Service Obligation (SO) Scheme

International Students reading a government-subsidised programme can apply for the Service Obligation (SO) Scheme to pay reduced, subsidised tuition fees.

International Students who have applied successfully for the Scheme will be required to undertake a service bond under the terms of the Service Obligation to work for a Singapore-based company for three (3) years upon completion of their degrees (i.e. the employment secured after the date of degree conferment) so as to discharge some of their obligations to the Singapore public for the high subsidy to their graduate education. Singapore-based companies refer to local and international companies that have a base in Singapore that is registered with the Accounting & Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA) as well as companies of such local and international companies registered with ACRA that are based overseas. Please refer to MOE's website for more details.

  1. Student must be eligible for MOE Subsidy:
    • Student has not already attained a graduate degree that is of the same or higher level than the one s/he is intending to pursue through MOE subsidies or sponsorship by the Singapore Government agency (such as scholarships offered by the Ministries, Public Service Commission and Statutory Boards).
    • Student who has received MOE subsidies or sponsorship by the Singapore Government at the Autonomous Universities for the previous programme(s) at the graduate level for which s/he did not complete will be eligible for MOE subsidy up to the maximum course duration for the new programme less the equivalent number of semesters of government subsidy/sponsorship received for the previous programme(s) of the same level. 
  2. Students admitted from AY2020 for all graduate coursework programmes will no longer be eligible for the SO Scheme. Existing students from MOE subsidised coursework programmes which offer SO scheme may contact respective faculty/school to apply for the SO Scheme.
  3. All MOE-subsidised graduate research programmes are eligible for the SO Scheme, except for the following programmes:
    • Doctor of Philosophy (Duke-NUS Medical School)
    • Doctor of Philosophy (Public Policy)
    • Master's / PhD by Research (Law)
  4. The SO Scheme is not applicable to International Students on:
    • Foreign government scholarships
    • MOE-funded scholarships which comes with Graduate Assistantship Programme (GAP) requirement - NUS Graduate School for Integrative Sciences & Engineering Scholarship (NGSS), President's Graduate Fellowship (PGF), NUS Research Scholarship (RS), Tuition Fee Allowance (TFA) and Singapore International Graduate Award (SINGA)
  5. The terms and conditions for students on NUS RS, PGF and TFA who have already signed Service Obligation Agreement in previous semesters remain unchanged.

As the first semester's tuition fee will be billed before the Service Obligation Agreement is executed, students are to ensure that they have sufficient funds to pay the tuition fee amount chargeable before Service Obligation subsidy. After successful execution of the Service Obligation Agreement, the tuition fee will be adjusted accordingly. The difference in tuition fee paid will be credited to the students' Student Account in myEduRec and used to offset the next semester's tuition fees.

For students who wish to have a refund of the Credit Balance (arising from the Service Obligation Agreement executed) in their Student Account, please write-in directly to the Office of Finance (Attention: Mr Huang Zhenhui at

The amount of MOE Subsidy under Service Obligation can be referred from the student's bill in every semester. Students, who are required to pay Liquidated Damages (LD) to MOE, would have to pay the total amount of MOE Subsidy under Service Obligation plus 10% interest rate compounded at the end of each academic year.

Step 1:
Service Obligation application process is held biannually in August and January. For upcoming SO application exercise, eligible International Students can apply for the SO Scheme through MOE TGOnline System and complete the online application during the stipulated period as indicated below:

Online Application Period via MOE TGOnline System (

For Newly Admitted Students
To activate your TGOnline account, you will need the following details:
(b) Student ID no
(c) Date of Birth

(Note: After accepting the admission offer, newly admitted students are required to complete Registration Processes and apply Student’s Pass to obtain Student ID and FIN respectively in order to submit their SO applications.)

For Existing NUS Students
Enter the following details in the Login page:
(a) User ID (UIN/FIN)
(b) Password

(Note: Existing NUS Students have to contact their Dean’s Office to inform their intention to sign SO. Otherwise they will not be able to access MOE TGOnline System to submit their SO applications.)

Reminder (for Newly Admitted and Existing NUS Students)
While submitting the online SO application, please ensure that Home Country and Singapore addresses are filled up completely under “Addresses” section for the applicant and both sureties as shown in page 7 of the MOE TGOnline System Guide.
(Note: Home Country address is your residential address from your home country where you resided before leaving to Singapore.)

Online application period:
26 January to 1 February 2021
(Tuesday to Monday)

Step 2:
Students who have successfully submitted the online application will need to submit completely signed SO documents to MOE via an email from 2 to 15 February 2021. More information on this will be communicated to successful applicants via an email on 2 February 2021 by Registrar’s Office.



  1. Newly admitted and current International Students who meet SO eligibility criteria provided above.
  2. SO applicants who successfully submitted online SO application during the application period can submit completely signed SOA to MOE during the stipulated period via email to complete SO signing formalities.
  3. Only SO applicants who completed the signing formalities can enjoy subsidised Tuition Fees from the current semester to the Maximum Course Duration (for Research-based programmes) and Normal Course Duration (for MOE-subsidised Coursework programmes, with effect from Semester 1, AY2019/20). The list of MOE-subsidised Coursework programmes and its Normal Course Duration (NCD) can be found here.

For further enquiries about the SO Scheme, please refer to MOE's website on Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) or contact the following:

Tuition Grant Section Email: