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Information for Applicants of MPhil-PhD Programme in Social Welfare (MPhil-PhD)

 

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Prospectus and Leaflet

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Programme Information
Programme Description

The MPhil-PhD Programme in Social Welfare (MPhil-PhD) is a research-oriented programme, with MPhil (Master of Philosophy) Stream and PhD (Doctor of Philosophy) Stream. Students shall submit a research thesis and pass the oral defence.

 

Full-time students will be awarded the Postgraduate Studentship: HK$15,600 for MPhil and PhD Pre-Candidacy students and HK$16,140 for PhD Post-Candidacy students in 2016-17.

 

For details, please visit here.

Hong Kong PhD Fellowship Scheme

PhD applicants with outstanding qualities of academic performance, research ability / potential, communication and interpersonal skills, and leadership abilities are welcome to apply for the Hong Kong PhD Fellowship Scheme.

 

The Hong Kong PhD Fellowship Scheme, established by the Hong Kong Research Grants Council in 2009, aims at attracting the best and brightest students from all over the world to pursue their PhD studies in Hong Kong. The Fellowship provides a monthly stipend of HK$20,000 and a conference travel allowance of HK$10,000 per year for the awardees for a maximum period of three years. The application deadline is 1 December 2016.

 

Applicants applying for admission to full-time PhD programmes of the Chinese University of Hong Kong through the Hong Kong PhD Fellowship Scheme are required to comply with the admission requirements of the Graduate School. Applicants who are not selected for the Fellowship Scheme will be considered as normal application and if admitted, will be offered a regular postgraduate studentship stipulated by the University during their normative period of studies.

 

For details of the Scheme, please visit the Graduate School's website and the Government's website.

Qualification for Admission

Academic Qualification

Applicants applying for the MPhil/ PhD Stream shall have:

 

  • graduated from a recognised university and obtained a Bachelor’s degree, normally in social work, with honours not lower than Second Class; or
  • graduated from an honours programme of a recognised university with a Bachelor’s degree, normally in social work, with an average grade of not lower than "B".

 

Applicants with a Master's degree from a recognised university can apply for the PhD Stream.

 

English Language Proficiency

Please refer to the Graduate School’s website for details:

  • Website
  • Section: “All students should fulfill the English Language Proficiency Requirement prescribed below before they are admitted”

 

Remarks: Applicants for the Hong Kong PhD Fellowship Scheme (HKPFS) are required to submit score reports of TOEFL /IELTS. GMAT result is not accepted.

 

Others

Applicants are required to furnish proof of their research capability in the form of comments from academic referees, professional colleagues or past publications.

 

Applicants having at least two years of practice or teaching in the field of social service or social welfare are preferred.

Thesis Supervisor

After students are admitted to the Programme, they will be advised of the procedures of thesis supervisor assignment. In brief, the appointment of thesis supervisor is subject to the Division Head’s discretion, by taking into consideration the expertise of the teaching staff and the student’s preference. Applicants of the MPhil-PhD Programme therefore do not need to contact their intended thesis supervisor during the application process. You are yet welcome to visit our website for details on our faculty members’ specialties and research interest.

Study Mode and Study Length

Normative Study Period

MPhil Stream:

Full-time: 24 months

Part-time: 36 months

 

PhD Stream:

Full-time (with research master’s degree): 36 months

Full-time (without research master’s degree): 48 months

Part-time (with research master’s degree): 48 months

Part-time (without research master’s degree): 64 months

 

Details on “Period of Study”

Please refer to Clause 5 and Annex of “General Regulations Governing Postgraduate Studies”.

Tuition Fee

The tuition fee for 2017-18 is to be confirmed. For reference, the tuition fees for 2016-17 are as follows:

 

  • Full-time (MPhil/ PhD Streams): HK42,100 per annum
  • Part-time (MPhil Stream): HK56,280 per annum
  • Part-time (PhD Stream): HK63,000 per annum
Financial Aid and Scholarship

Postgraduate Studentship

Postgraduate Studentship (PGS) is a form of award and financial assistance provided to all full-time students of MPhil-PhD in Social Welfare who are within the normative study period. Applicants need not make a separate application for obtaining the PGS award.

 

Students awarded PGS will receive stipends in return for assisting in the teaching and research work of the Graduate Division. The monthly stipends in 2017-18 are not yet announced. For reference, the monthly stipends in 2016-17 are HK$15,600 for MPhil and PhD Pre-Candidacy students and HK$16,140 for PhD Post-Candidacy students. While in receipt of the PGS award, students must not undertake other engagement or employment, full-time or part-time, unless with permission of the University.

 

Government Grant and Loan

Registered full-time students of MPhil-PhD in Social Welfare who satisfy conditions may apply for grants and loans under the "Tertiary Student Finance Scheme - Publicly-Funded Programmes (TSFS)" administered by the Student Financial Office Working Family and Student Financial Assistance Agency (SFO) of the Hong Kong Government. For details, please visit here.

