TOP QUESTIONS

  1. Does A*STAR, NTU, NUS, or SUTD offer PhD scholarships for international/foreign students?
  2. Can I apply if I do not have GRE / IELTS / TOEFL / SAT I & II / GATE scores?
  3. Can I apply if I do not have a passport?
  4. What should I do if my academic referees did not receive the email prompting them to complete the online recommendation form?
  5. Is SINGA offered for Masters programme?
  6. Can I apply for SINGA if I have not completed my Bachelor/Masters studies?
  7. How is SINGA different from the other scholarships offered by A*STAR, NTU, NUS and SUTD?
  8. What do I need to complete for the sections “Project Title” and “Project Description” in the online application form?

    Will I be exempted from courses that I have taken during my Masters?

    You may be granted some exemptions on a case-by-case basis, subject to the approval of the school or department. 

    Why should I consider doing PhD in Singapore?

    There is strong commitment at a national level to R&D in Singapore, with S$19b to be invested in 5 years from 2016 to 2020. Singapore is also one of the fast growing economies in the vibrant Asia Pacific (APAC) region and is home to over 7,000 MNCs. Many of these MNCs (such as GlaxoSmith Kline, Novartis and Rolls Royce) have situated their R&D centres, manufacturing facilities or regional headquarters in Singapore. Graduate students will obtain a world-class PhD education at top-ranked universities and research institutes with state-of-the-art labs under renowned professors and scientists in various science and engineering disciplines. Please visit www.yoursingapore.com/en.html for more information.

    Why does the SINGA office offer scholarships for a direct PhD programme instead of the normal Master programme followed by doctoral studies?

    Singapore Institutions have adopted the international norm of admitting, for graduate work leading to a PhD, students with a Bachelor's degree. The students are expected to start with both coursework and research and work on a research thesis after passing a Qualifying exam. SINGA awardees will normally complete their PhD studies in 4 years.

    Who can apply for SINGA?

    International students with a passion for Science and Engineering research, excellent academic qualifications, good reports from academic referees, and fluency in English are encouraged to apply for this award.

    Where can my academic referees send their recommendation letters to?

    Upon submission of your online application, an email will be sent to your academic referees prompting them to complete an online recommendation form within 7 days of your application submission date. Please note that all recommendation letters should be submitted through the online portal.

    When will I be informed on whether I have been short-listed?

    Shortlisting results will be released about 12 weeks (at the earliest) after the application closing date. Please take note that only shortlisted applicants will be notified via email.

    When does the SINGA application open and what is the deadline for applications?

    There are 2 admission points for SINGA per academic year - August and January intakes. For admission in August, application is open after the closing date of the previous intake to 1 January of the current year. (E.g., for August 2016 intake, application is open after the closing date of January 2016 intake, i.e. 2 June 2015  to 1 January of 2016.) For admission in January, application is open after the closing date of the previous intake to 1 June of the previous year. (E.g., for January 2017 intake, application is open after the closing date of August 2016 intake, i.e. 2 January 2016 to 1 June of 2016.) 

    What should I do if my academic referees did not receive the email prompting them to complete the online recommendation form?

    Please advise your academic referees to check his/her junk inbox in case the email has been accidentally re-directed there. Applicants could also log in to the online application portal, click on "Referee info" under the tab "My Applications" and send email reminders to request for referee recommendations.

    What should I do if I cannot login to the online application portal?

    Please click “Did you forget your password? Recover it here” to reset password and re-access account.

    What is the information that I would need to provide if I would like to apply for SINGA before completion of my studies?

    In your online application form, please upload your transcripts (up till your latest semester), and a letter of certification from your university, indicating that you are currently still studying, and expected date of completion. 

    What is the definition of "international students"?

    "International students" refer to students who are not citizens or permanent residents of Singapore, and who have not previously studied in Singapore.

    What is SINGA?

    SINGA is a collaboration between the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR), the Nanyang Technological University (NTU), the National University of Singapore (NUS), and the Singapore University of Technology and Design (SUTD). It is an award offered to international students with excellent academic undergraduate and/or master's results, and strong interest in doing research leading to a doctorate (PhD) in Science and Engineering at a Singapore University. The students can choose to do their research work mainly at A*STAR, NTU, NUS, or SUTD. The PhD degree will be conferred by either NTU, NUS or SUTD.

    What do I need to complete for the sections “Project Title” and “Project Description” in the online application form?

