Electronic bribery as students battle to swap course places

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 06 February, 1999, 12:00am
UPDATED : Saturday, 06 February, 1999, 12:00am

Students desperate to swap courses are offering cash on the electronic notice board at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology.

The university began its registration for courses for the new semester yesterday.

Some students were disappointed to find the courses they wanted to take were full.

The university's electronic notice board, which students log into by computer, has become a black market for class places.

A student from the department of marketing wrote: 'I really urgently want MGTO 231, any session time is OK! 'I can give you another course in exchange. I can give you three courses in exchange for one MGTO 231 quota.

'Or I can give you a considerable $$$$$$$$ reward to exchange your MGTO231! The reward $$$$ is negotiable!' A student from the department of accounting, needed to swap her film art course.

'I have signed up for this course because I liked it but now I can't take it because it clashes with my other courses,' she said.

A university spokesman said they were aware of the adverts. He said swaps, especially involving money, were not allowed.

'Some students must be too keen to take specific courses. In fact, they need not panic because those courses will open again next term.

'So far we have no evidence to show that students have paid.' He said a new Web-based registration system would be introduced next academic year so that students could check by computer which courses were over-subscribed. They could then put their names on a waiting list.