A new system for admissions to foreign language and international high schools was adopted by the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology in January of this year. It placed greater emphasis on essays and teacher recommendations versus test scores and language certificates. This change in emphasis highlighted another threat, that of cheating on essays by hiring a ghostwriter from a private institute.
Consequently, the Ministry has now announced the introduction of a new system that targets student cheaters. If an essay has more than five consecutive words that are the same as on any other essays, the system will automatically highlight the common words so that examiners can judge whether a student cheated, according to the ministry. The system will indicate the name of the writer and what percentage two essays may have in common.