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Student Handbook

  1. Coursework

    1. Coursework Requirements
      1.   Candidates should successfully complete a minimum of 15 units of coursework (including three units of mandatory common core courses) as laid down by their respective Faculty and achieve a minimum GPA score of 2.67, except as specified in sections 7.1.3 and 7.4.1 of the General Regulations below. Except the common core courses, each course normally carries 2 to 3 units per semester/trimester/term. For candidates on joint or dual degree programmes, the unit requirement for graduation may vary. All coursework courses taken for fulfilling the coursework requirement will be included in the GPA calculation.
      2.   Make-up courses and laboratory courses which are required to cover the candidate’s deficiencies are not counted towards the coursework requirements.
      3.   Candidates who have a relevant Master’s degree may be exempted from 3 units of coursework.
      4.   For candidates who have been transferred from MPhil candidature and have successfully completed the MPhil coursework requirements, the units gained in their MPhil coursework requirements can be counted towards their PhD coursework requirements if deemed appropriate by the Faculty.
    2. Academic Standard of Required Courses
      1.   The number of units assigned to a course is indicative of the contact time with a teacher and/or the study time associated with that course, on a weekly basis over a period of one semester/trimester/term. In general, a single unit represents attendance once a week throughout the semester/trimester/term at a lecture/recitation lasting 50 minutes.
      2.   Not more than two courses (which must have direct relevance to the research area of the student) are to be taken at advanced undergraduate level (e.g. 3XXX or 4XXX series courses in HKBU, or upper division courses in a 4-year UG curriculum).
      3.   Any course to be taken by a candidate will need to be recommended by the Principal Supervisor and endorsed by the Department Head with due reference to the candidate’s academic background.
      4.   If a required course cannot be offered by the University at a given time, an equivalent course may be taken from another university in Hong Kong with the approval of the Principal Supervisor and the Department Head.
    3. Mode of Teaching and Assessment Method The teaching of a course can be delivered in any appropriate mode, such as tutorial, small class, lecture, seminar, colloquium, conference, etc., depending on the course syllabus and the number of students enrolled. Whether the course is taken at the University or another institution/university in Hong Kong, some means of assessment, such as a written examination or submission of term paper(s), is needed to evaluate the candidate’s achievement.
    4. Coursework Administration
      1.   Candidates should officially enrol in the chosen courses through the Graduate School. For courses successfully completed at other institutions/universities under the crossinstitutional course enrolment scheme, transfer of units/credits is allowed but the letter grades would not be included in the GPA calculation. Courses without letter grades and courses with grade “S” will not be counted towards GPA calculation. Students who take all courses under the crossinstitutional course enrolment scheme for fulfilment of coursework requirements would not have a GPA score.
      2.   All courses attempted in the University will be recorded in the candidate’s transcript with letter grades and the total number of units gained. For courses that cannot be assessed objectively (e.g. guided reading and seminar, etc), candidates will only be given an “S” grade for satisfactory completion of a course or a “U” grade for unsatisfactory performance. For courses successfully completed without letter grades, only the units would be counted towards the total number of units gained. The grades would not be included in the GPA calculation.
      3.   Courses taken in the University with grade below “C” will not be counted towards the units gained nor used in the GPA calculation.
      4.   For courses approved for transfer from another institution/university, the total number of units gained (but not the letter grade) will be recorded in the candidate’s transcript. The University shall  not approve transfer of units for courses with grades below the equivalence of grade “B-” in the University’s grading system.
      5.   Any candidate who fails to satisfy the coursework requirements will be dismissed from the University.
      6.   Candidates are required to satisfy all coursework requirements within the normal study period and prior to the submission of their theses for oral examination.
    5. For registration, attendance and assessment of courses, the relevant provisions under the General Regulations for Undergraduate Degree Programmes and the General Regulations for Taught Postgraduate Degree/Diploma/Certificate Programmes are applicable unless otherwise specified.
    6. For registration procedures, please refer to section 3 of the “Guidelines and Procedures for Research Postgraduate Degrees”.