Bachelor of Laws (LLB)
1. Course Requirements and Programme Structure
1.1 The educational aspiration of the LLB degree
It is the mission of the Law Faculty to:
- Instill in our students a strong commitment to the rule of law and justice.
- Equip our students with the highest level of analytical, professional and practical skills.
We know that the rule of law, which is the foundation of Hong Kong society and its economic success, is in the hands of future lawyers. Our aim is to facilitate your moral and intellectual development to enable you to take up this important role in the future in whatever capacity you may choose to serve society.
Specifically, the LLB programme aims to help students achieve the following learning outcomes:
- A solid understanding of the law and the capacity to critically analyse and evaluate legal principles and arguments.
- Ability to apply the legal knowledge, research and reasoning skills you have learnt to real life situations, with a view to resolving issues, problems and disputes within the parameters of the law.
- Ability to present legal arguments effectively and in a professional manner, and to convey and explain complex legal issues to lay clients or members of the larger community.
- Ability to appreciate the underlying values of law and the legal system in the broader social, economic, political and cultural contexts.
- Ability to appreciate and understand the comparative differences between legal systems, legal ethos and legal culture among various jurisdictions and to think critically about how these differences may guide approaches to law reform in the future.
- To develop a strong awareness of social issues and conditions with a view to identifying avenues for law reform to address new challenges and to change law which no longer delivers just outcomes.
1.2 Your Role as a Student of the Law
You will study an array of courses that will form the core and elective components of your degree. The key to your success in all these courses, however, is your ability to think like a good lawyer.
To help you to develop the necessary critical thinking skills, your lecturer will teach very differently from your previous teachers (and the tutorial colleges that you have been attending). Be prepared to being challenged and to go beyond your comfort zone.
Think and form your own view: The best lecturer is not someone who tells you the ‘model’ answer and asks you to rote learn it and regurgitate it in the exam. You will (a) be asked to read a lot; (b) form your own judgment on the point of view you think best addresses the legal problem; (c) debate with your peers and defend your point of view by coming up with good arguments; and (d) be assessed according to the quality of your arguments and your ability to make good and reasoned judgments. To achieve these and to reap the rich rewards that university life beholds for you, you will need to be highly dedicated and disciplined.
Learn how to construct arguments: Assessments methods will be in multiple forms, ranging from in-hall exam (which may be open or closed book), take-home exams, research papers, periodic coursework, online assessments, oral presentations, mooting, simulation exercises, etc. The key to do well in these assessments is to build arguments step-by-step in order to persuade the examiner of your point of view. Students who get good marks are those who can utilise the information to generate solutions to legal problems and by conveying their reasons for such an approach persuasively.
To learn how to construct arguments, read a very good book by Anthony Weston, A Rulebook for Arguments (Hackett Student Handbooks), (Hackett Publishing Inc, 4th, 2008)
To better prepare yourself and understand what studying law is about, also read:
- Mi Zhou, Thinking Like a Lawyer, (Sweet & Maxwell HK, 1st, 2015)
- Nicholas J McBride, Letters to a Law Student (Longman, 2nd, 2010)
1.3 Course enrollment
Regardless of the stream you have chosen, you will be required to partake in courses amounting to 60 credits in total this year. These would include:
- 4 Professional Core Courses
- Common Core Courses
- Core University English or Free Elective
|LLB||BBA (Law)||BSocSC (Govt&Laws)||BA & LLB|
|Course Enrolment Structure||Professional Core in Law (30 Credits)|
|Common Core Courses|
|(24 Credits)||(6 Credits)||(12 Credits)||(6 Credits)|
|Core University English or Free Elective (6 Credits)|
|Business or Accounting Core/ Electives||Social Sciences/ Politics and Public Admin Courses||Literary Studies Courses|
|(18 Credits)||(12 Credits)||(18 Credits)|
For more information on the various courses offered by the Faculty, learning objectives for each course, its format and teaching staff, please visit the Academic Resources Support Centre
1.3.1 Professional Core Courses
The 4 Professional Core Courses are compulsory for ALL first year students.
These courses are designated as “core” and offered in your first year because they all aim to instill in students the foundation, knowledge and skills necessary for them to progress in their legal studies and career in the future.
In this first year, in Legal System of the HKSAR, you will be introduced to the way in which a legal system operates to achieve certain functions and objectives, including meeting society’s expectations of protecting certain values, implementing and enforcing the law and maintaining law and order through the peaceful resolution of disputes.
