Classes & Attendance

The University does not have a policy on minimum class attendance. Instructors may take attendance into consideration when assigning grades, provided this is made clear to the students during the discussion of grading.

The academic year begins on 1 September and ends on the following 31 August. A year consists of four terms – Fall, Winter, Spring and Summer.

The Fall and Spring terms are the regular terms. Each has 13 weeks of classes, followed by a short study break and an examination period. Almost all formal instruction takes place in the regular terms.

Normally, the Fall term begins in early September and ends in late December, while the Spring term begins in early February and ends in late May. The Summer term usually runs from late June to mid-August.

The Summer and Winter terms may include regular courses, short credit-bearing skills courses, intensive language courses, workshops, lecture series, mini-conferences and other activities.

Most undergraduates are not required to take courses during the Winter and Summer terms.

ALL
Language of Instruction

At HKUST, English is the language of formal instruction, including lectures, tutorials and laboratories. Individual instruction or consultation may be in any language.

The School of Humanities and Social Science may teach in Chinese and use Chinese reading materials in Chinese studies courses and courses with Chinese subject matter.

Study Load & Student Employment

You normally have to register for courses totaling at least 12 credits and not more than 18 credits in each regular term.

An exemption from this requirement must be approved by your dean or their designee.

If you do not register for courses that give you an appropriate study load, you may be required to withdraw from the University.

Student Employment

A department may employ you to assist in research or other work that relates to your field of study. Other kinds of work (either at or outside the University) may impede your academic performance.

You are expected to study full-time. You may not engage in paid work for more 10 hours a week on average during a regular academic term.

Your dean or their designee may make an exception for an internship or employment related to your academic program.

This rule does not apply to employment during the Winter and Summer terms.

Non-local Students

If you are in Hong Kong on a student visa or an entry permit, you need permission from the Hong Kong Immigration Department to take employment, whether paid or unpaid. Under certain conditions, you may be allowed to take up internships, part-time work on campus and summer employment.

If you are permitted to do such work, you will receive a “no-objection letter” from the Immigration Department upon approval of your entry and extension-of-stay applications. The letter will say what types and conditions of employment you can accept.

For further details, visit the website of the Immigration Department of the HKSAR Government. The Career Center of HKUST has also provided general guidelines for reference of non-local students.

Pages In this Guide
1
Who Does What

The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST) is supported by the Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of the People's Republic of China.

2
Academic Programs & Registration

HKUST believes in total education. Our credit-based undergraduate programs combine the advantages of the sharp program focus of traditional Chinese and British universities and the broad approach characteristic of American universities.

Our educational philosophy and your personal development require that you be exposed to fields outside your major area of study. The undergraduate curriculum is designed to ensure that you get this exposure.

Under the 4-year curriculum, programs usually consist of eight regular terms of full-time study. All programs lead to honors degrees.

Most programs are administered by academic departments/divisions. Joint programs involve two or more departments and are administered by a unit set up for that purpose.

3
Courses & Enrollment

You are responsible for your own studies. It is important for you to plan ahead to ensure that you can complete the study within the permitted duration of study.

4
Academic Integrity

Academic integrity and honesty are key values at HKUST.

5
CURRENT PAGE
Classes & Attendance

The University does not have a policy on minimum class attendance. Instructors may take attendance into consideration when assigning grades, provided this is made clear to the students during the discussion of grading.

The academic year begins on 1 September and ends on the following 31 August. A year consists of four terms – Fall, Winter, Spring and Summer.

The Fall and Spring terms are the regular terms. Each has 13 weeks of classes, followed by a short study break and an examination period. Almost all formal instruction takes place in the regular terms.

Normally, the Fall term begins in early September and ends in late December, while the Spring term begins in early February and ends in late May. The Summer term usually runs from late June to mid-August.

The Summer and Winter terms may include regular courses, short credit-bearing skills courses, intensive language courses, workshops, lecture series, mini-conferences and other activities.

Most undergraduates are not required to take courses during the Winter and Summer terms.

6
NEXT PAGE
Assessment & Progress

Grades are assigned for all courses. Your instructors will discuss the course content, structure, activities and grading scheme with the class at the start of each course.

Typically, the course grade is based on student performance throughout the term and on the final examination. Instructors may consider factors such as class attendance, tardiness and classroom behavior in assigning grades, provided this is made clear to the students during the discussion of grading.

Final examinations are held after the end of classes. There is normally a short study break before the start of the examination period.

7
Graduation & Degrees

You are responsible for ensuring that you fulfill the course and credit requirements for your program in the time allowed. If you wish to graduate, you are required to indicate your intention of graduation via the Student Center in SIS. Failure to apply on time may result in a delay in graduation.

The Academic Registry will track your graduation status based on the application for graduation. Your school/department may also monitor your progress and warn you if a problem appears.

Your program will be completed when you have met all the program requirements. After reviews by your major department and school board, or AIS, your graduation will be approved by the Committee on Undergraduate Studies under authority delegated by the University Senate.

Your degree will be conferred on the date designated by the Senate. You will be awarded at Congregation, which is the formal graduation ceremony. Attendance is not compulsory.

8
Useful Contacts