Undergraduate Curriculum

Enabling Structure

Educational Aims for Undergraduate Education in HKU

To enable students to develop capabilities in:

  1. Pursuit of academic / professional excellence, critical intellectual enquiry and life-long learning
  2. Tackling novel situations and ill-defined problems
  3. Critical self-reflection, greater understanding of others, and upholding personal and professional ethics
  4. Intercultural understanding and global citizenship
  5. Communication and collaboration
  6. Leadership and advocacy for the improvement of the human condition

Enabling Structure

The underlying rationale and principles of HKU’s new curriculum structure are:

  • To provide flexibility for students to pursue their own academic interests.
  • To broaden their knowledge base and develop generic skills to complement specialized knowledge and skills.
  • To optimize the choices of disciplinary subjects for students.
  • To allow room for students to engage in diverse learning experience, including research experience.
  • To encourage students to design with academic guidance their own programmes of study by combining majors/professional cores, minors and electives.
  • To provide opportunities for students to gain experience in academic exchange, internship, work placement or community service.
Component Course No. of Credits* Proportion
Compulsory Courses Common Core
English
Chinese
36 credits
12 credits
6 credits
22.5%
Specialization# Major 72-96 credits (incl all intra-faculty courses that may be required of a major of up to a quarter of the maximum credits for a major, i.e. 24 credits or 4 courses) 30% – 40%
  Minor 36-48 credits 15% – 20%
Electives Electives for all students Remainder to complete 240 credits 17.5% – 32.5%
Total no. of Required Credits   240 credits 100.0%

* 6 credits = 120-180 student workload hours

# Some professional curricula have been approved to adopt a “professional core” for their disciplinary studies.

Common Core Curriculum

The Common Core Curriculum is the centerpiece of the new undergraduate curriculum. It provides the key common learning experience for all HKU students, and it stimulates students’ intellectual curiosity to explore issues of profound significance to humankind. Common Core courses are taught by professors from all Faculties.

Capstone Experience

Capstone experience is an important component of HKU’s 4-Year Undergraduate Curriculum. It may take the form of undergraduate research, field work project, internship, practicum and so on. It focuses on integration and application of knowledge in senior years of study, rather than only on the acquisition of new knowledge and skills, and students will be required to take ownership and responsibility over the learning process.

All Faculties have put in place some forms of capstone experience in their current programmes.

Undergraduate Research

Undergraduate research can be regarded as one form of capstone experience. The University places strong emphasis on research and believes that it is important to enhance undergraduate research in its curriculum in order to stimulate intellectual curiosity among students and to nurture them into future researchers.