Research Postgraduate Studies

man using a testing tube

Research Postgraduate Studies

Research Postgraduate Studies

Hong Kong universities offer a wide range of research postgraduate programmes in both Science and Humanities. Students are encouraged to conduct research under the guidance and supervision of world-class scholars in a liberal environment. Ongoing support from the government and other organisations enables students to benefit from learning and development in advanced teaching and research facilities. Hong Kong’s dynamic research culture continues to attract young researchers to study here.

Research postgraduate programmes require students to focus primarily on their research work, but they may also include some taught components. At the end of their studies, students must submit a thesis/dissertation based on their research and defend their work in an oral examination conducted before an examination panel.

Based on the required level of depth and breadth in the research subject, students are admitted to Master’s and doctoral programmes. Master of Philosophy (M.Phil.) and Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) are the two main types of degrees awarded for research postgraduate studies.

Sharing Research Postgraduate Courses

(Cross-institutional Course/Subject Enrolment Scheme for Research Postgraduate Students)

In addition to offering courses to their own students, Hong Kong universities collaborate and share research postgraduate courses among students from participating institutions. This scheme enables postgraduate students in Hong Kong to benefit from broader exposure and the expertise of sister institutions in Hong Kong.

Detailed information on this collaboration scheme is available on the websites of participating universities.

women using microscope

PhD Studies

Most research postgraduate programmes at the doctoral level lead to a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD), and universities in Hong Kong offer a wide range of PhD programmes. With major emphasis placed on individual research, some PhD programmes also have a coursework component. Students are required to conduct in-depth investigation of a chosen topic, and to display sustained independent effort and original thought on the subject area. In order to graduate, students are required to present a complete thesis of publication-worthy quality, and to demonstrate to the examination panel that they have a thorough understanding of the context and significance of their research work. PhD students are also expected to produce evidence and arguments supporting an original proposition that results in a significant contribution to knowledge of their chosen subject.

To attract quality students to undertake doctoral studies in Hong Kong, a Hong Kong PhD Fellowship Scheme has been set up by the Hong Kong Research Grants Council. Further information on this scheme can be found on the Hong Kong PhD Fellowship Scheme page.