You will also learn, through Law & Society, the way in which law has led social changes in attitudes and behaviours, and consider the role of morality and culture in influencing the content of the law by discussing salient controversies of the day. You will also study how governments were historically organised and the underlying ideologies behind such a set up.
The Law of Contract I & II will introduce you to a very important area of law that is used in 90% of your legal practice, and it will help you acquire the skills of analysing law and presenting legal arguments, all of which are important thinking and lawyering skills.
Legal Research and Writing I provides you with the foundational skills to read cases and look for the key components of a judgment, to find cases on a point of law, and to prepare legal memoranda and research papers to develop and present your legal arguments and ideas.
|The Legal System of the HKSAR LLAW1008||The aim of the Legal system course is to provide students with an understanding of the HKSAR’s legal system, its common law foundations and its interface with the PRC legal system within the One-Country-Two-Systems framework outlined in Basic Law. We will look at the common law process and the role of personnel who help put the law into motion. We will examine the impact and performance of Hong Kong’s legal system through the study of a range of current issues, including the law making process, the rule of law, the workings of one-country-two-systems and access to justice.|
|Law and Society LLAW1009||The objective of this course is to introduce students to the historical, comparative and critical study of issues relating to “law and society”. We hope to capture the dynamics between law and society, namely, how law is shaped by social changes, perception and thought, and how society is moulded by legal rules and norms. We will discuss broad interdisciplinary perspectives and theoretical, empirical and policy considerations relevant to the study of the relationship between law and society.|
|Legal Research and Writing I LLAW1013||This course is designed as a practice-focused skills course and deliberately emphasizes maximum participation. The lectures and tutorials work in tandem to help students to develop skills such as research, analysis, legal reasoning, and persuasive argument. Students will be introduced to judgements, ordinances, and specific legal genres such as case note and legal memorandum.|
|Law of Contract I & II LLAW1001 LLAW1002||The law of Contract is perhaps one of the most important foundations of private law. In this course, students will learn the law that governs almost all major commercial transactions and the important thinking skills required in law.|
The following outlines some aspects of the format and expectations of each professional core course:
|Law of Contract I and II||Legal Research and Writing||Law and Society||Legal System of HKSAR|
|Full/ half year||Full||Half||Half||Half|
|Semester||1 and 2||1||2||1|
For more information, please visit: http://www.law.hku.hk/course/core-courses.
Alternatively, if you still have any questions after reading the information above, feel free to contact the respective coordinators for the first year courses.
|Legal System of HKSAR||Eric Ipemail@example.com||CCT 705|
|Karen Kongfirstname.lastname@example.org||CCT 910|
|Law and Society||Albert Chenemail@example.com||CCT 309|
|Anne Cheungfirstname.lastname@example.org||CCT 604|
|David Kwokemail@example.com||CCT 814A|
|Legal Research and Writing I||Eva Tamfirstname.lastname@example.org||CCT 514|
|Law of Contract I/II||Ben Chenemail@example.com||TBD|
1.3.2 Core University English or Free Elective
Candidates who have achieved Level 5** in English Language in the Hong Kong Diploma of Secondary Education Examination, or equivalent, may at the discretion of the Faculty, be exempted from this requirement and should take an elective course in lieu.
A pass in BOTH LLAW1013 Legal Research and Writing I and LLAW2017 Legal Research and Writing II shall be deemed to satisfy the “English in the Discipline” requirement under UG5(a) of the Regulations for First Degree Curricula.
1.3.3 Common Core Courses
The HKU Common Core Curriculum is an essential part of providing a space to build friendships across all the Faculties; enhancing creative and critical thinking; and addressing complex questions of the contemporary world.
For students in the Law Faculty, you will be required to enroll in one or more of the Common Core Curriculum courses each year for the first three years of your studies. The actual number of Common Core courses you take each year varies, depending on the respective degree regulations as shown below:
|LLB||BBA (Law) and LLB||BSocSC (Govt&Laws) and LLB||BA (Literary Studies) and LLB|
The CCC focuses on significant issues centered in 4 Areas of Inquiry, namely:
- Scientific and Technological Literacy
- Global Issues
- China: Culture, State and Society
For more information, please visit the Common Core Curriculum website.The CCC will help you make connections both to and beyond your chosen disciplinary fields of study, and to develop the intellectual, social, and innovative skills that all HKU undergraduates will need when they go into their respective career paths. These ideas will also undergird the ethical perspectives that the global HKU community is striving to practise.
