A 9-year-old boy has become the youngest person to pass a university-level mathematics test in Japan.
Shogo Ando, a fourth-grade student in Nishinomiya, Hyogo Prefecture passed Suken’s top-level 1st Kyu test, administered by the Mathematics Certification Institute of Japan on Oct. 27.
Established in 1988, Suken is a 14-level test for measuring practical skills in mathematics, covering “calculations, constructions, expressions, measurements, organization, statistics, and proofs.”
Ando, who started preparing for the test at the age of 7, took the 1st Kyu, which has the level of difficulty for undergraduate and graduate students.
The 1st Kyu is divided into two sections, namely (1) the “Calculation Test” and (2) the “Application Test.”
This year’s test covered topics such as Wilson’s theorem, multivariable functions, and metric linear spaces.
Ando beat a previous record set by Hiroto Takahashi, who passed the test at the age of 11 last year.
“When I saw the word ‘PASS,’ I felt so happy I almost cried,” Ando said, according to the institute. “In the future, I would like to make use of my knowledge in mathematics to contribute to the world, such as in research to stop global warming.”
Seventy-one out of 494 people passed the latest 1st Kyu — a passing rate of 14.4%.
Since 2015, more than 350,000 individuals from all ages have taken Suken tests every year, with some 17,000 schools, educational organizations and other groups as participants.
“Since this is a nationwide ability, absolute evaluation system, it is useful as a standard test for mathematics ability proof needed for school or job qualifications,” Suken’s official website states.
Alongside Japan, Suken tests are also conducted in the Philippines, Thailand, and Cambodia, among others.
Feature Image Screenshots via 読売テレビニュース