Undergraduate Continuation and Graduation Requirements

Minimum standards are set for continuation in a programme of study and graduation. This section covers the following:

CAP for Continuation and Graduation

To graduate, an undergraduate student must have a minimum CAP of 2.0. To remain in good academic standing, and to continue in an undergraduate programme of study, a student may not have:

  • CAP below 2.0 (but ≥ 1.5) for three consecutive semesters; or
  • CAP below 1.5 for two consecutive semesters.

For any semester in which the student's CAP falls below 2.0 (but ≥ 1.5), that student will be issued an academic warning. If, in the following semester, the student's CAP again falls below 2.0, s/he will be placed on probation. If the student's CAP remains below 2.0 for the third consecutive semester, the student will be issued a letter of dismissal by the Registrar and denied re-admission.

For students whose CAP falls below 1.5 for two consecutive semesters, they will be placed on probation for the first semester, followed by dismissal in the second semester.

Such a student may appeal the dismissal if there are extenuating circumstances. The appeal must be submitted to the relevant Faculty/Department within two calendar weeks of the last day of the release of each semester's examination results. Normally every student is allowed only one such appeal per candidature. If the appeal is rejected, the student will not be re-admitted. If the outcome of the appeal is positive, the student will be given one semester in which to achieve the minimum CAP required for continuation and graduation.

Degree Classification

The criteria for degree classification applicable to students admitted from AY2012-2013 onwards are as follows:

Honours Degree Classification (i)

Criteria

Honours (Highest Distinction)

CAP 4.50 and above (ii)

Honours (Distinction)

CAP 4.00 – 4.49

Honours (Merit)

CAP 3.50 – 3.99

Honours

CAP 3.00 – 3.49

Pass

CAP 2.00 – 2.99

Bachelor's Degree Classification (iii)

Criteria

Pass with Merit

CAP 3.00 and above

Pass

CAP 2.00 – 2.99

(i) This refers to 160-MC degree programmes.
(ii) Particular Faculties/Schools may stipulate other requirements.

(iii) This refers to 120-MC degree programmes.

(Students admitted prior to AY2012/2013 should refer to the General Information section of the archived NUS Bulletin relevant to their year of admission.)

Residency Requirement and Maximum Candidature

The University has established a minimum residency requirement and maximum candidature for all NUS degrees, including joint and double degrees with foreign universities.

Residency Requirement

For students admitted from AY2014/2015 onwards:

A student registered for a Bachelor's degree must complete 50% of required MCs for the degree programme with modules read at NUS. Modules read at NUS include all modules taught, co-taught, supervised or co-supervised by one or more NUS faculty members. These MCs must be earned from graded modules with assigned grade points or modules with an ‘S' or ‘CS' grade.

In addition, students are required to read at least 15 MCs every semester throughout their candidature, except during the following semesters when they are allowed to read fewer MCs:

  • the final semester before completion of all graduation requirements for the degree; and
  • the semester in which the students are undergoing industrial attachment or doing their final year projects.

(Students admitted prior to AY2014/2015 should refer to the General Information section of the archived NUS Bulletin relevant to their year of admission.)

Maximum Candidature

The maximum candidature for:

  • a Bachelor degree programme with a minimum requirement of 120 MCs is 4 years;
  • a Bachelor with Honours degree programme with a minimum requirement of 160 MCs is 5 years;
  • a typical double degree programme (which may involve between 180 and 200 MCs) is 6 years.

In general, students who have completed their degree requirements by the 6th semester or earlier for 120-MC programmes and the 8th semester or earlier for 160-MC programmes, may be allowed one additional semester of study (either a regular semester or Special Term) to improve their CAP standing subject to their reading:

In the case of the additional semester being a regular semester,

  • a minimum workload of 15 MCs, and
  • only Level-3000 or higher modules

In the case of the additional semester being the Special Term,

  • only Level-3000 or higher modules

Additionally, students are not allowed to opt for a new Minor, Second Major or Double Degree programme beyond the end of the 5th semester of study.

Minimum MC Requirements for Programme/Major and Minor

For students admitted from AY2014/2015 onwards:

  • Programme/Major: A minimum 60% of Programme/Major credits must be earned from modules read in NUS. Modules read at NUS include all modules taught, co-taught, supervised or co-supervised by one or more NUS faculty members. These would consist of graded modules with assigned grade points, or modules with an ‘S' or ‘CS' grade. The other 40% of credits may be earned through credit transfers, advanced placement and exemptions.
  • Minor Programmes: A minimum 16 MCs of the Minor requirements must be earned from modules read in NUS, unless indicated otherwise by Faculties/Departments for specific minors. Modules read at NUS include all modules taught, co-taught, supervised or co-supervised by one or more NUS faculty members. These would consist of graded modules with assigned grade points, or modules with an ‘S' or ‘CS' grade. The other 8 MCs may be earned through credit transfers, advanced placement and exemptions.

(Students admitted prior to AY2014/2015 should refer to “MCs excluded from CAP Computation” in the General Information section of the archived NUS Bulletin relevant to their year of admission.)

Advanced Placement Credits and Exemption

Advanced placement credits (APCs) or exemption may be granted for NUS modules taken and passed prior to admission to the University, for modules completed at another tertiary institution recognised by the University, or based on performance in placement tests set by the relevant Faculty.

