Message from the Head of School

The School of Chinese at The University of Hong Kong was established in 1927 and has been fully committed to the study of the core values and ideals of the Chinese heritage and to the integration of Chinese and Western cultures for over 85 years. Through the efforts of many trailblazers and their successors, the School has built a fine tradition of scholarship and disciplinary learning. It has become a leading international centre for research and education in Chinese language, literature, history, and translation. At present, the School of Chinese consists of the following three units: the School proper, the Chinese Language Enhancement Programme (CLEP), and the Chinese Language Centre (CLC).

The School proper offers undergraduate major and minor courses in Chinese Language and Literature, Chinese History and Culture, Chinese Studies, and Translation. The Chinese Language and Literature programme features two key components: the “language” component focuses on the study and research of the Chinese language from the perspective of linguistics, while the “literature” component encompasses topics in literary theory, creative writing, classical and modern Chinese literature, as well as Chinese literary history. The Chinese History and Culture programme offers courses in dynastic history, religion, philosophy, education, communication, the history of the Chinese diaspora, modern and contemporary history, technology, legal systems and culture. The Translation programme covers translation theory, language studies, translation criticism, and translation practice.

We offer postgraduate courses in both course work and research degrees. The two Master of Arts programmes – in Chinese Language and Literature (MACLL) and Chinese Historical Studies (MACHS) – are popular with practicing teachers and the local community at large. Scholarships are available for research postgraduates at the Master of Philosophy (MPhil) and Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) levels. The postgraduate programmes are comprehensive in coverage, with admission highly competitive due to the limited number of available spaces. In certain areas of specialization, postdoctoral fellowships are awarded to promising young scholars to pursue in-depth research.

The Chinese Language Enhancement Programme provides compulsory practical courses that aim primarily at enriching students’ knowledge of Chinese and sharpening their communication and writing skills. Through our outcomes-based approach, students proactively explore and learn to master Chinese. Professional writing and Putonghua training are two main concerns, which we pursue with increased use of e-learning technologies. We maintain close contact with many Faculties and Departments and forge collaborative links to refine our courses to suit the diverse needs of students from various disciplines.

The Chinese Language Centre mainly provides courses in Putonghua (or Mandarin), offered at eight different levels, as well as beginner and intermediate Cantonese courses and an array of offerings on Chinese culture, mainly intended for international students. The Certificate courses for foreign learners, in both Putonghua and Cantonese, offer an intensive two-year course of study. The Centre also offers many types and levels of Putonghua options for local undergraduates.

The School of Chinese has always valued academic research, which we consider to be the underpinning of the enterprise of education. With a distinguished line-up of academic staff, talented researchers and ample funding, the School excels in a wide range of areas, as evidenced by the vast array of prestigious publications in both Chinese and English by our faculty members. Each year the School organizes and participates in international academic exchange activities, including hosting international academic conferences on a regular basis. The School publishes both The Journal of Oriental Studies and The Bulletin of Ming-Qing Studies, both of which enjoy a strong global reputation. We seek to conduct cutting-edge research in Chinese language, Chinese literature, Chinese history, and translation on solid theoretical and empirical foundations and taking into account innovations in methodology and strategy. Given Hong Kong’s position as a cultural crossroads and a hub of interaction between East and West, our mission is to nurture top-notch researchers who will undertake transcultural studies and propel Sino-international scholarly exchanges to new levels of sophistication.