As many countries actively pursue an increase in international student enrollment, often facilitating such an endeavor with financial incentives and assistance, Singapore appears to be bucking the trend. Instead, Singapore has been reducing the number of international students receiving tuition grants and restricting the number of international students allowed to study at universities in the country.
- Since 2010 the number of international students receiving tuition grants in Singapore has decreased over 30%.
- In private and polytechnic universities, around nine percent of international students received tuition grants to study in Singapore in 2010, where less than six percent did so in 2013.
- In publicly-funded universities the current figure is 13 percent, down from 18 percent in 2010.
Moreover, this is in a country already famous for capping the number of international students enrolled in its country’s higher education system.
- An announcement several years ago by Singaporean Education Minister Heng Swee Keat had indicated that Singapore would be pursuing a strategy to limit the number of international students enrolled in its higher education system.
- The cap on the number of international students is intended to reduce the percentage of international students below 15% of the student body while advancing opportunities for Singapore nationals.
- To that end, an additional 2,000 student positions were created and made available exclusively to students from Singapore at the same time the number of international students positions had been capped at 2011 levels.
So, if you happen to be an international student interested in studying abroad in Singapore (home to a university that has consistently been ranked around the 24th best in the world, and a highly developed economy) it would be in your best interest to act quick! Moreover, given the cut in tuition grants and funding available to international students in Singapore, searching through scholarship databases and finding alternate sources of funding would be your absolute best move (in the event you don’t happen to be one of the lucky 13%).