Study in Singapore

Are you an Indian student looking for the details about the abroad countries which offer excellent education and career development? Check the page to get all the information about Singapore, its education systems, courses offered, career opportunities and lot more.


Singapore is a premier education hub in Asia, offering a rich and diverse mix of educational services to the students. Singapore has become one of the best destinations for the foreign students looking for high-quality education.

Education System in Singapore

The major educational institutions in Singapore are:
  • Approved Private Education Organizations
  • Kindergarten/Childcare Centre registered with MSF
  • Foreign System Schools
  • Institutes of Technical Education
  • Government/Government-Aided/Independent Schools
  • Polytechnics and Universities

Private education organizations

In Singapore, a vibrant variety of private schools offer a broad range of programs. There are private commercial, IT, Fine Arts and language schools' in Singapore. Private schools offer students the opportunity to attain international certification in Singapore's comfortable and affordable environment.

Under graduate degrees

The Private Institutes offers a degree in partnership with popular universities from countries such as United States, United Kingdom and Australia. These universities confer the degree and certification. Hence, private institutes provide students with the opportunity to attain qualifications from these foreign universities whilst studying in Singapore's affordable and comfortable environment.

Bachelor's degree

The Private Institutes offer bachelor's degree programs in almost every subject. The duration of the bachelor's course is 3 years to 4 years. The admission requirements vary from programme to programme. The SAT, TOEFL and IELTS are not compulsory for admission. The students completed their 12th or 11th Std. or equivalent to Singapore A level can apply for the bachelor degree in Private Institutes.

Diploma in government polytechnics in Singapore

A Polytechnics education is a popular route in Singapore for student inclined towards practice-oriented studies at the diploma level. They offer a wide range of courses such as Engineering, Business Studies, Mass Communication, Design and Info-Communications. Specialized courses such as Optometry, Marine Engineering, Nautical Studies, Nursing, Early Childhood Education and Film are also available for those who wish to forge a specific career path. All courses are conducted in the English medium and follow a credit accumulation modular system that allows students to pursue and complete their courses at their own pace. It takes 3 years to complete a full-time diploma course. Students completed classes 10th or 12th are eligible for the course.

List of some major polytechnics in Singapore:
  • Singapore polytechnic
  • Ngee Ann polytechnic
  • Temasek Polytechnic
  • Nanyang Polytechnic
  • Republic polytechnic

Under Graduate Study in Singapore's Public University

Universities and colleges in Singapore offer undergraduate programs in many areas including Applied and pure sciences, Business and Management, Computer science and IT, Creative Arts and Design, Engineering, Health and Medicine, Law, Humanities, Travel and Hospitality etc. The students can select the subject or their area of study as per their interest.

Bachelor's degree: Bachelor's degree programmes are offered in almost every subject ranging from the pure science, economics to engineering, architecture and business management. Admission to the Public University is competitive, primarily based on an academic profile. International students interested in pursuing undergraduate studies in Public University must have completed at least 12 years of general education in order to be considered for admission. The duration of the bachelor's course is 3 years to 4 years. Some of the programmes require SAT for Undergraduate programmes but this differs with each university

Post Graduate Study in Singapore's Public University

If you're thinking of doing your postgraduate degree in Singapore, the options are aplenty. Apart from the private institutions, the three universities, Nanyang Technological University (NTU) National University of Singapore, Singapore Management University offer quality Masters Degrees and PhD programmes in various disciplines. A typical Master's degree for a full-time student is one-two years in length, whilst a PhD may take between two-five years to complete.

Graduate degrees:

There are three main types of challenging graduate programmes in the Public Universities: Doctoral (PhD), Masters' and the Graduate Diploma.


All doctoral programmes are primarily research-based. The duration may range from 3 years to 5 years. Students can take admission for a PhD course after completion of their master's degree. PhD students need to submit a research proposal. The student needs to appear for GRE/GMAT & TOEFL/IELTS exams for admissions.


Master degree programmes are primarily designed to prepare students for the practice of the profession. The duration of graduate courses may range from one year to two years depending upon the university. The various Master degrees are MA, MS, MBA, MFA etc. Generally, an applicant must have at least a good bachelor's degree and two years' work experience. In addition, an applicant whose native language or medium of instruction for the bachelor's degree was not English must have a good TOEFL(Test of English as Foreign Language score) or IELTS (International English Language Testing System) score. An applicant applying for admission in engineering, computer science, science should also preferably have good GRE scores.

