The Singaporean Minister for Education (Higher Education and Skills) Ong Ye Kung has announced in parliament that international students will no longer be subsidized for a majority of the postgraduate degree by coursework (PGC) programmes offered at local autonomous universities from the next year. While Singapore PRs will see a reduction in subsidies.
Mr. Ong revealed during his ministry’s Committee of Supply debate that the new procedure will free up around S$25 million in the ministry’s budget each year for the expansion of bite-sized, industry-relevant modular courses offered by the institutes of higher learning for the local workforce.
The PGCs include Master’s by coursework programmes – degrees primarily designed to prepare students for jobs – and post-graduate diplomas offered in the local autonomous universities.
According to information from the Ministry of Education, the newly announced funding scheme will impact courses that are skills-based with industry relevance like the Master of Architecture and academic programmes such as the Master of Music.
There will be no change in the subsidy level for Singaporeans.
Mr. Ong revealed that more than 4,900 adult learners have enrolled in the SkillsFuture Series courses as of February. These SkillsFuture Series courses, a new SkillsFuture scheme launched last year, comprises modular courses targeted at emerging and critical area
Mr. Ong said that autonomous universities will progressively roll out more of such micro-credentials in the coming years, and subject them to the market test. He said that learners too, should focus on picking up what is necessary for their upgrading