China cancels all IELTS courses

Nasty for Australian education, via Xinhua:

China’s Ministry of Education announced that English proficiency exams Chinese students take to get enrolled by foreign universities will be cancelled nationwide during February in view of the ongoing novel coronavirus outbreak.

The exams include the International English Language Testing System (IELTS), the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), Graduate Record Examination (GRE) and Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT).

The IELTS test scheduled for Jan. 31 was also called off, according to the ministry.

Noting the prevention and control of the epidemic is the top priority at the present time, the ministry asked for the understanding of test takers and promised to update new test plans based on the progress of epidemic control.

Yep. It’s going to hurt.

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  1. Yep. It’s going to hurt.

    Nope, it’s not gonna hurt Aussie uni’s at all. They’ll just waive the IELTS requirement.
    You are very naive about how much our Uni’s will do to get dollars.

  2. And in the fine print, every school in China is not re-opening after the holidays, closed “indefinitely”.

  3. “China’s Ministry of Education announced that English proficiency exams Chinese students take to get enrolled by foreign universities will be cancelled nationwide during February in view of the ongoing novel coronavirus outbreak”

    Spoke to a QUT engineering student about his struggles with group assignments….. he said he was often grouped with 4-5 Chinese students only one of whom can speak very rough English. The rest were hopeless. So much for “proficiency exams”. He said he was excluded in their conversations (in Chinese) but in effect relied on to proof read, confirm ideas and generally put in 5 times as much work as them.

      • This is deliberate. The uni’s won’t let us choose our own groups. You are assigned “at random”, but always there is one English speaker with people who can’t and often don’t even want to learn English or Engineering.

        Thanks to the group system at our unis they’ll all pass and get their degrees.

        • Then, having worthless pieces of paper but no actual knowledge, they’ll go out and engineer crappy structures, software, roads, vehicles etc that will work poorly if at all. And because of the very nature of engineering, people will die as a result of those failures. And because it’s all about PR which they will be granted, all that will happen here in Australia.

          • Who said they wanted to be engineers? PR then daigou seems to be the trend at Golden Mountain.

          • don’t worry, none of them will end up doing actual engineering
            if they wanted to do engineering they would have had completed their bachelors in China and come here on masters

            they will do some engineering project management at the best which causes our projects to cost so much more, I guess

        • Seriously, can someone collect data on the “random” allocation of foreign ESL and Australian students? There is a very simple way to test whether true randomness has been used. I suspect that what tutors claim is random is their own selection of groups to balance ability. Their (quite wrong) assumption is that it ‘would not be fair’ to put native English speakers against foreign students. The true travesty of this is the failure to be honest and the expectation that Aussie students will be a part of the business model.

          • yes, i think statistically the method would be described as “haphazard” sampling. Truly random requires a random number generator or other such system.

    • IELTS isn’t ACTUALLY intended to ensure you are good at English. It’s just another ticket clip. You pay to enrol in the exam. You also pay someone else to sit it for you. Then you pay for your Aus degree, and you either pay someone to sit that exam for you, or you get the English speaker in the class to carry you.

      It all works great until a deadly virus means no one is allowed to turn up!

      • It’s not deadly, it’s just…well, it finds it a little hard to get on with some people, that’s all.

  4. Judas priest. What does it say when the china government takes this virus stuff more serious than our corrupt thieving politicians and thier p*as weak response to the threat.

    • Ronin8317MEMBER

      It comes down to not having experienced the SARS epidemic. This is why government authorities in HK and Beijing takes it far, far more seriously as they experienced the most number of cases during the SARS epidemic. Unlike SARS though, the carrier becomes infectious before they show any symptoms so even thermal scanners won’t help : the only effective prevention is quarantine.

      • What do you mean by even thermal scanners won’t help? They were useless anyway. They are there for (bio) security theatre.

  5. From

    “We reported earlier that the National Health Commission had issued new figures for deaths and infections, including 4,515 confirmed cases of the virus. State media is reporting that 976 – or just over 20% of cases – are patients in a critical condition. It also says there are 6,973 suspected cases in China.”

  6. happy valleyMEMBER

    Isn’t becoming more to the point that the language entry test for Strayan unis should almost be anything but English?

    • Mandarin testing for local students should be compulsory to ensure they are capable of completing group assignments with internationals?

  7. In the absence of IELTS testing, can we all just agree that Chinese students should now nod their head to indicate that their English is up to scratch. If they sneeze instead then that’s Ok too because “our 3rd biggest export industry yada yada…”