List of public universities in Singapore
  • National University of Singapore
  • Nanyang Technological University
  • Singapore Management University
  • Nanyang Institute of Management
  • National University of Singapore, Institute of Systems Science
  • Singapore University of Technology and Design

Admission to the Institutions in Singapore

Singapore is ranked among the world's top ten leaders in the subject areas of such as law, computer science, mechanical engineering, accounting and finance. The admissions process is handled directly by individual institutions in Singapore. The academic year in Singapore begins in August and runs through until about May. The main intake period for government-funded universities is around August, with some having a mid-year intake in February. Polytechnics typically have their main intakes in April and September, whilst private institutions have multiple intake dates depending on the programme. As courses are taught in English, students are required to prove their English language proficiency, via an IELTS, TOEFL or PTE test score. Average IELTS score accepted by universities of Singapore is 6.5. You need to check for the tests accepted by the universities as different universities demand different tests. SAT Subject tests are required by some universities for specific courses in universities of Singapore. Subject tests are offered in areas like Literature, History, Mathematics, Sciences and Foreign Languages. GRE (Graduate Record Examination) and GMAT (Graduate Management Aptitude Test) are a measure of a student's aptitude for postgraduate courses in Singapore. Admission to Singapore universities is highly competitive. Academic achievements are the most highly regarded component of your application.

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About Singapore

About country

Singapore, also known to be the garden city is an exciting city at the heart of Asia. It is the world's fourth leading financial Centre and it plays a major role in international trade and finance. Singapore has world-class infrastructure and has its place among the world's premier global cities. Living conditions in Singapore are amongst the best in Asia.

Geography of Singapore

Singapore, officially the Republic of Singapore is an island country lying almost 137 kilometres north of the equator. The country covers an area of 704 sq. km. It is located in Southeastern Asia, islands between Malaysia and Indonesia. Its location is at the southern tip of the Malaysian peninsula. Singapore has more than 50% of its area covered by greenery and with over 50 major parks and 4 nature reserves. Its climate is warm and humid year round, with the temperature almost never dropping below 20°C.

Language of Singapore

Singapore's official languages are English, Mandarin, Malay and Tamil. In addition to these, there are more than 20 other languages spoken in Singapore. English is widely spoken.

Quick Facts

Currency of Singapore

Singapore's currency is the Singapore Dollar (SGD), which is divided into 100 cents. The US and Australian Dollars, Yen and British Pound are also accepted in the larger shopping centres. Credit cards can also be used. ATMs are widely distributed and banks advance cash against the major credit cards.

Transportation in Singapore

Getting around Singapore is easy. The public transportation system is extremely easy to use.

By rail

The MRT (Mass Rapid Transit) and LRT (Light Rail Transit) are trains of Singapore's transit system. They are a cheap and very reliable mode of transportation.

By bus

Buses connect various corners of Singapore but are slower and harder to use.

By taxi

Taxis use meters and are reasonably priced and honest. If you are in a group of 3 or 4, it's sometimes cheaper and faster to take a taxi than the MRT.

By car

Car rental is not a popular option in Singapore. Roads in Singapore are in excellent condition and driving habits are generally good.

Admission Process in Singapore

How to apply for student visa to Singapore

Indian students who wish to study abroad in Singapore will need a visa. The first step to get the visa is to find your institution and get registered with it. Identify your area of interest and the institution that can provide you with the best. A foreigner is required to apply for a Student's Pass if he/she has been accepted by an educational institution to pursue full-time studies in Singapore. Students can apply for a visa using the Student's Pass Online Application & Registration (SOLAR+) online system after their host institution has registered them with it. If your visa application is successful, you will be issued a new SOLAR+ application number that can be used to apply for a Student Pass from your home country. You'll also need to pay an additional visa fee when you collect your Student's pass from the Immigration & Checkpoints Authority (ICA) in Singapore. Once you complete the forms in the online application system; your host institution will lodge your application to the ICA for you. If your application is successful, you'll need to complete the formality of going to an ICA office and collecting your Student Pass yourself. Depending on the type of educational institution that a foreigner is intending to study at, the requirements and procedures for applying for a Student's Pass will differ.

Types of educational institutions in Singapore are Edu Trusted private education organization (PEO) registered with the Council for Private Education (CPE), Institute of Higher Learning (IHL), Government/ Government-aided/ Independent. All the foreigners except the holder of Dependant's Pass/Immigration Exemption Order holder who wishes to study in these institutions must apply for a student pass. For the application of a Student's Pass, an applicant must be accepted into an approved full-time course.

