Monday, April 23, 2007

Cog notes by mobile
Coming up to exam time in Vietnam and the pressure drop for students. Heard lots of stories of cheating over the years. It gets pretty out of hand with kids so terrified of failure - and not just the kids, the parents too.

One method I heard was pretty brazen. A kid would be paid to just waltz in and sit an exam for some dolt with money - a ringer or super sub. They'd take the kids ID or make a fake one. Over the years the examiners have got wiser so the cheats did too. This gang just got done in court for radio-ing in the right answers by mobile after finding out the right answers. The gang leader, got 33 months.

Sure whatever happened to cog notes up the sleeve, says you?

Well, in Vietnam they use, or used, a cog note method called phao (life buoys - or life savers) and according to this two-year-old article by Pittsop's old beer-buddy Samuel Taylor you could buy them at green tea stalls near the university!

The article claims the "long, thin pieces of paper full of answers written in tiny font, costing between 1.20 and 3.50 dollars apiece. Folded tightly, the cheat sheets can be concealed and discreetly consulted in the examination room." You just had to remember your tiny-wee magnifying glass.

Don't know if this still happens but funny all the same.
"Ba oi! Two Vina, a cup of hot green tea and a concise history of the Russian revolution."

What a service.


Anonymous said...

I was a student once, and i cheated, of course (not for uni entry exam, but just during uni which is a much lesser crime than the entry one). So we vina students have those long thin rolls of paper ourselves, cutting and pasting together the paper and writting in tiny letter the whole book - often marxism and leninistism theory. Sometimes my classmates cheat on mathematics - mind you, advance mathematic - and wrote down equations and formulas on those rolls. So the problem was, they have to remember which hidden pocket for each topic. Now you imagine this scene: a young rosy cheek girl standing, slapping her right boob and say "minimum", her left boob: "maximum", slapping her left butt (back pocket) for "indefinate", and right butt "sphere calibre". It's quite funny back then and we giggled our head off. It's still funny now in my memory as I am grinning typing this.

pittstop designer said...

Heads, shoulders, knees and toes... knees and toes.