DSE 2022: What you need to know before exam day – this year’s Covid-19 measures and a checklist of items to pack

  • Every day, you will need to keep a record of your Covid-19 rapid antigen test results and fill out the Candidate’s Health Declaration Form
  • If you test positive for coronavirus or are identified as a close contact of a confirmed patient, call HKEAA Public Examinations Information Centre to make arrangements
Yanni Chow |

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Besides your typical exam supplies such as pens, pencils and other tools, make sure to wear a surgical mask. Photo: Dickson Lee

After your many years of hard work, it’s finally time to take on the Diploma of Secondary Education (DSE) exam – we know you’re ready to tackle this. To make your life a bit easier, here’s a checklist of everything you need to bring and a few reminders before you head out to the exam halls over the next few weeks.

DSE candidates with Covid, close contacts can sit exam at Penny’s Bay

Before leaving for your exam venue

On every exam day, check your temperature, and perform a Covid-19 rapid antigen test (RAT). Take a photo of your negative RAT result next to your admission form, and keep the photos with you throughout the DSE examination period in case you are randomly checked.

You’ll also need to complete and sign the Candidate’s Health Declaration Form for every examination you sit. (Available for download here.)

Take a daily photo of your Covid-19 rapid antigen test with your admission form. Photo: AFP

If you’re infected with Covid-19 or identified as a close contact before the exam day

If you test positive for Covid-19 before the exam day, you can choose to take the DSE at the Penny’s Bay isolation facility.

You should contact the HKEAA Public Examinations Information Centre as soon as possible by calling 3628 8860 during office hours, which are Monday to Friday from 8.30am to 5.30pm. You can also email them at [email protected] outside office hours. Indicate your identity as a DSE candidate, and state your intention to sit the exam at the Penny’s Bay isolation facility.

To arrange a designated taxi or minibus service to Penny’s Bay, infected candidates should call the Designated Fire Services Department Hotline at 5211 9422 between 9am to 6pm, at least one day before the exam day.

If you test positive for Covid-19 or are identified as a close contact after 6pm the night before the examination day, contact the Designated Taxi Hotline at 3693 4770 no later than 10pm to reserve a taxi to Penny’s Bay for the following day.

If you’re infected with Covid-19 or identified as a close contact on exam day

For those who test positive or are identified as a close contact on the day of examination, if you intend to sit the DSE exam at the Penny’s Bay facility, call the Public Examinations Information Centre at 3628 8860 before 6.30am.

You should also call the Designated Taxi Hotline at 3693 4770 before 6.30am, so you can arrive at the isolation facility as soon as possible.

DSE 2022: Tips for the English reading and writing papers

What to bring to every exam

Keep these lists handy as you pack for exam day. Graphic: Shutterstock

Don’t forget these required items:

  1. HKID card or another valid form of photo ID

  2. HKDSE admission form

  3. Completed and signed Candidate’s Health Declaration Form

  4. Surgical masks (masks or respirators with valves are not allowed)

  5. Blue or black ballpoint pens

  6. HB pencils and erasers (for the Maths papers)

Recommended items:

  1. HK$500 cash (for lunch and emergency taxi rides)

  2. Octopus card (with at least HK$100 on it)

  3. Correction pens or tape

  4. Highlighters (to highlight important words in listening data files)

  5. Extra ballpoint pens and pencils

  6. Gum or sweets if you think you’ll need them

  7. Water

  8. Jacket and rain gear

  9. Last-minute revision notes – but put them away before you enter the exam room

  10. Smartphone – put that away too

  11. Tissue packs

  12. Hand sanitiser

DSE 2022: Top tutor shares how you should prepare for the Chinese exam

Exam-specific checklists

Non-language exams

Calculators with a “HKEAA approved” or “HKEA approved” label, and with nothing written on the back. If it is electronic, make sure it is battery-powered, silent, and with no printout abilities, graphic/word-display facilities or dot-matrix technology on the display. It will be useful if you install some programs in them too.

Mathematics and Geography exams

  1. Graduated rulers with gridlines

  2. Protractor

  3. Drafting compasses with lead refills

  4. Flexible curves (optional)

  5. Set squares (optional)

DSE 2022: Why you need a strategy for the Mathematics exam

Listening exams

  1. A radio no bigger than 46cm x 15cm x 15cm with batteries, for exams taken at radio centres

  2. Working earphones – ones with a 3.5mm-diameter plug with two insulating rings on them

  3. A spare radio and batteries

Technology and Living (Fashion, Clothing & Textiles) exam

  1. HKEAA-approved miniature figures – they should not be labelled, or include details such as design lines, facial features or descriptions

  2. HKEAA-approved basic blocks in scale, including bodice, sleeve, skirt, and trousers – they should not be labelled or have words on them

  3. Colour pencils

  4. 1/5 scale ruler

DSE 2022: How focusing on grammar will help on English listening exam

Ethics and Religious Studies exam

HKEAA-approved Bibles (maximum two copies for different language versions or translations), and with no attachments like labels or stickers. The only writing allowed in it is personal details, such as your name, class and address. Texts and verses can be underlined or highlighted.

Design and Applied Technology exam

  1. Calculator

  2. Graduated ruler

  3. T-squares

  4. Set squares

  5. Flexible ruler

  6. Protractor

  7. Compasses

  8. French curves

  9. Flexi curves

  10. Circle and ellipse template

  11. Drawing board

  12. Colour pencils

Information and Communication Technology exam

  1. Flowcharting templates (with or without names of symbols printed on them)

For more details about the Education Bureau’s DSE exam guidelines, refer to the official instructions here.

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