1.4 Degree Classifications
All degrees offered at the Faculty of Law will be awarded in five divisions determined by the Board of Examiners for the degree in accordance with the following Cumulative GPA scores, with all courses taken (including failed courses) carrying equal weighting:
|Class of Honours||CGPA Range|
|First Class Honours||3.60 – 4.30|
Second Class Honours
2.40 – 3.59
3.00 – 3.59
2.40 – 2.99
|Third Class Honours||1.70 – 2.39|
|Pass||1.00 – 1.69|
Notwithstanding the above, the Board of Examiners has the discretion to limit the number of candidates to be awarded a particular class of honours as follows :-
- First: no more than 10% of the graduating class;
- Second (Division One): no more than 55% of the graduating class;
- Second (Division Two); Third; Pass and Fail: remainder of the graduating class.
1.5 Assessment Methods
In all of your assessments, you will be graded by reference to the following criteria.
|A- Borderline Excellent||3.7|
|B+ Very Good||3.3|
|B Good (Average Competent Answer)||3.0|
|B- Borderline Good||2.7|
|C+ Very Satisfactory||2.3|
|C- Borderline Satisfactory||1.7|
|D Borderline Pass||1.0|
2. How to be an Effective Student of the Law?
2.1 Teaching Methods
A key to becoming a successful law student is to be acquainted with the teaching styles adopted by the University and make the best of all the opportunities University life brings to you. Courses offered at the Faculty of Law are generally run in a combination format of lectures and tutorials or seminars. Increasingly, courses involve elements of experiential learning, requiring students to attempt real ‘lawyering’ tasks, like writing legal memos, interviewing ‘clients’ or preparing for ‘mock trials’ and presenting their case before an ‘appellate court’ (known as a moot).
Lectures are conducted in large group sessions.
They are intended to achieve one or more of the following objectives:
- Present – the overall theme of a particular topic
- Highlight – controversial issues pertaining to each area
- Introduce – key cases and commentaries
- Provoke – thoughts and induce further independent research
Although attendance for lectures is not compulsory, students are strongly recommended to attend all lectures.
In order to get the best out of every lecture, students should first familiarize themselves with the relevant topics / themes prior to the lectures. The lecture outline will usually provide a list of preparatory reading or activities to do prior to the lecture.
At the lecture, pay attention. Make notes if necessary, but not slavishly (see Q&A on note-taking).
After the lecture, try to think about the issues raised, discuss with fellow students and read broadly around the relevant topics. Try to access a broad range of source material to obtain different perspectives on the topics.
Seminars are conducted in small groups sessions. The purpose of seminars is different from that of lectures. They are designed to consolidate your knowledge on a particular subject and provide an opportunity for interactive learning and engagement. You are encouraged to participate actively and seek to clarify and discuss your views with others. Seminars are not intended to be another lecture.
It is therefore crucial that you prepare for the seminars beforehand. If you do not prepare or read in advance, you will stand to benefit little from your attendance. In order to prepare effectively, you may:
- Familiarize yourself with relevant background knowledge. A good way to do so is to follow the instructions as set out in the Seminar Activity Plan.
- Attempt the seminar questions. The questions are often relevant to your exams or assessments and many of them are taken directly from previous years’ examinations. This is a good way to test your own knowledge and understanding of a particular area.
- If you have any questions, write them down and remember to ask your tutor during or after the seminar.
At the seminar,
- Be punctual. This is a matter of common courtesy to yourself, your groupmates and your tutor.
- Be active. Your tutor is a facilitator who will design activities to help the seminar discussions. You and your groupmates are expected to contribute to most of the discussions in order to make the most of the seminars.
- Do not be afraid to be wrong. Most of the questions set out in the seminars are intended to be open-ended. There may be a particular stance that is more popular, obvious or compelling but this does not prevent you from arguing otherwise. In fact, a seminar is a safe place for you to make mistakes so do not worry about being wrong. It is better that you make mistakes at the seminars and learn from them, than to make the mistakes for the first time in your exams or worse still, during your summer placements or training.
- Take notes. But only when necessary, and not slavishly (See Q&A on note-taking).
After the seminar, review the notes taken during the seminars. If possible, this should normally be done immediately after so that your memory is still fresh.