 

University Bursary and Loan

A number of bursaries and loans are available for full-time financially needy MPhil/ PhD students who are Hong Kong permanent residents. For details, please visit here

 

Scholarship and Award

The University also administers a number of scholarships and prizes, which are awarded on the basis of academic performance or other non-academic achievements. For details, please visit here.

Student Hostel Full-time MPhil/ PhD students may apply for residence at Postgraduate Halls (PGH).
Prospectus and Leaflet
Postgraduate Prospectus of Research Programmes (English)

(click to download)       

RPg Eng

Full version

Postgraduate Prospectus of Research Programmes (Chinese)

(click to download)

RPg Chi

Full version

Leaflet of Hong Kong PhD Fellowship Scheme

(click to download)

RPg HKPFS 

Application Guidelines
Application Period

Application for PhD Stream through the Hong Kong PhD Fellowship Scheme (HKPFS)

From now to 12:00 noon of 1 December 2016 (Hong Kong time)

 

Application for MPhil/ PhD Stream with the University Directly (i.e. non-HKPFS Application)

First Round Application Deadline: 1 December 2016

Second Round Application Deadline: 1 February 2017

(see below for “Important Notes”)

 

Important Notes

Due to keen competition, applicants are strongly encouraged to submit their applications and all application documents on or before 1 December 2016. Interviews for both HKPFS and non-HKPFS applicants will be conducted starting from early December 2016. Applications received from 2 December 2016 to 31 January 2017 will be considered only if places are still available.

 

Due to keen competition, applicants are strongly encouraged to submit their applications and application materials as soon as possible since (i) The Admission Panel will start reviewing applications once all required application materials are received. Applications will not be reviewed only until the end of every Round; (ii) Competitions at later rounds are more and more competitive as places are fewer and fewer. Offers could be made only when places are still available.

Application Procedures

For Applicants of Hong Kong PhD Fellowship Scheme (HKPFS)

Please refer to Point 2 (ii) of "Notes for Applicant (Internet Application)".

 

For All Applicants

1. Complete an Application Form

Applicants can submit applications via the Internet through “Online System for Applicants of Postgraduate Programmes”. For details, please visit here and read “Notes For Applicants (Internet Application)”.

Before clicking "Submit" at the System, please ensure all information is complete and accurate. If you have not yet completed filling out the application form, please click "Save" instead of "Submit". It is because very soon after you click "Submit", you will be unable to revise your application form via the System as our Admission Panel will freeze your application so as to start processing your application. Amendments can be made, only by contacting us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., but would unavoidably delay the time your application is handled.

 

2. Pay the Application Fee

The application fee for each application is HK$300. The application fee, once paid, is not refundable. You can pay by credit card or bank draft/ cheque.

 

3. Arrange all supporting documents (see “Application Document” for details) to reach the Graduate Division of Social Work by post mail preferably on or before 1 December 2016 or by 1 February 2017, the latest.

Application Procedure: For Applicants Who Are Applying for More than One Programmes or Study Modes

1. You shall fill out this Reply Slip and attach it to your application documents.

 

2. You are welcome to apply for more than one programmes or study modes offered by the Graduate Division of Social Work. There will be no negative impacts to your applications on any of the programmes.

 

3. You shall submit different sets of application materials for each programme that you are applying for. It is because:

  • Materials that you will include and your way of presentation may vary according to the different natures of each programme that you are applying for. Especially for "Personal Statement", applicants normally prepare different ones for different programmes.
  • Your application will be separately considered by each programme's admission panel.
Application Documents

All of the following documents shall be sent to the Graduate Division of Social Work by post mail. (Attention: Ms. Wong; Address and Office Hours: Please visit here.) (Please make sure you and your referees bear sufficient postage for your mails. Underpaid mail items may be returned by the Post Office and thus delay delivery of your documents. For postage fees within Hong Kong, please click here.)

 

(click to expand for important details) 

(1) Document Cover Sheet

(2) Reply Slip for Applicants who are Applying for More Than One Programmes/ Study Modes Offered by the Graduate Division of Social Work (if applicable)

