Course Organisation

Year and term

Students will register for the course in Y2/3/4, T1, though they should pre-register in the preceding term (Y1/2/3, T2) and carry out much of the work in the intervening summer.

Students enrolled in programmes that require more than four years (e.g. BEd, MBChB, BSc in Chinese Medicine) should normally follow the same schedule and register for the course not later than the 4th year of study. Students who for valid reasons such as exchange or internship need flexibility of arrangement should obtain prior approval from the Chair of the GE Committee of the College.

Units and hours

The course will carry 3 units. There will be

  • not more than 2 lectures (up to 3 hours each) in Y1/2/3, T2
  • at least two individualized consultation sessions for each team during the summer
  • 6 to 8 weeks of tutorials (up to 3 hours each) in Y2/3/4, T1

Class size

The lectures will be delivered to ~75 students in one class. The class will be divided into sections consisting of ~4 project teams of ~4 students each, possibly mixed with teams from GECW4022.

Formation of teams

Each team should normally consist of four members, who must contain at least one member from each of the following groups of faculties:

  • Arts, BA, Education, Law, Social Science
  • Engineering, Medicine, Science

Where possible, upper-year incoming exchange students expected to be in the College in T1 should be encouraged to join these teams, provided they can arrive in the summer, or if they can participate via internet in a project that is of interest to them.

Project proposal

Each team must submit the project title and then the project proposal for approval before the end of Y1/2/3, T2.

The following factors will be considered in vetting the projects for approval.

  • The project should not require so much specialized subject knowledge that it would not be accessible to fruitful discussion in tutorials. Ideally, the project should make good use of the interdisciplinary expertise in the team, and a good report is one that is able to view an issue from multiple perspectives.
  • The project should have an element of novelty (at least a novel perspective even if the issue itself is familiar).
  • The subject chosen should encourage a rational and open-minded discussion, and the eventual report should demonstrate a fruitful process of academic enquiry that has fairly considered alternate points of view.
  • Projects involving field research outside Hong Kong will require special approval.
  • If data are to be collected from identifiable individuals or organisations, the usual ethics approval for social science research will apply.

Tutorial organisation

In each tutorial session, one team will make a presentation on its project. The time allotted is specified separately and may vary slightly from year to year, depending on the number of teams etc.

Suitable AV material (presentation slides or video) should be used to support the presentation, but the development of technically fancy material for its own sake is not necessary, and to the extent that it will not earn extra credit, not encouraged.

Written report

A group report is required, of approximately 5,000 to 7,500 words in English or 6,000 words to 10,000 words in Chinese. A reasonable amount of appendices may be attached, but anything beyond 10 pages should be included only in an electronic format.

The report should be a piece of academic writing (not merely thoughts, opinions and reflections) with its usual expectations as to objectivity, rigour, evidence, even format, and of course, originality and academic honesty. The report should present the findings, including data and evidence to support the findings, as well as evidence that alternate points of view have been fairly considered.

The goals of the report are (a) to demonstrate and record the research process; (b) to present the findings in a cogent manner, (c) to present data and evidence to support the findings, (d) to provide an occasion for training in writing, in a team, an extensive research paper at a high level.

The report must declare originality in the usual way, and be submitted via VeriGuide.

A unified format and style will be prescribed, so that the papers can be collated into a collection in the manner of the Proceedings of a conference, and placed in the College GE Archive. Students must release copyright to the College for this purpose.


The vision of CW Chu College includes internationality, and the College expects to enrol more than the average percentage of students from outside Hong Kong. This capstone College course should have the function of integrating students from different backgrounds into working teams, mimicking the multinational environment that might be encountered in the future workplace or in postgraduate studies. With this in mind, the default language for the presentation and the report should be English. However, in cases where the project topic is principally of local relevance, and/or where the data and primary source material are available mainly in Chinese, the team may apply, [1] at the time of project proposal, to make the presentation and write the report in Chinese. Approval will only be given if the language chosen (including the dialect in the case of Chinese) is accessible to all members of the team.  It is expected that by the final year, even international students will have enough access to Chinese at least to take part in the tutorial discussion, even where the presentation is in Chinese.

[1] Not merely that the issue is a local one, but that no international reader is likely to have any interest.

Staffing requirement

  • 1 to 2 teachers to give a total of 2 x 3 hours of lectures on methodology
  • Each section will be led by one teacher, who will be responsible for the 4 to 6 teams within the section, consider and approve their project proposals, and supervise their research. It is expected that each team will meet the supervisor at least once and ideally twice during the summer, so the contact hours may be about 10 in total.

College Office
G/F, CW Chu College
The Chinese University of Hong Kong
Shatin, New Territories, Hong Kong SAR

Tel:(852) 3943 1801

Fax:(852) 3943 1802