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State exam period begins with Estonian language exam

12th graders about to take the Estonian language state exam at Gustav Adolf High School Monday morning. April 16, 2018.
12th graders about to take the Estonian language state exam at Gustav Adolf High School Monday morning. April 16, 2018. Source: Siim Lõvi/ERR

A total of 6,772 high school and trade school seniors registered for Monday's Estonian language exam, the first of the 2018 state examination season. Another 2,101 students have registered for the Estonian as a second language exam on Tuesday.

The Estonian language state exam is divided into two parts designed to measure the examinee's reading and writing skills. Four versions of the exam are available, of which the student chooses one.

Tasks in the reading portion are based on texts that include fiction, opinion journalism and popular science. In the writing portion, examinees are asked to write and title a 400-word discursive essay.

Monday's Estonian language exam began at 10 a.m. and is scheduled to conclude at 4 p.m.

Reps: Examinees in exciting stage of life

Addressing examinees via radio broadcast on Monday morning, Minister of Education and Research Mailis Reps (Center) said that students cannot be given an exact guide on where and how to apply the knowledge they have gained in school, but rather must make smart decisions themselves, the first of which must be made by Midsummer — what to do following graduation.

"I cannot leave unsaid that you are all in an enviably exciting stage of life," said the minister. "Everything lies ahead of you and anything is possible. Whether you go to trade school, college, university or work — there are a number of great choices for the future."

Ahead of the Estonian language exam, Reps expressed hope that the graduating seniors taking the exam will do their best to demonstrate understanding of the assignments and beautiful usage of the Estonian language.

"Estonia is home to people of many different ethnic backgrounds, and Estonian is not everyone's native language, but as our official language, it unites us all and helps us better understand our common aspirations as a state and society," she said.

The written portion of the Estonian as a second language state exam, which measures Estonain language proficiency at the B2, or elementary, level, will be administered on Tuesday; the oral portion of the exam will be conducted on Wednesday and Thursday.

The state exam period will continue on May 4 with the English language exam and conclude on May 25 with the math exam. In lieu of state exams, proficiency in other foreign languages will be measured by international proficiency exams in French, German and Russian.

State exam results will be published on the Examination Information System (EIS) and Estonian state portal no later than June 20.

A total of nearly 10,000 students are taking state exams this year.

Editor: Aili Vahtla

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