Use Of ‘Smart Glasses’ Banned In Japan’s Common Test For University Admissions; Smartwatches, Study Timers Also Disallowed

Yomiuri Shimbun file photo
A pair of smart glasses, an eyeglass-shaped electronic device, which was misused in an entrance exam for Waseda University

The National Center for University Entrance Examinations will prohibit the use of smart glasses, a type of electronic device that takes the form of a pair of eyeglasses, starting from next January’s Common Test for University Admissions.

The new rule was stipulated in the center’s guide for the test released on Wednesday. The step was apparently taken after such a device was misused during the Waseda University entrance exam held during February of this year.

The guide’s list of devices which may not be used during the test also included smartwatches, computerized gadgets which are worn as wristwatches.

Both smart glasses and smartwatches have photography and communication functions, but the rules until now referred simply to “wearable devices,” without naming specific types.

Also newly included was a prohibition on so-called “study timers.” Some of these may emit a sound when time is running out, which the center determined to also be inappropriate.

The Common Test will take place on Jan. 18 and 19 of next year, with applications to be accepted from Sept. 25 to Oct. 7 of this year. This is the first such test that senior high school students who have studied under the new study guidelines will take. Subjects tested will accordingly be substantially reorganized.