If you are considering doing a semester abroad in Singapore, you will have many questions before you leave: Where do I live? How much is that going to cost? How are the people in Singapore feeling? That’s exactly how it was for me. I hope that my experience report can help out with any questions. Otherwise you can also contact me. Looking back and summarizing, however, I can already say that the decision to go to Singapore was definitely the right one.
After checking the internet beforehand, I was advised several times to look for an apartment locally. That’s what I decided to do. Singapore is growing steadily and built very vertically, but due to the rapid growth it is usually not a problem to find an apartment within a short time. The easiest way is simply via Facebook, there is a group “findyourroominsg”, simply post a post in the group a few days before departure with the desired location and budget and on messages (attention, Facebook moves the messages to the ‘Message requests’ folder, can one likes to overlook) wait. I had nine apartment offers within 24 hours, of which I looked at six. The apartments were priced between $ 800 (€ 525) and $ 1500 (€ 1000). I opted for an apartment that is a bit out of the way, for which I paid $ 950 warm. My landlord was very friendly and often rents out to students, if you are interested you are welcome to contact him.
You are also welcome to contact him directly and ask if he has a room available or if he knows someone. His Facebook name is ‘Fendy Tsia’.
The JCU offers both share apartments and a hall of residence. The apartments were in a good location, within walking distance of the university, the Hall of Residence is not recommended, you share a room with eight people and live in a not so nice area.
To the University:
The university is a little bit outside of the city center in Geylang. There used to be two campuses that have now been combined into one large one. The campus is visually very nice, there is a small food court that belongs to the university, a pond with koi, an air-conditioned student hub for studying and the lecture halls are all very clean and up to date.
Study contents / study conditions
I have attended the following lectures:
BX2014 – Financial Management
BX2062 – Operations Management
BX2074 – Research and Decision Making for Business
CP1401 – Fundamentals of Problem Solving and Programming
Financial Management: The lecturer is British and very competent. The lecture is very interesting, if you are interested in finance this lecture is definitely the right choice.
The exam is an online test, a short assignment (600 words) and a two-hour written exam at the end.
Operations Management: I didn’t like the lecture that much. A lot of topics are addressed, but everything only very superficially, so little specialist knowledge is conveyed, only basic knowledge tends to be imparted. Because the topics were only addressed superficially, a total of 17 topics were addressed, which in some places led to confusion on the part of the students. The examination is an assignment (1000 words), a group assignment (3500 words) and a two-hour written exam. The lecturer rated it as very elitist, none of the people I spoke to had more than 70% in an examination.
- Learn more information about Singapore and Asia on harvardshoes.
Research and Decision Making for Business: This is primarily about scientific work, e.g. how do I evaluate sources, how should surveys be carried out, etc. Lecturer is very friendly and also competent. Examinations are completed in two teams: two assignments (2000 words, 3500 words) and a two-hour exam at the end (not in a team).
Fundamentals of Problem Solving and Programming: This lecture aims to convey the basics of VBA programming. The lecture starts relatively relaxed, but it is very tough and requires a lot of work. The exam is an assignment (approx. 1000 words), two VBA source codes (you should program two simple games of chance), a video and a 2.5 hour exam.
The general conditions I found very comfortable, there is plenty of space for learning and all assignments will be announced. The ‘Due Dates’ are also not strictly adhered to.
Leisure / fun
Leisure and fun can really be capitalized in Singapore! Singapore is perfectly located for traveling, Changi Airport is regularly voted the best airport in the world. From there you can head for an incredible number of destinations without stopping. I’ve traveled a lot during my time in Singapore: Thailand, Indonesia, Vietnam, Malaysia… I can only recommend getting out during the weekends. In Singapore, too, there are unbelievably many possibilities, pool parties, huge shopping malls or Sentosa Island, an island that was built just for fun (beaches, Universal Studios, zip lining…).
Partying / clubbing: Partying in Singapore is super cool, but it works a little differently than in Germany. Admission is very expensive ($ 30), but you never actually pay admission because you’re always somewhere on the guest list. You get to know promoters very quickly or simply people who know someone and you are on the guest list and save yourself the entrance fee. The drinks are also very expensive ($ 18 / beer), so you usually meet someone at the pool for the “pre-drinks”.
That all sounds very nice, but what does it cost to have fun? Singapore is considered the most expensive city in the world. However, you can also live cheaply here.
In terms of nutrition, there are food courts everywhere in Singapore. There is a huge selection (Indian, Thai, Chinese, Western food…) at reasonable prices. Most of the time you pay between $ 3-10 (€ 2-6.50) for a meal. So it’s not worth cooking yourself, almost nobody did it in my year either.
The rent always depends on the location and luxury. Compared to the other fellow students, I tended to find a cheap apartment at $ 950, although I had a large pool, a gym, barbecue areas and a tennis court for free.
A semester abroad in Singapore costs around € 6000-7000 + tuition fee (€ 5500).
In conclusion, I can only say that Singapore was a very valuable experience for me. There is so much to see and do there that after more than four months there I unfortunately cannot say that I have seen everything. For me it was the perfect choice, I would recommend everyone to go there. A semester abroad is a unique chance to gain a valuable experience for life, Singapore is definitely the place that can make this experience as valuable as possible.