China is notorious for relying on difficult tests to weed out university applicants. The competition is enormous, as is the temptation to cheat on tests and entrance exams. Next week, 9.5 million Chinese students will take college entrance exams for only 2.6 million undergraduate places. About 1,700 students were disciplined for cheating last year, reports Reuters.
"Several police departments last year probed nearly 30 cases involving more than 30 suspects who were caught using hidden telecommunication equipment to cheat on the exams.
"Colleges and universities in Shandong, Heilongjiang and Liaoning provinces started to shield mobile phone signals at exam halls last year, and several other schools are planning the same move this year, even though some experts claim the scrambling devices may have unhealthy side effects," reports Xinhua news agency.
Along with instituting the cell phone scrambling devices, China has implemented an honor code policy similar to some American universities where colleges ask students to sign a paper not to cheat.
"China's police will also be on guard to ensure smooth operation of the exams," Xinhua said.