Gaokao season: China to embark on National College Entrance Examination

Photo: BBC

More than nine million high school graduates are sitting China’s yearly National College Entrance Examination, or the Gaokao, as June is drawing near.

Their result will determine which university they can attend, and therefore much of the rest of their future, so they are under huge pressure.

What is the Gaokao?

The subjects tested vary by region, but in many regions they will include Chinese language and literature, mathematics, a foreign language (often English), and another science or humanities subject of the student’s choice.

The latest test will take place on June 7 and June 8.

It is the only way for students to gain entry to university. Failing the Gaokao almost guarantees a lifetime of low-ranking employment, and family disappointment.


As you might imagine, preparing for and taking the Gaokao is a grueling ordeal. Students are under huge amounts of pressure from their parents and teachers to do well.

The final year of high school, especially, is often focused intensely on preparation for the exam.


Because the Gaokao is so vitally important, there are always students willing to attempt cheating.

With modern technology, cheating has become a veritable arms race between students and the authorities.

Students sitting down to the Gaokao will face jail time after they are caught cheating on their tests in accordance with the latest laws and regulations.

Extra points

The Ministry of Education of China announced an adjustment on policies for extra points in the Gaokao earlier this year.

Under the revised scheme, which takes effect this year, students who excel at sports, have won academic competitions, or hold the title of Outstanding Student will no longer get extra points in the exam, said an official with the ministry.

College majors

It is reported that new-emerging Date Science and Big Data Technology, Robot Engineering and New Media have become the most sought-after majors among the prospective college students.

Related Stories
Share this page
Touched Sympathetic Bored Angry Amused Sad Happy No comment

Alipay striving to make deals with more banks, luxury brands in EuropePizza Hut begins using robots as waiters in Shanghai outletUS finalizing deal to help revive China's ZTEChina offered to buy $70 billion of US agriculture, energy products: reportNew China policies spark disarray in region's recycling industryChina to investigate alleged tax evasion in film industryAlibaba-owned food delivery service to use drones for deliveries in ShanghaiTensions between Tencent and Toutiao grow amid lawsuitsShortage of drug brings pain to breast cancer patients in ChinaUS bombers fly by contested islands amid rising tensions with China
< Prev Next >