The University of Hong Kong (HKU) is a public research university which is founded in 1911. HKU has its roots in Hong Kong College of Medicine for Chinese (founded in1887) and is the oldest tertiary institution in Hong Kong. Over the past century HKU has evolved from a minor institution in a far-out colonial outpost to the top university in Asia, located in the heart of the continent’s financial capital. Since it was founded, the University has sought to transcend cultural and linguistic boundaries. Its motto has two parts, one Chinese and one Latin, reflecting its scholarly blend of East and West. “Sapientia et virtus” translates as “wisdom and virtue”, while  “mingde gewu” means to manifest virtue and to investigative things. Currently, HKU offers 35 undergraduate programmes across 10 faculties, Architecture, Arts, Business and Economics, Dentistry, Education, Engineering, Law, Medicine, Science, and Social Sciences, covering more than 70 major areas of study. HKU aims to provide students with a broad-based education across different disciplines with a global perspective, in order to develop students’ intellectual and personal strengths with the expectation of the best out of its students, who are among the top achievers in their schools and often their countries.

HKU consistently receives the highest number of awards of any University Grants Committee-funded institution (UGC) in Hong Kong. Students are blessed with the opportunities of research internships in the laboratories of HKU professors, 118 of whom have been ranked among the World’s top 1% of scientists by the Institute for Scientific Information.

World Rankings:

University of Hong Kong’s Worldwide Ranking:

  • 25th in the World according to QS World University Rankings
  • 36th in the World according to Times Higher Education

QS World University Rankings by Subject:

  • Dentistry: 1st
  • Education and Training: 7th
  • Social Sciences and Management: 10th
  • Engineering – Civil and Structural: 11th
  • Linguistics: 11th
  • Sports Related Subjects: 11th
  • Architecture: 12th
  • Modern Languages: 16th
  • Arts and Humanities: 18th
  • Law and Legal Studies: 19th
  • Social Policy and Administration: 20th
  • English Language and Literature: 22nd
  • Geography: 23rd
  • Politics: 24th
  • Earth and Marine Sciences: 25th
  • Business and Management Studies: 26th
  • Computer Science and Information Systems: 26th
  • Natural Sciences: 26th
  • Chemistry: 27th
  • Accounting and Finance: 28th
  • Mathematics: 28th
  • Statistics and Operational Research: 28th
  • Sociology: 29th
  • Engineering and Technology: 30th
  • Engineering – Electrical and Electronic: 32nd
  • Engineering – Mechanical: 33rd
  • Development Studies: 34th
  • Medicine: 34th
  • Economics and Econometrics: 35th
  • Communication and Media Studies: 35th
  • Psychology: 36th
  • Life Sciences and Medicine: 40th
  • Performing Arts: 44th
  • Pharmacy & Pharmacology: 47th
  • Nursing: 48th
  • Environmental Studies: 49th
  • Engineering – Chemical: 49th
  • Biological Sciences: 50th


The Research Culture of HKU

The university is a founding member of Universitas 21, an international consortium of research-led universities, and a member of the Association for Pacific Rim Universities, the Association of Commonwealth Universities and many others. HKU benefits from a large operating budget supplied by high levels of government funding compared to many Western countries. In 2012/13, the Research Grants Council (RGC) granted The University of Hong Kong a total research funding of HK$1,088 million, which is the highest among all universities in Hong Kong.

The Numbers and Figures

Number of Students:

4-Year Undergraduate Degree:

Number of Locals

Number of Internationals








Total number of scholarships for undergraduates: 4,898

Total amount of scholarships for undergraduates: HK$131,494,596 (USD$~16,788,848)


University Museum and Art Gallery:

Number of Art Exhibitions Organized since 1976 to May 2017: 364

Number of Art Exhibitions Held Annually: 14

Annual Number of Visitors: Around 9000

Internationally Famous Collections: -Tang Dynasty Underglaze – Blue Waterpot

       -Yuan Dynasty Nestorian Bronze Crosses


For more facts and figures, refer to this page.

The Numbers and Figures

Number of Students:

4-Year Undergraduate Degree:

Number of Locals

Number of Internationals







Total number of scholarships for undergraduates: 7,696

Total amount of scholarships for undergraduates: HK$155,449,647 (USD$~19,859,469)


Student Exchange:

Number of students participating in outgoing exchange: 7,347

Number of students participating in incoming exchange: 3,318

Number of Exchange Partners: 278 in 34 Countries/Regions


Visit this page for more numbers and figures.

Term Dates in 2020-21

First term

1 September 2020 – 30 November 2020

Reading week: 12 Oct 2020 – 17 Oct 2020

Second term

18 January 2021 – 30 April 2021

Reading week: 8 March 2021 – 13 March 2021

Summer session

28 June 2021 – 21 August 2021