Honors Study Track FAQs

  1. What is the Honors Track?
  2. What are the benefits?
  3. What are Honors courses and what are the study patterns?
  4. What are the entrance requirements?
  5. What are the conditions to remain in the Honors Track?
  6. Can I join the Honors Track half-way?
  7. How do I register for the Honors courses?
  8. What are COMP 2971, COMP 3971, and COMP 4971 directed studies courses?
  9. How can I use the extra credit from COMP 3711H?
  10. What is the difference between Final Year Project (FYP) and Final Year Thesis (FYT)? How do I sign up for FYT?
  11. What do I need to do if I wish to obtain both the BEng and MPhil degrees in four years?

  1. What is the Honors Track?

    The Honors Track is an exciting internal study track for academically capable students, starting from Fall 2004. In the past, top students felt that our regular programs are not challenging enough. The Honors Track was created in response to their feedback. The main objective is to provide a small number of motivated high-caliber students with a privileged learning environment and the (optional) opportunity to obtain a Bachelor degree and a Masters degree in 4 years.

    The CS Honors Track is purely an internal program. There is a special recommended study pattern for CS honors track students, but there is no special curriculum that CS Honors track students must fulfil. As far as graduation checking is concerned, all students, whether or not in the honors track, should fulfil the COMP/CSIE curriculum published in the Academic Calendar or the UG Curriculum Handbook for the respective year of intake. The honors courses (those with course codes ending with the letter H) are automatically used to substitute the corresponding core/required course requirements.

  2. What are the benefits?

    The main benefits of being in the Honors Track include

    • enrolment into enriched-content Honors courses which will be shown on your transcript,
    • opportunity to study alongside a small number of top students,
    • closer interaction with professors due to small class teaching,
    • permission to take graduate courses,
    • possibility to complete two degrees, BEng and MPhil/MSc, in four years.

    Note: Unlike other courses, the Honors courses will use absolute grading rather than relative grading.

  3. What are the courses for Honors Track and what are the study patterns?

    The Honors courses are:

    • COMP 2012H - OOP and Data Structures (Honors Study Track)
    • COMP 2711H - Discrete Mathematical Tools for Computer Science (Honors Study Track)
    • COMP 3111H - Introduction to Software Engineering (Honors Study Track)
    • COMP 3711H - Design and Analysis of Algorithms (Honors Study Track)
    • COMP 2971 - Directed Studies I (Honors Study Track)
    • COMP 3971 - Directed Studies II (Honors Study Track)
    • COMP 4971 - Directed Studies III (Honors Study Track)
    • COMP 3071 - Competitive Programming (Honors Study Track)
    • COMP 4982H - Final Year Thesis I (Honors Study Track)

    See COMP Course List.

    Recommended study patterns for COMP and CSIE Honors track:

  4. What are the entrance requirements?

    • Outstanding HKALE results averaging B or above in three subjects, or
    • HKCEE results of 5 A's (including Mathematics) plus good HKALE results, or
    • Early Admission Scheme applicant with HKCEE results of an A in Mathematics, or
    • Students who have completed Year 0 with grade B+ or above in two MATH courses and CGA of B or above; or Recommended by UG coordinator (e.g. other elite students).
  5. What are the conditions to remain in the Honors Track?

    You need to maintain a Cumulative Grade Average (CGA) of A- or above.

  6. Can I join the Honors Track half-way?

    Yes, students whose SGAs of the previous two consecutive semesters are A- or above may apply to take Honors courses, subject to the approval of the course instructor.

    Note that students who join the Honors Track half-way may not be able to follow the recommended study pattern of Honors track and complete the curriculum in 2.5 years.

  7. How do I register for the Honors courses?

    Students who successfully maintained a CGA of A- or above should just submit a swap request to register for the Honors courses using the course registration system. The course instructors will approve the adding of the honors-track courses, while the UG Coordinator will approve the dropping of the pre-registered normal-track required courses. Warning: Once you give up your reserved seat for the required course, should you decide later that the honors-track course does not suit you, the department CANNOT help you to secure the seat back if the course is full.

    COMP honors courses are normally not opened to non-COMP-CPEG students due to limited quota. If the class is not full by the end of the add/drop period, we may let in non-COMP-CPEG students according to their academic results.

  8. What are COMP 2971, COMP 3971, and COMP 4971 directed studies courses?

    These are directed studies courses offerred by individual faculty members. If you have great interest in a particular area, you may approach a faculty member in that area to offer you an independent study. However, since each faculty member typically supervises several final-year students, MPhil and Ph.D. students, they might be reluctant to supervise lower-year students other than those who demonstrate exceptional interest or knowledge. These courses may be 1, 2, 3 credits depending on the expected amount of work, and can be 1 or 2 semesters long. Students are required to submit a report at the end of the course.

    Students are not allowed to do an independent study course on a topic related to their FYP/FYT offered by their FYP/FYT advisor.

  9. How can I use the extra credits from COMP 3711H?

    Honors track students can have the COMP elective requirement reduced by one course through earning a total of 3 extra credits from COMP 3711H and COMP 2971/3971/4971; for example,

    • 1 credit from COMP 3711H, 2 credits from COMP 2971
    • 1 credit from COMP 3711H, 1 credit from COMP 2971, 1 credit of COMP 3971


    1. COMP 2971/3971/4971 (3 credits) is counted as a COMP elective by itself.
    2. The extra credit from COMP 3711 can be used as FREE elective credits.
  10. What is the difference between Final Year Project (FYP) COMP 4982 and Final Year Thesis (FYT) COMP 4982H? How do I sign up for Final Year Thesis?

    FYTs require students to undertake a project with a research component and submit an individual thesis at the end of the project. Subject to the approval of the project advisor, FYT students may participate in a group project, but each FYT student must submit an individual thesis. Students taking FYT should also submit a proposal, progress report, poster, and make a presentation at the end of the project.

    The selection of FYTs is carried out the same time as FYPs, which is around the end of April. However, the enrolment into COMP 4983/4983H is done only at the begining of the following Fall semester. Only students who meet the requirement of joining the honors track -- attain a CGA of A- or above by that Fall semester -- will be allowed to enrol into COMP 4982H. Enrolment into COMP 4982H requires the approval of the UG Coordinator. Students who have selected a research-oriented, individual-basis project but do not meet the enrolment requirement of COMP 4982H can still do the same project but will enrol into COMP 4982.

    The registration procedure of COMP 4982H is the same as other honors-track courses: submit online requests to drop the pre-registered COMP 4982 and add COMP 4982H.

    Abstracts of past FYTs.

  11. What do I need to do if I wish to obtain both the BEng and MPhil degrees in four years?

    The Honors-Track study patterns are designed to enable you to fulfill the credit requirement (101 credits) and course requirement of the BEng Computer Science in 2.5 years. The additional credits earned from taking graduate-level courses during your undergraduate study can be used to partially fulfill the course requirement of our MPhil program if you are admitted to our MPhil program. However, in this case, these courses must be considered as surplus courses which are excluded from your GGA calculation. (Please note that there are breadth requirement for MPhil courses. Refer to course requirement of MPhil.)

    If you plan to also earn an MPhil degree in 4 years, you are advised to choose an FYP/FYT topic that you are likely to continue working on for your MPhil study. However, note that the department has no obligation to admit Honors Track students to our MPhil/MSc program, and there is no guarantee that an MPhil degree will be earned within an additional year.

Further Questions

For further information, please contact the UG Coordinator Dr. Pedro SANDER at .