If there are still questions that you are not able to answer yourself, then do not be afraid to contact your tutor or your groupmates, they will be glad to help you.
2.2 How to study?
Education and learning at the university is different than at secondary school. Education in most secondary schools in Hong Kong tends to be “exam-oriented.” You are only taught (or “spoon-fed”) the necessary knowledge and skills sufficient for you to manage the exams. On the contrary, at university, you are expected to take a more pro-active role in your own education, set your own learning goals and targets, and plan your timetable for school and other activities. The lectures and seminars are merely intended to facilitate your learning process but the major part of the learning process is undertaken by YOU and requires discipline, dedication and diligence.
Everyone has a different style of learning in terms of approach, method, pace and consistency. It is therefore important that you develop your own method that works best for YOU.
The following tips may be of assistance to you:
- Set clear learning goals and work towards them consistently throughout the year.
- The learning process should be spread out evenly throughout the year. Do not leave it until exam revision period.
- Develop self-discipline so that knowledge can be assimilated in a systematic and controlled manner.
- Strike a balance between the time devoted to each course. Do not focus unduly on one subject to the neglect of others.
- Assess your strengths and capabilities. Remember that everyone has different styles and capacities. Work at your own pace and do not be afraid of spending more time than others to fine tune your understanding or acquisition or practice of particular skills, including reading, writing or other preparatory work.
- Read the syllabus. A good starting point is to refer to the list of “prescribed” and “recommended readings” available for each course.
- Read the textbooks. Choose a textbook that you are comfortable with. You do not have to read it back-to-back (unless you really have the time and interest). Focus on the relevant sections. This helps you to gain a better understanding of the cases you have read, especially how they relate to each other, areas of controversy, and the observations as presented by the textbook authors.
- Read the cases. The amount and length of some cases may be overwhelming at first, but in time, you will be acquainted with them and be more efficient in reading them. Try to enjoy the process, and appreciate the language, reasoning, eloquence, witticism, and various considerations that judges have in mind when they write their judgments.
- Read academic journals on specific topics or cases. These help keep you apprised of the most relevant controversies, legal developments and shifts in the law. They also expand your understanding of the law and its application in comparative contexts.
- Do not be a passive recipient of information. Reading all the materials without reflecting on your own thoughts is a static and meaningless exercise. You can progress and grow by developing a repository of your reflections about the law, why it is what it is and whether you agree or disagree with it.
- Think about what you learnt and read, and do so critically. Formulate your own views (eg. Is It right? What are the justifications? What are the implications? Why was it decided the way it was decided?)
- Develop arguments to critique and be ready to challenge the things you learn.
- Organize study groups to support one another.
- Discuss what you have learnt with fellow students. This is a good way to test your knowledge and develop your ability to formulate legal arguments. This may also allow you to see if you have missed any important points.
2.3 Learning Tools
There are a variety of learning tools to assist you with your studies.
Moodle is the centrally managed learning management system (LMS) at HKU. At the beginning of each academic year, new Moodle courses will be created based on the course information as registered in the Student Information System (SIS). Moodle courses are accessible through the “My eLearning tab” of HKU Portal by students. The system facilitates student participation in online interactive learning activities, collaboration with peers and communication with teachers.
A User Guide to the Moodle is available here.
A textbook is a great way to obtain an overview or commentaries on a particular topic. Depending on the authors’ preference, different textbooks are organised in a different manner, with varying purposes, focus, style, length and price.
You will typically be handed a list of recommended textbooks for each course at the start of the year. Unless otherwise indicated, it is not mandatory for you to use the recommended textbooks. There are also other textbooks available on the market for each subject. The important thing is that you should find one textbook which is suitable to you in terms of content, volume and style.
In choosing the suitable textbook for yourself, remember to check its year of publication. You are expected to obtain the latest edition in order to study the most up-to-date legal principles.
It is also good practice to write your own notes.
The act of writing notes is not only a physical process where you simply copy or type relevant information on a piece of paper. It is also an intellectual exercise as it organises and consolidates your thoughts and understanding on a particular topic.
The notes serve as a summary of key points for a particular topic. This saves you the time and trouble of referring back to the primary materials subsequently.
You may make use of different visual aids and technology to help you organise your notes.
Westlaw and LexisNexis
Westlaw and LexisNexis are the most advanced online platforms for legal research to date. Students will be able to access these platforms through their HKU Portal account. With a combination of primary and secondary materials such as cases, journals, legislation, commentaries, etc in Hong Kong, United Kingdom and other common law jurisdictions, they are indispensable for students and practitioners alike when it comes to legal research.
