To be awarded the MSc in Computer Science degree, a student must acquire a minimum of 30 credits, in which 9 credits come from the required courses and 21 credits from the elective courses, of which at least 3 credits are from those in Group I. Up to 9 credits can be transferred based on the student's previous study. Through suitable choices of elective courses, students may concentrate on a study stream (Data Science Stream or Information Security Stream) based on their interests. Alternatively, students may also choose courses without concentration on any stream.
The normal period of completing the programme is one year (full-time) or two years (part-time), while the actual period may vary depending on the student's study plan and progress. The required credit load for full-time study is 12-18 credit units per semester. For part-time study, students may determine their own credit load as long as it does not exceed 11 credit units per semester.
Local students are normally admitted to the programme in combined mode so that they can attend full-time or part-time studies in different semesters without seeking approval from the University. Some local students, such as those on Employment Visa, are admitted for part-time study only due to their own special circumstances. Non-local students are admitted for the study mode stipulated by their visa conditions and requirements set by the Hong Kong Immigration Department. Currently, the vast majority of non-local students are admitted for full-time study. The maximum periods of study in the programme are, respectively, 2.5 years for full-time students and 5 years for students in part-time or combined mode.
The Postgraduate Diploma in Computer Science (PGDCS) is an intermediate award which a student may obtain after the completion of 24 credits (including all required courses and at least 3 credits of elective courses in Group I) with satisfactory results if the student decides not to continue with the MSCS Programme.