    You are required to provide information on titles, areas and descriptions of projects that are of your interest. These information can be found within the following links in the SINGA website. You are also welcome to email any of the SINGA supervisors listed for more information about the research projects. Please note that your preferred supervisors or projects may not always be available. 

    A*STAR - www.a-star.edu.sg/singa-awards/PhD-Research-Areas.aspx#astar
    NTU - www.a-star.edu.sg/singa-awards/PhD-Research-Areas.aspx#ntu
    NUS - www.a-star.edu.sg/singa-awards/PhD-Research-Areas.aspx#nus
    SUTD - www.a-star.edu.sg/singa-awards/PhD-Research-Areas.aspx#sutd

    What are the selection criteria for SINGA?

    The selection criteria for SINGA include the applicant's academic record, publications, recommendations from academic referees, personal achievements, passion and ability to excel in research, and an interview if short-listed.

    What are the benefits of the award?

    The award provides financial support for up to 4 years of PhD studies. It includes:


    Full support of tuition fees
    Stipends - S$2,000 per month (S$24,000 per annum), to be increased to S$2,500 per month (S$30,000 per annum) after passing Qualifying Examinations
    One-time S$1,000 settling-in allowance
    One-time airfare grant of S$1,500

    Is there any application fee for SINGA?

    There is no application fee for SINGA. 

    Is there an age limit for SINGA applicants?

    There is no age limit for SINGA applicants. While SINGA is targeted at younger applicants, mature applicants with relevant research experience will be considered.

    Is there a bond for SINGA?

    There is no bond.

    Is SINGA offered for Masters programme?

    SINGA is offered for PhD programme and is not intended for students who wish to obtain a Masters degree.

    Is it possible for my spouse to come and stay with me in Singapore during my PhD study? Will my spouse be provided with any stipend?

    Accompanying spouses can apply for a social visit pass to stay in Singapore. Please see the links below for more information:
    NTU - www.ntu.edu.sg/SAO/studentsupport/Immigration/Pages/SocialVisitPass.aspx
    NUS - www.nus.edu.sg/ngs/social_visit_pass.html
    SUTD - Please email Office of Graduate Studies at phd@sutd.edu.sg for more information
    SINGA awardees who are accompanied by their spouse will not be provided with additional stipend.

    Is it necessary to have referees' recommendations for my application?

    Yes, recommendation letters from at least 2 academic referees are required.

    If successfully awarded SINGA, do I need to sign the Service Obligation agreement?

    No, it is not a requirement for SINGA awardees to sign the Service Obligation agreement. However, should international students choose to opt for the Service Obligation scheme, they can enjoy subsidized tuition fees. More information on the Service Obligation agreement can be found at https://tgonline.moe.gov.sg/tgis/normal/studentViewServiceObligationSubsidyInfo.action.


    For international students who are eligible for subsidized tuition fees without the need to opt for the service obligation, they are still required to fulfil the requirements of the Graduate Assistantship Programme (GAP) by performing teaching/laboratory supervision duties during their studies. 

    How many awards will be offered each year?

    SINGA awards are offered twice -- for August and January intakes -- during the academic year. It is a merit-based scholarship where all outstanding candidates will be considered for award.

    How is SINGA different from the other scholarships offered by A*STAR, NTU, NUS and SUTD?

    SINGA is a collaboration between A*STAR, NUS, NTU and SUTD. We expect to attract excellent students from around the world to pursue PhD studies in science and engineering in Singapore. SINGA complements existing scholarship programmes offered by the respective institutions, some of which are only open to Singaporeans. SINGA helps realize Singapore's ambition of becoming a talent hub, by building linkages with bright minds from diverse nationalities who have experienced living and working in Singapore.

    How do I apply for the student pass that is required for me to study in Singapore if I'm awarded SINGA?

    Once you have acknowledged acceptance of the SINGA award, the university (either NTU, NUS or SUTD) at which you will be enrolled in will send you its admission package which includes the offer of admission. You should send back a signed copy of the admission letter to the university to confirm that you accept its admission offer.

    The university will apply for the student pass on your behalf through the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) web-based Student's Pass Online Application and Registration (SOLAR) system. The SOLAR application number and other details that you need to log into the SOLAR system will be sent to you in your admissions package. You must follow the instructions to complete the application process prior to your departure for Singapore. Please note that it takes the ICA 2 - 4 weeks to process your application.

    Detailed information on student pass application could be found at www.ntu.edu.sg/SAO/OurServices/Pages/StudentsPass.aspx for NTU candidates, and www.nus.edu.sg/osa/iss/life-in-nus/student-pass/new-application for NUS candidates. 

