CHINA: Top universities to use common entrance exam

Seven prestigious universities in China announced last Sunday that they would begin using the same independent examination - besides the national one - to test students hoping to gain entrance to them in 2011, reports the official Xinhua agency.

The seven are Peking University, Beihang University (Beijing University of Aeronautics and Astronautics), Beijing Normal University, Nankai University, Fudan University, Xiamen University and Hong Kong University. Students who want to gain entrance to any of the universities will only have to sit one independent exam, according to the joint announcement.

China's college entrance exam system is undergoing reform as universities aim to select students based on independent criteria rather than just using the results of the national exam.

In 2003, Peking University and another 21 universities were allowed to pilot the reform by using their own criteria to independently select 5% of their students. Now nearly 80 universities across the country have the right to select talented students based on their own exams.
Full report on the Xinhau site