Education System in Hong Kong


 EducationSchool/LevelGrade FromGrade ToAge FromAge ToYearsNotes
PrimaryPrimary  6126Education in Hong Kong is modeled after the UK education system. Education is free and compulsory in primary and junior secondary school. Independent schools (including the English Schools Foundation (ESF) and international schools) follow the U.S., U.K, I.B. or other overseas curriculum.
MiddleJunior Secondary  12153Junior Secondary School (Secondary Forms 1 to 3)
SecondarySecondary     2Forms 4 & 5: Hong Kong Certificate of Education Examination (HKCEE).
SecondaryAdvanced Level     2Hong Kong Advanced Level Examinations. (Forms S6, S7)
TertiaryUndergraduate Education    3In total, there are 12 accredited higher education institutions in Hong Kong. In September 1999, the Education Commission began a review of the entire Hong Kong education system and issued a proposal for reforms of the academic structure, curricula, and assessment mechanisms at all levels of education. The reform entails the replacement of the current HKCEE and HKALE by one examination to be taken at the end of the senior secondary stage, tentatively named the Hong Kong Diploma of Secondary Education (HKDSE). The length of the undergraduate degree will also be extended from 3 to 4 years, thus more in line with the U.S. tertiary educational system.
TertiaryMaster    1 
TertiaryDoctorate    2PhD

Primary Education

The Hong Kong education system is based on the British model, although these days the medium of education is Chinese. The first 9 years are compulsory although most students complete all 12. Even primary school is highly competitive. During the 6 years of this a series of examinations are taken. Subjects include chinese, english, mathematics, music and arts, science, social studies,  and physical education.

Secondary Education

Schooling continues at secondary school of which the first 3 years are compulsory within a standardized academic program. In years 4 to 6 though, students may select 2 to 3 elective subjects from a choice of 20, in addition to their prescribed chinese, english, liberal studies and mathematics programs. Other options include a b-tec course.

Vocational Education

The Chinese government is committed to life-long adult education post-school. This includes professional training, as well as a huge range of non-degree programs provided by universities and other institutions. Languages including English, mandarin and Japanese are especially popular.

Tertiary Education

Hong Kong EducationTertiary education is a focus of many Hong Kong citizens in a city-state that boasts 8 universities. Of these the oldest is the University of Hong Kong that is regarded as one of the most prestigious in all of Asia, and is illustrated here.


It was established in 1910 on the foundations of the Hong Kong College of Medicine. Over and above a school of professional and continuing education, today it boasts faculties of architecture, arts, business & economics, dentistry, education, engineering, law, medicine, science, and social studies.


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