Fees, bursaries for part-time tertiary students to be reviewed: PM Lee, Latest Singapore News - The New Paper

Fees, bursaries for part-time tertiary students to be reviewed: PM Lee

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Fees and bursaries for part-time students will be reviewed, and if necessary, adjusted.

Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said this yesterday, adding to his announcement at last month's National Day Rally that tertiary education will be more affordable.

He noted that the Government has not yet revised the fees and bursaries for part-time students, although it had done so for full-time students through higher bursaries for lower- and middle-income university students, and lower fees for general degree programmes at the Singapore University of Social Sciences (SUSS) and Singapore Institute of Technology.

"We looked at them, but we think that these fees and bursaries should be affordable for working adults," he said in a speech at SUSS' inaugural ministerial dialogue.

The value of lifelong learning and a university education, as well as the future of work amid technological disruption, were among the issues covered during a lively one-hour dialogue between PM Lee and some 500 SUSS students.

SUSS, which became Singapore's sixth autonomous university in 2017, offers full-time and part-time graduate and undergraduate courses.


PM Lee said the biggest challenge for Singapore's education system is to make it effective for continual learning.

He explained that it was not just a matter of money or about running courses, but having educational programmes that are suited to meet the learning needs and styles of adults - whether they are from Generation X, or in their 70s.

Courses offered in polytechnics and universities like SUSS have to be structured in a modular fashion, and lecturers have to be able to adapt teaching styles to help older people learn at their own pace, he noted.

A whole support system must also be in place, so employers understand and make adjustments when their workers go for courses; and employees can focus on their jobs and studies and maintain a balance, he added.