3.5.3    Special Programme in Science (SPS)

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The Special Programme in Science (SPS) was established in 1996 to nurture enthusiastic students to pursue their passion for science. SPS brings together students from the different disciplines of the Faculty of Science into a tightly-knit community. Using six tailor-made research focussed (Discovering Science, and Integrated Science Project) and thematic (Atoms to Molecules, The Cell, The Earth, and The Universe) modules students have the opportunity to participate in multidisciplinary research, peer learning and student mentorship.

SPS broadens the experience of students to disciplines outside their major and offers opportunities to do independent research with access to staff and student mentors. SPS also teaches transferable scientific, computational and communication skills essential for the 21st-century workplace. In years three and four, after completing the six SPS modules, students can choose to mentor their juniors, thereby enjoying opportunities to refine their leadership and mentoring skills.

More details of the six modules read in SPS are shown below:

  Year/Semester Research Oriented Modules (4 MC) Thematic Modules (4 MC)
Year 1 Semester 1 SP2171: Discovering Science

(Over two semesters)

SP2173: Atoms to Molecules
Semester 2 SP2174: The Cell
Year 2 Semester 1 SP3172: Integrated Science Project
Semester 2 SP3175: The Earth
SP3176: The Universe
Years 3 & 4 SPS Mentorship / Exchange / UROP / FYP


SP3277 Nano: from Research Bench to Industrial Applications

This is a new elective SPS module offered with effect from Semester 2, AY2013/14.

This module exposes senior students to nanoscience research and nanotechnology-based industry. This is done through a series of weekly seminars by principal investigators and industrial experts in the field, laboratory and industrial visits, and by completion of nanosynthesis/nanocharacterization-related mini projects. The course culminates in an intensive one-week study tour to Japan, organised in collaboration with La Trobe University and Tokyo University.

For both SPS and non-SPS students, this module can be counted towards the Multidisciplinary & Interdisciplinary Sciences subject group of the Faculty Requirements. This module can count towards requirements for Nanoscience minor.

Kindly contact Assoc Prof Goki Eda, ( and Lim Zhi Han ( for more information.

Special Arrangements for SPS Students in USP

With effect from Cohort AY2017/18, USP students enrolled in Special Programme in Science (SPS) will be granted a waiver of 4 USP Inquiry modules (2 HSS + 2 ST). The waiver includes the ISM requirement.

Students from Cohort AY2012/13 and onwards:

From this AY onwards, USP will be under the revised curriculum. The Advanced Curriculum will cease to exist, and SPS modules will be used to fulfill USP inquiry modules. For USP students matriculating from this AY onwards who are in SPS:

Any two of SP2173, SP2174, SP3175 and SP3176 will count as regular Inquiry modules in the Sciences & Technologies (S&T) domain; in addition, SP3172 will count as an ISM in the S&T domain.

Please refer to the USP website for more details.

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