The Policy Address proposed to develop self-financing universities into "universities of applied sciences", with the aim of elevating the status of vocational education to degree-awarding level. In response to media enquiries regarding existing applied degree programmes, Caritas Institute of Higher Education pointed out that the graduation qualifications of current applied degree programmes are the same as equivalent degree programmes offered by universities.
Dr Carol Chan Wai-yi, Associate Dean (Education and Quality Assurance) of the School of Health Sciences at CIHE, said "Both applied degree programmes and Bachelor of Nursing (Honour) degree programmes are regulated by the Nursing Council of Hong Kong in terms of curriculum content, clinical placement hours and assessment standards. Graduates of applied degree programmes, just like those of the traditional five-year Bachelor of Nursing (Honour) degree programme, will ultimately obtain registered nurse licenses upon graduation."
The related media coverage is in Chinese version only