Hong Kong PhD Fellowship Scheme 2018/19
Hong Kong PhD FellowshipApplication ProcedureLiving and Studying in Hong KongParticipating UniversitiesWhat's NewEnquiry and FAQs



For enquiries about the Hong Kong PhD Fellowship Scheme, please contact us by email at HKPF@ugc.edu.hk. You may also get instant answers to the most frequently asked questions below.

As regards admission and application requirements for PhD studies, please refer to individual universities for information.






Frequently Asked Questions


General Information

Q1. What is Hong Kong PhD Fellowship Scheme?
Established in 2009 by the Research Grants Council (RGC), the Hong Kong PhD Fellowship Scheme (HKPFS) aims at attracting the best and brightest students in the world to pursue their PhD programmes in Hong Kong's universities.
Q2. What is the amount of award under the Hong Kong PhD Fellowship?
The Fellowship provides each awardee with an annual stipend of HK$240,000 (approximately US$ 30,000) and a conference and research-related travel allowance of HK$10,000 (approximately US$ 1,300) per year for a period of up to three years. More than 230 PhD Fellowships will be awarded in the 2018/19 academic year.
Q3. Which universities are supported by the Hong Kong PhD Fellowship Scheme?
The HKPFS supports the awardees to pursue their PhD studies at the following eight University Grants Committee (UGC)-funded universities in Hong Kong:
- City University of Hong Kong
- Hong Kong Baptist University
- Lingnan University
- The Chinese University of Hong Kong
- The Education University of Hong Kong
- The Hong Kong Polytechnic University
- The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology
- The University of Hong Kong
Q4. Am I eligible for Hong Kong PhD Fellowship?
Those who are seeking admission as new full-time PhD students in UGC-funded universities of Hong Kong, irrespective of their country of origin, prior work experience and ethnic background, should be eligible to apply. Applicants should demonstrate outstanding qualities of academic performance, research ability / potential, communication and interpersonal skills, and leadership abilities.
Q5. I am not sure whether I am eligible to apply for the PhD programmes in Hong Kong. How can I obtain such information?
UGC-funded universities determine the eligibility requirements of their respective PhD programmes. Interested parties should consult individual universities on eligibility.
Q6. I am currently a PhD student. Am I eligible to apply for the Fellowship?
You are eligible to apply for the Fellowship if you apply for another PhD programmes as a new full-time PhD student. However, it is up to the Selection Panel to decide whether the previous PhD study experience should be discounted so as to ensure a level play field for those who do not have any PhD background.
Q7. I have difficulties in obtaining transcripts/ certificates/ test results by the application deadline of the university I selected. Am I still eligible?
We encourage students with excellent academic performance and good potential in research work to apply for the HKPFS. Universities may give conditional offer to candidates who demonstrate outstanding ability and potential in their areas of studies. Since the candidates of the HKPFS are to be nominated by universities, applicants should consult the universities at which they intend to pursue their PhD studies directly in respect of their eligibility for admission to the PhD programmes concerned.
Q8. Do I need to attain a required score from IELTS/TOEFL/GMAT/GRE before applying for the Hong Kong PhD Fellowship?
For applicants from non-English speaking universities, unless they provide proof that English is the language of instruction for all courses, they are required to attach score results of TOEFL or IELTS in their PhD applications to the universities concerned. This requirement is exempted if their proposed PhD studies/programmes are specifically in non-English medium, e.g. in Chinese language. Please note that since the UGC-funded universities determine the admission requirements of their PhD programmes, whether applicants need to submit results of any other specific tests is subject to the requirements of individual universities. In general, good results obtained from an open examination widely recognised by international academic institutions will be very useful for universities and Selection Panels of the Scheme to assess one's intellectual and language competency.
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Q9.  What is an initial application for Hong Kong PhD Fellowship Scheme?
An initial application is the first step in making an application under the HKPFS.  The initial application must be submitted through the Hong Kong PhD Fellowship Scheme Electronic System.  The system will assign an HKPFS Reference Number which an applicant needs to quote in their application for admission to their selected universities.
Q10.  Am I required to submit applications to my selected universities directly after successful submission of my Initial Application Form?
Yes.  Please ensure that you have attained an HKPFS Reference Number assigned for your initial application, and quote the Reference Number when applying to your proposed universities.
Q11.  If I have forgotten to present the reference number assigned by the HKPFS, will my application still be considered as an application for HKPFS?
If no HKPFS Reference Number is presented to a university in an application for PhD programme admission, the university will process the relevant application as a regular one without giving any consideration under the HKPFS.
Q12.  I forgot to read the “Explanatory Notes to Applicants” before filling out the Initial Application. Will it affect my application?
The Research Grants Council (RGC) of Hong Kong may stop processing your application if it does not comply with any of the requirements as set out in the Explanatory Notes.
Q13.  Can I submit more than one initial application for the Hong Kong PhD Fellowship?
In order to ensure consistency and fairness to all applicants, each applicant can only submit ONE initial application through the Hong Kong PhD Fellowship Scheme Electronic System.
Q14.  May I print out the template of the initial application and fill it out manually for submission to the RGC?
No.  All initial applications should be made online through the Hong Kong PhD Fellowship Scheme Electronic System.
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Q15.  After the submission of the initial application, I would like to make changes to university/programme choices. What should I do?

