mother who gave her daughter “smart drugs” to help prepare for the highly competitive gaokao, China’s national college entrance exam, has prompted an ethical debate on social media. Smart drugs, also known as nootropics are substances that increase alertness and improve
mental performance. While the mother told Shanghai-based news website Knews that her daughter had made significant progress from taking the supplement, medical experts pointed out these prescription drugs were developed to treat specific disorders, such as ADHD and narcolepsy. Some contain modified forms of amphetamine, which if abused can be addictive and damage the nervous system. Netizens have called on authorities to put further restrictions in place, while others expressed concern the report would inspire other parents seeking to give their kids a competitive edge.