Will the value of degrees from Australian universities in S’pore get lower?
It seems like almost everyone has a degree nowadays.
What: Five years ago, there were 15,000 students enrolled in Australian university programmes in Singapore.
This year, there are 26,000, with 70 percent Singaporeans and 30 percent foreigners.
There are currently 23 Australian universities offering degree courses in Singapore.
There are 100,000 Singaporeans who are alumni of Australian universities.
Why: A few factors account for why Singaporeans are studying in Singapore for Australian degrees.
It takes only a year to upgrade to a degree from a diploma.
Curtin, for example, exempts poly graduates from half or two-thirds of the credits for a degree course.
Also, there are three semesters in an academic year, which means studies start and end more quickly.
Lastly, costs are much lower. Tuition fees charged by Curtin here are 40 percent less than in Perth.
How: Australia, as a study destination, is getting too expensive and Singaporeans are opting for long-distance learning by staying in Singapore.
Some universities in Australia are charging more than S$34,000 a year for its studies.
In 2010, there were more than 9,000 Singaporeans studying in the 39 Australian universities in Australia, with over 3,000 students arriving that year.
In 2012, it was 8,100, including 2,700 who moved there last year.
Australian university officials attribute the dip to more university places available in Singapore, the strong Australian dollar and high tuition fees and living costs in cities such as Sydney and Perth.
Where: In Singapore, the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology, which runs degree courses with the Singapore Institute of Management, has 6,500 students — the biggest enrolment among Australian institutions.
In 2010, it was only 5,800.
In eight years, Perth-based Murdoch University has increased its student numbers by 11 times.
Murdoch University, which offers degree programmes with Kaplan Higher Education and the Singapore Manufacturing Federation’s Institute of Higher Learning, grew from 500 students in Singapore in 2005 to 5,500.
Queensland-based James Cook University has increased its student numbers from 2,500 last year to 3,000 this year, and has set up a second campus.
Curtin has grown its student numbers from 1,300 three years ago to 2,000 now.
Top photo from here