The granting of APCs or exemption is subject to the following:

  • The university modules or diploma must not have been used to count towards the award of any other degree. In addition, the university modules or diploma must have been completed within the last 5 years prior to the date of admission to the University.
  • For NUS modules, APCs with grade transfer will be granted when student has received a pass (C or better). Students may choose to exercise Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory (S/U)* grading option for these modules, subject to the rules of their home faculty, during the S/U option exercise conducted at the end of the first semester.
  • Transfer of credits for modules not conducted by NUS will take place without transfer of grades.
  1. With effect from AY2008/09, holders of G.C.E. ‘A' Levels, International Baccalaureate or equivalent qualifications who have completed university modules or placement tests through the above-mentioned routes may be granted APCs in relevant modules for up to a maximum of 40 MCs, as follows:
  • Up to 8 MCs for the University Level Requirements;
  • Up to 12 MCs for Unrestricted Elective Modules; and
  • Up to 20 MCs for Programme Requirements.

Such students should apply to the Dean's Office of their home faculty for APCs at the point of admission to the University.

  1. Diploma holders of approved programmes from Polytechnics in Singapore admitted to a 120-MC or 160-MC programme may be granted APCs in relevant modules for up to a maximum of 40 MCs, as follows:
  • Up to 8 MCs for University Level Requirements, comprising one General Education Module and one Breadth Module;
  • Up to 12 MCs for Unrestricted Elective Modules; and
  • Up to 20 MCs for Programme Requirements.

With effect from AY2011/12, for diploma holders to be granted the relevant APCs Programme Requirements, the diploma must have been completed within the last 5 years prior to the year of admission to the University.

However, the 20 MCs of APCs for the University Level Requirements and Unrestricted Elective Modules will be awarded to all diploma holders of approved programmes from Polytechnics in Singapore, regardless of when the diploma was completed, in recognition of the overall knowledge gained from a Polytechnic education. These 20 MCs of APCs are tagged at Level-1000. However, the 12 MCs from Unrestricted Electives will not be counted against the 60-MC limit on Level-1000 modules. This is because many Level-1000 modules are essential modules that students must complete before they can progress to the next level. For Polytechnic diploma holders admitted to the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, all 20 MCs of APCs will be counted against the 60-MC limit on Level-1000 modules.

  1. Students from other tertiary institutions recognised by the University who have declared themselves as transfer students at the point of application for admission and are seeking APCs or exemption should apply to the Dean's Office of the Faculty concerned within the first week of the first semester of study. Please note that such APCs or exemption applications will be considered only at the point of admission to the University and approvals are subjected to the following:
  • The residency requirement (see here for details);
  • The limit on the number of MCs that can be excluded from CAP computation (see here for details); and
  • Up to 8 MCs for University Level Requirements

Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory option

The Grade-free First Semester scheme, in the form of Satisfactory / Unsatisfactory (S/U) option, aims to provide a supportive and enabling environment for NUS undergraduates to make a successful transition into the academic and social culture of university life.  It serves to facilitate a transformation in students' mindsets towards grades and learning in the university setting, as well as enable students to leverage opportunities for a holistic education. The Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory (S/U) option is also intended to encourage students to pursue their intellectual interests, without undue concern that exploring a new subject area may adversely affect their CAP.

Under the S/U mechanism, letter grades are assigned to modules. Students may choose to retain the letter grade and have it factored into the computation of his or her their Cumulative Average Point (CAP), or choose to exercise the S/U option on a module, in which case the letter grade will not be shown on the transcript nor computed towards the CAP.

A ‘S' grade is assigned if a student receives a ‘C' grade or above for the module. Conversely, students will receive a ‘U' if the grade obtained is lower than a ‘C' grade. Students will receive credit towards the degree only if they attain a ‘Satisfactory' (S) grade.

For students admitted from AY2014/2015 onwards, up to 32 MCs may be taken on an S/U basis, which may be exercised

  • during the student's first semester, for up to 20 MCs; and
  • any time during a student's candidature, for up to 12 MCs.

Once an ‘S' or ‘U' grade is assigned to a module, it will count towards the 32-MC limit that can be taken on an S/U basis.

The S/U option will apply to all Level 1000 modules (with or without pre-requisites) and Level 2000 modules without other NUS modules as pre-requisites, unless otherwise stipulated by the Faculties/Departments.

In general, unused S/U MCs from the first semester may not be carried forward to subsequent semesters. However, some Faculties or programmes with unique circumstances have been permitted to exercise flexibility in the implementation.

In addition, students may only read up to a maximum of 23 MCs during the first semester  and 27 MCs for students on specific special programmes like double degree programmes, concurrent degree programmes, University Scholars Programme, Faculty of Engineering's Global Engineering and Design-Centric Programmes, and Faculty of Science's Special Programme in Science.

The S/U declaration exercise will be conducted upon the release of examination results and will end by the stipulated deadline, which will be announced each semester. Students will exercise their S/U option during this period for any module that permits the S/U option. Thereafter, the student's decision will be considered final.

For more details, please view the Frequently Asked Questions on S/U Option by clicking here.

(Students admitted prior to AY2014/2015 should refer to the Satisfactory / Unsatisfactory (S/U) policy in the General Information section of the archived NUS Bulletin relevant to their year of admission.)