If an applicant wishes to change his/her choice of universities(ies)/programme(s) for PhD studies in the initial application, he/she will need to log-in using the HKPFS Reference Number and password.

Q16.  How many universities and PhD programmes I can choose for an application under Hong Kong PhD Fellowship Scheme?
You may choose up to two programmes in total in one or two universities with priority indicated in your application.
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Q17.  Do I need to pay any fees for making an application under HKPFS?
The RGC does not charge any application fee for the HKPFS. However, universities may charge application or other processing fees.
Q18.  If I have problem in paying application fee to my chosen university, what should I do?
The Research Grants Council (RGC) does NOT have any involvement in the payment of application fee for PhD admission which is solely the business between applicants and the respective universities. Furthermore, the RGC is not liable for any information or services which may appear on any websites linked to the web-page of the Hong Kong PhD Fellowship Scheme. Should applicants encounter problems arising from application fee payment, or have any enquiry regarding particular universities, they should contact the relevant universities directly.
Q19.  Where can I get the information about PhD programmes and admission requirements of the universities?
For details on PhD programmes and admission requirements of individual universities, please refer to the following websites:
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Q20.  Is there a definite time frame for submission of my Initial Application?
Applicants must submit their initial applications through the Hong Kong PhD Fellowship Scheme Electronic System before the deadline on 1 December 2017 at 12:00 noon Hong Kong Time.
Q21.  Are application deadlines for the eight universities the same as that for the Initial Application?
No.  As application deadlines for some of the universities may immediately follow that for the initial applications, candidates should submit initial applications as early as possible to ensure that they have sufficient time to submit full applications to universities.  Deadlines for submitting full application via chosen universities are listed as follows:

City University of Hong Kong : 1 December 2017 (11:59pm Hong Kong Time)
Hong Kong Baptist University : 1 December 2017 (11:59pm Hong Kong Time)
Lingnan University : 3 December 2017 (11:59pm Hong Kong Time)
The Chinese University of Hong Kong : 1 December 2017 (5:00pm Hong Kong Time)
The Education University of Hong Kong : 1 December 2017
The Hong Kong Polytechnic University : 1 December 2017 (11:59pm Hong Kong Time)
The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology : 4 December 2017 (11:59pm Hong Kong Time)
The University of Hong Kong: 1 December 2017

