Q1  What is The Hong Kong Academy for Gifted Education?

The Hong Kong Academy for Gifted Education (HKAGE) was set up in 2007. It is a non-profit making organisation with a Board of Directors.

Its mission is to be a world-class institution offering the highest standards of information, support and appropriate learning opportunities to gifted students aged 10-18 years who consistently perform in the top 2% of the age-related ability range, and it also supports parents, teachers and researchers in Hong Kong.

Q2  Is the HKAGE a school/ government department/ NGO?

The HKAGE is a subvented Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO). Our Board of Directors is drawn from representative sections of our stakeholders.

Q3  What is the background of the HKAGE?

In 1990, the Education Commission Report No.4 initiated the development of gifted education in Hong Kong. In the Policy Address delivered in October 2006, the Chief Executive announced the establishment of the HKAGE to provide more structured, articulated and challenging off-site programmes for students with exceptional talent, and to promote the concepts and practices of gifted education.

The Legislative Council Panel on Education discussed in November 2006 the Administration’s proposal to provide financial support for the setting up of the Academy.

The HKAGE was set up in 2007 and officially started its operations in 2008. It became a subvented Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) since September 2017 and a registered school under the Education Ordinances (Others) starting from October 23, 2017.

Q4  What is the structure of the HKAGE?

Board of Directors
Chairman of the Board: Ir Dr LAM Hiu Fung

There are 10 directors from different sectors, including the Education Bureau, psychologist, academics, and professionals from various sectors such as legal and finance, representing a wide spectrum of stakeholder groups. Under the Board, four Committees have been formed to oversee the strategic direction and development of the Academy.

Senior Management Team
The team is in charge of the daily operations and development of the Academy.

The Team includes:

Executive Director
Dr WONG Kam Yiu, Jimmy

Head of Academic Programme Development Division
Mr WONG Chung Po

Head of Affective Education Division
Ms TANG Yuen Wai, Livia

Head of Advanced Learning Experiences Division
Ms CHEUNG Hok Ling, Amia

Head of Research Division
Dr FUNG Tze Ho, Eric

Head of Corporate Services Division
Ms HUI Yi Ting, Grace

Q5  What is giftedness?

The Education Commission Report No. 4 (1990) has adopted a broad definition of gifted children as those who demonstrate exceptional achievement or potential in one or more of the following areas:

  • Specific academic aptitude in a subject area
  • Creative thinking
  • Superior talent in the visual or performing arts
  • Natural leadership skills
  • A high level of measured intelligence
  • Outstanding performance in sport or other areas requiring motor coordination
The education Bureau supports and encourages schools to use the multiple intelligences concept in making provision for gifted students.

For details, please visit our website (www.hkage.org.hk) or the EDB website (http://www.edb.gov.hk/en/curriculum-development/major-level-of-edu/gifted/hong-kong-development/introduction.html).

Q6  Would those being identified as gifted feel "different"?

Gifted children are different and most gifted children don’t need any assessment or labelling to identify their differences. They understand they are different and though they might have difficulty accepting this in a society where differences are not always easily tolerated. It is important for adults to recognise and appropriately respond to these differences.

Q7  My child loves to sing and dance. As parents, do we need to focus on training his/her musical talents?

Parents should not limit their children’s interests too early. In addition to the subjects or activities their children are interested in, parents should expose them to various fields to widen their horizons. They may be able to pursue his/her many and varied interests in future. Parents should also let their children know the importance of striking a balance between studying and extracurricular activities.

Q8  How can teachers identify gifted students in class?

The following are the general cognitive and behavioural characteristics of gifted students. Gifted students do not necessarily have all of the below-mentioned characteristics. There may also be considerable variation in the features manifested. In general, gifted students:

  • are discerning observers.
  • are apt at learning and applying new knowledge.
  • can comprehend and synthesise complicated concepts.
  • have a strong repository of general knowledge.
  • are prominent in collecting and processing an extensive amount of information.
  • are able to handle and construct abstractions.
  • are able to generate many alternative means to solve complicated problems.
  • are skillful in organisation and categorisation.
  • possess intense curiosity about innovative things.
  • have numerous imaginative and ingenious ideas.
  • sustain their interest in a specific topic or subject.
  • are interested in social issues, such as politics, religion and morality.
  • are firm in justice.
  • hold their own views and refuse to follow suit unreasonably.
  • have high expectations of themselves and strive for perfection.
  • prefer to have elder companions.
  • have a variety of interests and hobbies.

According to Howard Gardner’s Theory of Multiple Intelligences, apart from the above-mentioned characteristics, human beings possess at least eight types of intelligence, including linguistic intelligence, logical and mathematical intelligence, interpersonal intelligence, intra-personal intelligence, musical intelligence, spatial intelligence, bodily-kinesthetic intelligence, and naturalist intelligence. Gifted students may possess one or more potential. The behaviour listed below may help us identify gifted students in terms of different intelligences.

