Dr Chau received his BSc in Industrial Engineering and Postgraduate Certificate in Psychology at The University of Hong Kong (HKU), and MSc and PhD in psychology at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, USA. He then taught at the Department of Psychology at HKU and was appointed as Warden of University Hall (1996-2006), Associate Dean of the Faculty of Social Sciences (2000-2002), Director of General Education (2002-2015), and Dean of Student Affairs (2005-2015). He is an elected fellow of the Hong Kong Psychological Society.
Dr Chau has served on committees and panels related to secondary and tertiary education. He was appointed to the Council of Hong Kong Metropolitan University (2017-now), and several Government committees or advisory panels related to education, elderly affairs, and environment; and provided voluntary service to a few charities and NGOs on youth development, heritage preservation and arts and culture.