Is Singapore the best place to get a degree?

A world-class education system and a wealth of study options make Singapore an alluring destination for international students.

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By Ray Campbell

The growing popularity of studying abroad has created extensive opportunities for students who want to explore the world and immerse themselves in a new culture. Over the last decade, Singapore has cemented its place as one of the top study destinations for many students worldwide. Its allure lies in its diverse communities, towering skyscrapers, and its emergence as a jewel of modernity in Southeast Asia. 

Singapore is dripping with culture and abundant with attractions and experiences that appeal to international students. However, the real reason why Singapore is so frequently selected as a study abroad destination is its educational system. 

Singapore has one of the best educational systems in the world. It consistently tops the international PISA rankings (the OECD’s Programme for International Student Assessment), a triennial testing study that assesses students’ science, reading, and maths abilities. According to these results, students who study in Singapore are as much as three years ahead of their peers in the United States. 

Not only does Singapore rank highly in terms of primary education, but the Singaporean higher education system has produced outstanding talent that is spearheading success and innovation across the globe. Choosing Singapore as a study abroad location hands students an internationally recognised degree with a hallmark of quality education.

Higher education institutions in Singapore are among the most prestigious in the world

Singapore has some of the best colleges and universities in the world, which rank highly among both research disciplines and student satisfaction. The highest-ranking university in the city-state is the National University of Singapore (NUS) which was selected as one of the top 11 global universities in the QS World University Ranking of 2019. Singapore’s Nanyang Technological University (NTU) was ranked 12th. 

The educational system in Singapore is versatile. Students are given a myriad of choice compared to other countries that limit the enrollment of foreign students to private or public universities. As a student in Singapore, you can study in a public university, private universities, foreign universities, art schools, technical education institutions. Everyone has a shot to get the education they want. 

As a student in Singapore, you also have the opportunity to build a career in one of the most advanced workforces post-graduation. Graduates can apply for work passes and secure a job in Singapore once they finish their studies. 

According to the Ministry of Manpower, international students who study in Singapore can work part-time on a student pass, giving them a chance to earn extra money to support their studies and life in the country. This pass makes students eligible to work limited hours during school time, and unlimited hours during vacation periods. 

What can students expect from studying in Singapore?

Education in Singapore is of the highest quality, which makes it challenging. Students who choose Singapore as a study destination should not expect an easy ride. 

Those who attend Singaporean universities should be prepared to study and put a lot of effort into their studies. According to a study published by Straitstimes, Singapore ranks third globally in time spent on homework. Students enrolled in academic institutions in Singapore devote approximately 9.4 hours on homework every week.

In Singapore, educational institutions put emphasis on everything from attendance to writing tasks, as well as accuracy and dedication. Singaporean international students benefit from a comprehensive schedule, buckets of personal motivation, and an answer to the question: What is proofreading? 

The beginning of a course can be especially hard on a new student. Many students are still adjusting to a new culture and way of life, in some cases, they are also struggling with a new language. Proofreading online services can help with written tasks until they master their language. Foreign arrivals at Singaporean universities often secure affordable proofreading services to help them hit the ground running. This may not be free proofreading, but students need to prioritise their language development to build a platform for academic success. 

What requirements do international students need to meet to study in Singapore?

Firstly, there’s the matter of the language requirements. The medium of instruction in Singapore’s universities is English, even though the country has four official languages. Universities in Singapore have high language skills requirements. Those without English as a mother tongue have to demonstrate a solid command of the language.

There’s the visa requirement. To study in Singapore, students need either a visa or student pass to enter the country. Those who are accepted into a university of their choice can secure the student visa from the university itself. However, they’ll still have to apply for a student pass at the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority one or two months before the course begins. 

Finally, there’s the tuition matter. When studying abroad, finances are a determining factor for the duration of a student’s stay and where they can afford to study. Therefore, any applicant should check fees required by each program, calculate living expenses in their plan, and narrow down the list to the institutions they can afford to study in.

Ray Campbell is a career advisor who works at a US university. He helps students pick their major, find the perfect career path, find volunteering opportunities, and fill their resumes. Right now, he mostly works on abroad studies and programs, helping students in finding the perfect destination to study in.