Undergraduate    FAQ

Programme description

22. Do I need a single major or double major in geography to be qualified for the application of Taught postgraduate programme(s) / Research postgraduate programme(s) in the future?


The top universities in the world would usually list the minimum qualifications required to satisfy the General Entrance Requirements for postgraduate studies, but they mainly look at your Graduation GPA scores and the Class of Honours. Taught postgraduate programme(s) would usually accept students with Second Class Honours and above, while research postgraduate programme(s) would prefer students with First Class Honours – mainly due to the fierce competition for places.

Nowadays, students who wish to pursue a research path would complete an MPhil programme first before applying for a PhD programme. Research postgraduate programmes aim at students who had already possessed a deeper understanding and more specialized hands-on skills in certain area, and are ready to research independently in a particular field. Students with a single major might therefore be more favorable to some professioriate staff who would request for specific subject backgrounds.





Eligibility to declare major/minor

10. Is it a must to study more than one method courses for the geography major?


Geography major students must take at least ONE core method course, but we encourage you to take more than one to strengthen your research skills and spatial techniques.




11. How many streams/ sub-disciplines are there in the Geography major programme?


We have a diverse discipline offering knowledge to understand different contemporary issues including:

  • economic & social development,
  • environmental quality,
  • geography of public health,
  • global warming,
  • environmental hazards,
  • transport & urban issues,
  • tourism & leisure

Many of the courses we offer are highly relevant to the betterment of the local community and to your future career development.




12. Can I take all method courses to fulfill the advanced courses requirements?


Yes, you are welcome to take all method courses.




13. I am a geology students. Should I take GIS courses to enhance my first major and to prepare for future job hunting?


As we always said, the future belongs to those who prepare for it today. A series of courses designed this year to help you specialize your skills, including:

  • GEOG2090 Introduction of Geographic Information Systems
  • GEOG2147 Building Smart Cities with GIS
  • GEOG2157 Open source GIS
  • GEOG3202 GIS in Environmental Studies
  • GEOG2120 Introductory Spatial Analysis
  • GEOG2141 Remote Sensing Applications

Learning new skills would improve your marketability to employers in the job market. At the same, a career isn’t simply a job. It also about doing what you love. Therefore, we encourage students to take advantage of the add/drop period – to explore as many intriguing courses as you can, so as to understand and identify if the courses would able to cater your education needs as well as your interests to make your own decision for your study.




14. Why some method courses e.g. GEOG2137 & GEOG2145 are not offered this year?


The courses listed on the regulations and syllabus are for reference only. For the list of courses we offered in 2021-22, please refer to https://www.geog.hku.hk/list-of-courses.

This year, we offer numerous GIS method courses to meet the demand of spatial analytic trends and the goal of smart city in Hong Kong 2030+, including:

  • GEOG2090 Introduction of Geographic Information Systems
  • GEOG2147 Building Smart Cities with GIS
  • GEOG2157 Open source GIS
  • GEOG3202 GIS in Environmental Studies

Besides GIS skills, statistical and remote sensing knowledge are also important to support geographical research, for example:

  • GEOG2120 Introductory Spatial Analysis
  • GEOG2141 Remote Sensing Applications




15. Are there any geography courses with CI-badge?


Yes, GEOG2056 Tourism in the Shrinking World (6 credits) is a certified Communication-intensive (CI) Course which meets all of the requirements endorsed by HKU’s Senate.

If you wish to develop communication-related knowledge, skills and attributes, more information at (for HKU members only): https://intraweb.hku.hk/reserved_1/tlearn/cics/syllabus/GEOG2056.pdf. The C-I course badge will be visible on the student’s Academic Attainment Profile (AAP).





Major/Minor combinations

21. What is the difference between Academic Mentorship Scheme for Geography and Faculty Academic Adviser?


Academic Mentorship Scheme for Geography is a privileged scheme that provides one-to-one coaching to selected students who have excellent academic results in our major programme(s). Interested students may also proactively submit applications to the Department for consideration.

Details and the application form can be found at https://www.geog.hku.hk/gmms.





Introductory Courses requirements

16. What are the options to fulfil the capstone experience requirements?


Under ‘normal’ (non-pandemic) circumstances, geography and urban governance majors may fulfill our programs’ capstone requirement by enrolling in an overseas field trip course.

In the event that the overseas field trip needs to be cancelled or postponed due to COVID-19 related restrictions in 2021-2022, students may use one of the following three courses to fulfill this capstone requirement: GEOG4002 Directed Project in Geography (6 credits) / GEOG4003 Honours Dissertation (12credits) / GEOG4004 Directed Project in Urban Governance (6 credits). Please be advised, failure to successfully complete one of these courses may alter your expected graduation date.




17. I want to know more about GEOG4001 Overseas Field Trip.


GEOG4001 course is a compulsory capstone experience course for our Geography/ Urban Governance majors. It provides a valuable experience in examining real world situations from the natural environment, conservation, social and economic development, transportation and urban planning in a designated part of a foreign country.

Candidates are required to complete one ‘two weeks’ overseas residential field camp in the summer after Year 3 of study, and to produce a written field trip report (plus a poster/oral presentation where applicable) in the first semester of Year 4 study for assessment. Therefore, it also helps students develop useful transferable skills.

We offer a range of destination choices from China, South Korea, to Australia, the UK and Italy. Students can apply for government funding support to cover some field trip expenses on a reimbursement basis.




18. I am a BEd&BSocSc student with a 5-year programme. When should I take the Capstone Experience course?


We understand that each student would have their study plan and various workload in your study programme. Therefore, we highly recommend you to take account of the time commitment of the Capstone Experience course too, in order to balance your study.

