Sun, Aug 11, 2019 - Page 3 News List

Hoklo certification test sees record number of takers

By Rachel Lin and Jake Chung  /  Staff reporter, with staff writer

A record 11,582 people took the Ministry of Education’s 2019 Hoklo (commonly known as Taiwanese) Language Certification Exam yesterday, the ministry said.

The ages of the test-takers ranged from four to 78, the ministry said, adding that French and US citizens also took the test.

The ministry has since last year waived all expenses for test-takers aged 19 or younger, the ministry’s Department of Lifelong Education official Wu Chung-yi (吳中益) said.

The number of test-takers for the basic and entrance levels has been increasing over the past few years, Wu said.

The number of participants aged seven to 12 rose by 1,000, or 29 percent, this year, he said.

Group applicants have increased to 720, an increase of 65 from last year, Wu said.

This year, there were 356 participants from Tainan’s Tien Hai Junior High School, up from 310 last year.

The increase was due to the school establishing an additional class in scholastic 2019 for local language courses and students who had not passed the exam last year giving it another go this year, Wu said.

Exam results are to be announced online and mailed out on Oct. 21, he added.

With the 12-year national education program to start in scholastic 2019, elementary-school students would select one mandatory language class from among Hoklo, Hakka and Aboriginal languages or one of the Southeast Asian languages, while junior-high school students and high-school students would have them as an optional course.

However, by scholastic 2022, language courses would become mandatory for junior-high and high-school students, Wu said.

Every additional language learned is an additional opportunity, the ministry said.

The exam provides the entry to the profession for language teachers and is open to the public, it said, adding that increase attendance at the exam would help facilitate teaching languages to people across generations.

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