The purpose of Postgraduate Scholarships (‘PGS’) is to provide selected students who have attained good academic qualifications as determined by the Graduate School with financial assistance to study full-time for the degree of MPhil or PhD.
- Postgraduate Scholarships shall:
- be awarded by the Graduate School, on the recommendation of the appropriate Faculty Higher Degrees Committee (FHDC), to selected students who (i) normally hold a Bachelor’s degree at second class honours first division or above and/or Master’s degree as appropriate from this University, or another qualification of equivalent standard, as determined by the Graduate School which has sole and absolute discretion in this matter; and (ii) hold full-time candidature for the degree of MPhil or PhD.
- be tenable on an annual basis and renewable upon the conditions stated in this Regulation and Regulations 4, 5(a) and 8 below being fulfilled. The maximum period of award shall be, in the case of full-time MPhil candidature, two years from the date of registration and in the case of full-time PhD candidature, the first three or four years from the date of registration, this being the period of study as specified in the “Offer of Admission” letter. In the event of transfer from MPhil to PhD or vice versa, the period of study for the new degree shall be calculated from the date of first registration for the initial degree. Scholarship holders who are allowed to submit their theses earlier than the specified periods of study are eligible to continue to receive the balance of the award before notification of degree conferment, on the condition that they continue to be registered for the degree, to be physically present in Hong Kong, and continue to provide their prescribed services for the Department (see Regulations 4 and 5(a) below). They will cease to receive the balance of award upon expiry of the award or confirmation of the award of the degree, whichever the earlier.
- The annual value of the Postgraduate Scholarship shall be determined by the University from time to time and the Scholarship terms are not negotiable. Payments to Postgraduate Scholarship holders shall be made on a monthly basis.
- Postgraduate Scholarship holders shall be responsible for paying whatever University fees are liable to be paid.
- A Postgraduate Scholarship holder may be required to provide, under supervision, services which carry educational benefits for the holder, as prescribed by the Head of the Department, Unit, Centre, School or Institute in which the holder is registered. The amount of such services shall not exceed 100 hours in any full twelve-month period (or pro rata if the period is less than twelve months), and the calculation of the hours shall include preparation time in all cases. The provision of services forms part of the research student’s training covered by the value of the Scholarship, and no other payment for these hours of services may be made to a Scholarship holder.
- For Postgraduate Scholarship holders who registered before September 1, 2012
In addition to the 100 hours of training stipulated in Regulation 4 above, a Postgraduate Scholarship holder may provide extra services for a maximum of a further 150 hours per annum, as part of his/her PGS training, in return for a higher rate of Scholarship (i.e. PGS top-up levels). The higher rate of Scholarship is determined by the University from time to time. The services provided in this capacity shall be relevant to the holder’s research training, beneficial to his/her studies and subject to the concurrence of the supervisor(s). The holder shall not otherwise undertake any employment either within or outside the University during tenure of the Scholarship.
- For Postgraduate Scholarship holders who registered on September 1, 2012 and thereafter
Any work required by the supervisor/Department/Faculty/unit above the maximum 100 hours per annum of services or scope expected from a Postgraduate Scholarship holder shall be treated as part-time employment between the party concerned and the Scholarship holder in accordance with the University’s human resources policy and practices, subject to the approval of the FHDC. Part-time employment within the cap of 150 extra hours per annum shall be approved by the FHDCs. The FHDCs, in approving Scholarship holders’ part-time employment (regardless of whether it is undertaken within or outside the University), should ensure that it does not exceed the cap of 150 extra hours per annum and is in compliance with the relevant immigration policies/guidelines where appropriate.
- For Postgraduate Scholarship holders who registered before September 1, 2012
- The services referred to in Regulations 4 and 5(a) above are intended to constitute part of the training of a Postgraduate Scholarship holder, and the nature of the training may for example include:
- assistance with research;
- assistance with scheduled laboratory, studio and fieldwork classes and with tutorials;
- assistance with the preparation of materials for scheduled classes;
- assistance with marking practical notebooks and answers from exercise classes; and
- assistance with invigilation of University degree examinations.
- With effect from September 1, 2012, a Postgraduate Scholarship holder who is a PhD student and whose candidature has been confirmed will receive a higher rate of Scholarship with effect from the following calendar month after his/her probation is fully confirmed. The higher rate of Scholarship shall be determined by the University from time to time and is not negotiable.
