Study in Hong Kong (SAR)
Over the years, universities in Hong Kong (SAR) have been focusing on promoting quality higher education by welcoming talents, upholding academic freedom, respecting institutional autonomy, supporting collaboration, and promoting academic exchanges.
Hong Kong aspires to further develop itself as a regional education hub with world-class universities and quality institutions, through diversification and internationalisation. Universities focus on offering bilingual students a broad knowledge base, a global outlook, as well as the ability to think critically and creatively, and the ability to work independently and collaboratively.
Over 3,700 overseas companies have based their Asia-Pacific operations, employing over 200,000 people.
Find the best information about what it’s like to study in Hong Kong, including degree course offers, career opportunities, student life, living costs, and more.
Why study in Hong Kong?
1. Top-ranked universities
Universities in Hong Kong are among the best educational institutions in both Asia and the world.
The University of Hong Kong, the Chinese University of Hong Kong, The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology — these are only a few examples that are present every year in prestigious global university rankings.
Hong Kong universities stand out especially when it comes to Business studies, offering a wide range of academic programmes whose quality is at the highest level.
2. English is an official language
You don't need to worry about language barriers if you've decided to study in Hong Kong. Together with Chinese, English is an official language. Almost 50% of the population speaks the English language, so it shouldn't be too hard to ask for help and make friends.
3. Scholarships for everybody
The high quality of education provided by Hong Kong universities comes at a price: tuition fees range between 11,500 and 34,000 USD per academic year, which isn't exactly affordable for everyone.
Luckily, there are numerous scholarships available to international students. Some of them are offered by the local government, others by educational institutions or public/private organisations.
If you meet the requirements, don't hesitate to apply. After all, it's free money that can make your study experience a lot easier.
4. Hong Kong is a bridge between the East and the West
If you really look at it, Hong Kong is a blend between Eastern and Western cultures. This is reflected in the lifestyle, architecture, official languages, administrative processes, and so on.
It also means diversity is at home here, so internationals from all over the world shouldn't find it too difficult to integrate and quickly find their own rhythm.
5. Plenty of things to see and do
Hong Kong isn't only a great place for studies, but it's also an exciting place to live in. There are numerous attractions and activities to explore.
You can visit the Victoria Peak, amuse yourself at the Hong Kong Disneyland, jump into wild rides at the Ocean Park, take pictures of the Tian Tan Buddha statue, travel with the famous Peak Tram, and witness the beauty of Hong Kong's Symphony of Lights.
Which universities to attend in Hong Kong?
Here are a few universities in Hong Kong we recommend:
- The University of Hong Kong
- The Hong Kong Polytechnic University
- Hong Kong University of Science and Technology
- City University of Hong Kong
- PolyU Design
- The Chinese University of Hong Kong
Institutions in Hong Kong enjoy a high degree of autonomy in admission of students, and admission requirements may vary between different institutions. Some institutions will invite applicants to attend interviews. You are advised to read the course information provided by institutions carefully and contact the institution(s) you intend to apply for if you need further advice and clarification.
Generally, the main documents students should provide include the following:
- A secondary school graduation certificate;
- Proof of satisfactory results in your country's Leaving or Aptitude exams;
- If English is not your mother tongue, you will need to take the TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language), IELTS (International English Language Testing System), or equivalent exams.
Of course, you should contact the admission office of institutions for more detailed information. For more information regarding the higher education admission process visit: http://studyinhongkong.edu.hk/en/apply-to-study/admission-requirement.php
The Government strives to provide multiple study pathways for secondary school leavers, with multiple entry and exit points. Some of them will study bachelor's degree programmes. Some will choose to study sub-degree programmes. Upon graduation, they can pursue study in top-up degree programmes and obtain their undergraduate qualifications.
Apart from undergraduate programmes offered, students can also choose a wide diversity of sub-degree programmes, various continuing and vocational programmes that best suit their interests and ability.
There is also a wide array of taught and research postgraduate programmes for students who have graduated from their undergraduate studies to choose from.
Higher education institutions in Hong Kong also provide quality research. They emphasize inter-disciplinary and inter-institutional collaboration in research activities.
The Hong Kong Government established the Research Endowment Fund in 2008, which provides a stable source of funding for research conducted by the higher education sector in Hong Kong.
To attract both outstanding local and non-local students to pursue PhD studies in Hong Kong, The Hong Kong PhD Fellowship Scheme was launched in 2009. The scheme provides a monthly stipend and a conference and research-related travel allowance per year will be provided for a period up to three years. Additional support is possible for students who need more than three years to complete their PhD degree.
Hong Kong is an international city where both English and Chinese are official languages and English is used as teaching medium in most university courses. Students are able to learn authentic Chinese at the higher education institution they are enrolled in.
English language preparation for studying in Hong Kong
Develop your academic English language skills in order to meet the English language requirements at universities in Hong Kong offering degree studies for international students. Choose an English language school anywhere in the world and pick your preferred English exam preparation course from diverse language course options.
The certificates generally accepted by the universities in Hong Kong are:
Higher education institutions in Hong Kong adopt international standards in curriculum design and quality assurance, and their qualifications awarded are internationally recognized. Academic freedom and a highly internationalized campus broaden student’s gained knowledge and expose them to different learning perspectives.
Living in Hong Kong (SAR)
Let's take a closer look at tuition and living expenses in Hong Kong (SAR):
For international or non-local students, tuition fees at Hong Kong universities range between 11,500 and 34,000 USD per year. To support your study costs, you can always apply for scholarships and other types of financial aid.
On average, foreign students need around 450–650 USD per month to live in Hong Kong. This budget can go up and down depending on your lifestyle and spending habits.
