Where should Singapore’s education develop in?

Singapore is becoming the next big destination for higher education. With strong support from the Government, it has strived to develop an education structure which aims to bring out the best in every student. In addition, with the introduction of Information and Communication Technology in education, education in Singapore has been moving ahead rapidly with modern needs. Today we find large numbers of students flocking to Singapore in pursuit of higher studies in various subjects. Let us see what the strengths of the education system in Singapore are.

Strengths of the education system:

1) The educational system is broad, catering to different aspirations and aims to bring out the best in everybody. It believes that every student has a particular skill and talent which must be nurtured and manifested so that they can contribute to the society on their own.

2) English is the both the business language and the main medium of education, catering to international needs.

3) The curriculum is strong in technical capabilities, particularly Math and Sciences, but increasingly also, there is a move towards innovation, creativity, thinking and entrepreneurship. The education system adjusts to meet the needs of the future jobs market.

4) Even when the students work, they can still undergo further training which will help them to grow and stay relevant in their occupation. There are a number of vocational and professional training institutes available for the students at a cheaper rate.

Nonetheless, we will find that even for an advanced education system like Singapore, it is not without limitations. Let us see what the areas of development needed for Singapore to become the greatest educational hub in the near future.

1) The education is too much examination result-oriented. That means significant amount of time and energy of students are put to repetitively practising questions and answers. This may not be the most efficient way for students to develop themselves.

2) The students are neither taught that failure is a part of the education system nor do they learn how to take risks and face failure boldly. Every student is expected to excel, leading to a stressful education environment.

3) Given the examination result focus, there is limited experimentation and exploration beyond pure academic subjects.

4) Every student has to obey the rules and regulations strictly. A “following” mentality may develop, affecting liberal and free thinking.

If Singapore can overcome these limitations and create an environment which promotes free and open thinking among the students, then it can create an even more advanced education environment. Students, parents and the teachers must know that failure and risks are inevitable as part of education, and that there is no hard and fast rule to success in this rapidly changing economy which requires constant adaptation. “If things seem under control, you are just not going fast enough.” – Mario Andretti

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Credits pic: gigaom.com

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