BEIJING, March 20 (Xinhua) -- A record-breaking 260,000-plus candidates took the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) in China last year, the sponsors said Friday.
The British Council, one of the sponsors, released the figure at the 2009 transnational education summit and celebration of the 20th anniversary of the IELTS.
About 60 percent of the IELTS candidates in China in 2008 were aged 19 to 22 and most intended to study abroad for a master's degree.
The Council said candidates under age 18 would increase and intended study destinations would expand, with the United States likely to become more popular.
Other sponsors are the International Development Program of Australia and the University of Cambridge English for Speakers of Other Languages Examinations. More than 6,000 schools, government agencies and professional organizations recognize IELTS scores
The IELTS official website in Chinese language -- www.chinaielts.org -- went online Friday offering the latest news and information for Chinese test-takers. Also, the "Road to IELTS" online course, providing free exam preparation material for registered candidates, was launched the same day.