College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences

Research Degree Programmes (RPg)

The College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences (CLASS) at CityU provides leading educational programmes in the field of Humanities and Social Sciences. It is home to seven academic units spanning a wide range of subjects. These are the Departments of Chinese and History; Linguistics and Translation; English; Media and Communication; Public and International Affairs; Social and Behavioural Sciences; and Chan Feng Men-ling Chan Shuk-lin Language Centre.

In the latest QS World University Rankings by Subject, CLASS ranked Top 100 in Social Sciences and Management and 151st for Arts and Humanities among over 1,200 universities. For individual subjects, CLASS also puts in a strong performance. Three of the departments in the College are now ranked in the Top 100: Communication and Media Studies, Linguistics, and Social Policy and Administration. The College prides itself on its research reputation and is also concerned with providing excellent opportunities for research degrees at the MPhil and PhD studies level.

The following academic units of CLASS offer research degree studies:

Department of Chinese and History

Research foci and expertise in the Department include: (1) Chinese Language, Literature and Culture: Chinese Classical Studies (jingxue), Chinese Literary Criticism, Chinese Philosophy, Classical Chinese Language, Classical Chinese Literature, Modern Chinese Literature and Culture; (2) Comparative Literature, Cross-cultural Studies and Cultural Heritage: Comparative Literature, East Asian Literature and Culture, Cultural Studies, Cultural Heritage, Art History; and (3) Chinese History: Urban History, History of Buddhism, History of Medicine, Intellectual History, Early China, Middle Period China, Ming-Qing Studies, Modern China, History of Cultural Exchanges, Digital Humanities. The programme places equal importance on the use of both Chinese and English languages.

Department of Media and Communication

Research foci of the Department includes: (1) New Media and Technology: diffusion, use, and effects of communication technology; impact of online and mobile media; computer-mediated communication; human-computer interaction; policy and regulation; business strategy; (2) Media Institutions and Society: state-society-media relationships; news production; media organizations; journalists and professionalism; social influence of media content; (3) Political Communication: public opinion, civic and political participation, political campaigns; (4) Media Psychology and Effects: cognitive processing, media effects; interactive advertising; (5) Computational Communication Research: social media/network analysis, big data mining; computational social science; (6) Health Communication: persuasion, healthcare narratives, health message processing; (7) Strategic Communication: public relations, advertising, integrated marketing communications.

Department of English

Research strengths in the Department include: (1) Discourse Analysis: conversation analysis, corpus-assisted discourse analysis, critical discourse analysis, genre analysis, mediated discourse analysis, multimodal discourse analysis, pragmatics, semiotics, and text analysis; (2) Applied Linguistics and Language Teaching: identity, intercultural communication, language policy and planning, pedagogical grammar, second language acquisition, second language writing, self-access learning, language teacher identity; (3) Professional Communication: business communication, English for specific purposes, language and law, persuasive communication, rhetoric of science, health and risk communication; (4) Language, Technology, and Media: computer-assisted language learning, digital literacies, language and mobile communication, and online discourse; and (5) English-medium Instruction: incidental language acquisition in the English-medium environment, pedagogical approaches to teaching and learning in EMI settings, professional discoursal skills in EMI; and (6) Literary Studies: World literature in English, postcolonial literature, modern and contemporary novel, nineteenth-century literature and culture, crime fiction, travel writing and comparative literature. (7) Theatre and Performance Studies: Modern and contemporary drama, performance studies; (8) Cultural Studies: Film studies and visual culture, fashion studies, creative industries and popular culture.

Department of Linguistics and Translation

The Department of Linguistics and Translation takes a systematic approach to the study of language from a number of different perspectives with a broad range of methodologies. Research foci and expertise cover (1) Corpus and Empirical Linguistics, including cognitive linguistics, computational linguistics, corpus linguistics, dialogue act analysis, lexical semantics, neurolinguistics, and psycholinguistics; (2) General Linguistics, including Chinese linguistics, discourse analysis, formal linguistics, functional linguistics, historical linguistics, morphology, phonetics, phonology, sociolinguistics, systemic functional grammar, syntax-semantics interface, and text linguistics; (3) Pedagogical Linguistics, including applied linguistics, computer-assisted language learning, contrastive study of English and Chinese, lexicography, linguistics-based pedagogy to language teaching, second language learning and teaching, and teaching Chinese to speakers of other languages; (4) Translation and Interpretation, including translation and interpretation studies, translation theories, computer-aided translation, machine translation and terminology.

Department of Public and International Affairs

The Department of Public and International Affairs (PIA) is an internationally-leading research hub for public policy, international studies, philosophy, and urban governance. Our staff come from top universities around the world, and our PhD students are very successful in gaining positions in government, academia, business, and with non-governmental organizations. We are one of the leading departments for winning HKPFS awards, and guarantee excellent training and resources for our doctoral students. Studying in PIA exposes students to leading debates and techniques across the field and its subdisciplines as well as provides students with the opportunity to discuss their research with visiting scholars from around the world.

PIA graduates are people who can communicate effectively, possess strong leadership skills and have the necessary analytical skills to dissect societal problems and make improvements to the world. Our faculty have well established track records in taking their academic research and making an impact on Hong Kong and global institutions. PIA professors are frequently interviewed in the international and local media on issues of daily concern.

Department of Social and Behavioural Sciences

The Department's research expertise encompasses a broad range of topics across several disciplines, including: (1) Applied Sociology: work, labour, class, organization, community, family, gender, ethnicity, deviance, welfare, politics, quality of life, social capital, social movement, social policy, social problem, civil society, and social development; (2) Psychology: cognitive biases, self-concept, educational psychology, intimate relationship, stress and emotional regulation, health psychology, positive ageing, creativity, aggression, resilience, and human values; (3) Social Work: casework, groupwork, community work; working with children, youth, elderly and family; family violence, empowerment-oriented practice with socially disadvantaged groups, conflict management and mediation, volunteerism, and social work management and supervision; (4) Counselling: cognitive behavioural therapy, narrative therapy, family therapy, parent education and support, marriage enrichment, and psychotherapy process; and (5) Criminology: restorative justice, youth justice, organized crime, juvenile delinquency, Chinese criminology, anti-corruption, policing, crime prevention, school bullying, gang and outreach youth work, and cybercrime. Existing research works often tap on the expertise of different disciplines. For example, the development of caregiver assessment model is supported by a team from social work, and psychology disciplines.

More details about research degree programmes at CityU are available at website of Chow Yei Ching School of Graduate Studies.