THE politically themed question in this year’s Hong Kong Diploma of Secondary Education (中學文憑試) liberal studies test was the most difficult since the exam began in 2012, according to some teachers and students.
Students were asked in one of the three compulsory questions if they agreed that “a more representative composition of the Election Committee for the Chief Executive and the Legislative Council would enhance the global competitiveness of Hong Kong”.
Liberal studies teacher Lau Chi-kwan (劉志鈞) from Lee Kau Yan Memorial School (李求恩紀念中學) in Kowloon City (九龍城) said the eight-mark question would be demanding for many students, requiring much discussion and analysis.
“Students will need to be able to define what would be a more representative composition and also explain the current election systems,” he said. “They also need to show how these systems and their changes could have an impact on Hong Kong’s competitiveness.
“Those who agree could talk about a more effective governance occurring with greater representation, increasing competitiveness. Those who disagree could say a more democratic representation could mean a welfare society, slowing down economic development and deteriorating competitiveness.”
One student said he anticipated a question about the political system. “It is the election year for [the Legislative Council (立法會)] this year and for the chief executive next year so I studied the system thoroughly. But I did not expect they would link political questions with the economy, so it was difficult for me and there wasn’t enough time for me to think,” he said.
A compulsory question relating to politics was omitted from last year’s exam.
Other topics included agricultural development, HIV vaccines, China’s two-child policy and Hong Kong’s dying traditional industries.
(This article is published on The Student Standard on 14 April 2016)
HKDSE core subjects: liberal studies – samples of candidates’ performance
NSS liberal studies – frequently asked questions