hong kong city lights

Chinese University of Hong Kong

Stroll along Tsim Sha Tsui Promenade, and take in the free nightly Symphony of Lights along the harbor, the world’s largest permanent light & sound show.

Ranked #46 in the world, the Chinese University of Hong Kong is a city unto itself, as one of the foremost research universities, it also has one of the most scenic and sustainably-designed campuses in the world, and is one of the top 3 institutions of Hong Kong (QS 2020). 

Well-connected via transit to the city of Hong Kong, their beautiful green campus overlooks the Tolo Harbour and is the largest in Hong Kong. Here you can immerse yourself in Hong Kong culture with a visit to myriad markets and the Sik Sik Yeun Wong Tai Sin Temple. With nearly 20,000 students and 8 Faculties, CUHK is one of the most organized, and international student-friendly campuses in Asia.

Key information


English, Cantonese


Fall, Winter, Academic year

Program type


Application information

Application status




Fall 2024 & Winter 2025

Priority Deadline: January 10th 2024

University-specific additional requirements

Applicants do not need a reference, with the exception of Law students - see the Eligibility section below.

2025-2026 applications

Open November 1, 2024

Student experience

"My experience was interesting, I ate amazing food, met interesting people. I went to the highest restaurant in the world and swimming in the ocean on the same day. Wild."

Through My Lens

Alia Aluma-Baigent

Program details

Areas of Study: Anthropology, Architecture, Art History, Asian Studies, Biochemistry, Biology, Biomedical Science, Business, Chemistry, Chinese Studies, Communication, Computer Science, Cultural Studies, Earth Science, Economics, Engineering (Biomedical, Computer, Energy, Mechanical), English, Environmental Science, European Studies, Finance, Fine Arts, Food Science, Gender Studies, Geography, Global Studies, History, International Relations, Journalism, Law, Life Science, Linguistics, Marine Biology, Math, Music, Natural Science, Neuroscience, Nursing, Philosophy, Physics, Political Science (Government & Public Admin), Psychology, Public Health, Religious Studies, Sociology, Sports Science & Physical Education, Statistics, Tourism, and Urban Studies.

Languages: Arabic, Cantonese, French, German, Italian, Korean, Mandarin, Russian, Spanish, Thai. Undergrad exchange students can also take up to 6 units (2 courses) per semester from the Chinese Language Centre (CLC) in Cantonese and Mandarin. 

Closed Programs: Information on restricted courses (not available to exchange students) is available online (scroll down to "Course Information"). Please note only the restrictions specific to "Exchange" students - restrictions specific to "Study Abroad" students do not apply. While almost all courses at CUHK are taught in English, some are taught in Cantonese (Chinese Literature etc). Refer to the Teaching Timetable for full course listings. Course availability is subject to quotas so flexibility is recommended, especially in Law and Business.

Course requirements: 
At CUHK, courses are equivalent in credit to UCalgary courses. Exchange students are typically expected to take 4-5 courses per term. A minimum of 9 units (3 courses) to a maximum of 18 units (6 courses) per semester is permitted. Law students must determine if they wish to take all undergrad or all graduate level courses at the time of application. 

The regular academic year is divided into two terms:

  • 1st Term runs from early September (sometimes late Aug) to late December.
  • 2nd Term runs from early January to mid-May.

There is also a summer program available at CUHK.

  1. Costs

    Exchange students pay their tuition and academic fees to the UofC. Other expenses are paid directly to the service provider. There is a misconception that studying in Hong Kong is expensive but in fact living on-campus at CUHK is extremely affordable, as student accommodation is subsidized, and CUHK has over 35 canteens that provide affordable meals from 20-60 HKD each, including halal, vegetarian, and a mix of asian and western dishes. 

    The following table shows a 2019 estimate of living costs at CUHK for one semester:

    Budget per semester: LOW: 25,030 HKDHIGH: 40330 HKD

    *for on-campus accommodation, $1000 HKD is typically refunded following checkout. Please budget more than stated for off-campus accommodation. Also, remember to include things like visas, flights, insurance, vaccinations, etc. in your budget planning. See more info on the budget breakdown here

    Hong Kong cost comparison vs. Calgary: Click Here (note: student housing is much cheaper than standard rent in HK)

  2. Funding

    Did you know that you can take your UCalgary funding with you on exchange? 
    Since you remain a degree seeking student at UCalgary while on exchange you remain eligible for any awards and scholarships you are eligible to receive from the university as well as student loans.

    Our office administers several awards, including the Global Access Fund (based on a funding-first model where students apply prior to committing to a global learning program) and the Global Learning Award (students apply after being accepted to a global learnng program). Students may only receive these awards once. Please see the funding page, linked below, for more information.

    China International Study Travel Award: $5000 offered annually to continuing undergraduate students enrolled at the University of Calgary. See funding page for more details. 

