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Singapore
Approx. Time Difference
Apr - Oct: +15 hrs
Nov - Mar: +16 hrs
Biodiversity, National University of Singapore - Summer


This guide was created to help you navigate the different aspects of travelling abroad as a UCEAP student. All important aspects of attending university in your host country are addressed here, including academic information, extension of UCEAP participation, cultural awareness, orientation, transportation, finances and much more.

Remember to also visit the Participants section of the UCEAP website for important information and deadlines.
Click a heading below to see section content.
Your UCEAP Network
 
 
 
 
Academic Information
Program Overview

The summer biodiversity program at the National University of Singapore is intended for students with a science background (biology or environmental science) and provides an opportunity to gain valuable field experience. All students take the following two courses.

  • Field Studies in Biodiversity course; 8 UC quarter units, letter grade only
     
  • Either Beginning Chinese or Beginning Bahasa Indonesian course; 4 UC quarter units, P/NP or letter grade
The Field Studies in Biodiversity course focuses on the study of multiple species-rich habitats through practical learning and includes a weeklong fieldtrip to Pulau Tioman, an island in the East China Sea, off the coast of Malaysia.  Students and staff participate in field work, analysis, and discussions each day, followed by a group debriefing each evening. UCEAP students will take a quiz, give a presentation, and write a report for this course.  The report is due one week after the end of the program.  No late papers will be accepted. 
 
You will also study a Southeast Asian language, either beginning Bahasa Indonesian or beginning Mandarin Chinese, complemented with activities in the local culture.
 
You will receive instructions on MyEAP registration after the program begins.
Academic Culture
 
 
Course Information
Grades
​Grades for the Biodiversity course will be based on a quiz, presentation, and a written report. The written report is due one week after the end of the program. No late papers will be accepted. Failure to turn in the written report by the deadline will result in an F for this course.
 
This is a new program and grades were received in early September the first year.  We expect to receive grades about the same time each year.

 

For additional information about grades, see the Academic Information chapter of the UCEAP Guide to Study Abroad.

Extending UCEAP Participation
Cultural Awareness
Educate Yourself
 
 
Social Conduct
Cultural Differences

 

 
Official Start Date & Mandatory Orientation
 
 
Travel Planning
Travel to Your Host Country
Travel Documents
Additional information about passports and other required documents is provided in the UCEAP Guide to Study Abroad and UCEAP Predeparture Checklist.

Passport & Student Pass

To enter Singapore, a passport valid for at least six months beyond the date of your intended stay is required.
 
Although U.S. citizens are not required to obtain a visa to enter Singapore, all NUS exchange students are required to apply for the Student Pass after registering at NUS. The Student Pass serves a similar purpose to a visa by granting permission to reside in Singapore for the purpose of study. The Student Pass is issued by the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority of Singapore.
 
 
 
Packing Tips
 
 
 
Financial Information
Understanding Your Finances
 
Your MyEAP Account & Budget
 
 
Handling Money Abroad
 
Communications Abroad
Internet Access
NUS students will have access to the NUS Computer Center, NUSNET, and several computer labs on campus. NUSNET is a campus-wide network that interconnects 104 academic departments at NUS. It provides a wealth of network services with gateways to the Internet, e-journal, NUScast, newsfeed, CD-ROM databases, and more. In addition, you will receive an NUS e-mail account.
 
Phones
 
Mail & Shipments
 
Housing & Meals
Housing
You can find housing application instructions in the UCEAP online Predeparture Checklist.
 
Past participants have stayed at Prince George’s Park Residences (PGPR). Rooms are grouped into clusters of 15 and offer their residents an apartment lifestyle. The 15 residents in each cluster are entrusted with collective responsibility for their shared facilities. Each cluster has its own kitchen, dining area, and bathroom facilities.
 
Every room is equipped with phone, television, and computer access to the university’s network and the Internet.
 
