In order to help students gain a better understanding of the courses, the application procedure and student life on campus, we have prepared answers to the following questions which are frequently asked by students.
Questions on General Course Information
What are the differences among the similar courses offered by the five polytechnics?
An example of similar diploma courses offered by the Polytechnic is as follows:
Mechatronics and Robotics (SP)
Mechatronics Engineering (NYP)
The contents of these courses are largely similar. However, there are slight differences in the topics covered and options offered.
Do any of the polytechnic courses offer specialisations and options?
Yes. Most polytechnic courses offer specialisations and options for students to choose in their second or third year of study based on their interests and results obtained in their studies.
Can a student learn a foreign language in any of the Polytechnics?
Foreign language courses such as French, German, Japanese, Bahasa Indonesia and others are offered by the Polytechnics.
Questions on Applications & Admissions
When can GCE "O" Level students apply for courses at the polytechnics?
Applicants with GCE "O" Level qualification can apply for polytechnic courses through the JAE. Applications are open to eligible candidates on the day of release of the GCE "O" Level results and will remain open for 5
Can students use results of their GCE "O" Level examinations taken at different sittings to apply for polytechnic courses?
they can but not from more than two sittings.
Will students who have completed the five-year Normal Stream be eligible to
apply for courses offered by the polytechnics?
Selection of candidates applying for polytechnic courses is based on candidates'
GCE "O" Level examination results. Students whose GCE "O" Level results meet the
minimum entry requirements of the courses they are interested in can apply for
Can students reserve a place in the course if they wish to work or do
their National Service first?
The Polytechnics' policy is to reserve places only for successful applicants,
who have been enlisted for full-time National Service, for course commencement
in the academic year closest to their ORD.
Are there any financial assistance schemes for students who face financial
Yes. Each Polytechnic has a number of financial schemes for which
students can apply. Please see the section on Fees and Financial Assistance
How many students are admitted to the polytechnics each year?
The student intake for polytechnic courses may vary from year to year
depending on the projected manpower requirements of Singapore and the intake
capacity of the courses offered.
Are there any medical or special requirements for entry into polytechnic
Successful applicants must be certified physically and mentally fit to
pursue the course offered. They must submit a medical report, which must comply
with the Polytechnics' requirement, and an X-ray report from a registered
medical practitioner. Students of Republic Polytechnic will be required to do a
declaration of their physical and mental fitness in place of a medical report.
Successful applicants of the Outdoor & Adventure Learning course of Republic
Polytechnic are also required to submit a
medical report completed by a registered medical practitioner. Students of Ngee Ann
Polytechnic, other than those of the Child
Psychology & Early Education,
Early Childhood Education, Health Sciences (Nursing) and Psychology
& Community Services
courses, are required to complete a Health Record form in lieu of a medical
Questions on Campus Life
What is campus life like?
The campus environment is conducive to students' intellectual, physical
and social development. Leadership qualities are developed through
leadership training programmes and participation in various clubs and societies
under the Students' Union. Involvement in community service is encouraged
so that students will learn to care and share. There are programmes to
promote healthy lifestyle through sports and healthy eating habits. Other
talks, seminars and workshops covering a wide range of topics also prepare
students for successful careers.
How are the polytechnics' academic terms structured?
The academic year for the 5 polytechnics is structured as follows:
From 15 Apr 2013 to 20 Apr 2014
Apr 2013 to 20 Apr 2014
all the polytechnics incorporate industrial training/attachments as
compulsory components of the
Industrial orientation/training/attachment is a compulsory component of the
polytechnic curriculum. This is usually scheduled during the second or
third year of study.
How long is the industrial training/attachment period?
Work attachments are included as part of the practical curriculum and this
can vary from the usual 6 - 8 weeks to 6 months in certain courses. These
attachments are with industry for job exposure and training during their second
or third year of study,
except students of Republic Polytechnic, where an intensive in-house educational
programme is conducted for industrial orientation.
What is the average time a polytechnic student spends on campus everyday?
The time a student spends in the Polytechnic varies from course to course. On
average it is about 25-30 hours, or 25-40 hours in Republic Polytechnic, a
week is spent attending lectures, tutorials, practical or other
educational activities. In addition, many students remain on campus after
classes for sports, other recreational activities and self-study.
Is it compulsory for a student to be a member of the Students' Union/clubs and participate in the activities?
All students of a polytechnic are members of the Students' Union of that
polytechnic. They can be members of the clubs and societies so that they will be
able to widen their social life on campus.
Do polytechnic students participate in national tournaments?
Yes. Besides participating in the national competitions, polytechnic
sportsmen and sportswomen also take part in the Institute-Varsity-Polytechnic
Games, a sort of mini-Olympics for the tertiary institutions.
Questions on Examinations
How are students assessed at the Polytechnics?
Continuous assessments, projects, tests and semestral examinations would be
to assess the academic performance of the students.
How many examinations are there in an academic year?
There are two examination periods per year, one in August/September/October and
the other in February/March. At Republic Polytechnic, however, continuous
assessment forms the basis of measuring student achievement.
If students fail their examinations, will they be given a second chance?
Students who are unsuccessful in an examination may be required to repeat the
modules where they have not achieved the required standard, provided they are
not dismissed under the dismissal criteria.
Questions on Career Prospects & Further Education
What will be the career entry level for diploma holders?
Upon graduation, polytechnic diploma holders can start their career as
technologists or middle-management executives. The career prospects are very
promising as long as they perform well and have gained relevant working
What are the chances for upgrading after completing the diploma studies?
Graduates can pursue advanced diploma courses, post/specialist diploma courses,
professional courses and certificate courses conducted by the polytechnics and
other educational or professional institutions. After some working experience,
graduates may also consider further studies in the local or overseas
Questions on where to find more information
Where can students find out more detailed information on the courses offered
by the polytechnics?
For detailed information on courses offered by the polytechnics, such as
subjects or areas of study, students can refer to the prospectus of each
polytechnic. Copies of the prospectus can be found in their school library or
the public libraries, or can be purchased directly from the respective
polytechnics. Students can also access the on-line prospectus at their
If students have any queries on the courses, whom should they contact?
They can consult the career guidance teachers of their school.