Both platforms are intended to be user-friendly but you are still strongly recommended to attend the training sessions offered by the Law Library from time to time.
Alternatively, you may refer to the following online instructions:
Other Online Research Platforms
There are also other platforms available online for legal research on Hong Kong law.
Hong Kong Legal Information Institute (HKLII): easy and free access to a wide range of primary legal materials in Hong Kong, such as Ordinances, Regulations, decisions from all levels of court, tribunal decisions, arbitration decisions, etc.
Judiciary HK: contains all judgments and practice directions published by the judiciary daily.
Bilingual Laws Information System (BLIS): Electronic database providing bilingual texts of Ordinances and subsidiary legislation in force on or after 30 June 1997 (including the current version and past versions dating back to 30 June 1997) .
Lui Che Woo Law Library
The University of Hong Kong Lui Che Woo Law Library is one of the subject branch libraries of the University Libraries. It provides study and research facilities for the academics, students and postgraduates of the Faculty, and other staff and students of the University. Members of the legal profession practising in Hong Kong may also use the library on application.
Reflecting the historical development of Hong Kong, and the Faculty’s common law tradition, the Lui Che Woo Law Library has strong collections of materials from Hong Kong, the United Kingdom, and major Commonwealth jurisdictions. In response to the geographical location of Hong Kong and its commercial relationships with other economies, resources from the Asia-Pacific jurisdictions are also developed for its collection.
A significant portion of the printed texts available in the library can also be accessed online.
The library also provides excellent guidance on doing research in law at the HKU. For more information, please click here.
Past Exam Paper Database
The HKU Past Exam Paper Database is accessible through the HKU Portal Account. It hosts a substantial volume of past papers from a variety of courses which dates back to the 1970s. The exam papers available there may be of great assistance to you during your exam revision.
2.4 How to prepare for exams?
Examinations at the University are merely a venue for you to showcase your knowledge in a particular area. If you have worked consistently throughout the year in fulfillment of all the expectations and learning objectives, then you would be well prepared for sitting the examinations.
There is some great exam preparation advice helpfully prepared by the Centre of Development and Resources for Students (CEDARS).
Additionally, the following are some key points for preparation for a law exam:
Plagiarism is defined under Regulation 5 of the University’s Regulations Governing Conduct at Examination as:
“the unacknowledged use, as one’s own, of work of another person, whether or not such work has been published.”
For the avoidance of doubt, it is plagiarism and grave academic misconduct to copy your own work or re-submit part or all of your own work for another assignment, and to reproduce substantial parts of another’s work without putting them in quotation, even if you have made editing changes and cited the source.
It is sometimes also referred as “academic offence” or “academic theft”.
As a university student, it is crucially important that you adopt all necessary precautions in order to avoid plagiarism because:
- Work containing plagiarism will be given a mark of zero.
- The matter may be treated as a disciplinary offence which, if proven, may result in the student being subjected to sanctions, including a published reprimand, suspension from classes or expulsion from the University.
- It goes to the integrity and honesty of a person.
- It stifles creativity and originality, and defeats the purpose of education.
2.6 How to avoid plagiarism
To avoid committing plagiarism inadvertently, you must always cite the sources you intend to rely on in your work properly in accordance with either one of the recognized practices on legal citation.
Like most law schools around the world, the Faculty of Law adopts “footnotes” citation as opposed to “in-text” citation. For more information, you may refer to either one of the recommended legal referencing styles available here.
The University of Hong Kong is committed to whole-person education. We believe both inside and outside classroom learning are essential for your development in the University. The Centre of Development and Resources for Students (CEDARS) provides comprehensive and student-centred resources and outside classroom learning opportunities for your development.
There are 4 main sections of CEDARS:
4.1 Campus Life Section
The CEDARS-Campus Life section provides a comprehensive and integrated student support programme for the promotion of student welfare. The specialized services covered by the section are:
- Amenities Centres
- Student Finance
- Student Societies and Activities
- Student Welfare and Emergency
- International Students and Integration
- Support for Students with a Disability
4.2 Careers & Placement Section
The CEDARS-Careers & Placement Section is a student-centred careers and placement services unit to all HKU students. With a team of dedicated staff, we strive to deliver the most effective and all-round career services for students in career planning, training and workshops to provide vast opportunities for students to develop independent learning attitude and professional skills in launching a rewarding career.
