Hong Kong Community College (PolyU) (HONG KONG)
About this paper:
Appears in: EDULEARN14 Proceedings
Publication year: 2014
Pages: 3421-3429
ISBN: 978-84-617-0557-3
ISSN: 2340-1117
Conference name: 6th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 7-9 July, 2014
Location: Barcelona, Spain
The advancement of education is an important topic in worldwide (Michael H. Lee, 2005). Since 90th century, the trend of world-wide education has changed from elite education to mass education. Hong Kong is not an exception as it is a metropolitan city and being a financial, trading, transportation and tourist centre. The nurture of world class professionals in Hong Kong depends on the existence of an internationalized tertiary education. In addition, the family size of Hong Kong people also becomes smaller with around 1 child (Hong Kong Fact Sheet, 2011) and with the traditional Chinese culture, Hong Kong parents’ concerns child education very much.

In Hong Kong, secondary schools only provide education up to matriculation (Form 1 to Form 7) with three streams: Arts, Science and Business before year 2012. Students will then attend the public advanced level examination (Education Bureau, 2011). The structure of higher education is similar to United Kingdom before 2012. University Grants Committee (UGC) funded eight degree-awarding institutions. Since 1989, Hong Kong government has never increased the university quota. Thus, only less than 20% of the 17–20 age group in post-secondary education was available to study government funded degree program. The universities articulation rate in United Kingdom, America and Australia is from 50% to 80%. Thus, the availability of higher education in Hong Kong is far below than the developed countries (PTU newsletter, 2008-04-07). This limitation will affect the prosperous development of Hong Kong and causes dissatisfactions among Hong Kong citizens.

In the 2000-2001 Hong Kong Policy Address, the Chief executive proposed to have 60% of students to have access to post-secondary education. With limited resources, Hong Kong government adopts the American approach by introducing Associate Degree program in 2000 (Education commission, April 2008). In this recently reformed education system, Associate Degree programs are provided by community colleges or 2 years’ junior colleges or subsidiaries from the universities. Though Associate Degree is in the lowest rank in the degree, it does not equivalent as a degree. It is a partial degree. It equals to one half of a 4 years’ American Degree or one third of a 3 years’ UK Degree. Associate Degree is an independent valuable certificate as it is higher than a secondary certificate. It belongs to a post-secondary academic qualification (Eddy,W.C. Lee and Enoch, C. M. Young, 2003).

The Second Phase of Review Report on Tertiary Education Sector shows that the number of Community Colleges and programs in Hong Kong increase from 4 to 20 and 2468 to 24000 respectively from year 2000 to 2006. The expansion of Community Colleges’ market leads to competition and the colleges need to implement various marketing strategies for their survival in the private tertiary education sector.

This paper will present the common characteristics of students admitting in the Community Colleges in Hong Kong and their rationales to study in this ‘partial degree’ in the Community Colleges. It provides information about the need of students to educators and management expertise in the Community Colleges in Hong Kong. Features and limitation on the role of community college in Hong Kong will be discussed. Thus, related integrated marketing strategies or improvement can be proposed or formulated.
Community College, Associate Degree, Higher Education.