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Looking for a career abroad? Head for S'pore

Just a five-hour flight away from India, Singapore offers high quality education in a multi-cultural environment.

delhi Updated: May 31, 2007 17:34 IST

Just a five-hour flight away from India, Singapore offers high quality education in a multi-cultural environment.

The country's USP

As an education destination, Singapore scores on offering world-class education in a cosmopolitan yet an Asian setting. Noted institutes like France’s INSEAD and the Chicago Graduate School of Business operate in Singapore as well.

“In addition, our local universities, NUS (National University of Singapore), NTU (Nanyang Technological University) and SMU (Singapore Management University) are also well recognised in the Asia Pacific. As such, we believe our vision to be a global schoolhouse will be achievable,” says Kenneth Lim, Area Director, Singapore Tourism Board (STB), which also promotes the country’s education.

Singapore is only about a five-hour flight from anywhere in India. And it is culturally close to the subcontinent due to its ethnic Indian citizens. The city-state boasts a safe and secure environment to boot. “In summary, Singapore's thriving economy, high quality of education as well as excellent entertainment options would be a ideal choice for Indian students to pursue their studies in,” says Lim.

Hot for what?

Most Indian students go for subjects such as Business Management, Engineering, Biosciences and Hospitality. Arts and Design courses are also gaining popularity among pupils. Top institutes STB says that it does not have India-specific enrolment figures of Singaporean institutes as the data is “protected”.

Information highway

Semester commences: the academic year generally commences in July/August at public universities. Semesters vary for different universities/institutes; some universities offer a third or summer term over the long vacation period to allow students to take additional courses for credit.

When to apply: begin in Class XII for admission to the next year's academic session. You must avoid submitting applications in a rush close to the deadline.

How to apply: apply directly to the educational institution. Local universities accept online applications; some will, however, want to interview you or give you a placement test. Upon acceptance, you will be sent a letter of offer. Sign the acceptance form and return it before the closing date.

Application processing time

: the offer letter generally comes in June for the session beginning in August.

Application docket:

the application docket contents vary from one institute to another. You may also be asked to produce General Certificate of Secondary Education (GCSE), TOEFL or IELTS scores.

Tuition fees: for students who receive a Singapore Ministry of Education tuition grant, the fees are pegged at SG$2,000 for diploma programmes and SG $ 6,720-7,700 a year for nonlab-based undergraduate programmes in public universities.

Tuition cost for medicine and dentistry programmes is about SG$17,820 a year. Postgraduate programme fees ranges from SG$4,730 to SG$25,000. MBA programmes cost from SG$12,000 to SG$81,000 per annum.

Cost of living: housing and living expenses depend on requirements, ranging from SG $ 750-2000 a month which includes accommodation, food, telecommunications and other utilities.

Scholarships/grant: the Ministry of Education Tuition Grant is applicable to UG students at universities and to diploma students at polytechnics. This means international students can study at “highly subsidised” rates, which come to 65 to 80 per cent of the full tuition fees.

Student visa: those aspiring to study full-time in Singapore need to apply for a Student's Pass and visa (if applicable) from the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA). Applicants who require a visa must submit their Student's Pass applications at least two months before their programme starts.

Part-time jobs: full time undergraduates at polytechnics and universities are allowed to work part time for up to 16 hours a week during school terms. However, they need to take permission from the institute’s student's liaison office. During vacations, they are permitted to work full time as Singapore’s Ministry of Manpower has exempted them from applying for work permits.