James Cook University Singapore (20)

Study at James Cook University Singapore (20)

The University:

The ghosts argue about the JCU – precisely because of the impressive price. I should start right away with the horror fact for those who want to study at JCU – yes, in Singapore there is compulsory attendance at universities. That means, every day from Monday to Friday at least 3 hours of attendance on campus. In addition, you have to be there for 90% of your lectures in order to have the respective subject recognized. You have to log into the system consistently with your fingerprint.

The good thing for students who only spend one semester in SIN, however, is that this system is not controlled quite as seriously for such people. While you should be careful not to overdo it with the compulsory attendance of the subjects, you can see it more loosely with the campus presence. In my time, the system was not yet fully developed to be able to say without a doubt whether you were really there or not. With a little discussion at the beginning of the month, you don’t have a problem as a student abroad.

At the JCU, depending on the course you choose, you can have very positive as well as very negative experiences. When choosing, you should pay attention to whether and how many assignments have to be submitted per subject. These written elaborations are usually associated with a lot of effort and take a lot of time. At that time I paid less attention to it and as a consequence was able to submit over 50 pages of scientific work within the 4 months. For this reason, I recommend that you calmly dare to study math or social skills subjects, here the workload seemed to be more rewarding. But what you should be prepared for, you will have to do something unimportant.

As at any university, the level of instruction depends on the lecturer. Due to the high proportion of foreign students, you are prepared for language differences and use understandable English (provided the lecturer is able to speak English without an accent, because there are stark differences here as well). However, the complexity of the topics presented is limited. Although I can say that I have learned a lot of things during this time, most of it was limited to memorization and less to my own problem-solving approaches as one is normally used to in Europe.

In addition, you should inquire in advance how the grades are converted at your own university in Germany. In Singapore – apart from failing – four grades are awarded: High Destinction (1.0), Destinction (2.0), Credit (3.0) and Passed (4.0). However, the rating system differs fundamentally from the German standard. It is absolutely unusual to get an HD (1.0). In my experience, this can only be achieved in individual cases and with a great deal of effort. So you have to be satisfied with a D (2.0) or with an average effort a C (3.0) with a lot of effort. Some German universities do not convert the grades into their own study system, but the subject only has to be passed and then it is noted without a grade. Should you come from such a university:

If you, like me, come from a university that converts an HD into a 1.0, a D into a 2.0, etc. into the German system, think carefully about your choice of subjects. The JCU is by no means a university where you can polish up your style. There are definitely other addresses in Asia for this purpose. But Singapore rightly does quite well on the résumé.

Even if that doesn’t sound so positive, I emphasize again that I wasn’t dissatisfied at university. Although I chose work-intensive subjects and did not go out with a lot of HDs, I was able to take some knowledge with me from some courses and had fun there. The university offers many sports and leisure opportunities and otherwise invites you to linger. In addition, it has to be said that all European foreign students with Kim and Shelley have two permanent and nice contacts who are available for all problems.

Leisure / travel options:

Singapore, as one of the most important logistics centers in the world, offers excellent opportunities to travel around Southeast Asia. Almost every country has a flight connection to Singapore and the many Asian budget airlines make flights much cheaper than in Europe (example: flight to Kuala Lumpur: € 25, flight to Bangkok: € 50). These circumstances, of course, invite you to travel and were used a lot by my fellow students and me. I recommend that anyone coming to Singapore plan plenty of time before or after the semester to travel because it was really straightforward and a priceless experience. Just as an example, I had planned to travel two weeks before and a month after the semester and was able to travel to India, Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Cambodia, and Laos. There are worse things in the semester abroad.

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In all honesty, the application process would have been too strenuous for me without MicroEDU. Just like Singapore, an incredible number of documents are required that have to be filled out very correctly. Not only do you have to provide a lot of personal details but also absolutely correct data, as the JCU is subject to the requirements of the Immigrations & Checkpoints Authority (ICA) of Singapore. Fortunately, College-Contact not only offers a translation of the application forms, but also helps with any questions and is in constant contact with employees of the JCU in Singapore. So a lot of the work was done for me. All of my friends who applied to the JCU were also accepted. The recruitment process doesn’t seem too strict, especially for Europeans, and should be feasible for everyone.

That’s it on my part. Anyone who has actually read through all of this and has any further questions can write to me via email! In the sense of a good semester abroad.

James Cook University Singapore (20)

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