Master of Philosophy (MPhil) and Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Introduction | Research in the School of Law | Admission Requirements | Accommodation | Financial Assistance | Visiting Research Students | Applications and Enquiries

 

Introduction

The School of Law offers two research degrees:  Master of Philosophy (MPhil) and Doctor of Philosophy (PhD).  Each degree consists of a substantial research project and a limited coursework component.  A PhD thesis, in particular, must make a substantial original contribution to knowledge in the relevant subject area.  Research postgraduate students are encouraged to be active members of the School of Law research community.  Supervision is available under regional and international experts in a diverse array of subject areas, including public law, human rights, criminal law, private law, comparative law, international law and maritime law.  The University also offers excellent financial assistance to eligible students, widening access to research postgraduate study.

The University has stipulated the following study periods for research degree programmes, and students are required to complete their studies, including the submission of their thesis, within those periods (for 2019 entry):

Programme of Study Full-time Part-time
MPhil 2 years 4 years
PhD
(students with a bachelor’s degree or a master’s degree)
4 years 8 years


To be recommended for the award of an MPhil or PhD degree, students must successfully complete the coursework requirements, and satisfy the examiners with regard to their submitted thesis, in an oral examination on the thesis and area of study concerned, and in any written or practical examinations as required.

 

Research in the School of Law

The School of Law at City University of Hong Kong is a small collegiate institution with an outstanding reputation as a leading law school. It fosters a culture of integrated research and teaching, drawing on the expertise of its faculty and a diverse student body, contributing to relevant and innovative research in Hong Kong, Greater China and beyond. We seek to attract high quality and dedicated PhD students to contribute to the School’s diverse range of research activities. Research postgraduate students will benefit from the School’s research culture which emphasises both fundamental and applied aspects of advanced legal studies and research, and where local, regional, international and comparative analysis are all encouraged.

Prospective students are strongly encouraged to contact potential supervisors in their subject area before submitting an application, to ensure that appropriate supervision will be available for a given research project.  The research interests of our staff are available on the staff profile pages, and there are also research centres such as the Centre for Chinese and Comparative Law, the Hong Kong Commercial and Maritime Law Centre and the Human Rights Law and Policy Forum.

 

Admission Requirements

Applicants seeking admission to a research degree programme must satisfy the following minimum entrance requirements:

  1. Master of Philosophy (MPhil)
    • hold a relevant bachelor's degree with first or second class honours (or equivalent qualification) from a recognised university.
  2. Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
    • be a current MPhil student in the University who seeks transfer to PhD candidature; or
    • hold a higher degree by research (or equivalent qualification) from a recognised university; or
    • hold a Master's degree (or equivalent qualification) from a recognised university; or
    • hold a Bachelor's degree with first class honours (or equivalent qualification) from a recognised university.

Equivalent qualifications mentioned above include relevant professional qualifications or other scholarly achievements recognised by the University.

In addition to the above, applicants from an institution where the language of instruction is not English should satisfy the following minimum English proficiency requirements:

  • a minimum total score of 580 (paper-based test); or 92 (internet-based test); or 66 (revised paper-delivered test; sum of Reading, Listening and Writing section scores) in TOEFL or
  • a minimum overall band score of 7 in IELTS; or
  • a score of 520 in the Chinese mainland's College English Test Band 6.

(Please note that the School of Law has stipulated a validity period of three years for results of the above tests. Thus, only test results obtained within the three years immediately preceding an application to the School of Law will therefore be considered valid.)

The University may also prescribe other additional entry qualifications, as deemed appropriate.

 

Accommodation

Residential accommodation is available for research postgraduate students. All full-time research students of UGC-funded programmes are eligible to apply.

 

Financial Assistance

Postgraduate research students may be eligible for, and can apply to, a number of financial support schemes. Postgraduate Studentships are, for example, granted to selected full-time government-funded research students on the basis of academic merit. Research Tuition Scholarships recognise and reward full-time government-funded students with outstanding academic performance (these scholarships are in the form of a tuition fee exemption). Government-funded research students can also apply for conference grants to support their attendance at conferences, and for research activity funds to support their research-related activities outside Hong Kong.

Other forms of financial assistance include the Chow Yei Ching School of Graduate Studies Entrance Scholarships aimed at encouraging outstanding international students to undertake MPhil or PhD studies at the University (applicable to government-funded students only). The Government of the Hong Kong SAR and the University also offer various grants and loans to help students who are in financial need. Prospective and current research degree students are also encouraged to apply for external financial awards and assistance.

 

Visiting Research Students

For students who wish to apply for visiting research study in the School of Law:

  • they must be enrolling in a postgraduate programme in the legal discipline in a recognised university; and
  • (applicable to applicants from an institution where the language of teaching is not English) they should satisfy the minimum English language proficiency requirements stated above; and
  • they should identify a faculty member who agrees to be his/her supervisor before submitting the application.

The final decision on the assignment of supervisors for successful applicants rests with the University.

For the application period and procedures, please visit https://www.sgs.cityu.edu.hk/prospective/visitingrpg/

 

Applications and Enquiries

Prospective students should apply for admission online at https://www.sgs.cityu.edu.hk/prospective/apply/procedures.  Applications must be accompanied by a research proposal.  Applications are accepted throughout the year and are mainly considered in one admission round.

Further details on the application procedures, programme requirements and tuition fee are obtainable from https://www.sgs.cityu.edu.hk/prospective/rpg/

Prospective students may also contact:
Chow Yei Ching School of Graduate Studies
Tel: (852) 3442 9076
Fax: (852) 3442 0332
Email: sg@cityu.edu.hk
Website: //www.cityu.edu.hk/sgs

Prospective students are strongly encouraged to contact potential supervisors before submitting an application, to ensure that appropriate supervision is available for a given research project.

Routine admissions enquiries may be addressed to:

General Office, School of Law
City University of Hong Kong
83 Tat Chee Avenue
Kowloon
Hong Kong
Tel: (852) 3442 8008
Fax: (852) 3442 0190
E-mail: slwrpg@cityu.edu.hk
Website: //www.cityu.edu.hk/slw

 

 

Other enquiries may be addressed to the Research Degree Coordinator:

Dr THOMSON, Stephen
Associate Professor
Research Degree Coordinator
School of Law, City University of Hong Kong
83 Tat Chee Avenue
Kowloon
Hong Kong
Tel: (852) 3442 6592
Fax: (852) 3442 0190
E-mail: sthomson@cityu.edu.hk