Students taking the Diploma of Secondary Education English language exam this year said there were more questions than normal and that they ran out of time.
Some 48,660 students sat for reading and writing exams as part of the core subject yesterday, including two quarantined in Penny's Bay.
The listening and integrated skills test will be held today.
The reading test has two parts. For part A, candidates read and answer questions on three passages on the theme of food.
The first was a recommendation for an eatery, and the second passage about the challenges faced by packaged food firms amid rising awareness regarding healthy, organic food. The last was a newsletter on a sustainability plan for a resort in Singapore.
Part B was divided into two parts for candidates to choose from - the easier part B1, comprising two passages about plants, or the more difficult part B2 paper, which had three passages on space exploration.
For the writing test, candidates were given a poster about an annual school fair and asked to write a 200-word announcement on it for delivery during a morning assembly.
They also had to write another 400 words from a choice of eight topics: electric vehicles; workplace communication in the sales department at an online fashion firm; sports communication; debating whether social media influencers are more trustworthy than traditional media advertisements; a social media challenge; a scary short story; a poem about friendship; and a letter to the production manager regarding an idea for a TV drama series.
A student, Chan, said she didn't have enough time to complete the exam as there were more multiple choice questions in the reading exam compared to last year.
Chan said she prefers to answer open-ended questions, as "at least you can find the answer from the reading passages."
Another, Yuen, said the part B1 reading paper was quite easy.
A number of students chosen EVs in the writing test. A student, Tam, said he chose that topic as he's familiar with news about EVs like Tesla