Exame Nacional do Ensino Médio

Exame Nacional do Ensino Médio
Acronym Enem
Type Paper-based standardized test
Developer / administrator National Institute for Educational Studies and Research "Anísio Teixeira" (INEP)
Year started 1998
Duration 10 hours over 2 days
Offered 1 time per year
Countries / regions Brazil
Languages Portuguese
Website portal.inep.gov.br/web/enem/enem
Students taking the exam in Brasília.

Exame Nacional do Ensino Médio (Brazilian Portuguese: [eˈzɐ̃mj nasjõˈnaw dw ɛ̃ˈsĩnw [ˈmɛd͡ʒjw, ˈmɛdjw]]) (Enem Brazilian Portuguese: [eˈnẽ(ĩ)]) (English: National High School Exam) is a non-mandatory, standardized Brazilian national exam, which evaluates high school students in Brazil.[1] The ENEM is the most important exam of its kind in Brazil, with more than 8.6 million registered candidates in 2016. It is the second largest in the world after the National Higher Education Entrance Examination, the entrance examination of higher education in China. [2][3]

After 2009 its importance for students who want to attend college has increased, since the exam has been used both as an admission test for enrollment in 23 federal universities and 26 educational institutes, as well as for certification for a high school degree. The test is also used by people desiring to gain points in the University for All Program (Programa Universidade para Todos, or ProUni), a federal scholarship program.[1]

Date and time

The ENEM is held in early November, with a small number of students taking the test in early December. The test starts at the same time across Brazil, with the starting time being based in Federal District. This results in the ENEM starting at four different times according local time zones, ranging from 10:30 am in the state of Acre to 1:30 pm in the Federal District and states of the South and Southeast regions.[3]

The test

Until 2008, the exam consisted of two parts: a 63 question multiple-choice test on various subjects (Portuguese, History, Geography, Math, Physics, Chemistry and Biology) and a composition.

Since 2009, the exam has been composed of 180 multiple-choice questions, equally divided into four areas of knowledge: languages, codes and related technologies (plus a written essay); human sciences and related technologies; natural sciences and related technologies; and mathematics and its technologies. Due to the length of the test, it is applied in two consecutive days, the first lasting 270 minutes, and the second lasting 330.[4]

Even though its purpose is to be a national evaluation exam, students can use their scores to be admitted to a university, though not every university accepts it as the only admission exam. Usually private institutions, such as PUC-Rio, a major private Brazilian university, accept Enem as an admission exam. Others, such as University of São Paulo and Faculdade Cásper Líbero use the student's score as supplement to their admission credentials, depending on the student's performance.

Since 2009, most of Brazil's federal universities have used ENEM as part of their admission exams, either as the entirety of the exam, the first level, or as a way of selecting potential candidates.[1]

2009 controversy

On October 1, 2009, it was announced that the test, which was supposed to take place on October 3 and 4, would be cancelled and postponed to another date within a 45-day period. The decision was made by the Brazilian Ministry of Education after the original test was offered for sale to a Brazilian newspaper O Estado de S. Paulo for R$ 500,000 (some US$ 278,000).[5] After contacting the source, who stated that he obtained the test via a person from Inep (an institute of the Ministry of Education),[5] the newspaper examined the exam. and the minister of education, Fernando Haddad, confirmed the leak was of the official exam. At that time the Ministry of Education decided to move the exam to the beginning of December, in accordance with exam periods in universities. The decision was not implemented.[5]

Test structure

Day Duration Subject Questions
1st 4h 30m Natural Sciences (Biology, Physics and Chemistry) 45
Human Sciences (History, Geography, Philosophy and Sociology) 45
2nd 5h 30m Languages and Codes (Portuguese Language, Literature, Foreign Language, Physical Education, Information technology and Communication) 45
Math (Math, Geometry) 45
Composition - Dissertation - Essay Writing 1


  1. 1 2 3 "Sobre o Enem" [About Enem] (in Portuguese). Brasília, Brazil: INEP, Instituto Nacional de Estudos e Pesquisas Educacionais Anísio Teixeira Sobre o Enem. 2011. Retrieved 2016-11-06.
  2. "Vestibular chinês tem 2 milhões de candidados a mais do que o Enem". O Globo (in Portuguese). Rio de Janeiro: Infoglobo Comunicação e Participações. 2013-10-25. Archived from the original on 2016-03-04. Retrieved 2016-11-06.
  3. 1 2 Moreno, Ana Carolina (2016-11-05). "Enem 2016: primeiro dia de provas". O Globo (in Portuguese). Rio de Janeiro: Infoglobo Comunicação e Participações. Retrieved 2016-11-06.
  4. "Perguntas Frequentes" (in Portuguese). Brasília, Brazil: INEP, Instituto Nacional de Estudos e Pesquisas Educacionais Anísio Teixeira Sobre o Enem. 2011. Retrieved 2016-11-06.
  5. 1 2 3 Cafardo, Renata; Sergio Pompeu (2009-10-01). "Enem vaza e ministério anuncia cancelamento do exame" (in Portuguese). São Paulo: O Estado de S. Paulo. Retrieved 2009-10-01.

See also

External links

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