In China, system of competitive examinationsfor recruiting officials that linked state and society and dominated __education__ from the Song dynasty onward, though its roots date to the imperial university established in the Han dynasty. Candidates faced fierce competition in a series of exams dealing primarily with confusion text and conducted on the prefectural, provincial, and national levels. This successful system showed the advantages of meritocracy over aristocracy. Too inflexible to be capable to modernize, the system was abolished in (1905).

The age and the requirement of the Chinese civil service exam

To obtain a civil service position, a scholar generally required the juren provincial degree, which would take would take years of study, and even a candidate could not reasonably expect to do so before he was thirty. Many candidates who were eventually successful did not achieve office until they had reached a venerable age. The jinshi degrees were prospects for only a very few exceptional scholars. For the very highest ministerial posts, the best examination essays were selected by the Emperor himself. In this video it shows where the students would go to study and take the tests and it would have stone walls with students names on them that took those tests so follow this link. On the map it has a bigger picture so if u click on it it would be a bigger image and more readable.