To employers, we strive to foster the branding of HKU as the premium source of top quality graduates who embrace high intellectual and professional standards as well as social responsibility awareness.
Law Faculty’s In House Career Resources Centre
Apart from the CEDARS-Careers & Placement section, the Faculty of Law also provides extensive support for its students to develop and launch a career in law.
The web-based Career Resources Centre is a law student-centred platform providing resources from career talk schedule, latest market news, job vacancies to list of law firms. Through a wide range of activities, we strive to provide vast opportunities for students to develop independent learning attitude and professional skills in launching a rewarding career.
If you have any other questions regarding your first year experience, you may also contact our First Year Experience Coordinator, Puja Kapai.
Please visit their website for more information.
4.3 Counseling & Person Enrichment Section (“CoPE”)
The CEDARS-CoPe section is your resource to CoPE with every form of life challenges. Their services focuses on 8 main areas.
(i).Counseling and Psychological Services
- The Counseling and Psychological Services are entirely free of charge. It aims to assist students in not only handling their personal problems and emotional/ psychological distress, but also in exploring their potential, nurturing their adaptabilities and developing coping abilities.
- All data and information obtained during the counseling services will be kept in strict confidence.
More information is available here.
Interactive small group Person Enrichment Workshops are provided to assist students to develop and enhance their skills necessary for them to build social confidence and maintain a well-balanced and fruitful University Life.
More information is available here.
It promotes a barrier free community and equal learning opportunities for students to fully participate in university life. It is also committed to supporting students with disabilities or special educational needs (SEN) in overcoming barriers and achieving successful university education.
More information is available here.
(iv).Diversity and Social Inclusion
It organizes events to promote a better understanding of mental illness and encourages people in need to seek help.
More information is available here.
(v).Peer Support Network
It promotes the benefits of learning from one’s peers. For instance, the Peer English Tutoring Programme is a student volunteering service for students who want to improve their oral English (tutees) to chat with students who are native or near native English speakers (tutors). The programme not only provides an opportunity for students to practise their spoken English but also creates a platform for cultural and knowledge exchange.
More information is available here.
(vi).Mental Health First Aid (MHFA)
MHFA is an international certificate course for the appropriate help and response given to someone who is experiencing a mental health crisis, before he or she can obtain professional help. It aims at preserving life, providing comfort, preventing deterioration and promoting recovery among people who are developing a mental health problem or in a mental health crisis.
More information is available here.
Provides comprehensive support to students to adapt to university life. Examples include “Tips on Enjoying University Life” (available at: http://beta.cedars.hku.hk/showext.php?id=cpe), First Year Experience website for upcoming activities specially designed for first-year students, and Exhibitions on learning opportunities at HKU.
More information is available here.
(viii).Self Help (Psychometer)
Psychometer checks how well-adjusted you are to university life regularly. It is a one-stop online resource hub which provides psychological tests and enrichment tips on a wide range of areas including academic studies, moods, strengths, interpersonal relationships, and adjustment issues.
More information is available here.
4.4 Student Development Section
The CEDARS-Student Development Section supports the University’s educational goal of whole-person education with its non-academic and non-credit bearing courses, activities, resources, support and advice.
The three main themes of its SD-prorgammes are:
- Sustainability Leadership supports student leaders to apply their knowledge, leadership and creativity to solve pressing global issues.
- Community Engagement offers opportunities for all students to enhance their understanding of the world through engaging with local and overseas communities to address community needs.
- Education for Empowerment offers opportunities for HKU members to make exchange with global leaders and changemakers in lectures, summits, and conventions. It also supports students to prepare and engage in prestigious conferences and competitions worldwide.
For more information, please visit the CEDARS website.
5. Exchange Programmes
HKU is committed to nurturing its students as global citizens and providing them with education opportunities that foster international perspective and intercultural understanding through its curriculum and various student exchange opportunities. To this end, the University has established the HKU Worldwide Undergraduate Student Exchange Programme to enable undergraduate students to conduct full-year or short term exchanges on a full credit-transfer basis in overseas Universities.
Outgoing Exchange Programme
It is now possible to study for part of your degree on an approved exchange programme. It is a worthwhile experience which will broaden your horizon and perspective. If you are interested to study abroad for one or two semesters, LLB students may do so in Year 3 or 4. The double degree students (BBA(Law), BSS(G&L) and BA&LLB may do it in Year 4 or 5.
