FAQ

Master of Science Programs (except MSc FinTech)

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What is the admission schedule for Fall / Spring intake?

Admission offers will be made on a rolling basis from November onwards. Due to keen competition, applicants are encouraged to apply as early as possible. 

When will the program start and how long will it last?

The Fall intake will begin in early September while the Spring intake will begin in early February. The program will last approximately 1 year for full-time students and 2 years for part-time students, depending on student's own pace of study. 

What are the program fees and when will they need to be paid?

Students who study the full-time program would need to settle the program fee in 2 installments whereas 4 installments for part-time program. New Students admitted with credit transfer are also required to pay the nominal program fee. Students who take any additional courses or need to retake any courses are required to pay additional program fee. 

Except the above mentioned, for MSc(IT) program, if the graduation requirements are not met within 3 years (excluding study leave), additional fees will be charged on a pro rata basis for additional course credits taken beyond this time limit. For MSc(CIEM) and MSc(EVEM) programs, students who take courses beyond the nominal study period limit (i.e. beyond the four terms (for full-time mode) or six terms (for part-time mode) to fulfill the graduation requirement are required to pay additional program fee. 

When are the classes scheduled?

For MSc courses, classes are normally held on weekday evenings from Monday to Friday; on Saturday mornings or afternoons. Each course typically meets once a week for approximately three hours. 

Where will the course modules be held?

The course modules will be held on the HKUST Clear Water Bay Campus. 

What are the admission criteria for MSc program?

Applicants seeking admission to a master's degree program should have obtained a bachelor’s degree from a recognized institution, or an approved equivalent qualification. Individual program may have specific requirements on the major of a bachelor degree. Please refer to the program curriculum for details. 

Who can I ask to act as a referee for my application?

The referee should be a respected person who knows you well (or has known you well) and is able to comment on your character and suitability for this program. For example, a senior colleague, manager or supervisor from your work, an instructor or Professor from your school or a respected professional acquaintance who you know or a leader in your community.  

How can I submit reference letters for my application?

After the application has been submitted, referees will be invited by email to complete a reference report online. Referees may attach additional reference letters to the online report.  

What are the English requirements for MSc program?

All in-class lectures and materials are in English. Applicants from Universities where English is not the medium of instruction would have to fulfill English Language requirements.

Applicants don't need to present English proof if they obtained the bachelor's degree (or equivalent) from an institution where the medium of instruction was English. 

Is there any financial assistance to students admitted to the program?

Various scholarships are available.  

The following forms of financial assistance are available from the HKSAR Government to eligible students who are Hong Kong citizens:  

  1. Continuing Education Fund (CEF) for eligible Hong Kong citizens - Reimbursements of up to HK$20,000 upon completion of our entire program with an overall attendance rate over 70% (excluding project course, if any). Please visit the CEF website for further details and updates of eligibility, application, and reimbursement procedures (in particular the reimbursement period from the date of application).  

  1. Extended Non-means-tested Loan Scheme (ENLS) is available for eligible Hong Kong citizens - ENLS provides financial assistance in the form of loan to eligible Hong Kong citizens. Interest is charged far below the average best lending rate of the note-issuing banks.

What is the chance of pursuing a PhD degree upon completion of the MSc program?

MSc program is particularly suitable for students who prefer taught course delivery. For students considering further studies for a PhD degree, it also offers an opportunity of exposure to emerging technologies through independent study or project course under supervision of world-class faculty members. However, this group of students are also advised to consider research-oriented Master of Philosophy (MPhil) programs. Historically, around 4% of full-time MSc graduates will continue with MPhil or PhD study. 

Can I stay in Hong Kong to look for job after graduation if I am not from Hong Kong?

Yes, referring to the Immigration Arrangement for Non-local Graduates (IANG), non-local fresh graduates from full-time program may apply to stay and work in HKSAR. They may be granted 12 months' stay on time limitation without other conditions of stay provided that normal immigration requirements are met.

Can I apply for University arranged off-campus accommodation?

All full-time students are eligible to apply for University arranged off-campus accommodation. Successful applicants offered admission into the program will receive application information on off-campus accommodation from the Program Office or Student Housing & Residential Life (SHRL) in May. In most cases, non-local students holding student visa are given priority for off-campus accommodation; however, successful application rate is subject to total number of application, number of available places, and the current University regulations. Since only limited housing is available, students are encouraged to look for off-campus accommodation directly.

Can I apply for English course to improve my English proficiency?

Full-time students are eligible to apply for taking an optional course of LANG 5030 English Communication for Postgraduate Engineering Studies in the Fall term. LANG 5030 addresses the specific communication needs of MSc students in Engineering, such as the skills to play an active part in academic seminars. It also allows students to enhance their abilities in speaking, listening to and writing English through intensive practice. Graded P or F. Seats will be subject to availability. Students need to pay course fee before taking the course. 

Can students from places outside Hong Kong apply for part-time program?

