4-year Curriculum Structure

In 2012, the University has exploited the “3+3+4” New Academic Structure (NAS) opportunities to re-develop its undergraduate curriculum. In designing the new four-year curriculum, the University embraced the ideal of liberal education and affirmed its position that the aims of a four-year undergraduate education are to broaden the scope of learning, inspire creativity, and enrich students’ learning experiences. The goal is to prepare graduates for the world of work and the challenge of life-long learning.

In keeping with the ideal of liberal education, the University affirmed the importance of enriching undergraduate educational experience through the holistic approach of Whole Person Education. To this end, students would benefit from academic studies, co-curricular and extracurricular learning that are designed to help students attain the University’s Graduate Attributes.

Under the four-year curriculum, the minimum number of units students should complete in order to graduate has been increased to 128 units (versus 96 units under the three-year curriculum). The extra year (32 units) have been distributed to the General Education (GE) and the free electives. The number of units for the GE curriculum was 38 units in total at the time of its implementation in 2012. Following a comprehensive review, the GE curriculum has been enhanced and revised to 31 units with effect from the 2018/19 intake. Please refer to the above chart for the four-year curriculum structure.

With the availability of 30 units for free electives (versus 9 units under the three-year curriculum) which aims to widen students’ academic exposure and to encourage a free pursuit of academic interests, students can pursue one or two minor programmes, strengthen their major, pursue a double major, or choose other courses that cater for their interests and needs for future careers or postgraduate studies.

Except for some specialised programmes, most Faculties/Schools have moved to broad-based admission under the 4-year curriculum. Students can choose to study in their desired Faculty/School and enhance their overall understanding of the discipline in the first year. After they have learned more about different aspects of the discipline, they can then make an informed choice of major at the end of the first year. (For further information on undergraduate programmes offered under the 4-year curriculum, please click here).

With the implementation of the “3+3+4” NAS, students entering the universities are one year younger than before, the University has strengthened the advising/mentoring system by providing all undergraduate students with a range of Academic Advising/Mentoring services. Details on the Academic Advising/Mentoring Programme under each Faculty/School, AVA can be found at:

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