    For SUTD candidates, please email Office of Graduate Studies at phd@sutd.edu.sg.

    How can I find out more information on the research projects listed on the website?

    You are most welcome to email any of the SINGA supervisors listed for more information about the research projects. Please note that your preferred supervisors or projects may not always be available. 

    How can I apply for SINGA?

    You will need to complete and submit an online application form by clicking on the following link: www.a-star.edu.sg/singa-award/How-To-Apply.aspx. Softcopies of the following supporting documents must be uploaded during your online application:

    Compulsory:
    Identity card or Passport
    A recent passport-sized photo in JPEG/PNG format
    Bachelor's Academic Transcripts (in English translation)
    Bachelor's Degree Certificate / Scroll (in English translation) or a letter of certification from the university on your candidature if your degree certificate / scroll has not yet been conferred
    Master's Academic Transcripts, if any (in English translation)
    Master's Degree Certificate / Scroll, if any (in English translation) or a letter of certification from the university on your candidature if your degree certificate / scroll has not yet been conferred
    2 recommendation reports (to be completed and submitted online by the referees)

    Not compulsory but good to include (if available):
    GRE / IELTS / TOEFL / SAT I & II / GATE results
    Hardcopies of the above-mentioned supporting documents sent to the SINGA Office will not be processed.

    Does SINGA support PhD studies in humanities and/or business management?

    SINGA only supports PhD studies in the field of science and engineering. SINGA does not support MBAs or PhD in humanities, finance, business management or architecture.

    Does A*STAR, NTU, NUS, or SUTD offer PhD scholarships for international/foreign students?

    Yes, A*STAR, NTU, NUS, and SUTD offer a PhD scholarship known as the Singapore International Graduate Award (SINGA) for international students under the SINGA collaboration. Graduates with a passion for research and excellent academic results are encouraged to apply for SINGA.

    Do I need to contact the supervisors before the submission of my application?

    It is not necessary but you are most welcome to email any of the SINGA supervisors listed for more information about the research projects. You may also email the supervisors in your area of interest and discuss with them about proposing your own research project. Please note that your preferred supervisors or projects may not always be available.

    Do I need to apply on the university application portal, in addition to applying on the SINGA application portal?

    Applicants applying for SINGA through the SINGA application portal are not required to apply on the university application portal, unless contacted by the university to do otherwise. At later stages of your SINGA application, the university may contact certain selected candidates to apply on its application portal to obtain further details.

    Do I have to work in Singapore after graduation?

    No, you are not required to work in Singapore after graduation.

    Do I have to source for my own research supervisor in advance to apply for SINGA?

    You are strongly encouraged to browse the list of available projects and supervisors on the SINGA website, and select projects according to your research interests, passion, and academic background. You may indicate up to 3 supervisors and project choices in the online application form.

    Can my academic referees send their recommendation letters through email attachments or hardcopies directly to the SINGA office?

    No, all recommendation letters should be submitted through the online portal. Email attachments or hardcopies sent directly to the SINGA office will not be processed.

    Can I pursue a PhD degree in a field of study different from my bachelor major?

    You may pursue a PhD degree in any field of study for which you can demonstrate interest and capability. The scholarship award committee will assess your suitability for the chosen field, in discussion with the supervisors and yourself, based on academic record and testimonials.

    Can I propose my own research project?

    You are most welcome to email the supervisors in your area of interest and discuss with them about proposing your own research project. Please note that your preferred supervisors or projects may not always be available.

    Can I exit the SINGA programme with a Masters degree?

    SINGA is a PhD programme and is not intended for students who wish to obtain only a Masters degree.

    Can I apply if I do not have GRE / IELTS / TOEFL / SAT I & II / GATE scores?

    Yes, you can. If you are invited for an interview, the selection panel will assess your command of spoken and written English during the interview. The selection process for the SINGA award will not be biased against candidates without GRE / IELTS / TOEFL / SAT I & II / GATE scores.  However, do note that you may be requested by the university to submit satisfactory scores as part of the university admission requirement. 

    Can I apply if I do not have a passport?

    You may use your national ID instead of a passport to apply.

    Can I apply for two or three research projects at the same time?

    In the online application form, you are strongly encouraged to specify your top 3 project choices and the institutes where the supervisors are based. 

    Can I apply for SINGA if I have not completed my Bachelor/Masters studies?