Yes, students from places outside Hong Kong may apply for full-time or part-time program. Full-time and part-time students will have the same quality of program and will undergo the same set and level of assessment. Part-time program is particularly suitable for working professionals who have to handle full-time job during the program of study. Students from places outside Hong Kong are required to apply for student visa (full-time or part-time whichever appropriate). Visa details please refer to Immigration Department of the HKSAR Government. Please note the Immigration Department of the HKSAR Government usually requires students holding part-time student visa to leave Hong Kong after every lecture.

Do I need to apply for student visa?

Non-local students who do not have valid visa to study in Hong Kong are required to apply for student visa. Valid visa may be work visa or dependent visa which allows the visa holder to study in Hong Kong.  

Non-local students who graduate in Hong Kong may use IANG visa for study. However, it may be more preferred to use student visa in some cases. For non-local students who would like to apply for certain recognition in mainland China, sometimes, a student visa is required. For non-local students who would like to stay in Hong Kong without condition after completing the MSc degree, perhaps applying for IANG visa after completing the MSc degree is more appropriate (instead of applying for IANG visa immediately after completing the first degree).  

Please refer to Immigration Department of the HKSAR Government for further details. Successful applicants who are offered admission will also be offered details on required document to apply for student visa in due course. 

Where should I submit the official documents and / or student visa application after accepted the admission offer?

After accepted the admission offer, students may send the official documents and / or student visa application to HKUST Fok Ying Tung Graduate School (FYTGS) directly.

How can I check my admission status?

The latest application status will be available online. Please log in to the Online Admission System to keep track of your application status. 

MSc FinTech program

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How many intakes are there each year? When does the year start?

There is one intake every year. The Fall Term starts in September at the HKUST campus.

What is the class size?

The intake is expected to be around 50-60 students.

What is the course length and how many class hours will it cover?

For a 2-credit course, there are a total of 28 contact hours. There is usually one class per week for each course, so it takes 8 weeks (with the final week allotted for examination) to complete a course of 2 credits; whereas for a 3-credit course, there are a total of 42 contact hours and it takes 14 weeks to complete.

Can I claim course exemptions for my previous study?

Yes, but credits for exempted courses have to be replaced by electives. Some courses can be exempted for students who have obtained certain qualifications with proof provided, such as transcripts and syllabi of courses taken within the past 7 years, when the content and level of the previous courses are equivalent to those of the exempted courses and satisfactory grades were achieved. Subject to the approval of the MSc FinTech Academic Director, students may apply for credit transfer of no more than THREE courses (6 credits) in the program.

Is it possible to extend the length of my study?

We normally do not encourage students to extend their length of study. However, we do offer study extensions for students who cannot complete the program within the defined timeframe because of health reasons. All students must complete the whole program within 5 years.

Do I need a student visa for studying in Hong Kong?

Yes, students who do not have the right to reside in Hong Kong are required to apply for a student visa for entering into Hong Kong and studying a full-time master degree program. The Program Office will coordinate with the University’s Office of Postgraduate Studies to arrange student visas for all incoming students upon admission and prior to the commencement of the program. The duration of the student visa will cover the whole period of study in the program.

What is the major difference between the part-time study mode and the full-time study mode?

The part-time study mode is mostly for local students or working executives in Hong Kong or nearby regions whom can only attend classes during the weekday evenings or weekends. It takes normally 18-24 months to complete for the part-time program.

The students of the full-time study mode are mostly recent graduates or junior professionals who dedicate their full attention to the master study. The student body forms a diversified mix of local and non-local students, including the Greater China region, Asia Pacific, the Americas and Europe. Students attend classes on weekdays with a more intensive full-time curriculum. Students can complete the program by 12-16 months.

Will I be able to do program transfer between the full-time and part-time study modes?

Program transfer between the full-time and part-time study modes after program commencement is normally NOT encouraged. Students have to be clear about their interest and time commitment in either study modes at the time of application and admission, and commit to their enrolled study mode throughout the course of study. Transfer between the study modes is considered on a case by case basis only with strong reasons, and is also subject to the approval of the Academic Directors of both study modes.

Do I need to submit a TOEFL/IELTS score with my application? Does the University accept any test alternatives for the English Language admission requirements?

A TOEFL/IELTS score is required if your first language is not English or your degree or equivalent qualification was awarded by an institution where the medium of instruction is not English.

For applicants who are not able to take the TOEFL or IELTS due to the test suspensions, the University is now accepting the following test results as alternatives in meeting the University English Language admission requirements. It is a special arrangement applicable to applicants admitted in Fall 2021/22, Spring 2021/22, Fall 2022/23 or Spring 2022/23 under COVID-19; subject to change when the regular TOEFL or IELTS tests become available again.

TOEFL-iBT Special Home Edition: Total score of 80 in one single attempt
IELTS Indicator: Overall score of 6.5 and All sub-score of 5.5
Duolingo English Test: Score of 105

Does the University accept GMAT/GRE online test results?

For applicants who are not able to take the regular GMAT/GRE tests due to the suspensions of physical exams, the University is now accepting the following online test results as alternatives in meeting the admission requirements. It is a special arrangement applicable to applicants admitted in Fall 2022/23 under COVID-19; subject to change when the regular GMAT/GRE tests become available again.

GMAT Online Exam
GRE General Test at Home

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