Doctor of Health Science

Sept 2017 Entry
Programme code: 06001

Duration & Credit Requirement

Stream Code

FTD (Full-time)
PT (Part-time)

Mode of Study
Mixed Mode
Normal Duration

3 years (Full-time)
4 years (Part-time)

Credits Required for Graduation


Fund Type
Initial Registration Credits

3 for local and non-local students

Tuition Fee

HK$6,200 per credit

Programme Leader(s)

Prof. Carly Lam
MSc, PhD, MCOptom, FAAO

  • We have a quota for admissions. Early applications are strongly encouraged. Shortlisted candidates will be invited for interviews. Offers may be made on a rolling-basis.
  • An incomplete application cannot be processed promptly and may reduce your chance of admission. Please complete all relevant fields on the application form and upload all necessary documents.

Aims & Characteristics

Programme Aims

We aim to prepare healthcare professionals to contribute to the science and practical development of healthcare services. Graduates are expected to be able to:

  • Synthesise knowledge from the health sciences and other academic disciplines for application in a substantive specialised practice area of a healthcare profession;
  • Design, conduct and direct research studies in the specialised area;
  • Analyse and evaluate concepts, theories and models that are related to health practices from different perspectives;
  • Disseminate knowledge through scholarly publication, formal teaching and the provision of expert mentoring and vision for the substantive specialised area; and 
  • Integrate knowledge and use evidence to influence health policy and decision-making through collaborative, interdisciplinary efforts at the organisational, local and national levels.



PolyU is the first local university to initiate this professional doctoral programme, which is at the highest level of healthcare education. Unlike many traditional PhD programmes that focus on research, the Doctor of Health Science (DHSc) is a professional doctoral programme with a primary focus on the practice of the profession. The programme prepares experienced healthcare professionals to further develop their competence for leadership roles in advanced professional practice or for clinical-track faculty membership. The DHSc is recognised as a terminal professional degree for the healthcare discipline, and graduates have earned the right to use the title of 'Dr' before their names. The mixed-mode study pattern provides flexibility for students to engage in a full- or part-time study load.

Recognition & Prospects

No information is available at present.


Programme Structure

The programme covers 8 Doctoral Subjects, including 4 Compulsory Subjects and 4 Elective Subjects, and a Doctoral Thesis. The Compulsory Subjects aim to provide students with a core foundation in healthcare concept analysis, research and knowledge translation within the reality of the ethical-sociological-economic context of healthcare provision.


The Elective options and the Doctoral Thesis allow students to develop an individualised programme of study for acquiring, appraising, synthesising and applying knowledge in a substantive specialised area. The mentored research experience serves to strengthen students' skills in the conduct of disciplinary enquiry.


Candidates are required to complete the coursework requirement with a minimum GPA of 3.0 or above and a Doctoral Thesis to be eligible for the award of Doctor of Health Science.


Students can choose to graduate with the following awards/specialisms:

  • Doctor of Health Science (generic award)
  • Doctor of Health Science (Medical Imaging and Radiation Science) 
  • Doctor of Health Science (Medical Laboratory Science)
  • Doctor of Health Science (Nursing)
  • Doctor of Health Science (Occupational Therapy)
  • Doctor of Health Science (Optometry) 
  • Doctor of Health Science (Physiotherapy)
  • Doctor of Health Science (Prosthetics and Orthotics)


To be eligible for the specialism concerned, students should complete a thesis related to that specialism plus a 3-credit specialty subject. Furthermore, they should hold a Bachelor's degree or a Master's degree in a relevant discipline or possess professional qualification in a relevant discipline to fulfil the registration requirements of certain professions.


Core Areas of Study

Compulsory Subjects

  • Concept Analysis in Health Care
  • Health Care Ethics
  • Advanced Quantitative Methods
  • Health Economics or Issues in Health Sociology 


Elective Subjects

  • Advanced Statistics in Health Care Research
  • Advanced Methods in Qualitative Health Care Research
  • Advanced Study in Autism Spectrum Disorder
  • Information Technology in Health Care
  • Evidence Based Practice
  • Independent Study in a Substantive Specialty
  • Gender and Health
  • Health and Social Policy Analysis
  • Health Systems: Management and Organization
  • Pain Management: A Multidimensional Approach
  • Other Elective Options (e.g. specialty subjects, or subjects offered by PolyU's other professional doctoral and postgraduate programmes subject to the approval of the Programme Leader)


The above subject list will be updated from time to time. Please refer to this website for the most updated subject information.

Entrance Requirements

  • A Master's degree in a health-related discipline or the equivalent; 
  • At least 5 years of substantial professional health care experience.

If you are not a native speaker of English, and your Bachelor's degree or equivalent qualification is awarded by institutions where the medium of instruction is not English, you are expected to fulfil the University’s minimum English language requirement for admission purpose. Please refer to the "Admission Requirements" section for details.

Remarks: Candidates possessing a recognised first degree in a health-related discipline with substantial professional experience may also be considered on a case-by-case basis.

Other Information

For the taught subjects, most classes are held once per week in the weekday evening (6:30pm - 9:30pm) during a 13-week semester. Students can enrol for subjects in each of the two semesters (Normally, Semester 1 runs from Sept to Dec, while Semester 2 runs from Jan to May.) The timetabling information will be released to students 1-2 months before the class begins.


For further information on academic matters, please contact: 
Prof. Carly Lam (tel: (852) 2766 6091; email:


For further information on admission matters, please contact:
Miss Cindy Yu (tel: (852) 2766 7774; email:;
or Ms Stepheny Wong (tel: (852) 3400 3994; email:

Student Message

The programme has enlightened my values and practice in delivering healthcare services and research. I have gained a thorough understanding of the advancement of public services, which has enabled me to conduct comprehensive service planning and evaluation at the management level. I enjoyed the programme and treasured the well-established friendships and networking with my classmates.

Dr Mo Yee, Polly Lau (Outstanding PolyU Alumni Award 2015 and Graduate in 2008)

Department Manager of the Physiotherapy
Department of the Queen Elizabeth Hospital (QEH) and the Cluster Manager of Physiotherapy
Departments in the Kowloon Central Cluster (KCC), Hospital Authority

Dr Mo Yee, Polly Lau

The DHSc is an excellent programme and is well designed for part-time allied healthcare workers. I am happy that joining and studying the programme has enlightened me with up-to-date knowledge and skills, such as the enhanced concept analysis of daily problem-solving activities through the discovery of various world views.

Dr Yu Wai-Hong (Graduate in 2014)
Senior Medical Technologist, i/c
Yan Chai Hospital, Hospital Authority

Dr Yu Wai-Hong

Additional Documents Required

Transcript / Certificate


Info Seminar

No information is available at present.