- Location and Housing
- Pricing and Dates
- Application Instructions
- Additional Information
Established in 1911 during the British Colonial era, the University of Hong Kong (HKU) is the oldest tertiary institution in Hong Kong. Today it is a world-renown public research university located in the Mid-Levels of Hong Kong Island. Both QS World University Rankings and the Times Higher Education World University Rankings have ranked HKU as one of the top 50 universities in the world, and oftentimes as one of the top 5 in Asia. At the undergraduate level, there are over 16,000 students, with close to 4,000 international students. Each year HKU accepts over 1,300 exchange students from around the world. This program is university-wide, meaning any undergraduate Pitt student regardless of major may participate.
As an active and engaged participant on this program, you will have the opportunity to develop:
- the ability to succeed independently in a foreign education environment.
- non-US based perspectives on your field of study and/or future career path.
- a global network of peer in similar fields of study and connections with faculty in Hong Kong.
International Affairs Office
G/F, Fong Shu Chuen Amenities Center
The University of Hong Kong
Pokfulam, Hong Kong
Hong Kong is located in southeastern China, with a population of approximation of 7 million. Due to its British colonnial history, it has an international population with half a million international residents, making it truly multi-cultural and cosmopolitan. Considered a shopping and dining paradise, Hong Kong has a unique food culture and is filled with modern shopping centers and fascinating street bazaars.
HKU offers options for university-affiliated or private accomodations. Although Pitt students are not guaranteed slots within university-affiliated housing, HKU will provide instructions on when and how to apply for university-affiliated housing and provide recommendations on how to find private options. See HKU's page for more information on housing.
At HKU, nearly all courses are taught in English, with the exception of Chinese language and Chinese literature courses.
Credits taken at HKU are equivalent to credits received at Pitt according to a 2:1 ratio. For example, 6 credits at HKU will transfer as 3 Pitt credits. Additionally, for the purpose of full-time status here at Pitt, students should be prepared to take what is equivalent to at least 12 Pitt credit hours. All credits taken at HKU require approval by both your academic advisor(s) and study abroad program manager.
Courses taken at HKU will be treated as transfer credits and will be marked as pass/fail (S/NC) on a Pitt student's transcript. In other words, transfer credits will not affect your Pitt GPA. Actual grades earned will appear on the transcript from HKU.
As a part of the cultural experience, HKU offers Chinese language courses specifically designed for visiting students. These may be considered for credit or not for credit. Verify with the study abroad program manager regarding their transferability.
For more detailed information, please see HKU's website.
Like Pitt, HKU’s grading scale follows the practice of assigning letter grades, such as A, B, C, D and F. For more information about the grading scale at HKU, see their explanation.
For Pitt transfer credit in order to earn a grade of “S,” (satisfactory) at Pitt, you must make an equivalent to a grade of “C” or higher. An equivalent to a “C-” or lower will result in a grade of “NC” (no credit) at Pitt.
HKU will provide hardcopy transcripts to the University of Pittsburgh’s Study Abroad Office. Make sure that you follow their instructions on how to ensure that an official copy of your grades are received. Hardcopies should be sent the following address: 3959 Fifth Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15260, USA. Electronic copies should be sent to the designated exchange program manager under “SAO Staff.”
Exchange university transcripts typically do not arrive from the exchange university until 3 to 4 months after the end of exchange period. Therefore, Pitt students should be mindful of how this may affect their ability to graduate, especially when exchanging during one's senior year. Another consideration is how this may affect your financial aid package, as the S/NC grades are not posted until transcripts are received.
Pitt students may utilize the following online resource to understand the grading scale within this host country.
Items Billed by Pitt
|Study Abroad Fee||$400||$400|
|Total Billed by Pitt*||$10,259||$17,273|
Estimated Additional Out-of-Pocket Costs
|Travel Expenses: Airfare, Passport, Visa, Resident Permit||$2,000|
|Room & Board||$4,700|
Students studying abroad through Pitt Study Abroad are automatically provided health insurance coverage during the official program dates. However, you may need to purchase additional insurance if the exchange university you will attend requires purchase of a specific health insurance coverage per their regulations. It is your responsibility to ensure you know the cost of that insurance prior to committing to the program.
Pitt students enroll at HKU for either a full semester (fall or spring) or a full academic year (two full semesters). HKU's academic calendars may differ from Pitt's normal fall (August through December) and spring (January through April) semesters, so Pitt students should check the academic calendar at the exchange university. Like Pitt, HKU’s academic calendar follows a Fall-Spring progression, meaning Fall is the first semester followed by the Spring semester as the second. The dates listed above are estimated and therefore subject to change according to the host university’s schedule.
Pitt sends a limited number of students per semester to HKU. In addition to applying to the Pitt Study Abroad application above, be sure to review HKU's website regarding their application requirements for incoming exchange students. A formal nomination from Pitt Study Abroad is required for Pitt students to be recognized as an exchange student at HKU. Therefore, Pitt students must complete all necessary Pitt Study Abroad steps in addition to HKU's requirements. In other words, acceptance by Pitt Study Abroad does not guarantee acceptance by the exchange university.
The exchange university may require the following to be submitted through an online application. Requirements may include but are not limited to the following:
- Application Form
- Copy of Valid Passport
- Official Pitt Transcript
- Official Pitt Verification of Enrollment
- Statement of Intent or Purpose
- Resume or CV
- Official Language Evaluation
- Up to 2 instructor letters of recommendations
- Up to 2 passport photos
Language Requirements: Non-native English speakers will be required to show evidence of English proficiency either through the IELTS or the TOELF. Please check with HKU regarding these requirements.
Students studying abroad through Pitt Study Abroad are automatically provided health insurance coverage during the official program dates.
In order to study as a student in specific countries, a visa is required. A visa is formal endorsement by the host country to grant permission for an individual to enter, live or stay in that country for a specific purpose and period. In addition to a visa, some host countries may require a residency permit upon arrival.
For those without a Hong Kong Permanet ID card, students must obtain a student visa to study in Hong Kong. For an overview regarding the visa process, please review HKU's website. HKU will provide general direction after formal admission on for how to apply for either the visa and/or residency permit. Pitt students should also research the visa and/or permit process. In general visa and/or permit application requirements include but are not limited to the following requirements:
- Visa application
- Valid Passport
- Verification of acceptance from sponsoring university (exchange university)
- Financial Documents, such as bank statements, tax documents or pay statements.
- Passport photos
- Application fee
- Medical/physical examination (likely to require a doctor's appointment so plan accordingly)