College applications in Beijing to sink again
 updatetime:2010-04-02 09:17:45   View:0 Source:xinhuanet
    The number of Beijing students to take university entrance exams next June is expected to drop by 10,000 from last year.
BEIJING, Dec. 2 -- The number of Beijing students to take university entrance exams next June is expected to drop by 10,000 from last year, setting a record low for applications in the capital city, local media said Wednesday.
According to a pre-application survey among high schools in Beijing, each district will contribute about 1,000 fewer students than last year, totaling 10,000, the Beijing Morning Post reported Wednesday.
However, the Beijing college enrollment office refused to comment on this prediction.
"About 100,000 students took the 2009 college entrance examination in Beijing this June, almost 18,000 less than last year," said Gao Fuqin, deputy director of the Beijing college enrollment office.
"It was the least number of applications since 2005," he added.
In a survey conducted between September and October by consulting company Mycos, only 1 percent of 5,000 high school graduates questioned nationwide said they would not sit the college entrance exam.
But 30 percent believed there was no advantage in a university qualification when looking for a job.
Instead, about 7,000 Beijing students took a foreign alternative, the Scholastic Aptitude Test in 2009, up from 3,000 in 2008.
"Foreign universities are sharing a larger chunk of the higher-level education market with universities in China," Song Baoying, a senior manager at the Australia-China Educational and Cultural Development Center, told METRO Wednesday.
"Younger students prefer international education because competition is so fierce in China. They believe it will be useful when applying for work after university."
She said it only takes three years to obtain a bachelors degree in countries such as UK and Australia. And foreign degrees can sometimes enhance student resumes far more than Chinese educational institutions.
Song also said tuition fees for Chinese universities have increased in recent years. Many of her clients prefer to apply for overseas universities if top Chinese universities are unavailable.
A website for Beijing hukou holders to register for 2010 university entrance examinations opened at 8 am Wednesday. The site,, will run until 6 pm on Monday.