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More Singaporean Students Get to Go to Universities

Quality education in Singapore continues to skyrocket as the Ministry of Education plans to open up more university places this year bringing the number of places at the 6 universities which includes SIM University (UniSIM) and Singapore Institute of Technology (SIT) to 14,000. This amazing plan is said to achieve the government’s target to provide university places for 30% of an age group a lot sooner than expected.

The Announcement on Facebook

The project was even made public by Education Minister Heng Swee Keat on Facebook when he congratulated SIT for officially becoming an autonomous university. Along with that, he notes: “5 year old SIT can confer its own degrees”. It can be recalled that SIT could award only joint degrees with overseas institutions.

Universities to Add Places this Year

Based on the announcement made by the MOE spokesman, only 1 out of 5 polytechnic graduates is expected to win a place in the publicly funded universities this year. Majority of the new varsity places are created from the expansion of SIT (Singapore Institute of Technology) and UniSIM or locally known as SIM University. UniSIM in Clementi is said to add 3 full-time degrees to its current part-time offerings. The courses in marketing, finance and accountancy will offer 200 places. SIT on the other hand will organize its own programmes this year in infrastructure engineering, software development and accountancy. It is set to add another 200 places.

Singapore Schools Add Places this 2014

The year gets even more exciting with the top 4 universities to add places this year – Nanyang Technological University (NTU), National University of Singapore (NUS), Singapore University of Technology and Design (SUTD) and Singapore Management University (SMU). NTU offers about 100 places in Philosophy and Earth Science and 1 course merging engineering with business.  Yale-NUS College is also accommodating more places from 150 last year to 170 this year. SMU and SUTD are also giving dual-degree programmes in technology and management for 45 students.

Education Minister Assures Quality Education

Although this year is a boom to creating more places in many Singapore universities and colleges, Mr. Heng assures that quality will never be compromised. The education minister still wants the students to be able to meet the rigours of the programmes and at the same time make the best of opportunities as the economy continues to develop and becomes more diverse. On his statement, he gave emphasis on SIT and UniSIM’s applied learning approach. He notes the increasing diversity of higher education in these 2 institutions in Singapore.

Mr Heng was firm when he pointed out that there are other ways for young people to build deep skills and knowledge. He advised students to find their passion along with his statement, “If the best path for you is to take some time to work and gain experience – do that”.  By 2020, MOE will press on to offer publicly funded university spaces for 40% of every cohort.

Why Choose SIT and UniSim?

There are sure a lot of highlights to note when it comes to Singapore universities and colleges. But what sets SIT and UniSIM in the center stage is all because of the following:

UniSim

  • One unique feature of UniSIM full-time programmes experience is the civic consciousness among students. Students are trained to initiate projects for a cause. They learn soft skills such as leadership, communication and teamwork through offering public service.
  • Another highlight to note about UniSIM is the modular and flexible pathway for the students on their full-time programmes. In a matter of 4-6 years, students can complete their programmes. They have options to finish their degrees earlier than expected by taking more courses each semester or enrolling to evening classes.
  • They expose students to overseas experience. They allow them to spend 1 semester abroad to study courses in a qualified foreign university or participate in an overseas study mission.
  • They have workshops to guide students to become a better individual. They encourage students to join residential team building and life skills workshops to pick up leadership and organizational skills.
  • They introduce the Common Core scheme which comprises interdisciplinary courses that allow students to detect problems through a broad picture. This strategy doesn’t only nurture student’s diverse viewpoints but also gets them to be aware of the various tools that are important to solve varying problems.

Singapore Institute of Technology

  • They have their own degrees. Last October 24, 2013, SIT announced in a press conference that they would offer their own honours degree programme in Sustainable Infrastructure Engineering, Information and Communications Technology and Accountancy starting AY2014. It also offers its first Master of Engineering Technology in Sustainable Infrastructure as a post-degree option for students who are doing a good performance on their studies.
  • They offer options to finish a degree earlier than expected. In their programme duration, the students of SIT receive an advanced standing from the overseas university partners as most of the applicants received prior relevant education in polytechnic. This helps the students finish their entire degree in just 2 to 2.5 years instead of 3 t0 4 years.
  • SIT has a number of reputable overseas partners. At the moment, SITs has more than 8 university partners which includes those in USA and Europe. Among their top university partners are Newcastle University, Technical University of Munich, University of Glasgow, Trinity College Dublin, The University of Manchester, The Glasgow School of Art, DigiPen Institute of Technology, Wheelock College, University of Liverpool and The Culinary Institute of America (CIA).

Singapore Foreign University Partners

Intro on New Courses Offered

1. Sustainable Infrastructure Engineering

Singapore Institute of Technology defined SIE as a multi-disciplinary degree as it synthesizes the essence of several fundamental engineering disciplines. According to Singapore Institute of Technology website http://www.singaporetech.edu.sg/engineering/bachelor-of-engineering-with-honours-in-sustainable-infrastructure-engineering-land, students will go through a vigorous academic training provided by highly qualified professors while immersing themselves in the land transport industry through work stints with established organisations such as LTA, SMRT, SBS, Keppel Group and Singapore Technologies.

2. Information and Communications Technology

Information and communications Technology (ICT) is often used as an extended synonym for Information Technology but is a more specific term that stresses the role of unified communications and the integration of telecommunications (telephone lines and wireless signals), computers as well as necessary enterprise software, middleware, storage and audio-visual systems which enable users to access, store, transmit, and manipulate information.

Conclusion:

With the extensive efforts of MOE to continually design plans to make education top-notch, Singapore is never far from becoming the best country to take up almost all possible degree. The addition of places this year to top colleges and universities is yet another milestone not only for students who hope to enrol to their dream degree but also to parents who are willing to offer their utmost support to send their children to quality schools.

Indeed, there’s so much to admire about Singapore’s education system.

 

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