SOLAR+ (Student's Pass Online Application and Registration+)

This facility allows authorized schools and registered students to apply for a Student's Pass for the foreign student electronically via the SOLAR+ system. Applications are to be submitted through the institutions via the Student's Pass Online Application & Registration+ (SOLAR+) system at least one month before the commencement of course.
An authorized School will use this system to apply for a Student's Pass for an Indian student who intends to pursue full-time studies in the school.
Indian students who wish to pursue full-time studies in these institutions can use this system to submit eForm 16 and other relevant information required for the application.
A local sponsor can use this to submit eForm 39S and eForm 39Q and to sponsor a foreign student's application for a Student's Pass.

The processing time is 5 full working days provided all required documents are submitted. For Indians who require a visa to enter Singapore, the processing time is 10 full working days. However, some cases may take a longer time to process. A processing fee is required for every application submitted to ICA. An issuance fee will also be collected for every student's pass issued and a further multiple-entry visa fee for visa required nationals will also be collected. The fee is non-refundable regardless of the outcome of the application or if the application is withdrawn after submission. For submission via SOLAR+, payment can be made by credit/debit card or internet banking.

Student Visa Application Process

Travelling to Singapore

Each time you visit Singapore, you will need to fill an immigration card. Keep it carefully after immigration clearance, for you have to return it when you exit. Most nationalities can enter Singapore without a visa. Entry permit duration depends on nationality and entry point. The mode of travel can be selected depending on your country and convenience.

By Air

Singapore is one of Southeast Asia's largest aviation hub and hence the easiest way to enter Singapore is by air. Being an important gateway to Southeast Asia, mostly all major international airlines fly into Singapore.

By Train

Singapore is connected to Malaysia, Johor Bahru and Kuala Lumpur by rail, with a route to Bangkok. There are three trains per day, including a sleeper.

By Water

Being an island country, Singapore offers regular ferry services to Tanjung Belungkor in Malaysia and Riau Islands in Indonesia. Star cruises offer a lifetime experience and are a great way to reach Singapore.

Visa of Singapore

Indian students who wish to study in Singapore need a visa to enter the country. Application for the student visa is a simple process. The application process is linked with your university application. Visa applications may be submitted online using ICA's Submission of Application for Visa Electronically (SAVE). Institutes in Singapore will file the Singapore student pass for Indian application behalf of students to Singapore immigration and checkpoint authority (ICA). Singapore student pass application Fee varies from institute to institute.


Why study in Singapore

Singapore is a modern, vibrant nation with an excellent education system which provides numerous opportunities for international students who wish to study abroad. The economic and social development, the quality of its universities and the business infrastructure offering good employment are the factors that attract Indian students to this financial hub of the Asia Pacific region. Singapore is a good option for Indian students to study abroad as the climate conditions, living culture is almost similar to India. Driven by excellence, Singapore education offers a broad base curriculum and global perspective to equip students with the relevant qualification and training. Education is a priority in Singapore and the nation is recognized as a global schoolhouse. Universities of Singapore maintain high standards of teaching and learning, as well as scientific research. The country is ranked among the top ten leaders in various areas of studies. Teaching style in Singapore is systematic, pragmatic and instructional, based on pedagogical traditions from both East and West. There are 34 universities in Singapore, of which six are national. The two best known, the National University of Singapore (NUS) and Nanyang Technological University (NTU) are ranked highly in the QS World University Rankings® 2015/16, offering courses in a wide range of subjects. Another major reason for Indian students attracted to Singapore for higher studies is that it is a safer place with zero tolerance for racism and drugs.

Cost of Living for Students

Cost of Living in Singapore

There is a good reason why Singapore is also referred to as a 'city in the garden'. With lush belts of greenery contributing to the cityscape, Singapore offers a comfortable living environment. The city's hostels, homestays, private and public apartments are unrivalled for their modernity and comfort. The cost of studying in Singapore is not as affordable as other Asian destinations; still, it is reasonable compared to universities in the UK, USA and Australia.

