HKU launches six new bachelor’s degrees including two focused on fintech and AI

The new interdisciplinary undergraduate programmes will cover both arts and science subjects

Joanne Ma |

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Students can apply for six new interdisciplinary undergraduate courses starting from the 2019/20 academic year.

Six Bachelor of Arts and Sciences (BASc) degree programmes were launched on Monday at the University of Hong Kong (HKU). Students can apply for these undergraduate courses from the 2019/20 academic year. These are “interdisciplinary” courses – they cover more than one subject, for example arts and sciences.

HKU offers five new BASc programmes for first-year candidates: Bachelor of Arts and Sciences; BASc in Applied Artificial Intelligence (Applied AI); Innovative Design (Design+); Financial Technology (fintech); and Global Health & Development. HKU has also introduced BASc in Social Data Science to graduates of full-time associate degrees or higher diploma programmes in relevant fields.

“These programmes will enable our students to see the connections across disciplines. Our ambition is to make them future social leaders,” said Professor Ian Holliday, Vice-President and Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Teaching and Learning) at HKU. Holliday added that he wanted HKU graduates to take on new opportunities, work in new industries, create new job opportunities for others, and help to make a difference to Hong Kong and the surrounding areas.

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These degrees aim to give students better social and cultural skills so they can apply their knowledge of arts and sciences to current issues in society.

BASc (Applied AI) covers the basics of artificial intelligence (AI), as well as teaching students problem-solving and analytical skills. AI techniques in industrial applications and technological innovations will also be taught.

In BASc (Design+), students will be taught how to work together. Students will learn, through experimenting, activities, and evaluations, how to come up with ideas. These skills are to be used in many fields, and not just in the design of specific items like it is taught in conventional design schools.

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It is hoped that more students will become fintech professionals or will go on to work within the fintech industry if they take the BASc (fintech).

The university says that students will take on a more global approach to learning when they take the BASc (Global Health & Development). BASc (Social Data Science) teaches students ways to find, make use of, and manage data.

Edited by M. J. Premaratne