HKIEd to acquire university title

     The Chief Executive in Council today (January 26) approved that the Hong Kong Institute of Education (HKIEd) be granted university title. It will be retitled the Education University of Hong Kong in English and 香港教育大學 in Chinese.

     The Hong Kong Institute of Education (Amendment) Bill 2016, which gives effect to the change in title, will be gazetted on February 19 and introduced into the Legislative Council on March 2.

     In congratulating the HKIEd, the Secretary for Education, Mr Eddie Ng Hak-kim, said that the award of university title recognises its efforts and contributions over the years, and would boost public confidence in the HKIEd and its graduates.

     "In recent years, the HKIEd has been making commendable progress in developing into a multi-disciplinary institution with a focus on teacher education and a good spread of complementary disciplines, i.e. 'Education-plus'. The HKIEd has also rapidly developed its research capabilities.

     "We are satisfied with the finding of the University Grants Committee (UGC) that the HKIEd is fully worthy of joining the ranks of the other UGC-funded universities. It also testifies to the development of our higher education sector, as more institutions are found to possess the qualities and attributes commonly expected of a university," Mr Ng said.

     Apart from the award of university title, the Chief Executive in Council also decided to award self-accrediting status to the HKIEd in respect of three programme areas covered by its existing Programme Area Accreditation (PAA) status, namely Chinese Studies, English Studies and Environmental Studies. In addition, the Chief Executive in Council approved to grant the HKIEd full self-accrediting status if it can in future obtain PAA status in the remaining areas in which it currently also operates bachelor's degree programmes.

     After becoming a university, the HKIEd will remain committed to its mission, with education at its core and with "Education-plus" providing a sound base for further development. The HKIEd will continue to be subject to periodic external quality audits by the Quality Assurance Council under the UGC's aegis, as is the case for the other seven UGC-funded universities.

     Mr Ng also expressed his gratitude to the UGC and its Review Group, led by Sir Ivor Crewe, for looking into the matter thoroughly and submitting the review report.

     "I would like to thank the UGC for producing a most insightful review report on the matter. The report has provided valuable advice to the Government," he said.

     The HKIEd was formally established in 1994 by merging the four former Colleges of Education and the Institute of Language in Education. In June 2009, the then Chief Executive in Council decided on the way forward with respect to the institutional development of the HKIEd. The HKIEd has since been following up on this decision. In July 2014, the HKIEd submitted an application for university title to the Government. In line with the established procedures, the Secretary for Education invited the UGC to consider the application and to let the Government have its expert views. The UGC subsequently set up a Review Group, led by Sir Ivor Crewe, Master of University College, Oxford, to consider the matter. The UGC submitted the Review Group Report to the Education Bureau in September 2015.

Ends/Tuesday, January 26, 2016
Issued at HKT 15:30