    HKCBA Award 3 prizes awarded annually. Apply directly to HKCBA ($1500/$1000/$500)See funding page for more details. Deadline: January 31, 2024

Undergraduate exchange students are guaranteed placement in on-campus housing located on main campus and are assigned to double or triple-occupancy rooms. International students are interspersed with local students which will ease the transition to living in Hong Kong and promote Chinese culture immersion. On-campus housing is assigned automatically; and application is not required. On-campus housing is strongly recommended due to costs and availability of off-campus housing. 

Law Students: please note, if you are studying postgraduate Law courses, your campus will be located in Central Hong Kong Island at the CUHK Graduate Law Centre, not on main campus. There are no residences located near this campus, so off-campus housing will need to be arranged. CUHK runs an off-campus housing page for more information

This exchange is open to regular, full-time students in any faculty at UCalgary, who have completed at least 1 full year (10 courses) at the post-secondary level, with a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0 (B).

For applicants from the UCalgary Faculty of Law, an academic reference letter is required. Please click here to view the reference letter guidelines & submission instructions. It must be submitted at the time of your application to UCalgary.

What supports or services are available at CUHK?

The Support Services for Students with Disabilities office is a good resource for SAS students. Due to the terraced construction and hill-side location of CUHK, this location may not be suitable for students that require a wheelchair - please speak with an advisor for more information.

The Student Counselling and Development Service under OSA assists students with individual or group counselling on emotion management, self-understanding, family relations, academic development, and interpersonal relations. Student privacy is strictly observed.  

What's special about Hong Kong and CUHK?

With the largest campus in Hong Kong, CUHK is also the only university in Hong Kong with a college system. Each of CUHK's 20,000+ students is assigned to one of the 9 colleges (similar to Harry Potter houses!), that offer accommodation, informal learning, and academic/cultural immersion. You can download the "CUHK Mobile" app for info on campus. 

All university campuses in Hong Kong prohibit smoking on campuses in accordance with Hong Kong law. 

CUHK has a variety of sports facilities (fields, gyms, a swimming pool, tennis & squash courts, games rooms, fitness rooms, and a water sports centre).  

Hong Kong is one of the world's most recognizable global metropolitan areas and provides a contrast between East and Western culture that is reflected in its rich culinary scene. The city holds records for having the most skyscrapers in the world, the world's longest life expectancy (at 86.7 years on average), the tallest outdoor bronze Buddha, the world's only exclusively double-decker tram system, and the largest permanent light & sound show - "A Symphony of Lights", to name a few. Watch video! 

Have questions?

Global Learning 101

Please watch this short YouTube playlist before reaching out or booking an appointment. In these videos, you will learn much of the basics about Global Learning, which may answer your initial questions.

Watch Global Learning 101

Academic Advising

Before applying to study abroad, you should ask your academic advisor how this program might align with your degree (e.g. best time to go, what courses you need).

After you are accepted, you should ask your academic advisor more specific questions about courses/transfer credits. It’s also recommended to follow up with your advisor again once you return to Calgary.

Find your academic advisor

Global Learning Advising

If you have questions, please reach out to our office! We offer drop-in advising for general inquiries, and if you have questions about this specific program or any others, you can book an appointment with the responsible advisor.

Please use the link below to find the most up-to-date information about our current advising options.

View the Global Learning Advising page

The exchange advisor for this program is: Flavien Niederst

How to Apply

Download the application guide

This PDF contains information on how to complete your application and what to do after you have applied.

Application guide

Identify three programs of interest

We recommend applying for your top three programs for the priority application deadline, as placement may be competitive. We will assess your applications in ranked order.

Check requirements and deadlines

These may vary by program, so check the individual program pages and make sure that you are aware of any different application deadlines or eligibility requirements.

Start your application

Once you have gathered everything you need, you can begin your application!

Please note: Applications will not be considered complete until all required documents are submitted in full.


International travel presents challenges that may not be found when attending classes on campus. There may be a lack of resources, emergency services, hospitals, accessibility issues and/or demands on the physical and the mental self, all of which can challenge individuals when away from their usual support systems and structures. Adequate preparation is essential.

For this reason, it is imperative that you evaluate all aspects of your own physical, psychological, emotional and spiritual condition against the rigors of the particular global learning program you are selecting. If you are unsure of whether or not this program is a good fit for you and/or if you have any circumstances that could impede your enjoyment of the program, please contact us. Our Global Learning Advisors will be happy to assist in finding the best options for you and arrange any supports or accommodations necessary to ensure your success.

If you have or are seeking a certificate from Student Accessibility Services, you should provide this early to your Global Learning Advisor to ensure that the option that you are seeking can support your needs.

Please note: All participants must adhere to COVID-19 and other vaccination-related requirements for the destinations visited on this program. Failure to do so may have consequences such as being denied access to accommodation/housing, program activities, or to the host country itself.