(3) Transcript
  • For final year students, academic results shall be as of the final term in the last academic year. Marks/ grades of the current academic year are not required. For graduates, a full transcript with grades/ marks of all courses attended shall be included.
  • CUHK qualification:
    • Photocopies of “Student Copy Transcript” issued by CUHK are accepted. To apply for a “Student Copy Transcript”, please visit here for undergraduate qualification or here for postgraduate qualification.
    • Submission of an official transcript is not needed.
    • Academic reports generated from CUSIS are not accepted.
  • Non-CUHK qualification:
    • Official transcripts issued by the institution(s) you attended are required. The transcripts should be issued by the Registry/ Academic Secretary (教務處/ 檔案館/ 學生成績專用章) but not Department of a university.
    • The official transcripts shall be sent to the Graduate Division of Social Work directly from your institution(s), or in sealed envelopes with other supporting documents by you.
    • Photocopied or "certified true copy" of transcripts are not accepted.
  • Students graduated from Associate Degree or Higher Diploma programmes shall also provide official transcripts of their studies at Associate Degree or Higher Diploma programmes.
(4) Grading Scheme
  • An accepted Grading Scheme should indicate the marks/ GPA for achieving an average grade of not lower than “B”.
  • Grading Scheme is a document that states the marks for each grade (e.g. Grade A is for marks ranged from 90 to 100, Grade A- is from 85 to 89) or grade point conversion (e.g. Grade A carries a converted point of 4.00 and Grade A- is 3.70). Grading Scheme is usually shown at the bottom/back of the transcript, stated at Student Handbooks or posted at your institutions’ websites where you check your academic results.
  • If the Grading Scheme is not shown at the transcript that applicants will provide, applicants shall provide a copy of the document which shows the Grading Scheme:
    • If the Grading Scheme is obtained from a website that is accessible without logging in any system, please state the URL of the website.
    • If the Grading Scheme is obtained from a website that logging in a system is needed, please print screen the Grading Scheme and copy it to a Word file.
  • If your University does not have a Grading Scheme, you shall seek assistance from your Registry (教務處/ 檔案館) (i.e. not your Department) to issue a letter confirming that no Grading Scheme is adopted by your University.
(5) Scores Calculation
  • If your degree certificate/ transcript does not show honours classification, average marks or cumulative grade point average (CGPA) that you have attained, you shall calculate the average marks or CGPA by yourselves by using an appropriate template provided below:
(6) Research Proposal
  • All applicants of the MPhil-PhD Programme should indicate their research interest by submitting their Research Proposals. Research Proposals should show applicants’ knowledge and ability in presenting information and ideas logically and systematically, and demonstrate their potential to be outstanding researchers or scholars.
  • There is no specific requirement for the Research Proposal. However, a Research Proposal normally includes at least a title page indicating the area/ topic of the research, introduction, rationale, literature review, objectives, methodology, expected outcomes, limitations, conclusion and references.
  • The Research Proposals can be written in either English or Chinese. If the Research Proposal is in Chinese, the applicants should also submit an English abstract in around 500 words that summarises the Research Proposal.
  • Length of the Research Proposal shall be around 3,000 words.
(7) Personal Statement
  • All applicants should submit a 400 to 500-word Personal Statement written in English.
  • In the Personal Statement, you shall state why you are interested in the programme and reasons you find yourself suitable for the programme.
(8) Photocopy of Certificate of Graduation
  • Graduates: Please submit a photocopy of your graduation certificate.
  • Graduates of Associate Degree or Higher Diploma programmes: A copy of the graduation certificate of the Associate Degree or Higher Diploma programmes shall also be provided.
  • Final-year students: You need not submit the graduation certificate as it is not yet available.
(9) Photocopy of Hong Kong Identity Card and Other Identity Documents
(10) Payment Voucher
  • For applicants who pay the application fee by bank draft/ cheque, please download “Payment Voucher” from “Online System for Applicants of Postgraduate Programmes” and send it to the Graduate Division of Social Work together with your payment.
  • For applicants who have paid for the application fee by credit card: You need not enclose the Payment Voucher to your application.

 

Meanwhile, applicants should submit two Confidential Recommendations and documentary proof of fulfilling the English Language Proficiency Requirement by methods mentioned below.

 

(click to expand for important details)

Confidential Recommendations from Two Referees
  • Applicants could use any of the following methods to submit the Confidential Recommendation:
    • print out or email “Confidential Recommendation” (downloadable from “Online System for Applicants of Postgraduate Programmes”) for referees’ completion and seek referees’ assistance to seal the recommendation and pass it to you. You can then send the sealed recommendation with other application documents to the Graduate Division of Social Work by post mail;
    • print out or email “Confidential Recommendation” (downloadable from “Online System for Applicants of Postgraduate Programmes”) and seek referees’ assistance to directly send the complete recommendation to the Graduate Division of Social Work by post mail; or
    • submit two referees’ contact information via “Online System for Applicants of Postgraduate Programmes”. The System will then send emails to your nominated referees inviting them to complete the Confidential Recommendation Form online.
  • The Confidential Recommendation could be written in English, traditional Chinese or simplified Chinese.
Documentary Proof of Fulfilling the English Language Proficiency Requirement
Please note the following:
  • Applicants who will have a degree/ recognised professional qualification from a university in Hong Kong or an English speaking country:
    • Submitting a copy of your graduation certificate/transcript is already regarded as having fulfilled the English Language Proficiency requirements.
    • You need not submit other proofs such as GMAT/ IELTS/ TOEFL reports, or grade of English subjects at Hong Kong Advanced Level Examination, Hong Kong Higher Level Examination, CUHK Matriculation Examination or Hong Kong Diploma of Secondary Education Examination.

