The "IC Player" was demonstrated to members of the media at the Meguro Ward, Tokyo test center last Thursday. The device measures 9cm x 6cm x 2cm and has just three buttons - a power switch, a "check" (kakunin) button and a "play" button - and a volume control. Students will receive a memory card which they insert into the device. The playback-only device allows students to listen to the test questions twice. While most listening tests have used a broadcast system over speakers in the testing rooms, the new system will ensure that every student can enjoy the same sound quality. Any student who experiences technical problems with the listening device will be allowed to retake the test on the same day. The new 30-minute listening section of the test accounts for 50 points, and will be taken after the 80-minute written test (200 points). The new section has caused a shift in focus for teachers and students preparing for the so-called "sentaa shiken," which is taken by over half a million students every year. (photo copyright Yomiuri Shimbun. Click here to enlarge)
Article in Japanese (link will expire)
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