banner image

NUS Leadership Excellence And Development (LEAD) programme

The NUS Leadership Excellence And Development (LEAD) programme seeks to empower students to gain deeper insight into their socio-emotional competencies and leadership skills and better equip them to lead with success in their leadership appointments, on campus and in the larger community. 



  • Enrich university student life and promote holistic leadership development
  • Boost future graduate employability by articulating leadership skills and experiences in interviews and CVs
  • Build network of graduated student leaders and measure long-term impact of student leadership


Leadership Learning Process 

This multi-year leadership programme consists of three levels:

Emerging Leader

Level 1: Emerging Leader

Develop areas of personal growth and self awareness fundamental to personal and leadership success

Developing Leader

Level 2: Developing Leader

Enhance leadership effectiveness and learn how to develop a team and sustain team performance

Influential Leader

Level 3: Influential Leader

Demonstrate leadership mastery through application and learn how to lead with influence

Leadership Courses

The Leadership Courses are organised under the 4 leadership pillars, mirroring the stages of leadership development. The List of Eligible NUS Courses, offered by faculties and departments, and online courses can be found here.


Cultivate areas of personal growth and development fundamental to leadership success

Topics: goal setting, self-awareness, developing self-esteem and self-potential

Level 1: The Emerging Leader


Ability to recognise and manage feelings (i.e. of their own and others) to create strong relationships

Topics: interpersonal and intercultural communication, working in teams effectively

Level 2: The Developing Leader


Learn how to build your team, improve teamwork and collaboration, and sustain team performance

Topics: decision-making, managing change, building trust and conflict management

Level 2: The Developing Leader


Create an inspiring vision of the future and motivate their followers to achieve this shared vision

Topics: leading with influence, visionary leadership, motivation and engagement

Level 3: The Influential Leader

Programme Fulfilment

Upon completion of each leadership level, student leaders will be awarded a digital badge or certificate. The leadership levels for LEAD are successive, i.e. completion of Level 1 is a pre-requisite for Level 2. Criteria for programme fulfilment are as follow:

LEAD programme fulfilment, emerging, developing, influential, accomplished leader

How to Apply

Application for the LEAD programme is now open!

Register your interest for LEAD Level 1 via the Registration Form for LEAD. Upon Registration, you have to follow through and confirm the online courses and/or NUS courses offered by faculties and departments you have selected. You may refer to the List of Eligible NUS Courses and online courses here.
Apply Now

Upon registration, you will be invited to be part of the Singapore Young Leaders Programme (SYLP). 

SYLP is a new initiative from MOE comprising a suite of programmes and activities to honour our founding generation of leaders and commemorate the ideals and values they exemplify, e.g. integrity, conviction and a commitment to building Singapore. The SYLP is designed with a suite of programmes that allows for young inspiring leaders like you to get a chance to interact with students from other Institutes of Higher Learning (IHL) and the prominent industry or political leaders.

Registration for SYLP is complimentary and it will give you access to some exclusive events. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Eligibility as Learners

1. Is the LEAD programme open to all students, i.e., Undergraduates, Masters, PhD students? 
Yes, the LEAD programme is open to all NUS students.

2. Can I participate in the LEAD programme as a final year student?
Yes, learners may participate in LEAD programme as final year students. However, please ensure that all three levels are completed before graduation so as to receive the final certification for LEAD.

3. Must I be involved in an NUS CCA to eligible for LEAD Level 2? Are external CCA involvement recognised for LEAD?
The LEAD programme was established with the objective to encourage students to take up leadership commitments within NUS, hence only involvement in NUS CCA(s) are recognised for LEAD.

4. Can I attempt LEAD Level 3 after the end of my leadership CCA term? 
No, you are required to hold a leadership position to be eligible for LEAD Level 3. The intention is to have the leadership position as the practicum for the theories learnt in Level 3 courses.
 5. Who can sign up for the Singapore Young Leader Programme (SYLP)?
 SYLP is open to students in Institutes of Higher Learning (IHL), including the Autonomous Universities (AUs), Polytechnics and Institute of Technical Education (ITE).

Participants should have some level of exposure to leadership opportunities in school and should share an interest in social and national issues. However, even if you have not assumed leadership roles, as long as you are open to hearing and sharing perspectives on social and national issues, we welcome you to participate in the programme. 

Programme Fulfilment

1. Is there a deadline for sign-ups? 
The LEAD programme is designed to encourage self-initiated and self-paced learning. It is up to learners when they plan to start and complete the Levels, i.e., you may complete more than one level of the LEAD programme within the semester.

2. Can I complete Level 1 before the recommended deadline to move on to Level 2?
 The LEAD programme is designed to encourage self-initiated and self-paced learning. It is up to learners when they plan to start and complete the Levels, i.e., you may complete more than one level of the LEAD programme within the semester.

3. When do we begin our learning after we register for LEAD? Will we receive any notifications that we have been accepted into the programme?
Official enrolment for the LEAD programme commences after the completion of the Pre-course Survey. Learners may proceed to learn at their own pace and produce proof of completion for verification at the end of their learning at each Level.

4. Will we still receive the digital badges if the learning of the online courses is via the audit track? 
Yes, by default, all learners will attempt the LEAD online courses via the audit track, which does not require any payment. Learners will be able to access all content of the online course, except for the graded assessments.

5. Is there an option to skip to LEAD Level 2 if I have completed the relevant courses for Level 1?
Yes, you will be able to clock the learning for Level 1 if you have attempted any two of the listed courses. Learners will need to produce evidence of fulfilment of Level 1 learning requirements, before proceeding to the next level.

Please write in to and we will advise you on the follow up accordingly.

6. Is there an option to skip LEAD Level 1 and move on to Level 2 if I have existing leadership experience? 
No, you will not be allowed to skip levels for LEAD. The LEAD programme is designed to build upon each level of learning. Learners are required to complete the learning for Level 1, before proceeding to Level 2. The same applies for subsequent levels.

7. Is the List of Eligible courses for LEAD exhaustive? Will other leadership courses be considered under the LEAD programme? 
The eligible courses for LEAD are selected after careful consideration of the learning content. However, please write in to if you have any other suggested courses for our consideration. The LEAD team will review the relevance of the course content accordingly.

Administrative Procedures

1. How do I submit proof of completion of a. NUS courses and / or b. online courses, if I had taken them in the previous semesters? 
You will be invited to a collaborative platform via MS Teams, where submission of relevant documents will be done via the platform. Further instructions will be provided following your enrolment for LEAD.

a. NUS courses - You could submit your academic transcript if you had completed the courses in previous semesters.
b. Online courses - You could submit a screenshot of the course completion page if you had completed the online courses in previous semesters.

Examples of screenshots for Coursera and edX as follows:

2. Can I earn Units for my learning in the LEAD programme?

While attempting LEAD, you are eligible to earn units via for option A Design Your Own Course (DYOC). Please refer to Registrar’s Office’s website and follow the timeline for registration if you wish to attempt LEAD Programme as a DYOC. 

Option A – 2 Units, only for edX online courses

If you wish to attempt the LEAD courses via the certification track, the certification track will be payable, and you may apply for reimbursement upon completion. 

3. Will I still be able to attempt LEAD as DYOC if I had used up my DYOC units entitlement? 
You may opt to take the LEAD programme as a non-DYOC as you will not be able to claim further Units for DYOC.