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Pilot Project on the Development of Applied Degree Programmes

In pursuance of a recommendation made by the Task Force on Promotion of Vocational and Professional Education and Training to develop applied degrees in Hong Kong with an applied focus, the Pilot Project on the Development of Applied Degree Programmes (the Pilot Project) was launched in December 2020 to gain experience in the practical issues involved in the development of applied degree programmes and to assess the implications for the higher education system as a whole.  Having assessed the proposals submitted by eligible self-financing post-secondary institutions, the Education Bureau (EDB) has selected four degree programmes for the Pilot Project, all of which have strong industry elements and are in disciplines with keen manpower demand.  These programmes include:




Bachelor of Nursing (Honours) (Applied Degree Places) programme by Caritas Institute of Higher Education

Bachelor of Applied Science with Honours in Integrated Testing, Inspection and Certification programme by the Hong Kong Metropolitan University

Bachelor of Science (Honours) in Horticulture, Arboriculture and Landscape Management programme by the Technological and Higher Education Institute of Hong Kong of the Vocational Training Council

Bachelor of Science (Honours) in Applied Gerontology programme by Tung Wah College


The four selected institutions will develop applied degree programmes by modifying the programme structure and curriculum of their existing programmes.  The EDB has engaged the Hong Kong Council for Accreditation of Academic and Vocational Qualifications to assist the institutions in the development of the applied degree programmes.  The relevant internal and external accreditation processes for the four applied degree programmes have been completed, and they have been launched in the 2022/23 academic year.


The four applied degree programmes to be developed under the Pilot Project will have the following distinct and prominent features that would differentiate them from other degree programmes:


  • the qualifications will be equivalent to those of conventional academic degrees (i.e. to be pitched at Qualifications Framework Level 5);
  • generally speaking, a more flexible admission requirement will be adopted. Apart from academic results, other relevant factors will also be considered;
  • the programmes will have an applied focus blending theory and practice, provide substantial internships and work-based learning experience, and prepare graduates for a specific trade/industry, though they can also support articulation to other qualifications; and
  • there will be strong industry involvement in the programme development with trade recognition.


Generally speaking, application for the four applied degree programmes can be made through the Joint University Programmes Admissions System (JUPAS) or non-JUPAS channels.  The detailed admission requirements, application procedures, student intake, duration of study, tuition fees, and other related information of the four programmes may vary.  Applicants may visit the institutions’ websites or contact the institutions directly for the latest arrangements and information.


The tuition fees of the four applied degree programmes range from around $80,000 to $115,000 a year.  The Government currently offers various subsidy schemes for students pursuing self-financing undergraduate programmes, such as the Study Subsidy Scheme for Designated Professions/Sectors ( and the Non-means-tested Subsidy Scheme for Self-financing Undergraduate Studies in Hong Kong (  Applicants may visit the relevant websites for information.  Besides, students in need may also apply for student financial assistance and/or loans from the Student Finance Office of the Working Family and Student Financial Assistance Agency in respect of the actual amount of tuition fees payable (after deduction of subsidy).



Last Review Date: 31/01/2023