Document Type



Department of Education Studies

Conference End Date


Conference Title

Education, Ethnicity, and Inequality Symposium: Issues and Insights


Most ethnic minority students in Hong Kong attend local designated or non-designated schools. While the quality of designated schools and their effectiveness have received much criticism, little is known about the differences and similarities in learning experiences of ethnic minority students in these two different types of schools. This paper investigates the learning experiences of South Asian students in both types of schools. It examines four aspects of learning experiences, namely (1) the impact of medium of instruction and language proficiency on learning; (2) the separatist policy and its implication for classroom learning; (3) learning support, if any; and (4) cultural barriers to learning and integration into the school community. The analytical focus is on how the school contexts affect students’ learning and how the students interpret the situations they find themselves in.

Besides learning experiences, the paper also addresses issues of further studies and career preparation of ethnic minority students, through understanding their educational and vocational aspirations.

The study from which this paper is based used semi-structured interviews as data collection instrument. The research participants are male and female South Asian students in Secondary Four and Five in one designated and one non-designated school.

Conference Location

Hong Kong Baptist University, Kowloon, Hong Kong SAR


Ethnic minority, South Asian, designated schools, learning experience

Publication Date


Place of Publication

Hong Kong SAR

Included in

Education Commons