Documents for University Admissions in Singapore

eForm 16

To complete the eForm 16 in SOLAR+, you will need to have the following documents and information:

  1. A notice of registration acknowledgement from the institution where you registered which acknowledging and confirming that they have registered you with the SOLAR+ system.
  2. Passport details: passport number, nationality, date of expiry.
  3. If your parents are Singaporean, or living and working in Singapore, you will need to provide NRIC/ FIN of your parents.
  4. Need to provide your address in Singapore, if applicable.
  5. Your e-mail address.
  6. One recent passport-sized colour photograph that has been taken within the last 3 months.

Once you have completed the form online through SOLAR+, you need to print a copy of it that you will need to submit in person to the Student's Pass Unit (ICA) when you go to pick up your pass. If your application is successful, you will be issued an In-Principle Approval (IPA) letter by your host institution. If you require a visa to enter Singapore, it will be attached to this letter. Your IPA letter will act as a provisional Student's Pass until you collect it from an ICA office.

In some cases, your host university may be authorized by the ICA to issue your Student's Pass on campus. If not, you will need to contact the ICA and make an appointment to collect your pass and submit additional documents.

When you go to collect your pass, you have to take with you the following documents:

  1. A valid passport and a photocopy of the passport photo page
  2. The Disembarkation/Embarkation card granted upon entry into Singapore
  3. One recent passport-sized colour photograph taken against a white background
  4. A printout of the eForm 16 submitted through SOLAR that has been signed by you
  5. A photocopy of your IPA
  6. A medical report no older than three months
  7. Relevant fees

Scholarships to study in Singapore

The universities in Singapore provide different scholarships to the students with an excellent academic background. Some of the scholarships are listed below. For more details about the scholarships, you can contact the university in which you are planning to study. Different universities provide different kinds of scholarships. Scholarships will be offered by the government, by the universities or by some private organizations. Scholarships are available for undergraduate courses at NUS, NTU and SMU on the basis of academic merit and are available through open competition.

  • Commonwealth Scholarships and Fellowships for UK Citizens: Asian scholarships for UK students to study in Singapore at PhD level.
  • DST A*STAR Call for Singapore-India Joint Research Grants: Grants for Indian researchers within the fields of science and technology to study in Singapore. Sponsored by the Indian government and A*Star Singapore.
  • Lee Kong Chian Graduate Scholarships: Graduate scholarships for research students at the National University of Singapore (NUS).
  • NTU University Engineering Scholarship: Scholarships for undergraduate engineering students to study in Singapore at Nanyang Technological University (NTU).
  • Singapore International Graduate Award (SINGA): PhD scholarships to study in Singapore in the fields of science and engineering at selected Singaporean universities. The award provides financial support for up to 4 years of PhD studies including full tuition fees, monthly stipend, settlement allowance, and airfare grant.
  • TUM Asia QS Scholarship: study abroad scholarships for graduate students at Germany's Technische Universität München (TUM) branch campus in Singapore. Part of the QS Scholarships fund.
  • INSEAD- Syngenta MBA Scholarships: This scholarship is offered for Students with excellent academic achievement, leadership potential, aptitude for business and financial management.
  • Science & Technology Undergraduate Scholarship from NUS: This scholarship is offered for students from Asian countries doing under-graduate degree courses in the field of Computers, Engineering or Science.
  • Singapore Millennium Foundation Scholarships: This scholarship is for PhD Students or post-doctoral students who have gained admission in either NTU or NUS or any of the Singapore's Research Institutes.

Working during study in Singapore

If you are a full-time Indian student pursuing a degree at a university in Singapore, you are allowed to work part-time for not more than 16 hours a week during the school year and full time during vacation. There is no need to apply for additional permission from the Ministry of Manpower if your work hours are within the permitted limit. However, for being eligible for these work rights you need to be enrolled in any of the institutions approved by the Ministry of Manpower (MOM).

Post - study work rights in Singapore

Most of the institutions in Singapore offer internships as part of their curriculum. Many of them have tie-ups with reputed corporate to train their students and provide them hands-on experience. At the end of the course, you are likely to get selected by these companies. To work full time after graduation, you need to apply for either an employment pass (E Pass), work permit or a Service Pass (S Pass) based on various factors such as your level of skills, education qualifications and work experience. There is also an Employment Pass Eligibility Certificate (EPEC) which allows you to stay in Singapore for up to one year to facilitate your job search. To be eligible for an EPEC, you need to possess selected university qualifications or a skilled migrant visa.
For more details about the visa formalities, you can contact Singaporean embassies in India which are located in Mumbai, Chennai and New Delhi.

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