  1. Linguistic intelligence
    Like to talk, have a strong repertoire of vocabulary, and have rich content in speech.
    Expressive, can precisely express themselves.
    Convincing and eloquent.
    Show intense curiosity and highly inquisitive.
    Interested in reading.
    Good at writing stories.
    Demonstrate a keen sense of humour.
  2. Logical and mathematical intelligence
    Interested in mathematical games.
    Proficient in mental arithmetic and precise in computation.
    Love intelligent games, such as chess.
    Interested in scientific issues.
    Proactively explore causal relationship, patterns and logical relationships.
  3. Interpersonal intelligence
    Demonstrate leadership.
    Behave in a more mature way than their peer.
    Sensitive to the emotion, thought, motivation and behaviour of others.
    Sociable and have many friends.
    Able to influence others’ opinion.
    Confident in getting along with people of different ages.
  4. Intra-personal intelligence
    Understand others’ views and comments.
    Aware of his/her own interests and hobbies.
    Aware of his/her own strengths and weaknesses.
    Good at expressing his/her own feelings.
    With a habit of reflecting his/her daily life and writing diary.
  5. Musical intelligence
    Love listening to music.
    Love singing with a melodious voice.
    Memorise rhythm quickly.
    Recognise tones and spots errors in tone quickly.
    Master the skill of playing musical instruments easily.
    Able to perform body movements in the rhythm of music.
  6. Spatial intelligence
    Love visual games, such as jigsaw puzzles and mazes.
    Love painting.
    Appreciate beautiful things.
    Good at making models, especially three-dimensional models.
    Easily find ways out in strange places.
    Easily visualise scenes in a bird’s-eye view.
    Easily retrieve and verbalises visual images.
  7. Bodily-kinesthetic intelligence
    Good at imitating movements by others.
    Excel in one or more sports.
    Energetic and active, have attention spans.
    Prefer learning through activity.
    Have responsive muscular tissue.
    Prefer using body language, such as gestures and physical movements.
  8. Naturalist intelligence
    Love to collect ecology-related information.
    Interested in keeping animals and plants.
    Interested in exploring geographic environment.
    Interested in rural life or life in fishing villages.
    Love travelling and enjoying natural landscape.

Also, teachers can use the Behavioral characteristics checklists for Gifted Student (For teachers) from Education Bureau for checking:

Q9  How can I become a member of the HKAGE?

The Hong Kong Academy for Gifted Education (HKAGE) endeavours to secure appropriate learning and development opportunities for gifted students aged 10 to 18 in Hong Kong.

HKAGE admits student members of appropriate ages mainly through the “School Nomination” and “Self Nomination” schemes every school year. Gifted students interested in being members of HKAGE are required to pass “Stage 1: HKAGE Online Learning Programmes for Screening” before they can submit their nomination profiles in “Stage 2: Submit Nomination Profiles” for further screening.

Besides, HKAGE invites students of appropriate ages with outstanding performance at “Nurturing the Gifted Scheme” and “Web-based Learning Courses for Gifted/More Able Students (offered by the Education Bureau (EDB) and HKAGE)” to join the screening for HKAGE student membership.

For details, please refer to https://www.hkage.org.hk/en/students/student-membership.

Q10  What are the nomination procedures of the “School Nomination” and “Self Nomination” schemes?

Stage 1 is “HKAGE Online Learning Programmes for Screening”. In September of each year, HKAGE will send out invitation letters to all schools and conduct briefing sessions about the overall arrangements for the nomination scheme. From September to October, interested students can apply for the HKAGE Online Learning Programmes for Screening. Then, from November to January of the following year, students should complete the HKAGE Online Learning Programmes for Screening with a pass to be entitled for nomination.

Stage 2 is “Submit Nomination Profiles”. In February, HKAGE will conduct briefing sessions for the arrangements for submission of nomination profiles and operation of the Online Nomination Platform (ONP). Then, from February to March, School Coordinators and students’ legal guardians can submit nomination profiles for further screening through the ONP. HKAGE will screen the nomination profiles from April to May. Finally, School Coordinators and students’ legal guardians can check nomination results and help students to register as student members through the ONP in June.

For details, please refer to https://www.hkage.org.hk/en/students/student-membership.

Q11  What are the screening criteria for HKAGE student membership?

Screening by HKAGE is based on Dr Joseph Renzulli’s Three-Ring Conception of Giftedness, taking into consideration whether the student could benefit from the HKAGE programme provision.

  1. Above Average Abilities:
    General abilities: processing information, integrating experiences, and abstract thinking
    Specific abilities: the capacity to acquire knowledge and perform in an activity

  1. Creativity: 
    Fluency, flexibility, and originality of thought, an openness to experience, sensitivity to stimulations, and a willingness to take risks

  1. Task Commitment:
    Perseverance, endurance, hard work, self-confidence, perceptiveness and a special fascination with a special subject

Source: https://gifted.uconn.edu/

Q12  Is it a must to provide IQ test results as an evidence of gifted?

IQ test results is not a must-provide item for nomination.

