CUHK eases the way for doctors

Top News | Jane Cheung 17 May 2019

The admission requirement for the Chinese University of Hong Kong's medical school has been streamlined to 40 points in seven best subjects in the Diploma of Secondary Education, faculty dean Francis Chan Ka-leung said yesterday.

DSE candidates with the required results who pass an interview will be accepted as long as they put the school as their first choice on the Joint University Programs Admissions System.

For 2019-20, intakes for the two medical schools at CUHK and the University of Hong Kong have been raised from 235 to 265 each to meet demand.

Chan said yesterday the school's bachelor of medicine and surgery programs will take in students who scored 40 points in seven subjects.

A student may have his core subject excluded under the "36 points in six subjects" requirement if he has full scores for electives such as physics, chemistry and biology.

"In that way, he may still be admitted even though he may have only a four for his language subjects," Chan said.

The announcement came after HKU said it would take students who got 36 points in six subjects.

Chan said the requirement for seven subjects will allow the school to take in students with good results in more subjects, including Chinese and English.

Asked if the school had a definite ratio for JUPAS and non-JUPAS students, he said he would not set a fixed target number.

"Sometimes it's embarrassing if we fail to achieve our target," he said.

This comes amid fierce competition between the medical schools after CUHK managed to grab 60 percent of medical students admitted through JUPAS last year while more than half of HKU students were of non-JUPAS means.

Vincent Mok Chung-tong, CUHK's assistant dean of admissions, said the school is having five rounds of interviews, two for non-JUPAS and three for JUPAS students.

The school has already conducted two rounds of interviews with 500 to 600 students and will complete the exercise and notify students of the results before the release of DSE results on July 10.

Chan said the school will put out a personalized curriculum for students admitted in September and provide platforms for courses and learning experience outside medical training in their six-year bachelor course.

"Every student will be given a wish list in their first year. They can write down the extracurricular courses or activities that they want to do every year, including exchange programs and overseas internships," he said. "The school will assist them in making arrangements."

Chan said students from grassroots families need not worry about overseas travel costs, as the school offers travel sponsorship.

He said students can also choose to take minors outside of their major in medicine and surgery.

"Many of our students have shown interests in other subjects and languages," Chan said. "We encourage them to pursue studies outside medicine too."

Wong Tsz-him, a CUHK third-year medical student, said he had used his elective courses and completed three minor programs on statistics, risk management and German.

"I utilize my spare time and the summer semesters to take these courses, as I want to learn more," he said.

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