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Candidates shall not be allowed to bring any item.

I saw this sentence on a prospectus. Is it correct to use shall not be instead of will not be?

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You may, but in this context, "shall" enhances the note of requirement, expectation, or command, similar to "should":

Candidates shall bring a notepad and a pencil, but not a pen.

Each cadet shall be expected to buy his own uniform, and to keep it in perfect condition.

You shall not pass!

"Shall" is also somewhat more formal and affected.

"Will" does mean much the same thing as "shall", without the extra emphasis:

Candidates will not chew gum during the exam.

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When we form the future tense, we can use either "Will" or "Shall". Nowadays, most people, especially in informal speech use "Will". However, if you are writing formally, you can use "Shall". "Shall" gives emphasis, and is often used to express commands.

Also note that the "Will" and "Shall" in general are stronger and more definite than the phrasal future (To be going + Infinitive).

Imagine that you're asking if you can choose gum during an exam. Now, compare your proctor saying the following sentences:

"You shall not chew gum during the exam."

"You will not be able to chew gum during the exam."

"You aren't going to be able to chew gum during the test."

Do you see the difference?

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This is one of the exceptional use of shall in the present-day English to denote an absolute rule, and will cannot be used instead of shall in this particular case.

Candidates shall not be allowed to bring any item.

means "It is mandatory that candidates not be allowed to bring any item."

If a less absolute rule is intended, may should be used instead:

Candidates may not be allowed to bring any item.

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