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Results from September’s SSAT canceled due to suspected cheating, part 2

The Secondary School Admissions Test (SSAT) is an admissions test that aids independent and private schools to make admissions decisions. This year, the SSAT board announced that all upper level results from September will be cancelled due to suspected large scale cheating.

While only 357 test takers will be affected by this particular announcement, there have been a series of scandals with regard to irregularities on popular standardized tests. The GRE once cancelled all mainland scores from a particular test date, affecting thousands, while TOEFL have found their test questions for sale for more than 4000 USD before particular test dates in the past.

Today is the second in a two part series, starting with the subsection entitled “观点呼吁”. This is an academic article but contains lots of quotations from interviewed educational professionals, so there is some excellent colloquial expressions mixed in with the semi-formal written MSM. One notable example of a colloquialism is 马虎 (mǎhu, the second character is unstressed), which means “to be sloppy or careless”.

所谓 is a formal written construction that means “so-called” or “what is called” (所说)。

那些允许自己的孩子投机取巧的家长,正在用所谓的帮助和捷径,把孩子们往一辈子的苦难上送行。
(from the article) Those parents who allow their children to seize any opportunity, because of using those so-called shortcuts, will lead their children to a life of difficulty.
A better translation may read: Parents who allow their children to seize any opportunities, to utilize these so-called shortcuts, will lead them to lead difficult lives later.

所谓的特效药原来是骗人的东西。
The so-called miracle drug is snake oil.

他就是所谓的活字典。
He’s what we call a walking dictionary.

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