Application FAQ

Please submit your application via - the Online Application System before the deadline. Applicants are required to fill in the online application form by providing information including qualifications, working experience, professional qualifications, English Language Proficiency Test Results, and contact information of 2 referees. Applicants shall state their interests or/ and background in literary and cultural studies in English and indicate which emphasis they would like to pursue in (Literary and Cultural Studies or Film/ Screen Studies) in the "Reasons for interest in this programme" section when they go through the online application.

The application fee for each taught postgraduate programme is HK$300 (non-refundable). Payment of application fee should be made online at Payment by cash will NOT be accepted.
The online application system will be open for public exercise from around October. The application deadline is subject to be announced/revised by MALCS.

Commencement date for the Programme will be September 1 (subject to change in every academic year). No second round admission for Spring Semester.


Academic transcript - Applicants who will graduate soon shall upload a photocopy of their most up-to-date transcripts before the application deadline and within four weeks from the date of the creation of application account. Potential applicant with BA degree to be awarded will be granted conditional offer, and required to submit a complete transcript by the due date shown on the letter of conditional offer issued by the Arts Faculty.

Graduation certificate - Not applicable to candidates who will graduate soon.

IELTS/ TOEFL report – For applicants with qualifications from a university or comparable institution outside HK where the language of teaching or examination is English, it is not necessary to submit IELTS/ TOEFL reports as supporting documents.

No photocopies of certificates/ transcripts are accepted. We only accept:
  1. official copies certified by HKU or comparable institutions; or
  2. verified true copies, which can be arranged by (i) notary public (e.g. a Commissioner for Oaths at a City District Office in Hong Kong); or (ii) your home institution.

Documents which are not in English should be accompanied by a formally certified translation in English. The translation should be certified by either the appropriate office/department of your institution, or notary public.

Academic referee's reports – Applicants are required to invite 2 academic referees to complete a standard report* and send it to the Department of Comparative Literature (MALCS) by post, in sealed envelope marked with name of applicant and application number. (*Please refer to the downloadable documents "Supporting Documents" at

Writing Sample(s) - English language is the medium of instruction in the MALCS. Applicants are required to submit writing sample(s) in English only, which may serve as review materials regarding applicants' language capacity in essay writing in advanced studies (length: 1,000 – 1,200 words). [Note: Personal Statement does not serve as English Writing Sample.]

All submitted documents will not be returned.
The basic qualification for admission to the MALCS is a good honours degree from HKU or an equivalent qualification from comparable institutions. Qualified applicants may be holder of:

  • a BA Degree (in any discipline), Division 2 or above (2B)

Applicants with qualifications from a university or comparable institution outside HK where the language of teaching or examination is not English are required to obtain:

a score of 550 or above (paper-based test) or 80 or above (internet-based test) in the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), in which a score of 4 or above in the Test of Written English (TWE), or a score of 25 or above in the Writing section of the Internet-based TOEFL; or

a minimum overall band of 7 with no subtest lower than 5.5 in the International English Language Testing System (IELTS)

Only TOEFL / IELTS score recorded in the two years before the date of application is considered for admission.
Literature, film and cultural studies are three emphases of the MALCS Programme. Candidates with literature/ film/ cultural studies background will certainly have an advantage in the advanced studies in the MALCS.

Nonetheless, diversity is also an emphasis in the Programme. Students in the Programme come from different professions, e.g. education, law, filmmaking, creative industry, media, art administration, fine art, and so on.

Find out the Programme objective for our students here.
You may like to take a look at the course descriptions and lists of recommended text/films available here.
No, sit-in is not allowed in regular courses offered by the MALCS. Yet, you are welcome to come to observe and participate in regular teaching and learning activities during the Class Visits sessions. Please email us at to reserve your place for a class visit.
Short-listed applicants may be invited to reply to e-mail questions and a follow-up interview. Our Programme Committee would like to better know the interests/background of applicants in literary and cultural studies. Test and interviews are conducted in English.

There will be on-going screening of applications. Invitations will be sent out to selected applicants throughout the admission process.
Only full-time students in the Programme will be allowed to apply for student visas. Details of the application to student visa will be stated in the offer letter issued by the Arts Faculty.

Composition fee of the MALCS academic year 2022-2023:

1-year Full time
2-year Part time

(paid in 2 equal instalments)

(paid in 4 equal instalments)

Applicants should note that the first installment of the composition fee is payable at the time of acceptance of a conditional/firm offer of admission. Once paid, the composition fee cannot be refunded.

MA is Taught Postgraduate Programme (TPG). MALCS is a self-funded MA Programme offered by the Department of Comparative Literature (HKU). Students are required to take regular courses and complete a dissertation or its equivalent to complete the Programme. In recent years, MA graduates with outstanding academic results have been admitted to the research postgraduate PhD programme at HKU.

MPhil is Research Postgraduate Programme (RPG). MPhil students are Postgraduate Studentship holders who will undertake independent research-based studies under supervision.

The Department of Comparative Literature offers Master of Philosophy (MPhil) and 3-year and 4-year Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) degrees organized around a clearly defined research project culminating in a dissertation.
Yes, you should submit a separate online application for alternative study mode in the MALCS.
You are welcome to apply to visiting studies in the MALCS. For admission requirements and application procedures, please refer to here
Applicants will be notified by letter of their application results latest by the end of July.
You shall require to re-apply for admission for the next year.
The academic year starts in early September.

For general University FAQ, please refer to

For further enquiries, please feel free to contact our Programme Officer Mr. Ben Lee at or (852) 3917-2760.

Contact Us

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Contact Details

  • General enquiry:
  • TEL: 3917 2760 / FAX: 2857 7955
  • Department of Comparative Literature
    Master of Arts in Literary and Cultural Studies (MALCS)
    The University of Hong Kong

    Room 9.58, 9/F,
    Run Run Shaw Tower (Building B, Arts),
    Centennial Campus,
    The University of Hong Kong,
    Pokfulam Road, Hong Kong