    You may still apply for SINGA. However, please upload your Bachelor/Masters' transcripts (up till your latest semester), and a letter of certification from your university, indicating that you are currently still studying, and the expected date of completion in the online application portal. 

    Can I apply for other scholarships in addition to SINGA?

    Yes, you may apply for other scholarships offered by other institutions, but you can only hold one award.

    Are there any coursework requirements to be fulfilled for SINGA? If yes, what are the modules I have to take?

    In addition to a research thesis, there will usually  be coursework requirements to be fulfilled. These coursework requirements are determined by the university (NTU, NUS or SUTD) at which you are enrolled for your PhD degree. Please note that there may be additional requirements depending on the schools or departments at which you are enrolled in.
    You may visit the following websites for more information:

    NTU - www.ntu.edu.sg/Academics/pages/graduateprogrammes.aspx

    NUS - www.nus.edu.sg/admissions/graduate-studies/graduate-programme-and-contacts.html

    SUTD - www.sutd.edu.sg/Admissions/Graduate/PhD-Programmes/SUTD-PhD-Programme

    Are the biomedical projects under SINGA research or clinical-based?

    The PhD projects under SINGA are research-based, not clinical-based.

    Are Singaporeans and permanent residents eligible for the award?

    SINGA is intended primarily for international students studying for the first time in Singapore. Singaporeans and permanent residents may consider applying for the following scholarships: 

    A*STAR Graduate Scholarship (AGS):
    https://www.a-star.edu.sg/Scholarships/For-Graduate-Studies/A-STAR-Graduate-Scholarship-Singapore.aspx

    National Science Scholarship NSS (PhD):
    https://www.a-star.edu.sg/Scholarships/For-Graduate-Studies/National-Science-Scholarship-PhD.aspx

    NTU Graduate Scholarships:
    http://admissions.ntu.edu.sg/graduate/scholarships/Pages/ResearchScholarship.aspx

    NUS Graduate School Scholarships:
    http://www.nus.edu.sg/admissions/graduate-studies/scholarships.php

    SUTD Graduate Scholarships:
    http://www.sutd.edu.sg/phd_scholarships 

    Are international students who have completed their bachelor degrees in Singapore eligible for the award?

    SINGA is intended primarily for international students studying for the first time in Singapore. International students who have previously studied in Singapore may consider applying for the following scholarships: 

    A*STAR Graduate Scholarship (AGS):
    http://www.a-star.edu.sg/Awards-Scholarship/Scholarships-Attachments/For-Graduate-PhD-Studies/A-STAR-Graduate-Scholarship-Singapore.aspx 

    National Science Scholarship NSS (PhD):
    http://www.a-star.edu.sg/Awards-Scholarship/Scholarships-Attachments/For-Graduate-PhD-Studies/National-Science-Scholarship-PhD.aspx

    NTU Graduate Scholarships:
    http://admissions.ntu.edu.sg/graduate/scholarships/Pages/ResearchScholarship.aspx

    NUS Graduate School Scholarships:
    http://www.nus.edu.sg/admissions/graduate-studies/scholarships.php

    SUTD Graduate Scholarships:
    http://www.sutd.edu.sg/phd_scholarships 

    Are international graduate students currently pursuing their PhD degrees in NTU, NUS and SUTD eligible for the award?

    SINGA is intended primarily for international students studying for the first time in Singapore. International students already in our Universities may consider applying for the following scholarships: 

    A*STAR Graduate Scholarship (AGS):
    http://www.a-star.edu.sg/Awards-Scholarship/Scholarships-Attachments/For-Graduate-PhD-Studies/A-STAR-Graduate-Scholarship-Singapore.aspx 

    National Science Scholarship NSS (PhD):
    http://www.a-star.edu.sg/Awards-Scholarship/Scholarships-Attachments/For-Graduate-PhD-Studies/National-Science-Scholarship-PhD.aspx

    NTU Graduate Scholarships:
    http://admissions.ntu.edu.sg/graduate/scholarships/Pages/ResearchScholarship.aspx

    NUS Graduate School Scholarships:
    http://www.nus.edu.sg/admissions/graduate-studies/scholarships.php

    SUTD Graduate Scholarships:
    http://www.sutd.edu.sg/phd_scholarships 

    Am I required to take up citizenship?

    You are not required to take up citizenship.

    Am I allowed to take up part-time jobs in Singapore during my PhD studies?

    SINGA is a full-time research scholarship and you are not allowed to take up part-time jobs during your studies in Singapore.