 

  • Applicants who fulfill the English Language Proficiency requirements by GMAT, IELTS or TOEFL scores:
    • Submitting a score report of any one of GMAT, IELTS or TOEFL tests is already regarded as having fulfilled the English Language Proficiency requirements.
    • Only original valid official score report of GMAT/ IELTS/ TOEFL sent directly from the test organisation to the Graduate Division of Social Work will be accepted. Original examinee’s score report will not be accepted.
    • While the original valid official score report is on its way to our Graduate Division/ our University, you are very welcome to provide us with a copy of the test report for our reference and consideration of your application.
    • Once your test score meets the requirement, you are strongly encouraged to immediately update us your test result. It is because fulfilling the English Language Proficiency Requirement is one of the criteria for applicants to receive offers, and whether you have fulfilled the requirement would affect our consideration of your application.
    • For applicants who will provide IELTS score report: Please fill in the following contact information on Question 22 of the IELTS Application Form:
      • Name of person/ department: Division of Social Work
      • Name of institution/ agency/ body/ employer: The Chinese University of Hong Kong
      • File/case number: your application number for the programme you are applying for
      • Address: Room 504, T.C. Cheng Building, United College, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Shatin. NT, Hong Kong
    • For applicants who will provide TOEFL score report: Please note that the University’s institution code is 0812.

 

  • Applicants who would like to fulfill the English Language Proficiency requirements by grade attainment at Hong Kong Advanced Level Examination, Hong Kong Higher Level Examination, CUHK Matriculation Examination, Hong Kong Diploma of Secondary Education Examination or General Certificate of Education Advanced Level/ Advanced Subsidiary Level:
    • A copy of the score report must be certified by the official organisation, e.g. Hong Kong Examinations and Assessment Authority
    • The University may require applicants to provide the original documents for verification.

 

Last but not least, please email the following two documents to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..
(1) Score Calculation (i.e. Application Document Item 5) in Excel format, not in pdf or other formats.
(2) Research Proposal (i.e. Application Document Item 6) in Word format.
The file name shall be in this format: “Application Number_Name”, e.g. “16301234_Chan Siu Ming”.

Download Area
Application Result

Application for PhD Stream through the Hong Kong PhD Fellowship Scheme (HKPFS)

Research Grants Council will announce the results in around late March 2017.

 

Application for MPhil/ PhD Stream with the University Directly (i.e. non-HKPFS Application)

Applicants may login the Online System for Applicants of Postgraduate Programmes to check their application results and relevant information. Successful applicants will receive the offer letter on or before August 2017. Applicants may consider their applications unsuccessful if they do not hear from us thereafter.

Tips for Applicants
  1. Do check your email daily. Both the Graduate Division of Social Work and the Graduate School will contact applicants for follow up, interview, etc. (if any) by email. It is possible that the emails are classified as spam or junk mails by email servers. So, please check both the “Inbox” and “Junk Mail” of your email account.
  2. Applicants are advised to make sure information are correct and complete before they submit their applications to the Application System. It is because applicants cannot make amendments by themselves once the form is submitted. In case revisions need to be made, please submit a request to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. The requests will be handled, but not immediately.
Contact Us
Graduate Division of Social Work

When you contact us, please always provide the following information:

  • Application Number
  • Name in full as on the Application Form
  • Programme
  • Study Mode: Full-time/ Part-time

 

The Graduate Division of Social Work can be reached at:

  • Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
  • Telephone Number: (852) 3943 7556
  • Fax Number: (852) 3943 1869
  • Address: Room 504, 5/F, T. C. Cheng Building, United College, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Shatin, N.T., Hong Kong
  • Office Hours
    • Monday to Thursday: 8:45 am to 1:00 pm and 2:00 pm to 5:30 pm
    • Friday: 8:45 am to 1:00 pm and 2:00 pm to 5:45 pm
    • Saturday, Sunday and Public Holiday: Closed
Graduate School

Please always quote the Application Number for inquiries.

 

The Graduate School can be reached at:

  • Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
  • Online Enquiries
  • Telephone Number: (852) 3943 8976 or (852) 3943 8977
  • Fax Number: (852) 2603 5779
  • Address: 7/F, Yasumoto International Academic Park, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Shatin, N.T., Hong Kong
  • Office Hours
    • Monday to Thursday: 8:45 am to 1:00 pm and 2:00 pm to 5:30 pm
    • Friday: 8:45 am to 1:00 pm and 2:00 pm to 5:45 pm
    • Saturday, Sunday and Public Holiday: Closed

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