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4-Year PhD Programme

Major features of the 4-year full-time PhD programme

  1. Uniformed commencement date (beginning of the 1st semester of an academic year, or the 2nd semester for students admitted in the clearing round)

  2. A minimum of ^22 units coursework requirement

  3. Qualifying examination between 13th and 18th month
    (Students are required to satisfy all coursework requirements including Mandatory Common Core Programme (MCCP) before the qualifying examination, except for Research Seminars which should be taken throughout the course of studies.)

  4. Candidature examination by 30th month

  5. 1 to 6 months of overseas research learning experience* (e.g. overseas attachment or other comparable overseas research learning) 

  6. At least 1 oral/poster presentation, and publication at reputable international conferences, workshops, events or exhibitions before graduation (depending on disciplinary requirements)

Note: Students should also fulfill the specific requirements stipulated by individual Faculty/School.

The University has approved to relax the duration of overseas research learning experience (OA) from 3-6 months to 1-6 months in order to allow more flexibility for students to arrange and attend the OA activities either face-to-face or by virtual means with effect from September 2022.

^More units may be required by specific disciplines

Coursework Requirement Units

Mandatory Common Core Programme (MCCP)


#Research Seminars


#Research Methodology Course


Other Courses


*A minimum of 4-8 units in total, that is 0.5/1-unit for each semester.

#Students are welcome to seek course selection advice from Principal Supervisor/Department.

^More units may be required by specific disciplines

Overseas Research Learning Experience
Overseas Learning Experience Guideline

Arranging Overseas Research Learning Experience

Frequently Asked Questions for Arranging Overseas Research Learning Experience

For travel insurance, students shall submit the “Overseas Travel Insurance Declaration Form for Official Trip” to Finance Office before departure date. Please visit for access to the declaration form and follow the guidelines from Finance Office.