PGPR also houses a lecture theatre, seminar rooms, a multi-purpose hall, gymnasium, basketball and tennis courts, a jogging track, an exercise station, mini-supermarket, four food outlets, and other service outlets. Distributed throughout the whole residence are air-conditioned lounges, television rooms, and meeting and reading rooms.
 
Internet is available in dorm rooms, as well as throughout the NUS campus. Linens and pillows are not provided. You can take your own or buy them in Singapore. Detailed descriptions and costs are posted on NUS Hostel Admission Services website.
 

Your Housing Assignment

You will be notified of your housing assignment about one month prior to the program. Notification is sent directly from NUS via e-mail.
 
Once you receive your housing notification, you are required to accept the housing assignment, register, and submit a payment; or decline the offer by their stipulated deadlines. NUS is very strict with housing deadlines. Miss one deadline and your housing assignment will be given to another student.
 
You will receive an e-mail from the NUS housing office if you did not get an on-campus assignment as well. In this situation, they will provide you with information about off-campus housing, or you may opt for your own independent housing.
 

Check-in Date and Move-in Procedures

If you are assigned on-campus accommodations, the check-in date and move- in procedures will be included in the housing notification e-mail. You may also contact your assigned residence hall for additional details. Arrive during regular business hours for an easy check-in process. 
 
If you are securing off-campus housing arrangements, you will need to ask about the check-in date and move-in procedures in advance. Move-in dates may vary based on location.
 

Rent Payment

Payment for the entire term is due at the beginning of the program. Payments are only accepted in Singapore dollars. Rent can generally be paid with cash, international bank draft, or NETS. Credit cards are not accepted. Payment instructions and details will be included in the NUS housing allocation e-mail.
 

Private Hostels & Hotels Close to NUS

Hostels located closest to NUS include:
  • Bukit Timah Hostel
  • Pasir Panjang Inn
  • Praisehaven Foreign Students’ Hostel
  • Singapore Hostel One66
 
There are several hotels near NUS if you arrive early, need temporary accommodation until you complete an off-campus housing search, want to invite family and friends to visit you, etc.:
  • Carlton Hotel, 76 Bras Basah Rd.
  • Copthorne Orchid Hotel, 214 Dunearn Rd.
  • Fragrance Hotel–Waterfront, 418 Pasir Panjang Rd.
  • Fragrance Hostel, 63 Dunlop St.
  • Garden Hotel Singapore, 14 Balmoral Rd.
  • Hotel Grand Central, 22 Cavenagh
  • Hotel Royal Singapore, 36 Newton Rd.
  • Orchard Hotel, 442 Orchard Rd.
  • Peninsula Excelsior Hotel, 5 Coleman St.
Meals

 

Eating at NUS

You can prepare your own food in the housing kitchenettes. You can also eat in the numerous canteens on campus, at hawker centers, or in the cafeterias, where a few dollars will buy a hearty meal.
 
"Even if you eat at a different place everyday, you still won’t be able to hit all the restaurants, not to mention all the stalls in the hawker centers." - UCEAP Student
There are five canteens and two take-away kiosks on campus. All of the canteens and cafés operate on a self-serve system, so be sure you deposit your plates and cutlery after meals in the appropriate trolleys.
 
With the exception of Prince George’s Park Residences, NUS students living on campus must enroll in a mandatory meal plan, which includes breakfast and dinner.
 
There are several vegetarian food stalls on campus. If you are a strict vegetarian, contact NUS Hostel Admission Services Office of Housing.   
 
Daily Life Abroad
Local Transportation
 
Extracurricular Activities
"I often socialized with my Singaporean peers. That’s the best way to get to know the country; they show you their culture." - UCEAP Student
 
"Volunteering was one of the most rewarding activities. Not only do you meet a lot of amazing people outside of NUS, you are also exposed to another side of Singapore that isn’t the government promoted, squeaky clean image of economic
prosperity and racial harmony." - UCEAP Student
  

Sports & Outdoor Activities

Singaporeans are active in sports. There are a great variety of sports you can choose from, and most of the teams welcome exchange students. There are judo, tae kwon do, wushu, tai chi, soccer, track and field, volleyball, basketball, tennis, swimming, diving, kayaking, biking, handball, triathlon, biathlon, and more.
 
