A Canadian university is to launch its first diplomas in business for Hong Kong executives next month. York University, Canada's third largest, in Toronto, has collaborated with the Global Knowledge Network in offering three professional diplomas in management, human resources and marketing, which carry eligibility to join the appropriate Canadian professional institution. Professor Harold Bassford, a college dean at the university, said: 'Our co-operative venture with Global is our first offering of on-site courses outside Canada. 'This is very appropriate, given the numbers of students from Hong Kong who have been attending York University and the close ties between Toronto and Hong Kong.' Professor Bassford, an expert on distance learning and adult education, said hundreds of Hong Kong executives in Canada had also enrolled in distance-learning courses at the institute. Accountancy, personnel management and marketing were growth areas. The professor added: 'The courses are designed for in-service managers who are unable to participate in a full-time course of study or who have missed the opportunity to further their education to professional level.' Business director (North Asia) of Global, Nelson Yeung Sun-man, said 60 per cent of the courses would be taught by seminars and tutorials while the rest of the work would be self-study. The courses will take between eight months and two years. Lecturers will visit from the university and other tutorials will be with York graduates who have taught at the university and now work in the territory. The diplomas, covering one-third of a business degree course, will also count as credit towards further study at York University.