University plans to aid pupils weak in English

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 19 April, 2011, 12:00am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 19 April, 2011, 12:00am


Form Five pupils whose English is below par will soon get a taste of university life to boost their skills and confidence. They will be participants in a programme being launched by Polytechnic University to offer intensive courses to pupils in areas where they are weak.

The pupils will be among the first to enter university under the new 3+3+4 curriculum.

About 100 pupils from 21 secondary schools will attend 36 hours of training under the scheme from this month to August. They will also have access to the university's language centre where they can try e-learning.

Participants who achieve 80 per cent attendance will have to pay only HK$250 for the HK$3,000 course.

As well as preparing the pupils for the four-year university curriculum, the programme would help the university learn about the needs of this new group, the vice-president of the university's academic development department, Wan Chi-keung, said.

The university would work with secondary schools to get feedback from teachers and pupils to help improve its English degree programme for the new curriculum, Wan said.

School principal Chung Lui-pong said the pupils would have no experience of open examinations like the Hong Kong Certificate of Education before sitting the new university admission test, the Hong Kong Diploma of Secondary Education.

'The scheme can build up their confidence in English language assessments,' said Chung, head of Lock Tao Secondary School, one of the schools joining the programme.

The university will also launch a two-week 'gifted programme' in summer for 120 Form Four students with higher standards of English.

The training includes 40 hours of lectures conducted by university professors and assisted by international students, as well as presentation and competition campaigns on promoting Hong Kong in English.

The programme follows the success of a pilot scheme last year.