Doctor of Health Science
Sept 2019 Entry
Programme code: 06001
Duration & Credit Requirement
3 years (Full-time)
4 years (Part-time)
3 for local and non-local students
HK$6,200 per credit
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
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
The following specialism awards are listed quotable qualifications under their respective Supplementary Medical Professions Boards:
Supplementary Medical Professions Boards (SMP Boards)
Doctor of Health Science (Medical Imaging and Radiation Science)
Doctor of Health Science (Medical Laboratory Science)
Medical Laboratory Technologists Board
Doctor of Health Science (Occupational Therapy)
Occupational Therapists Board
Doctor of Health Science (Optometry)
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
Students are required to complete 4 out of the following 5 subjects to fulfil the requirement. If they complete all the 5 subjects, one of them will be counted as a Generic Elective.
- Advanced Quantitative Methods
- Concept Analysis in Health Care
- Health Care Ethics
- Health Economics
- Issues in Health Sociology
Students are required to complete 4 Elective Subjects to fulfil the requirement. The Electives can be Generic Electives or Specialty Subjects.
A. Generic Electives
- Advanced Statistics in Health Care Research
- Advanced Methods in Qualitative Health Care Research
- Advanced Study in Autism Spectrum Disorder
- Evidence Based Practice
- Health and Social Policy Analysis
- Health Systems: Management and Organization
- Independent Study in a Substantive Specialty*
- Information Technology in Health Care
- Pain Management: A Multidimensional Approach
* Can be counted as a Specialty Subject
B. Specialty Subjects
Students should complete at least 1 Specialty Subject to fulfil the specialism requirement. Please refer to this website for the most updated subject information.
Other Elective Options (e.g. 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.
- 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.
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 one to two months before the class begins.
For further information on academic matters, please contact:
Prof. Carly Lam (tel: (852) 2766 6091; email: firstname.lastname@example.org).
For further information on admission matters, please contact:
Miss Cindy Yu (tel: (852) 2766 7774; email: email@example.com);
or Ms Stepheny Wong (tel: (852) 3400 3994; email: firstname.lastname@example.org).
Additional Documents Required
No more than to two to four A4 pages.
List of publications, if any, should be included.
A personal statement consisting of one to two pages, including the reason for applying to the programme, is required.
Applicants are also advised to submit a study plan listing the subjects to be taken at each semester and the proposed research area/topic(s) for the thesis. If such information is not uploaded with the application, it should be provided before the interview.
Transcript / Certificate
Copies of transcripts and graduation certificates, particularly those for the applicant’s relevant Master’s degrees, are required.