University Retitling

After 30 years of rapid development, The Open University of Hong Kong (OUHK) has gone through remarkable changes. A recent review indicates that the University needs a more appropriate title to better reflect its current status, focuses and strengths, and to facilitate its further development.


OUHK – First Decade (1989-2000)

Pioneering Open and Distance Education

OUHK, formerly the Open Learning Institute of Hong Kong, was established by the Hong Kong Government in 1989 with a mission to offer open and distance education, primarily to cater for the educational needs of the society at that time. University title was attained in 1997.

OUHK – Second Decade (2001-2010)

Venturing into Full-time Education

In line with Hong Kong Government’s education reform, OUHK began development of full-time programmes with formal academic qualification entry requirements:

  • 2001 – Launched full-time Associate Degree programmes
  • 2003 – Launched full-time Degree programmes
  • 2007– Joined JUPAS (Joint University Programmes Admissions System) for student admission together with 8 UGC institutions

OUHK – Third Decade (2011-Now)

A Full-fledged University

6 schools

3 campuses +

2 learning centres

practical and professional programmes of multi disciplines

part-time students


full-time students

rank 6th in HK in terms of full-time undergraduate enrolment
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Despite the transformation, many people still perceive OUHK as a purely distance education institution, partly because of our success in offering such programmes in the earlier years, and partly because of the title of “Open University”, which places us in the generic category of universities established for offering open access education normally through distance delivery mode. This has posed challenges and hindered further development of the University and its graduates.


In 2019, the University decided to explore this important issue of retitling. A series of consultations with students, alumni, staff members and others were conducted in 2019 and early 2020. Views collected in the various consultations are mostly supportive of a change of the University title to better reflect our unique characteristics and strategic focuses and to further the University’s development in the years ahead.


Over the years, the University has been committed to advancing learning, knowledge, and research that meet students’ learning aspirations and offering innovative, practical and professional programmes to meet the changing needs of Hong Kong.

Examples of OUHK’s signature programmes with a practical and professional focus:


The OUHK also uses innovative teaching and education technology to offer quality education. Examples include:


To chart the course for future development, the University has prepared the Strategic Plan (2019-2023) with the following strategic focuses:


In July 2020, the “Selection Committee on University Title” has been formed with the mandate to identify an appropriate title for the University. To facilitate the selection process, all members of the OUHK community and the public have been invited to submit nominations for a new university title between 23 Aug and 30 September 2020.

Over 1,100 nominations have been received by the end of the period, and the University would like to express its sincere thanks to the OUHK community and the public for their support and active participation. The Selection Committee will review the submissions according to the nomination requirements and selection criteria, and will make an appropriate recommendation on the new university title to the University Council for approval. The process of amending the ordinance governing the University will then be started and formal approval from the Legislative Council will be sought.

If you require any further information, please feel free to contact Mr Raymond Leung, Secretary of the Selection Committee by email:

Nomination Requirements & Selection Criteria