- Continued tenure or renewal of a Postgraduate Scholarship during the prescribed period of study or a higher rate of Scholarship for PhD students after confirmation of candidature shall at all times remain conditional upon the requirements specified in Regulations 1 and 4 and 5(a) above continuing to be met, and also upon:
- the holder continuing to make satisfactory academic progress; and
- the holder continuing to undertake training as stipulated in paragraphs 4 and 5(a) and 6 above to the satisfaction of the Department; and
- funds for the payment of the Postgraduate Scholarship continuing to be available.
Should the requirement in either Regulation 8(a) or (c) cease to apply, the Postgraduate Scholarship may be suspended, terminated and/or not renewed altogether, as appropriate. In case of non-compliance with Regulation 8(b), the Scholarship may be reduced partially, subject to the provision of Regulation 11.
- Postgraduate Scholarship holders shall sign a declaration agreeing to abide by these regulations and agreeing that they will immediately inform their supervisor(s) and the Graduate School if they cease to comply with any of the requirements specified in Regulations 1 and 4 and 5(a).
- If academic progress is unsatisfactory, a written warning will be issued by the Departmental Research Postgraduate Committee(DRPC) or FHDC in the case of unitary Faculties indicating the need for improvement within a period to be specified. The student may present his/her case to the FHDC. If progress continues to be unsatisfactory, the DRPC will recommend that the whole PGS be suspended for initially up to two months. If the FHDC decides to impose the sanction, it will inform the student, giving at least one month’s notice in writing, copying the letter to the DRPC Chairperson and the Graduate School. The student may appeal to the FHDC. The FHDC will, in light of such an appeal, review its earlier decision and determine if the sanction should be imposed. If the FHDC does not endorse the recommendation for sanction, it will notify the DRPC accordingly. Uplifting the sanction will be conditional upon demonstrated improvement to the satisfaction of the DRPC and the FHDC. A decision to resume the PGS will in no way lead to the payment of PGS suspended.
- If the Postgraduate Scholarship holder does not perform the training as stipulated in Regulations 4, 5(a) and 6 above to the satisfaction of the Department, a written warning will be issued by the DRPC indicating the need for improvement within a period to be specified. The student may present his/her case to the FHDC if he/she so wishes. If performance continues to be unsatisfactory after the written warning has been served, the DRPC will recommend to the FHDC that an initial sanction in the form of a deduction of $4,000 per month from the PGS value be imposed for a specified period of no more than two months. The sanction, if approved by the FHDC, will be preceded by at least one month’s notice in writing to the student. The student may appeal to the FHDC. The FHDC, upon receiving the appeal, will review its earlier decision and determine whether or not the sanction should be imposed. The PGS holder will be required by the Faculty to provide services as part of his/her training as stipulated in Regulations 4, 5(a) and 6 above during the period of sanction for a decision to be made on the subsequent resumption of the PGS in full or otherwise. Uplifting the sanction is conditional upon demonstrated improvement to the satisfaction of the DRPC and the FHDC. A decision to resume the PGS in full will in no way lead to the deducted portion be paid to the student.
- In cases where the sanctions referred to in paragraphs 10 and 11 have not led to an improvement in performance to the satisfaction of the relevant department, the relevant sanction may be renewed for a further period to be specified. Suspension may in effect lead to termination of the Postgraduate Scholarship, if academic progress remains unsatisfactory. The Dean of the Graduate School will hear appeals, if any, from students against the decision of the relevant Faculty Higher Degrees Committee. The decision of the Dean on this matter shall be final.
III. ADMINISTRATIVE ARRANGEMENTS
- Applications for Postgraduate Scholarship shall be made together with the application for admissions to the MPhil and PhD programmes via the on-line application system of the Graduate School.
- The recommendation of students for the award of Postgraduate Scholarship shall be made by the DRPCs of Departments, Units, Centres or Institutes in which the students are (or shall be) registered, and such recommendations shall be considered by the appropriate FHDC for recommendation to the Dean of the Graduate School.
- FHDCs shall receive reports on the academic progress of Postgraduate Scholarship holders and their performance of departmental training; and shall be responsible for assessing progress and making recommendations on the continuation/renewal or otherwise of Postgraduate Scholarship for the consideration of the Dean of the Graduate School.
- Notices to deduct part of the PGS payment or to suspend the entire Scholarship are issued by the FHDCs on the recommendation of the DRPCs, whereas notices of termination are issued by the Dean of the Graduate School on the recommendation of the DRPCs and the FHDCs.
- DRPCs will consult supervisor(s) concerned, as appropriate, before a recommendation on reduction of PGS payment or suspension/termination/non-renewal of Postgraduate Scholarship is made.