Skip to content
Introducing HKU’s New FinTech Interdisciplinary MOOCs


On HKU FinTech Day, Professor Douglas Arner from HKU Law Faculty announced the milestone of the Introduction to FinTech course and the HKU FinTech Professional Certificate comprising three interdisciplinary courses from three different faculties at HKU.

The first course, Introduction to FinTech was launched by the Faculty of Law in May 2018, and the upcoming two courses FinTech Ethics and Risks and Blockchain and FinTech are currently under development by the Faculty of Business and Economics and the Faculty of Engineering, respectively.

Introduction to FinTech MOOC Milestone
Professor Arner said it has been an exciting year for Introduction to FinTech MOOC. Today, the course has over 32,000 enrolled learners from 198 countries, which means there are learners from literally every country in the world. The course has a far and wide reach to learners, bridging the gaps in fundamental knowledge of FinTech for practitioners in financial services, legal and technology industries, students, and interested learners across various disciplines.
We anticipate that the two new MOOCs will continue to bring exciting news when released in 2019.

The short video of Professor Arner’s talk

Meet the Instructors of the Two New FinTech MOOCs
fintechProfessor Arner tells the audience about the upcoming new MOOCs

Professor Douglas Arner introduced the two new MOOCs, FinTech Ethics and Risks and Blockchain and FinTech, and the chief course instructors of the two courses, Dr David Bishop and Dr David Lee from the Faculty of Business and Economics, and Dr SM Yiu from the Department of Computer Science of Faculty of Engineering, respectively.

FinTech Ethics and Risks MOOC
Dr David Bishop and Dr David Lee presented the official course trailer of the FinTech Ethics and Risks course and talked about the ideas behind putting together the world’s first course in FinTech ethics.

The Chief Instructors of FinTech Ethics and Risks MOOC, Dr David Bishop and Dr David Lee from the Faculty of Business and Economics.

Click here to view the official course trailer

David Bishop mentioned that some people perceive this MOOC as neither “Fin” nor “Tech” and stressed that “the way the course is going to be is to focus on the WHY; we have experts in the technology side and the legal side who will focus on the HOW, and explain the process, the nature and implementation of the FinTech technologies.”

David Bishop said that he and David Lee approached the course not from the standpoint of experts: “This course for us is as much an intellectual journey as it is for those who have come along this ride with us. We will correspond with and put ourselves in the room with the experts and try to ask them really hard questions.”

He supplemented that as far as he knew, “there isn’t a website or a course in the world that focuses on FinTech ethics. In this course, we will ask the tough questions to ensure that they have a proper sense of morality, ethics, legislation and enforcement in place, so that we are able to unleash those tools in the most efficient and effective way possible while simultaneously reaching the goals that we have.”

“The objective of the course is not to bring us to a specific set of knowledge but instead to carry a simultaneous journey together. Learners join us as we consider these tough questions that help shape our collective future,” said David Bishop.

The short video of Dr David Bishop’s talk about the new MOOC.

Blockchain and FinTech MOOC

Currently, Dr SM Yiu from the Department of Computer Science of the Faculty of Engineering is also driving efforts for putting together HKU’s first Blockchain and FinTech MOOC.

Dr SM Yiu gave the audience 9 questions to decide whether they should join HKU’s upcoming Blockchain and FinTech MOOC, which will be released later in 2019.
Let’s try these 9 questions now and see whether the MOOC is for you too!

Dr SM Yiu gave 9 questions to the audience to test their knowledge on blockchain

  • Q1: Blockchain = bitcoin (or cyber currencies)
  • Q2: A cyber currency exchange is necessary for blockchain to work correctly
  • Q3: What is the role of each cryptographic operation (e.g. hash)?
  • Q4: Why we want to chain the transactions together?
  • Q5: Who are miners and why we need miners?
  • Q6: Blockchain is very secure and can 100% protect your privacy?
  • Q7: Given an application, judge if it is best-fit for blockchain?
  • Q8: Do you know how bitcoin is used by criminals (the “evil” side)?
  • Q9: The differences between different blockchain platforms?

If you do not know the answers to any of the questions, you will find the answers in the 6 modules of the Blockchain and FinTech MOOC. You will also learn about blockchain design and architecture, industrial applications, as well as the new opportunities, security issues, and illegal activities.

Module 1: Blockchain Technology: Why, What and How
– Why we need blockchain and design issues: security, privacy, integrity

Module 2: Technological & Cryptographic Elements in Blockchain
– Introduce the technical components (suitable for layman)

Module 3: Blockchain Platforms
– The pros and cons of these platforms

Module 4: Blockchain Applications
– Characteristics of best-fit applications in the real case studies

Module 5: Limitations of Blockchain
– Uncover the limitations of blockchain

Module 6: The “Evil” Sides of Blockchain
– Examples of how criminals use blockchain in illegal activities

The short video of Dr SM Yiu’s introduction of the new MOOC