The registration for the 2013 National Civil Service Exam is continuing, with as many as 20,839 positions on offer. It's estimated that the number of candidates for the exam this year will be close to 2 million. There will be 90 candidates competing for each position on average, a new record.
It's unimaginable that such a competition could happen in any European country or the US. Chinese young people are being tortured by too many exams. The core reason is that "good" work positions in China are scarce and the young must endure very cruel selection and competition.
This fierce competition could be viewed as the driving force of China, but it exerts a harsh toll on the Chinese lifestyle. Various appeals for alleviating the burden created by the National College Entrance Exam, or gaokao, and the National Civil Service Exam have proved to be empty in reality. Many even proposed making the exams stricter to prevent privilege eroding equality.
Only when the positions of civil servants are considered "normal" can the competition could be cooled. Only when the choice for universities and colleges becomes diverse, can the gaokao not be as competitive as it is now. What China most needs to do is to change the social environment in which young people are forced to take exams.
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