One of Japan's most prestigious universities is banning all watches from entrance exam rooms over cheating concerns. The Wall Street Journal reports that Kyoto University's ban was "required to conduct a fair test," and applies to any type of watch, even mechanical ones. The paper says Kyoto is the first Japanese school to instate an entire ban, although other international schools had similar rulings; schools in Australia and England have banned watches altogether, and the AP Program and SAT test centers in the US have rules against smartwatches in examination rooms.
Kyoto University was the nexus of one of Japan’s largest cheating scandals when, in 2011, a male student posted questions online from his phone during an exam. He then solicited answers from online forum readers. Now, of course, cell phones are not allowed in most — if not all — examination rooms.
Kyoto also happens to be the school behind a ban on cosplay costumes at graduation. No cheating? No cosplay? Maybe Kyoto just wants students to have no fun.