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Academics

Fields of Study: Humanities, Social Sciences, Science, Engineering

At the National University of Singapore, you can take engaging classes in your major with local and international students. As a global university, courses are taught in English by faculty from all over the world. Particular​ fields of note include engineering and computer sciences, biological sciences, environmental studies, social sciences, and South and Southeast Asian studies.

Unique study opportunities

  • Pursue your artistic, athletic, and cultural interests.
  • Access experiential learning programs that take you beyond the classroom.
  • Undertake unique interdisciplinary studies or conduct in-depth research with a local staff member.
  • Learn the art of adventurous inquiry, reflective writing, and critical thinking.

Language

Language of Instruction: English

Language Study: Optional

All coursework is taught in English. If you’re interested in learning a new language, the Center for Language Studies offers courses in 13 languages. These include Southeast Asian languages such as Malay, Tamil, and Bahasa.

Courses and credit

Requirements While Abroad

To successfully complete this program:

  • Take a full-time course of study: Four courses for a total of 24 quarter/16 semester UC units.
  • With four courses, you may take one course per semester for pass/no pass credit. With five courses, you can take two pass/no pass  courses per per semester.

Current Program Courses

NUS courses are called modules. NUS offers undergraduate modules in many disciplines through various faculties or schools including Arts and Social Sciences, Computing, Design and Environment, Engineering, and Science. You will select modules from the non-graduating student module list.

In addition to university courses, you can access the Undergraduate Research Opportunities Programs (UROP) offered by the School of Computing, the Faculty of Engineering, and the Faculty of Science. Predeparture preparation is usually required. You can research the NUS Staff Research Directory System to identify a research supervisor then gain approval from that supervisor to conduct research. 

Course Restrictions

Certain NUS courses or departments have restrictions for exchange students. For a full list of restrictions, visit the module restrictions document on the NUS website.

  • Business courses are not open to undergraduate UCEAP students.
  • Economics, Computer Science, Psychology, Architecture, and Civil Engineering courses are impacted.
  • Due to high demand, NUS will only allow Economics, Computer Science, and Psychology majors to enroll in these courses. You may only be able to enroll in one Economics/Computer Science course, if any. 

Note: Some courses will require you to have the necessary prerequisites before enrolling.

Due to the Singapore student visa restrictions, internships are not possible on this program.

Catalogs and resources

Academic culture

The National University of Singapore emphasizes group projects, field research, and class presentations. In this academic environment, you’ll readily be able to meet other students and embark on a deeper exploration of your academic interests.

Teachers in Singapore are highly respected, and relationships between students and teachers are different from those at UC. Students are expected to be polite, never confrontational or demanding. At the same time, many professors in Singapore have been trained in US and European universities. If you approach professors after class, you’ll likely find them friendly and interested in helping. If you have a difference of opinion or want to make suggestions, speak respectfully with the professor privately, out of class.

You must take all exams at the host university. The exam schedule is not flexible.

Grades

You will earn direct UC credit and grades for all coursework. Final course grades depend heavily on the final exam. Most exams at NUS are two-hour essay exams administered in large halls with up to 2,000 students. Be prepared to write many essays quickly and cogently. Multiple-choice exams are rare. Exams can be either open or closed book. NUS students typically rely on memorization and support their topics with many facts, charts, and graphs. Instructors are not just looking for broad concepts; they want specifics. You can look up past exams on file at the library, study the questions, and request feedback from the teaching staff early in the semester. Exams are graded by examiners, not necessarily the course instructor.

Final assessments may also be based on group projects, presentations, reports, laboratory assignments, research, participation, attendance, and any other criteria relevant to the course. Instructors generally do not give the feedback, evaluation, and explanation of grading that is common at UC.

Fall grades are usually available in late January to early February and spring grades are usually available in early July.