Wednesday, April 21st, 2004
Al Ahram Canadian University
Exam Paper Leaked in India
Shanghai Maglev Train News
LET’S GO CANADA – Al Ahram Canadian University
The Al Ahram Canadian University (ACU), as mentioned in Overseas, Overwhelmed 4.13, is a collaborative project between Al Ahram Establishment (the largest parastatal media company in Egypt and the Middle East) and the Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada (AUCC). The University plans to have a total of 12 colleges; already a permanent campus of 100 acres has been acquired in the 6 October City, Egypt which will be the main campus for all the colleges.
The first three colleges (Press and Mass Communication College in collaboration with Université du Québec à Montréal (UQAM); Computer & Information Technology College with École Polytechnique de Montréal; and Business Administration and Accounting College with McMaster University) will begin classes in October 2004. The remaining nine colleges will be established over a period of six years and will include the following colleges: Engineering & Technology; Pharmacy; Dentistry; Tourism; Arts; Environmental Studies; Economics & Political Science; Biotechnology & Health Sciences; and Medicine.
Canadian universities interested in working with ACU, should contact:
Mr. Ali Ghoneim, Vice Chairman, Al-Ahram Establishment, E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Mr. Walid Madhoun, Director, Technical Cooperation, AUCC, E-mail: email@example.com
Dr. Tarek Abdel Meguid, Commercial Officer, Canadian Embassy in Cairo
ABROAD PERSPECTIVE – Exam Paper Leaked in India
On April 11, 2004, the All India Pre-Medical Entrance Examination (AIPMT), conducted by the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE), was cancelled after two men were found selling duplicate question papers to a group of 13 students at a house in New Delhi. Each question paper cost between Rs 7 to 10 lakh (approximately $21,000 to $31,000 CAD). The AIPMT is the entrance exam for 1,800 seats in reputed medical colleges across India.
While the cancelled exam has caused an administrative headache, (nearly 250,000 students were scheduled to write the test in 424 centres in 31 cities), the focus of this latest scandal has been on the root cause of such behaviour. With the education system placing undue stress on academic excellence, the pressure to perform is very high. As a result, there is an increasing incidence of people using unscrupulous means to get ahead. A medical professor interviewed by The Times of India said, “The rot that has got into education system is all-pervasive.”
Our March/April 2004 Insight, On-site: India will examine the issue of leaked exams, forged qualifications and other problems facing the education system. For more information, please e-mail:
Source: “http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com//city/mumbai/Anger-disgust-as-pre-med-exams-are-postponed/articleshow/611406.cms,” Times of India, April 12, 2004
OVER THE COUNTER – Guangdong Gaokao
The Gaokao, or National College Entrance Examination, determines the placement of Chinese students in higher education institutions. Students write five subjects, each scored out of 150 points for a total of 750. For universities that recruit from China, Gaokao results may serve as highly useful admission information. For the exams held in Guangdong Province however, the marks may be misleading, as a different scoring system is followed.
In Guangdong, the five subjects written are Chinese, English, Math, Zhonghe (a combination of the natural sciences) and an elective. According to Higher-Edge’s Grace Huang, the Guangdong Gaokao is graded differently from the rest of the country, calculated by the Guangdong Education Commission. In each subject, students in the province are measured against one another on a scale of 900 (a student scoring 450 does not mean he has scored 50%). In addition to individual subject marks, there is also a cumulative relative mark, again out of 900.
Assessment personnel should therefore make note of whether an applicant has written a Guangdong Gaokao or not, and if so, make the according assessment adjustments.
GLOBE TIPPING – Shanghai Maglev Train News
In Overseas, Overwhelmed 4.03, we wrote about the new Maglev (magnetic levitation) train that runs between Shanghai and Pudong International Airport. The price for a one-way ticket has now dropped from 75 to 50 yuan. A two- way same day ticket only costs 80 yuan. With a same day airline ticket, you can get a 20% discount (40 yuan for one- way). There are also additional discounts for seniors and children (children under 1.2 metres can ride for free). Additionally, the train service now runs 24 hours.