Seeing my sister prepare for entrance exams reminded me of my school days, when I was studying long hours everyday to clear or as most people say “crack” the entrance exam to get admitted into a good college.
Made me wonder – do students in other countries also face the same kind of pressure and stress? And the research I did on this topic left me awestruck. There are countries other than India where entrance exams are far more brutal. Here are some of them.
Brazil’s Vestibular Test System
The New York Times calls the entrance exams in Brazil “cruel”. The level of stress is so high for students taking the “vestibular” tests for entrance into colleges of Brazil that they develop ulcers, their hair falls out and they develop skin problems.
It is funny and scary at the same time, that one of the most watched TV content in Brazil is the interviews of so many students crying about how they could not clear the exam and have to wait an entire year to take it again.
The exams are a series of tests, conducted over two days most of the time, ranging from Portugese and History to Physics and Chemistry.
The National Higher Education Entrance Exam or Gaokao is China’s elite entrance exam which high school graduates must clear to attain higher studies.
These are also a series of long tests conducted over two days which have Chinese and Mathematics in all the tests. No wonder Asians are good at math.
India’s IIT-JEE Advanced
Well, this had to make it to the list. Students in India prepare for years, sometimes upto 4 years, to clear this exam and get admitted into one of the several IIT’s (Indian Institute of Technology) of the country, which are some of the best in the world for engineering studies.
About 5 lakh students write it every year and hardly 10,000 make it to the top colleges. Although this is a single day exam, it has a test before it called IIT-JEE Mains, which is slightly lower in level, but is not an easy game at all either.
Oxford’s All Souls Prize Fellowship Exam
This is one of the toughest exams to crack in this world, which has 4 papers along with an extended essay.
You can imagine how difficult it is, when only 2 people get selected every year for the fellowship through this exam for Oxford University’s All Souls College.
Also Read: IIT Kharagpur’s Online Leadership Summit 2020 Will Have The Best Minds Empowering The Nation As A Whole
Master Sommelier Diploma Exam
This exam is ranked no. 1 in the world’s toughest exams by several sources. It includes a very peculiar kind of testing – wine tasting. But since it is a test for expert winemakers, that is the most important phase of testing where they have to taste and tell the year and region of the wine – blindfolded.
The exam has 3 sections – theory, service and blind tasting. That blind tasting section is where most people fail. People attempt it a few times, and only a handful get selected.
Graduate Aptitude Test In Engineering (GATE)
Again, this had to be there in the list of one of the toughest exams in the world to clear. It is a test for engineers in India who want to pursue a Master’s degree in engineering from the top colleges of the country.
Based on this exam, several government companies also select candidates for high ranking jobs. 15% of the total candidates qualify this exam and the candidates with a percentile of above 99% make it to IITs.
This article wasn’t meant to scare anyone. Exams are tough, the competition is high, and so you should not be too hard on yourself. The most you can do is prepare for the exam well.
If you have taken any of the above exams, tell us about it in the comments. My experience with JEE Mains is too good to share here, if you know what I mean.
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