Q13  Does the HKAGE provide any psychometric assessment to identify potential gifted students?

The HKAGE has launched a new Assessment on the Affective (Social-Emotional) Needs of Gifted Students, and psychometric assessment service has been temporarily suspended. For details, please refer to our Consultation and Assessment Centre.

Q14  How do student members sustain their student membership?

From 2018 to 19 school year and onwards, all newly admitted student members are required to successfully complete a designed programme within the first review period to sustain their membership. The first review period is from the admission date to 31st August of the following school year.
After the first review period, all student members must complete at least 1 programme or activity in each school year to sustain their membership. Review period runs from 1st September each year to 31st August of the following year.
For details, please refer to https://www.hkage.org.hk/en/students/student-membership.

Q15  What services does the HKAGE offer?
The HKAGE’s four major Divisions, namely Academic Programme Development Division, Advanced Learning Experiences Division, Affective Education Division and Research Division provide the stakeholders with information and a wide range of programmes and services.

Academic Programme Development Division
Offering high quality and challenging programmes by collaborating with both local and overseas universities, non-governmental organisations and professional individuals and teachers.

Advanced Learning Experiences Division
Providing challenging and vigorous learning opportunities for the highly gifted students who are ready to take up new challenges.

Affective Education Division
Advocating affective development through a range of learning experiences and services for gifted students, parents and gifted education practitioners.

Consultation and Assessment Centre

Free Frontline Services

The hotline and email support is provided by trained Guidance Counsellors who give parents free information and advice.

Hotline 3940 0106
Operating Hours Mon to Fri (closed on public holidays)
11:00 am – 12:30 pm ; 2:30 pm – 4:30 pm
Email consultation@hkage.org.hk

Charged Second-line Services

i. Assessment on the Affective (Social-Emotional) Needs of Gifted Students
This assessment addresses issues relating to areas of social, emotional or behavioural functioning.

ii. Counselling Service
Charged counselling service is provided for parents and gifted children whose conditions are complex or with special needs.

For further details, please visit https://www.hkage.org.hk/en/parents/Consultation or contact us on 3940 0104.

Research Division

The Research Division (RD) is committed to providing quality gifted education information by conducting regular surveys, publishing regular statistical reports, conducting programme evaluations, studying various gifted education issues in a clear and meticulous manner so as to enhance understanding of gifted students and their needs, and conducting collaborative researches with gifted education stakeholders. Research results are shared via different media and channels so as to increase public awareness and understanding of gifted education in Hong Kong.
Q16  Are the courses and services provided free of charge?

Almost all courses are provided free of charge. Only second line programmes and services for parents and teachers are subject to a modest fee.

Where appropriate, the HKAGE offers remission of fees to those who can demonstrate real need so that no person is excluded from benefitting from its services.

For details, please visit our website (www.hkage.org.hk) or call the Division concerned for further information.

Q17  How can I enroll for a programme?

For Students
All our programmes are exclusive for student members of the HKAGE. They can apply for various courses and programmes through the online platform: https://www.hkage.org.hk/en/students/student.

We organise talks, competitions and other learning activities for non-student members.

For Parents
Parents who work closely with gifted students are welcome to enrol for workshops and seminars via our online platform. Please visit our website frequently as all information of the forthcoming programmes is available on the website of the HKAGE.

For details, please visit https://www.hkage.org.hk/en/parent-programme/upcoming-events.

For Teachers
Thematic seminars and workshops are conducted to equip participants with the knowledge and skills to meet the learning needs of gifted students.

For details, please visit https://www.hkage.org.hk/en/teacher-programme/upcoming-events.

Q18  Are there any teacher training opportunities on giftedness offered to international schools?

Yes, we offer thematic seminars/ workshops for education practitioners. For more details, please refer to https://www.hkage.org.hk/en/teachers/outreach.

Q19  As a secondary teacher, where can I get the information on nurturing twice-exceptional child?

You can find the related information from the Nurturing the Gifted (Parent) and Inspire (Teacher) magazines : https://www.hkage.org.hk/en/publications/newsletter.

Q20  Can the HKAGE deliver gifted programmes to schools on request?

We deliver outreach gifted programmes to parents and thematic programmes for teachers. For more details, please refer to https://www.hkage.org.hk/en/teachers/outreach.

Q21  Where can I obtain more information about the HKAGE?

For further enquiry, please refer to https://www.hkage.org.hk/en/contact-us.

Q22  What are the operating hours of the HKAGE?
Office and Hotlines
Monday - Friday: 9:00am - 12:30pm; 1:30pm - 5:30pm
Closed on Saturdays, Sundays and public holidays

Consultation Hotline
Monday - Friday: 11:00am - 12:30pm; 2:30pm - 4:30pm
Closed on Saturdays, Sundays and public holidays
Q23  I have some questions on student, teacher, and parent related issues.
Please refer to the webpage of the division concerned on the HKAGE website: https://www.hkage.org.hk/en/contact-us.