Cheating on the gaokao, China's national college entrance exam, has been a perpetual nuisance for test officials for years. A combination of parental pressure, rampant ambition and the highly competitive nature of the exam have contributed to rising dishonesty among millions of test-takers:
The penalties [for cheating] are severe: a student convicted of peeking at a neighbor's paper is never allowed to take the gaokao again, and his name is entered in a public database for prospective employers' perusal.
Still, every year some students come up with innovative efforts to beat the system — 3,000 were caught last year alone. Before this year's gaokao, police raids in the industrial city of Shenyang turned up "cheating shoes" outfitted with radio transmitters."
Chinese educators are beginning to wisen up, however. Ahead of next week's administration of the 2009 gaokao, video cameras are being installed in as many as 60,000 exam rooms.