25th September 2023 – (Hong Kong) The Education Bureau (EDB) has announced that the School Nominations Direct Admission Scheme (SNDAS) will be available for applications from local Secondary Six students who will be taking the 2024 Hong Kong Diploma of Secondary Education (HKDSE) Examination and starting their undergraduate studies in September 2024.
Launched in the 2022/23 academic year, SNDAS is a scheme designed to recognize exceptional talent in specific disciplines that may not be fully assessed by the HKDSE Examination. It aims to match students with special and diverse talents to programs that align with their potential, providing them with opportunities for direct admission to local universities.
The nomination period for the third cohort of SNDAS will run from 5th October to 6th December, 2023. To apply for their desired programs through SNDAS, students must receive nominations from their secondary schools. Each local secondary school can nominate two students who possess exceptional talents and interests in specific disciplines/areas. Each student nominee can apply for admission to one designated University Grants Committee (UGC)-funded undergraduate program participating in SNDAS.
Participating universities will conduct interviews for all students nominated for SNDAS and make firm offers to successful candidates before the release of the 2024 HKDSE Examination results.
For the third cohort of SNDAS, the eight UGC-funded universities have designated over 220 publicly funded undergraduate programs to participate. Admission criteria for these programs are not solely based on HKDSE Examination results. Detailed information about SNDAS and specific admission requirements for participating programs can be found on the scheme’s website (www.edb.gov.hk/en/edu-system/postsecondary/policy-doc/SNDAS/index.html).
The EDB emphasises that SNDAS provides an additional pathway to university for students with exceptional talents. Students nominated for SNDAS, like other Secondary Six students, are required to apply for university admission through the Joint University Programmes Admissions System and also sit for the HKDSE Examinations, ensuring they have multiple opportunities for further studies.
The introduction of SNDAS stemmed from the Task Force on Review of School Curriculum, established by the EDB in November 2017 to conduct a comprehensive review of primary and secondary curricula. The task force’s review report, submitted to the EDB in September 2020, proposed six directional recommendations, including the implementation of a new direct admission scheme to enhance flexibility in university admissions. Accepting this recommendation, the EDB introduced SNDAS starting from the 2022/23 academic year.