A common entrance exam for all Russian universities will come into force by 2005. As a Rosbalt correspondent reports this was announced by Russian Education Minister Vladimir Filippov yesterday. 'The exam will not prevent creative competition and it will only be introduced gradually so that we can assess how effective it is,' he said. School leavers will be able to apply to 15-20 different universities which are taking part in the experiment. Information on the successful candidates will be published on the universities' websites by August 1. Students who have won national and municipal competitions will be able to enter the university of their choice without taking the exam. Mr Filippov emphasised that the exam is necessary for raising the objectivity of school leaving exams.
The exam was taken for the first time by Russian school leavers in 2001.