Pupils from a middle school in east China's Anhui Province were told to wear newspapers around their heads so that they couldn't look around, reported People's Daily Online.
According to the report, the picture was taken and uploaded to the Internet by a teacher supervising the exam.
The newspapers had been cut open in the middle so the pupils could put them on their heads.
The picture has sparked a debate among Chinese social media users.
Some praised the teachers' creativity, such as 'xian mu zi xi' who said on Weibo 'it really works'.
一些人称赞老师们的创意，比如，网友“xian mu zi xi”在微博上表示“这种方法真管用”。
However, many others suggested that it would harm students' dignity.
'Zhao Jiaxuan' wrote under the same post on Weibo: 'It's no longer a matter of preventing cheating in exams, it's serious distrust of students. It could bring great psychological damage to students.'
“Time machine -2009”表示赞同：“如果监考老师小心地站在教室前边，很容易看到谁作弊。根本不需要这么干。”
'Chun feng yi da' said: 'I feel sad about the Chinese education.'
“Chun feng yi da”说：“为中国教育感到悲哀”。
Weibo user 'Xi Ruogu' said: 'It would be easier to copy from notes as (the teacher's view) was blocked.'
'Yan Guiling' joked: 'What if the answers were on the newspaper?'
A follow-up report on People's Daily Online suggested that the picture had been taken at the Chuzhou Experimental School in Chuzhou, Anhui Province.
A spokesman from the school explained to the reporter that it was not an exam but 'a game' between the teachers and the students.
The school said by using the method the teachers hoped to help the students de-stress before the upcoming final exam.
According to the school, all of the students were willing to participate in the game.
Pupils in China often endure intense pressure before exams as they are expected by their families to stay at the top of the class at all times.
Chinese authorities have in the past released pictures of the James Bond-style cheating technology used by students during the competitive exams.
These included sophisticated vests that link up to a button-hole camera hidden in a pen or watch, used to beam out images of the exam paper to someone outside the hall with a receiver.
The person outside then looks up the answer to the question, and relays it back to a mobile phone hidden on the pupil in the exam hall.
The speech is picked up via the mobile, and then sent on to a hidden earpiece.
In the past criminal groups have been found to be selling stolen exam papers and launching cyber attacks on exam board websites.
Last year, educational authorities of central China's Luoyang city used drones to stop students cheating in the high-pressure 'gaokao'.
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