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Q22.  How are the Hong Kong PhD Fellowship awardees selected?
Individual universities may conduct interviews with applicants where necessary. Shortlisted applications, subject to their areas of studies, will be reviewed by one of the two Selection Panels with experts in the relevant broad areas - one for Science, Medicine, Engineering and Technology and another one for Humanities, Social Science and Business Studies.
Q23.   What are the selection criteria?
While candidates' academic excellence is the primary consideration, the Selection Panels will take into account factors such as research ability and potential, communication and interpersonal skills as well as leadership abilities.
Q24.  When will the result of the HKPFS be announced?
The result of the HKPFS 2018/19 will be announced by April 2018.
Q25.  If I am not awarded the fellowship, does it mean that my application for PhD admission with the universities will also be turned down?
No. Universities may admit candidates not selected for the HKPFS and offer them regular postgraduate studentship if they are considered to be qualified by the universities.
Q26.  When should I register with the universities?
A successful candidate of the HKPFS is normally required to register with the respective university in July to September 2018.  This may be deferred to 31 January 2019 the latest if there are well justified reasons and subject to the approval of the Research Grants Council.
Q27.  How can I apply for a student visa/ an entry permit?
Please refer to the Guidebook for Entry for Study in Hong Kong issued by the Immigration Department, The Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, at http://www.immd.gov.hk/eng/services/visas/study.html for detailed requirements for application for student visa/entry permit.
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Q28.  What can I do if I have more questions?
For enquiries about the HKPFS, please address your questions to HKPF@ugc.edu.hk. For enquiries about the PhD programmes and admission requirements, please contact the respective universities for information :

City University of Hong Kong

Chow Yei Ching School of Graduate Studies,
4/F., Fong Yun Wah Building,
City University of Hong Kong,
Kowloon, Hong Kong

Tel: (852) 3442 9076
Fax: (852) 3442 0332
Email: sgfellow@cityu.edu.hk


Hong Kong Baptist University

Graduate School,
AAB 904, Level 9, Academic and Administration Building,
Baptist University Road Campus
Hong Kong Baptist University,
Kowloon Tong, Hong Kong


Tel: (852) 3411 5127
Fax: (852) 3411 5133
Email: gs@hkbu.edu.hk


Lingnan University

Lingnan University,
8 Castle Peak Road, Tuen Mun,
Hong Kong


Tel: (852) 2616 8750
Fax: (852) 2572 5178 or
        (852) 2463 9104
Email: rpgadm@LN.edu.hk


The Chinese University of Hong Kong

Graduate School,
7th Floor, Yasumoto International Academic Park,
The Chinese University of Hong Kong,
Shatin, N.T., Hong Kong


Tel: (852) 3943 8976 or
       (852) 3943 8977
Fax number: (852) 2603 5779
Email: gradschool@cuhk.edu.hk


The Education University of Hong Kong

Graduate School, B4-G/F-02,
The Education University of Hong Kong
10 Lo Ping Road, Tai Po,
New Territories, Hong Kong


Tel: (852) 2948 7283 or
       (852) 2948 6611
Fax: (852) 2948 6619
Email: rpg@eduhk.hk


The Hong Kong Polytechnic University

Research Office,
Room Z404, 4/F, Block Z,
The Hong Kong Polytechnic University,
Hung Hom, Kowloon, Hong Kong


Tel: (852) 3400 3635
Fax: (852) 2355 7651
Email: roro@polyu.edu.hk


The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology

Postgraduate Outreach and Admissions Team (PGOA)
Office of Postgraduate studies,
Room 6418, Lift 25-26, Academic Building
The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology
Clear Water Bay, Kowloon, Hong Kong


Tel: (852) 2623 1120
Fax: (852) 3521 0049
Enquiry form: pg.ust.hk/enquiry


The University of Hong Kong

Graduate School,
Room P403, Graduate House,
The University of Hong Kong,
Pokfulam, Hong Kong


Tel: (852) 2857 3470
Fax: (852) 2857 3543
Email: gradsch@hku.hk



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