Here's a breakdown of the average living expenses:
- accommodation (hostel/student residence hall): 160–485 USD/month
- accommodation (rent apartment): 1,050–1,900 USD/month
- monthly utilities: 180–200 USD/month
- food and groceries: 200–350 USD/month
- books and study materials: 100–120 USD/month
- monthly transport pass: 53 USD
- other monthly expenses: 160 USD
Tips and tricks for international students in Hong Kong
- Save money and dive into local culture — eat in a Cha Chaan Teng, the Chinese answer to a café. Service is basic, but the food is delicious, and you can't beat the prices. Besides, you can have your meals at the campus student canteens, and the price is low. Having meals there can save much.
- Although credit cards issued overseas are mostly accepted in Hong Kong, overseas card issuers may charge foreign transaction fees, making credit card payment more costly.
- Having inherited ancient Chinese heritage and experienced a period of Western colonial influence, Hong Kong is a multifaceted city where English and Cantonese, Feng Shui and football, towering skyscrapers and historical sites exist side by side.
- You can relax at a sidewalk café, take up Tai Chi, or go hiking in one of our stunning country parks.
- Hong Kong is also known as a shopper's paradise.
- State-of-the-art telecommunications and internet system enable you to contact your friends and family, order a meal, and get high speed downloads.
- Hong Kong is the perfect entry point to the exciting Chinese mainland.
- To the north, the rural New Territories are home to vast country parks, ancient villages, tranquil wetlands, and diverse wildlife.
- Over 200 outlying islands have largely retained their natural character and are accessible to the adventurous people.
About Hong Kong (SAR)
Hong Kong is a small but dynamic city located to the southeast of the Mainland China, adjoining the province of Guangdong. It forms a triangle with Macau to the west and Guangzhou to the Northwest in the Pearl River Delta.
Hong Kong spreads over 1,104 square kilometers. Hong Kong Island and the Kowloon peninsula are at the core of the city, surrounding famed Victoria Harbour, one of the world’s most renowned deep-water harbours. This is where you can see Hong Kong's celebrated skyline and experience urban dynamism at its utmost.
Currently, the city’s population is over 7 million. People of Chinese descent comprise the vast majority of the population. The Chinese majority forms the core of the local culture. Yet Hong Kong is a cosmopolitan city with a significant foreign population. There are about 500 ,000 people from different parts of the world living here for education, employment, business, etc. Indonesian, Filipinos, British, American, Thai, Indian, Japanese, Australian, Pakistani and Nepalese form the majority foreign population here.
There is evidence of human settlement in Hong Kong from Neolithic times. Several thousand years ago, people here were hunting, fishing and making exquisite rock carvings.
The city was a British colony from 1842 to 1997. China assumed sovereignty of Hong Kong in 1997, since then the city was formally renamed as "Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of the People's Republic of China".
Hong Kong's economy is characterized by free trade, low taxation and minimum government intervention. Hong Kong is one of the largest trading economies in the world. Hong Kong is also a major service economy, with particularly strong links to the Mainland China and the rest of the Asia-Pacific region.
Hong Kong's climate is sub-tropical, with temperatures dropping below 10 degrees Celsius in winter and exceeding 31 degrees Celsius in summer. It is warm, sunny and dry in autumn, cool and dry in winter, and hot, humid and rainy from spring to summer.
Universities, colleges and schools in Hong Kong (SAR)
- Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (2 Distance Learning courses)
- Hong Kong Metropolitan University (1 Distance Learning course)
- Swiss School Of Business and Management (3 Distance Learning courses)
- University of Law, Hong Kong (19 Distance Learning courses)
- London School of Business and Finance Singapore (26 Distance Learning courses)
- The University of Hong Kong (5 Distance Learning courses)
- The University of Manchester (2 Distance Learning courses)
- The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (12 Distance Learning courses)
- The Chinese University of Hong Kong (1 Distance Learning course)
How to Apply to a Master's in Hong Kong (SAR)
If you've decided to study a Master's degree at a university in Hong Kong (SAR), you will have to gather the right documents to prove that you fit the university requirements. Provide complete personal information, previous qualifications, financial information, and a personal statement.
What documents do I need to provide to apply in Hong Kong (SAR)?
To apply to a university in Hong Kong (SAR) you will likely be asked to provide some of the following documents:
- birth certificate;
- recent photos;
- your passport or national identity card;
- one or more reference letters from past employers or teachers;
- copies of past diplomas or certificates, including your graduated Bachelor's degree;
- academic transcripts;
- letter of intent;
- Curriculum Vitae;
- Some form of proof that you can support your stay in the country during your studies.
Depending on the subject or specialization of your chosen Master's, you might also be asked to provide scores for additional tests like the GRE, GMAT or LSAT. Check if your programme requires any of these, or others.
The list of documents depends on the specific requirements of universities in Hong Kong (SAR) so you might be asked to include additional documents. It’s also likely you’ll have to provide official English translations of your documents, or translations in the local language.
Prove your English skills
Because you’ll study an international degree in English, you'll have to present a language certificate. Some popular options for international students are IELTS, TOEFL or C1 Advanced language certificates. You’ll have to meet a minimum language score set by the university, and your test scores shouldn’t be older than 1-2 years. If you don’t meet the minimum language requirements, you will have to improve your skills and scores by taking an English preparation course.
Application deadlines for Hong Kong (SAR)
The deadlines for applying to a Master's in Hong Kong (SAR) are usually during summer (June-July), or in winter (January-February). Keep in mind that some universities don’t have application deadlines, which means you can apply whenever you are ready.
To avoid delays or missed deadlines send your required documents with plenty of time in advance.