Hong Kong students' approaches to learning: cross-cultural comparisons.
US-China Education Review, 6, (12), .
Anecdotal evidence abounds in Hong Kong to the effect that students entering tertiary education are
predisposed to a “rote” learning approach. With the internalisation of higher education in many countries, there is
still insufficient understanding of how Chinese students approach their learning. Except few studies were conducted
locally, there have been no systematic studies undertaken and there is a tendency to rely on anecdotal statements
about Hong Kong students’ approaches to learning. This study was designed to see if Hong Kong Chinese students
who enrolled into a 3-year undergraduate programme in occupational therapy predisposed to a surface or deep
approach to learning react differently when moving progressively from one stage to the next stage in their curriculum.
The study adopted a longitudinal design method and measured students’ changes in their approaches to learning
using the Biggs’ Study Process Questionnaire (SPQ). The internal consistency reliability estimates for SPQ scales for
samples of Hong Kong, Australia and UK were compared. The results of this study indicated that Hong Kong
Chinese students demonstrated a higher mean for the deep approach learning and a lower mean for the surface
approach, similar to other Hong Kong studies conducted in other tertiary institutions in Hong Kong and Australia
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