Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

The University offers 3-year and 4-year PhD programmes. Applicants who have a good Bachelor’s degree with honours and/or a taught Master’s degree will be considered for admission to a 4-year PhD programme, whereas those who already hold a research Master’s degree (e.g. MPhil) will only be considered for admission to a 3-year PhD programme.

PhD programmes are offered in full-time and part-time modes and the periods of study are as follows:

Graduation Ceremony


Degree  Normative Study Period   Probationary Period 
  3-year PhD    Full-time    36 months 12 months
 Part-time  54 months 18 months

  4-year PhD  

 Full-time   48 months 18 months
 Part-time   72 months 24 months


Candidates for 4-year PhD programme will be required to follow an approved course of study and research, including coursework on discipline-specific knowledge, language and research skills. The coursework component is well designed to equip students for their research work and thesis writing. Candidates for 3-year PhD programme may also be required to take courses and satisfy coursework requirements. Please click here for details of the coursework requirements. 

A successful PhD thesis should represent the result of the candidate's research which should be an original contribution to knowledge and worthy of publication. 

Please refer to the Handbook for MPhil & PhD Programmes  for details of the regulations for PhD degree.