Postgraduate Student Handbook 2019-20   (VI-C)


Policy on Course and Unit Exemptions for Postgraduate Students


Type of Qualifications


Qualifications, either gained at other tertiary institutions or at another programme of studies previously undertaken at CUHK, or equivalent, may include:



courses completed in postgraduate degree or equivalent programmes, irrespective of whether that programme was completed or not;


where a programme prescribes undergraduate courses, courses completed in undergraduate programmes may also be considered.  However, only up to 15% of the total units required for graduation may be exempted by using undergraduate courses;


courses taken by CUHK students on approved exchange programmes.



In listing all these qualifications, it is not suggested that they shall necessarily be recognized, as the decision in each case will rest with the recommendation of the Graduate Division Head concerned and subject to approval by the Dean of the Graduate School on a case-by-case basis, taking into account individual circumstances.  Students should consult the Graduate Division concerned on the possibility of granting course and unit exemptions before making application.


General Principles of Exemption





It is up to students to initiate applications. Recommendations should be made by the Graduate Division, to which the student belongs, to the Dean of the Graduate School for his approval.


For taught programmes, a course taken elsewhere will be recognized as equivalent to a CUHK course if it is comparable in scope and standard, and provides the student with sufficient knowledge to pursue higher level courses at CUHK for which the exempted course is a pre-requisite.


For research programmes, exemption may be recommended if the student’s training in another postgraduate degree programme is considered to be of sufficient standard to warrant exemption from a course or certain courses in the CUHK programme.


In making its evaluation, the Division should take into account the status of the institution where the qualification was gained, the level and content of the course(s) under scrutiny, the grade achieved and how long ago the course was taken.  The Division concerned may set a test if appropriate.


The Division concerned will decide whether the student, if exempted from a course, is also exempted from the corresponding units in his/her CUHK programme of studies, or (s)he will have to take another course to make up the units.  The student cannot take a course for which exemption has been granted.


For taught programmes, the total number of units exempted may not exceed half of the required number.


Courses exempted under this policy will not count in GPA calculations and will appear on transcripts only as the total number of units recognized as equivalent.




Application Procedure


Students may submit applications for course and unit exemption via the Chinese University Student Information System (CUSIS) to the Graduate Division concerned during their normative period of study with the following supporting documents:




certificates/diplomas – copies to accompany applications. Divisions/Graduate School may request to inspect originals from students;


transcripts – copies to accompany applications. Divisions/Graduate School may request to inspect originals from students; and


course descriptions – copies of course content of courses taken.



Processing of the applications will start on receipt of all necessary documents and payment of the application fee.