The Chinese University of Hong Kong


Chapter 11Learning Activities at Colleges

11.1 Overview

The University¡¯s rich college tradition has continued since its founding to provide each and every Ug student with many outside-classroom educational opportunities. College learning activities therefore complement the formal learning. Every Ug student and every faculty member at the University is affiliated with one specific College; college affiliation changes only under exceptional circumstances (Appendix 11-1). Each College has its own unique characteristics, as described in its College Mission, Vision, and Motto (Appendix 11-2). Heads of Chung Chi, New Asia, United and Shaw Colleges are members of the SAPC (Appendix 1-3) and Administrative and Planning Committee (AAPC) (Appendix 11-3). Masters of the five new Colleges (Morningside, S.H. Ho, C.W. Chu, Wu Yee Sun and Lee Woo Sing) are invited to attend the AAPC meetings. The College Heads/ Masters are members of the Collaborative Group on College Affairs convened by the Pro-Vice-Chancellor overseeing College matters. College Deans of Students are also members of a number of University Committees on various aspects of student affairs. These Committees are chaired by the University Dean of Students (Appendix 11-4). These platforms enhance communication among the Colleges and central administration, and ensure that students in different Colleges have comparable support and learning opportunities.

11.2 Formal Learning Activities and Academic Support

Each Ug student has to complete CGE courses (Appendix 2-4). While CGE courses vary from one College to another, they share certain characteristics: they (i) guide students to reflect upon their university and College education, (ii) broaden students¡¯ intellectual horizons, and (iii) encourage students to initiate and plan projects of and on their own. CGE courses are overseen by the SCGE (Appendix 1-3), and are approved by the respective College¡¯s Assembly of Fellows and the SCGE (see Sections 3.3 and 4.3 for management, revision and review of CGE courses).

In addition to the CGE courses, students also have to attend a number of assemblies, talks, seminars, and high table dinners that cover a wide range of topics, including topics of societal and contemporary relevance, and latest academic advances.

Colleges also provide academic support and advice to Ug students in need through their specific committees, the offices of College Deans of Students, and their affiliated faculty members. Chung Chi, New Asia, United, and Shaw Colleges have designated affiliated faculty members serving as Departmental Coordinators.

Other forms of academic support provided by Colleges include scholarships, bursaries and financial aid, and academic exchange programmes. Such support complements those offered at the university level, e.g. by the Office of Admissions and Financial Aid, the Office of Student Affairs, and the Office of Academic Links (OAL).

11.3 Non-formal Learning

Colleges offer Ug students a host of non-formal learning activities, such as service learning and language enhancement programmes, summer trips and non-academic exchanges. Students also take part in various intercollegiate competitions, such as sports events. In addition, many university-level programmes and activities are organized in conjunction with Colleges.

Non-formal learning activities organized by Colleges, when applicable, are recorded in the Student Development Portfolio system (Appendix 10-1).

11.4 Pastoral Care

College Deans of Students are responsible for providing student unions and students with support and feedback on college affairs. College Heads/ Masters and Deans of Students regularly meet with Ug students in various college activities. In addition, student representatives sit on college committees.

Wardens and hostel tutors are attentive to resident matters. Fully residential Colleges require students to attend a certain number of communal dinners each week, thereby providing students with the opportunity to learn from others ¡ª often from very different academic and family backgrounds ¡ª in a communal setting. There are also college high table dinners. Half residential Colleges maintain non-resident halls, thereby allowing non-resident Ug students the opportunity to enjoy college life as well.

College student unions and specific student committees organize annual new student orientations with college support, both financially and administratively.