Distinctive Features

With a strong emphasis on academic and research excellence for impact, PolyU ranks among the world’s top 100 institutions according to the QS World University Rankings 2024. Our four-year undergraduate curriculum has been designed to the whole-person development of students through holistic education in order to ensure that our graduates not only possess a competitive edge in disciplinary knowledge but also bring positive impact to society. The main features of our curriculum can be grouped into two categories:


I. Preparing Students for Success in Their Chosen Professions


Academic and Application Orientation 

All of our schemes / programmes are thoughtfully designed, meeting the needs of industries, the professions and the community, with an appropriate balance of theory and practice in the curriculum. Most of our academic schemes / programmes are accredited by relevant statutory or professional bodies, both local and overseas.


Strengthened Language and Communications Component 

We aim to nurture our students to become effective communicators, both biliterate and trilingual (English and Chinese, including Putonghua). In addition to the English and Chinese language subjects (General University Requirements) in the core curriculum, extensive reading and writing components with adequate support from the teaching team are introduced to the general education programme and the discipline-specific curriculum.


Mandatory Work-Integrated Education (WIE) 

All PolyU full-time undergraduate students are required to complete a mandatory WIE component to gain real-life experience in the actual workplace before graduation. This will enable our students to deepen their understanding of industries and professions, to apply classroom learning in real-life situation, and to develop their workplace skills. 


Enrich Students' Experience with Industries and the Professions 

With our strong and long-standing relationship with industries and the professions, we are able to organise many "out-of-classroom" learning activities (e.g., mentorship programme, talks by experts from various disciplines, site visits and study tours, industry-based student projects, etc.) that bring students closer to real-life professional practice. This relationship has also further stepped up collaboration between the University and industries in research, high-level consultancy projects and knowledge transfer activities which in turn support the application orientation of our academic schemes / programmes.


Capstone Learning Experience

In all of our schemes / programmes, we include a capstone project or thesis to enable students to consolidate their learning experience accumulated over the entire undergraduate study to deal with or solve a complex problem related to their profession/discipline. This will better prepare our students for professional practice or further studies.


"Innovation & Entrepreneurship (IE)" and "Artificial Intelligence & Data Analytics (AIDA)" Knowledge and Skills

We place a strong emphasis on nurturing students' entrepreneurial and innovative spirit, knowledge in artificial intelligence and data analytics, as well as critical thinking and problem-solving abilities, and offer a wide range of curricular and co-curricular activities. Two new mandatory components, “Artificial Intelligence and Data Analytics (AIDA)” and “Innovation and Entrepreneurship (IE)” are included in the General University Requirements (GUR) of the undergraduate curriculum to help students develop these skills. Minor and Secondary major in IE and AIDA will also be included to provide opportunities to further develop in these two areas.


II. Nurturing Students into All-Round Global Citizens


Globally-Oriented Education

PolyU has long been committed to internationalisation of its curriculum, staffing and student bodies. We strive to provide students with global learning experience through our established Student Exchange Programme, WIE Offshore Placement Scheme, and General University Requirements (Cluster Area Requirements and Service-Learning) subjects offered overseas and in Mainland China.

Under PolyU's academic collaboration agreements with over 390 institutions spanning 42 countries and regions, our faculty and staff have been actively engaged in academic, joint degree and research collaboration initiatives. These initiatives further enhance the international exposure of our students and staff.


Broadening Students' Perspectives

We provide the General University Requirements to broaden students' horizons beyond their chosen professions. Students will study subjects of their own choice under four Cluster Areas that represent different domains of knowledge and methods of enquiry. They are:

  • Human Nature, Relations and Development
  • Science, Technology and Environment
  • Chinese History and Culture
  • Cultures, Organisations, Societies and Globalisation


Leadership Education and Development

To prepare our students to become "leaders of tomorrow" and nurture their strong sense of national identity and social responsibility, we offer to all students a General University Requirements subject or Discipline-Specific Requirements subjects on "Leadership Education and Development". The subjects attempt to nurture students to be competent and ethic leaders. To promote law abidance qualities in future leaders, the related subjects cover materials on modern Chinese history, the Constitution, the Basic Law and the Hong Kong National Security Law. Students will be provided opportunities to reflect on various related issues within the context of leadership development.


Cultivating a Heart to Serve

We aim to develop our students into educated global citizens with a heart to serve. All our students are required to take a credit-bearing subject on Service-Learning before graduation so that they can apply their knowledge to serving the people in need. They will:

  • participate in community service or civic engagement activities that will benefit the service users or the community at large in a meaningful way;
  • apply the knowledge and skills acquired from their Major and other learning experiences at the University to the community service activities; and
  • reflect on their Service-Learning experience in order to link theory with practice, and to develop a greater sense of ethical, social and national responsibility.


Promoting a Healthy Lifestyle

Healthy lifestyle is the platform for all-round development. Our students will complete a non-credit-bearing programme in healthy lifestyle. The programme will enable students to:

  • appreciate the benefits of sports training or sports participation;
  • acquire health information which promotes one's pursuit for healthy living;
  • explore the key components and principles of healthy living relevant to one's health concerns;
  • examine one's values and priorities on health behaviour with reference to competing priorities in life; and
  • review one's current status of healthy living and make plans for self-improvement or maintenance of well-being and mental health.