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Anhui to stop PETS test in 2017, first in China | Updated: 2016-12-20 09:12

(ECNS) -- Educational authorities in eastern China's Anhui province have confirmed that they would stop PETS (Public English Test System), a national English proficiency test, from 2017.

Anhui is the first to quit the system, with more regions expected to follow suit under a State Council plan to integrate the current PETS and CET English testing system into a new one by 2020.

China has about 300 million English learners who often face multiple, inconsistent English testing systems, said Liu Jianda, vice president of Guangdong University of Foreign Studies.

At a symposium held last month, Lin Huiqing, vice minister of education, revealed that the new English proficiency evaluation system will be ready to meet the public in 2017 and may be put forward within China by 2020.

According to Liu, the new system would correspond with international standards and set nine grades for testers -- Grade 1 and Grade 2 is desired for elementary school graduates, Grade 3 for junior high, Grade 4 for Senior high, Grade 5 and 6 for University, Grade 7 for English majors and Grade 8 and 9 for exceptional talents.

The country is also building a testing system accordingly, with the standards for Grade 5, 6 and 7 to be first announced in 2017.

China currently has two English testing systems. PETS accepts testers regardless of age, occupation and origination. It's widely chosen by elementary and high school students and off-campus testers.

CET-4/6 tests are normally taken by college students. The test result sometimes serves as an important reference in recruitment.

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