This may be done privately at the student’s own expense or through one of 2 exchange schemes:
- The HKU Worldwide Undergraduate Student Exchange Programme (organised by global affairs office)
- The Faculty-based Exchange Programme
It is also possible to combine these schemes with a semester in a civil law jurisdiction and a semester in a PRC or common law jurisdiction, one of which is a HKU institution and one of which is a Faculty exchange partner.
University subsidies are available for participants in both schemes at rates dependent upon cGPA levels.
If you are interested in participating in the Outgoing Exchange Programme, you are advised to:
- Attend the briefing session about the Law Faculty-based Exchange Programme (exact date to be confirmed); and
- Familiarize yourself with information available at the Faculty of Law website.
Incoming Exchange Programme
HKU has already developed academic links with over 300 Universities and research institutions worldwide. It also has reciprocal student exchange programmes with over 180 partner institutions in 26 countries.
Each year, the Faculty of Law will be host to a approximately 150 students to join HKU for academic exchange purposes. As students to this University, you will have the opportunity to meet new friends from around the globe, and share your learning experience together. Many of them arrive in Hong Kong for the first time. Having a buddy in the University will help make their transition easier. Being a buddy might mean meeting up for coffee or inviting the exchange student to some events on campus. It also provides you with a chance to get to know more about studying overseas. If you are interested in acting as a buddy, please sign up through the moodle link by August 31st:
We hope that you will treasure these opportunities and exhibit the necessary hospitality expected of a host in order to make their stay at HKU pleasurable and memorable.
12 Aug 2016, Sharing and Q&A session with senior students
The myth of “honeymoon period”
Contrary to public perception, there is no “honeymoon period” for any law degree. As it has already been explained above, the results you obtained in your 1st Year will count towards your final degree classification.
Additionally, if you intend to proceed to PCLL on graduation, you would be required to demonstrate competence in 11 Core Subjects, one of which is the Law of Contract, which you would be taking this year as a professional core subject. Therefore, your performance this year will affect your eligibility to enter into the PCLL in the future.
Can I record or take notes during lectures?
You are warned that notes taken in lectures, and course materials supplied to you by departments, are to be used by you only for the purposes of research or private study.
Similarly, lectures may not be recorded without the permission of the lecturer. If the lecturer permits recording, it must be subject to any conditions which are stipulated at the time of granting permission. The copyright of each lecture delivered in the University is vested in the lecturer delivering it and/or the University. Failure to heed this warning may result in an infringement of the copyright laws.
Should I record or take notes during lectures?
It depends. Lectures should only be recorded if it would be listened back in the future. Similarly, notes should only be taken to help you in remembering certain important point. There is no point in transcribing the entire lecture, as much information will already be known (if you have done your preparation accordingly) and if not, can still be easily found in the textbooks or cases.
Can I discuss my essays with other fellow students/ lecturers?
Yes you can. In fact, the University encourages academic discussions and exchanges among students. You may, for instance, discuss the essay topics with your fellow students or lecturers before embarking on the actual writing.
But remember, this does not mean you can come up with the answers together. The rules on plagiarism continues to apply in this regard. Your lecturers/ tutors are only there to help you understand the essay topics and to comment on your ideas. They cannot comment directly on the answers you have produced prior to it being marked.
Can I let others see my essays?
Yes you may. You are entitled to the copyright of the essays you write. You may therefore show it to others before or after it is handed in. But you must NOT show your essay to your lecturers/ tutors prior to it being handed in as it may lead to conflict of interests to the prejudice of other students. When showing your essays to your fellow peers, you must NOT allow others to copy it directly for the purpose of assessment. Remember: if your classmate plagiarises your essay, BOTH of you will be penalised for plagiarism.
How many hours should I devote to my studies every week?
As a university student, the major part of the learning process is undertaken by you. There is no fixed limit on the number of hours you spend on private study. But the normative student study load per credit unit as recommended by the University 25 (± 5) hours (ie. 150 (± 30) hours for a 6-credit course).
When should I start preparing for my exams?
You should be preparing for your exams throughout the year by consistently working towards your learning goals. Examinations at the University are merely a venue for you to showcase your knowledge in a particular area. If you have worked consistently throughout the year in fulfillment of all the expectations and learning objectives, then there should in principle be no problems in you sitting the examinations.