Swimming and water sport activities are also easily accessible along the beaches. There are several parks and nature reserves, such as Bukit Timah, that are optimal locations for hiking and mountain biking.
 
The NUS Sports and Recreation Centre offers over 70 recreational and competitive sport activities including basketball, rugby, and windsurfing.
 
Students with Disabilities
 
Travel Sign-out Form

 

 
Insurance
UCEAP Insurance
 
NUS Medical Insurance
In addition to the mandatory UCEAP Insurance Plan, NUS requires all students to have a specified amount of medical insurance coverage. You must pay the premium for the insurance policy offered through NUS, Group Medical Insurance Scheme (GMIS). Additional information is provided with the NUS Offer Package.
 
Staying Healthy
Local Medical Facilities
Good medical care is widely available. Doctors and hospitals expect immediate payment for health services by credit card or cash. The Study Center specifically recommends two health care facilities, the National University Hospital and NUS Health Clinic.
 
If you experience a medical emergency, go to National University Hospital. It is located approximately 15 minutes from NUS.
  
National University Hospital
5 Lower Kent Ridge Road
Phone: (65) 6779-5555
24-Hour Hotline: (65) 6772-5000
Fax: (65) 6779-5678
 
The NUS Health Clinic, open during regular business hours, offers services such as medical examinations, general health screenings, lab tests, and women’s wellness for NUS students. After hours, you can go to the Clementi Clinic, which is located 15 minutes from campus and operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
 
NUS Health Clinic
20 Lower Kent Ridge Road
Singapore 119080
Phone: (65) 6776-1631
E-mail: uhc_health@nus.edu.sg
Web: www.nus.edu.sg/uhc
 
Dental care services are available at NTUC Denticare Clinics.
 
NTUC Denticare Clinic
Blk 431 Clementi Ave 3, #01-304
Phone: (65) 6773-4533
Fax: (65) 6773-4534
Web: www.ntuchealth.com.sg/unity_denticare/clinics/detail.php?ID=314
 
“If you receive health care, be sure to keep receipts and you can get reimbursed through your UCEAP insurance."           - UCEAP Student

 

 
Physical Health
 
Prescription Medications
Mental Health

NUS Counselling and Psychological Services (CPS) offers a variety of services including individual assessment and counseling, group workshops, crisis intervention, and training events.

NUS Counselling and Psychological Services
Level 2, University Health Centre
20 Lower Kent Ridge Road
Phone: (65) 6516-2376
E-mail: counselling@nus.edu.sg
Web: www.nus.edu.sg/uhc/cps
 
There is also a dedicated phone line, LifeLine NUS, maintained by CPS for crisis management and life-threatening emergencies.
The LifeLine NUS phone number is (65) 6516-7777.
Health Risks
 
Staying Safe
Minimize Risk
Crime & Prevention
 
Civil Unrest
 
Traffic & Transportation Safety
 
Travel Warnings and UCEAP Policy
 
UCEAP Contingency Plans
 
Fire Safety
 
 
 
In An Emergency
 
 
 
 
The University of California, in accordance with applicable Federal and State law and University policy, does not discriminate on the basis of race, national origin, religion, sex, gender identity, pregnancy,* disability, age, medical condition (cancer-related), ancestry, marital status, citizenship, sexual orientation, or status as a Vietnam-era veteran or special disabled veteran. The University also prohibits sexual harassment. This nondiscrimination policy covers admission, access, and treatment in University programs and activities. Inquiries regarding the University’s student-related nondiscrimination policies may be directed to the campus Equal Employment Opportunity/Affirmative Action office.

* Pregnancy includes pregnancy, childbirth, and medical conditions related to pregnancy or childbirth.