Home > UGC Publications > Press Releases > 2004 > UGC-funded Institutions Responded Positively to Community Needs (10.5.2004)

UGC-funded Institutions Responded Positively to Community Needs

The University Grants Committee (UGC) met in April to examine the Academic Development Proposals (ADPs) submitted by the eight UGC-funded institutions for the 2005-2008 triennium. The institutions have moved with the times and responded positively to community needs.

"The UGC put in place a rigorous process to examine the ADPs. A Core Group comprising both overseas and local members was set up under the UGC to examine carefully all the ADPs. The Convenor of the Group met with each institution in mid March for an information sharing session. Then at the UGC meeting last week, individual sessions of half a day each were arranged for each institution to participate in in-depth face-to-face discussions with the Core Group. There were a lot of useful exchanges on their plans for academic offerings," Dr Alice Lam, Chairman of UGC, said.

Briefly commenting on the ADPs, Dr Lam said that apart from responding positively to the Administration's advice on specific manpower requirements including nurses, teachers, lawyers etc., the institutions had also put forward proposals on growth/priority areas including logistics, tourism, visual arts and creative media. Dr Lam and her Committee were also glad to see that the institutions are playing a very active role in supporting Hong Kong's transition to a knowledge-based economy.

On legal education, the Committee believes there is merit in establishing a third law school and therefore recommends acceptance of The Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK)'s proposal to do this. The Committee looks forward to seeing a healthy level of competition in legal education in the wider interest of Hong Kong. The Committee was also guided by outside expert advice and took account of the role and ability of CUHK to mount such a programme.

"Overall speaking, the institutions are well focused on their respective roles and have concentrated their proposed academic offerings in their respective areas of strength. They have sound plans to achieve international competitiveness in teaching and research. They have also demonstrated genuine interest in developing deeper collaboration with institutions, both locally and overseas."

A spokesman for UGC also highlighted the enthusiastic feedback from institutions for the provision of articulation opportunities for sub-degree (SD) graduates, where the Administration had provided additional places. Allocation of senior year undergraduate places for direct admission of SD graduates was made on a competitive basis, having regard to factors including the roles of institutions; institutions' experience in admitting SD graduates; as well as whether the programmes proposed meet what the Government sees as growth/priority areas, align well with institutions' areas of strengths and ensure a diversity of choice for SD graduates.

According to the UGC's work plan, its final views on the ADPs, together with the funding recommendations for the 2005-2008 triennium, will all be subject to the Government's endorsement later in the year.

The Committee's next major exercise will be to assess the institutions' performance against their roles in August. The primary emphasis of the Performance and Role-Related Funding Scheme is to recognise and encourage performance against role. Every opportunity will be taken to facilitate the institutions to develop themselves. According to the UGC spokesman, the recent submissions that the UGC received from the institutions on this exercise showed that they have a good understanding of the scheme and are positive to the ideas.

Monday, May 10, 2004