January 25, 2021

SMH

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The Nationwide University of Singapore (NUS) yesterday officially launched its new faculty that will convey collectively two of its oldest faculties – arts and social sciences, and science – and choose in far more than 2,000 undergraduates.

The College of Humanities and Sciences (CHS), which will admit its to start with cohort of students in August following year, marks a key change absent from the standard way of understanding in independent disciplines.

Equally faculties day as much again as 1929, and will continue to function individually. Students will continue to graduate with a bachelor’s honours diploma in arts, social sciences or science in four a long time.

But a crucial big difference is that they will have to consider 13 typical modules in regions that reduce throughout unique fields of analyze, these types of as style thinking, artificial intelligence and scientific inquiry.

Students will shell out a 3rd of their total curriculum on these modules, which will concentrate on the intellectual techniques and connections throughout disciplines. Other subject areas contain Asian scientific tests, computational considering and community and engagement.

They will also acquire two increased-amount interdisciplinary modules of their alternative. These intention to combine know-how across disciplines.

With this modify, modules producing up a student’s important need will kind a single-3rd of the all round curriculum. This is reduce than the latest 50 per cent or extra of the existing tutorial load.

Below the new process, a double diploma can also be carried out in four several years, and learners using up two majors from two distinctive diploma styles will be awarded double degrees.

Now, pupils usually have to extend their experiments by a semester or a calendar year to undertake these types of double degrees.

At a briefing yesterday, NUS president Tan Eng Chye mentioned the new curriculum composition will give learners far more adaptability in carving out their possess route, as the workload for 2nd big and insignificant prerequisites will also be lowered.

Students will be able to pursue any main as perfectly as a 2nd important from both faculty, or get a significant-small mixture. A lot more than 1,000 modules per year will be offered for them to select from.

  • School OF HUMANITIES AND SCIENCES

  • 13

    Selection of typical modules throughout unique fields pupils must get.

    >1,000

    Number of modules for every yr that learners can select from.

    1,400

    Annually ingestion for the arts and social sciences school.

    1,000

    Yearly intake for the science school.

Both of those colleges offer about 30 majors in overall. The annually intakes for the arts and social sciences and the science faculties are about 1,400 and 1,000 college students respectively.

Professor Tan pointed out that even though there is curiosity from pupils to consider up next majors or minors, only 15 for every cent of those people from each faculties presently do so.


School of Humanities and Sciences co-deans Robbie Goh (remaining) and Sunshine Yeneng (correct) and NUS president Tan Eng Chye at the launch of the university on Dec 8, 2020. ST Photograph: TIMOTHY DAVID

The hope is that, with bigger home to pick what they want to go after, this will improve to 40 per cent to 50 for each cent of college students, he mentioned.

Detailing the rationale for bringing both faculties jointly, Prof Tan claimed: “Careers have been destabilised in an uncertain, sophisticated and volatile ecosystem, and the function we do is starting to be ever more integrated. Additional than ever, the velocity and intensity of technological processes are rising and strengthened by Covid-19.

“So the graduates of the foreseeable future need to be perfectly prepared to navigate this new terrain and clear up sophisticated difficulties from various fronts. They need to have to not just operate together with 1 a further, but with each other.”

To let college students far more versatility throughout disciplines, CHS will also offer a few new cross-disciplinary degree programmes from upcoming calendar year – in facts science and economics, environmental studies, and philosophy, politics and economics.

Citing illustrations like the College Students Programme and Yale-NUS College, Prof Tan stated: “In instruction, NUS has experimented with several initiatives about the past 20 many years and along the way, we have learnt and improved on them.”

Now, with the new CHS, interdisciplinary finding out will be completed on a greater scale, he added.

The higher education is the initial in the pipeline of new undertakings by NUS to present even far more interdisciplinary activities for students, he reported.

Students from other colleges and faculties will be capable to “experience the rewards of interdisciplinary reports in the time ahead”, he explained, adding that more details will be shared at a later date.