GEOG4001 course would take place in summer and the first semester of the following academic year, while GEOG4002, GEOG4003 and GEOG4004 would require a full-year commitment. We would usually notify the course information to our major students from time to time, but still we encourage our major students to keep track on your own academic progress. Please be advised, failure to successfully complete one of these courses may alter your expected graduation date.





Advanced Courses requirements

10. Is it a must to study more than one method courses for the geography major?


Geography major students must take at least ONE core method course, but we encourage you to take more than one to strengthen your research skills and spatial techniques.




11. How many streams/ sub-disciplines are there in the Geography major programme?


We have a diverse discipline offering knowledge to understand different contemporary issues including:

  • economic & social development,
  • environmental quality,
  • geography of public health,
  • global warming,
  • environmental hazards,
  • transport & urban issues,
  • tourism & leisure

Many of the courses we offer are highly relevant to the betterment of the local community and to your future career development.




12. Can I take all method courses to fulfill the advanced courses requirements?


Yes, you are welcome to take all method courses.




13. I am a geology students. Should I take GIS courses to enhance my first major and to prepare for future job hunting?


As we always said, the future belongs to those who prepare for it today. A series of courses designed this year to help you specialize your skills, including:

  • GEOG2090 Introduction of Geographic Information Systems
  • GEOG2147 Building Smart Cities with GIS
  • GEOG2157 Open source GIS
  • GEOG3202 GIS in Environmental Studies
  • GEOG2120 Introductory Spatial Analysis
  • GEOG2141 Remote Sensing Applications

Learning new skills would improve your marketability to employers in the job market. At the same, a career isn’t simply a job. It also about doing what you love. Therefore, we encourage students to take advantage of the add/drop period – to explore as many intriguing courses as you can, so as to understand and identify if the courses would able to cater your education needs as well as your interests to make your own decision for your study.




14. Why some method courses e.g. GEOG2137 & GEOG2145 are not offered this year?


The courses listed on the regulations and syllabus are for reference only. For the list of courses we offered in 2021-22, please refer to https://www.geog.hku.hk/list-of-courses.

This year, we offer numerous GIS method courses to meet the demand of spatial analytic trends and the goal of smart city in Hong Kong 2030+, including:

  • GEOG2090 Introduction of Geographic Information Systems
  • GEOG2147 Building Smart Cities with GIS
  • GEOG2157 Open source GIS
  • GEOG3202 GIS in Environmental Studies

Besides GIS skills, statistical and remote sensing knowledge are also important to support geographical research, for example:

  • GEOG2120 Introductory Spatial Analysis
  • GEOG2141 Remote Sensing Applications




15. Are there any geography courses with CI-badge?


Yes, GEOG2056 Tourism in the Shrinking World (6 credits) is a certified Communication-intensive (CI) Course which meets all of the requirements endorsed by HKU’s Senate.

If you wish to develop communication-related knowledge, skills and attributes, more information at (for HKU members only): https://intraweb.hku.hk/reserved_1/tlearn/cics/syllabus/GEOG2056.pdf. The C-I course badge will be visible on the student’s Academic Attainment Profile (AAP).





Capstone Experience requirements

22. Do I need a single major or double major in geography to be qualified for the application of Taught postgraduate programme(s) / Research postgraduate programme(s) in the future?


The top universities in the world would usually list the minimum qualifications required to satisfy the General Entrance Requirements for postgraduate studies, but they mainly look at your Graduation GPA scores and the Class of Honours. Taught postgraduate programme(s) would usually accept students with Second Class Honours and above, while research postgraduate programme(s) would prefer students with First Class Honours – mainly due to the fierce competition for places.

Nowadays, students who wish to pursue a research path would complete an MPhil programme first before applying for a PhD programme. Research postgraduate programmes aim at students who had already possessed a deeper understanding and more specialized hands-on skills in certain area, and are ready to research independently in a particular field. Students with a single major might therefore be more favorable to some professioriate staff who would request for specific subject backgrounds.





Social innovation and global citizenship (SI & GC) requirements

19. What are the SI & GC requirements for non-Social Science students?


For non-Social Science students, you might take any Level 200 or above advanced social sciences/ non social sciences courses to fulfill the 24 credits SI & GC requirements. You are welcome to take advanced geography courses to fulfill the SI & GC requirements too.




20. Can GEOG4001 Overseas Field Trip be used to fulfill the SI & GC requirements?


No, GEOG4001 course can only be used to fulfill the Capstone Experience requirements.





Postgraduate options

22. Do I need a single major or double major in geography to be qualified for the application of Taught postgraduate programme(s) / Research postgraduate programme(s) in the future?


The top universities in the world would usually list the minimum qualifications required to satisfy the General Entrance Requirements for postgraduate studies, but they mainly look at your Graduation GPA scores and the Class of Honours. Taught postgraduate programme(s) would usually accept students with Second Class Honours and above, while research postgraduate programme(s) would prefer students with First Class Honours – mainly due to the fierce competition for places.

Nowadays, students who wish to pursue a research path would complete an MPhil programme first before applying for a PhD programme. Research postgraduate programmes aim at students who had already possessed a deeper understanding and more specialized hands-on skills in certain area, and are ready to research independently in a particular field. Students with a single major might therefore be more favorable to some professioriate staff who would request for specific subject backgrounds.





Life at HKU Geography

21. What is the difference between Academic Mentorship Scheme for Geography and Faculty Academic Adviser?


Academic Mentorship Scheme for Geography is a privileged scheme that provides one-to-one coaching to selected students who have excellent academic results in our major programme(s). Interested students may also proactively submit applications to the Department for consideration.

Details and the application form can be found at https://www.geog.hku.hk/gmms.