Reserapport - KI-student
Lärosäte: National University of Singapore
Utbildningsprogram: Hälsoinformatik
Utbytesprogram: INK
Termin: Hösttermin 17/18

Innan avresa

I have always wanted to study abroad, but it wasn’t possible during my bachelor. KI have collaboration with two universities, and the one I chose was National University of Singapore. It’s ranked as one of the best in the world. Before I went, I felt I got enough information about courses and housing. I had a good international coordinator at KI that always answered my questions. NUS also sent a lot of information before I departed. However, NUS is using a lot of different systems for different purposes which made it a bit confusing sometimes. I only took vaccine for Hepatitis A and B , but if you are going to travel to other countries you should look up what is needed.

Marina Bay Sands

Ankomst och registrering

I arrived to Singapore the 28th of July, but the first introduction was not until the 3rd of August. Registration was at the 4th of August and before the semester started you could add and drop modules, but the lectures started on the 14th of August. After registration, it takes 2 weeks for your student pass to be done. You cannot leave the country during these weeks.

During the free time, I explored Singapore and tried to get used to the heat. Since I arrived earlier than the pick-up period for my keys, I had to email them in advance so they know I was are coming. Some trips were arranged by NUS students, for example a shopping trip to a mall to buy stuff for your dorm and food bingo. Though, these trips did not have that many spots, so be quick.

Gardens By The Bay


I spent most of my money on accommodation and the flight tickets. I paid the flight tickets with the travel grant I got from KI. I had some money saved for this exchanged, but I felt that I should have saved more since there is so much to do!

In Singapore there is plenty of hawker stalls with cheap food. You can get chicken and rice for 2 SGD, which is around 12 SEK. It was very cheap to eat at campus, I paid 12-60 SEK per meal. I was not very smart in the beginning and ate at more expensive places. A tip is to look up these hawker centers and food courts with cheap food. You will also save money if you get accommodation at campus. Some campus accommodations had meal plans, which you pay for together with the rent. I cancelled my room at campus and hired an apartment with four other girls. We paid 6000 SGD per month and one of my roommates wanted her own room so she paid double. I paid 1000 SGD per month, which is around 6000 SEK.


NUS does not provide you with housing, you can apply for it through a portal. I did not get any accommodation during the first or second round. It made me a bit worried, but two weeks before my departure I got room type B at Prince George’s Residence at campus. I paid 14 000 SEK for the whole semester. However, I got a bit disappointed when I arrived. It smelled mold, without aircon, window towards the bus station and a fan that made a terrible noise. I asked if I could change room, but everything was full. I slept there one night and then booked a hostel in Chinatown, where I stayed for 10 days. I had contact with another swede from a group on Facebook “Swedes in Singapore” and she was going to rent through a company called XchangeHousing. They wanted us to sign a contract before we could see the apartment and when we got to see it, it was not the apartment that we were going to get. Also, I paid around 3000 SEK for their services, but they did not help us. So I don’t recommend renting through them.

During the registration I made friends with three other girls from Norway, Belgium and France. We hired a real estate agent which has helped a lot of student before. She found a 3 room apartment in HarbourFront with pools, gym, close to Sentosa Island and NUS. It is more expensive to hire a real estate agent, and you pay an agent fee once, which is half of the rent. There was also costs for aircon, electricity, gas, water and wifi. However, I’m happy that we chose this place since it was close to malls, food courts, school and the city.

Our pool

Studier allmänt

Like I mentioned before,  NUS is ranked as one of the top universities in the world, which is something I noticed. The three professors I had in my modules had years of experience within their field. Both work- and education related. The lectures were very informative with a focus on Singapore. Every professor had a teaching assistant which took notes on active participation. The teaching assistant is a PhD student. The relationship between professor and student is formal. You have to mention their title before their first name, otherwise it is seen as rude.

In some courses, it was not okay to be absent more than 2 times and they grade you based on how active you are. The schedules are fixed and held at the same time and day every week. I felt that the study pace is faster than in Sweden and you have more to do. I think the level of the modules is similar to KI and it was not to difficult to pass.

At NUS you read 20 credits and 5 modules per semester. Every module is worth 4 credits, but some students took 7 modules per semester. The Bell-Curve is used when grading, which means that your grades depend on how well the class performs.  

Campus UTown

Kurser under utbytet

Kurser motsvarande termin 3 på KI

I went on exchange during my 3rd semester because I had 22,5 credits of elective courses. Before I arrived to Singapore I got accepted to four modules:

  • IT Governance

    • This module was about how strategic planning help to align IT strategies with business strategies. The professor covered areas like security policy, quality management, risk management, project management and return on investment of IT. The module was focused more on business rather than healthcare, but still you got an understanding of why there can be resistance from users when implementing new systems. Also, who has the responsibility and what happens when there is a lack of communication when developing systems.

  • Information Technologies in Financial Services

    • This was my favourite module. The professor had a lot of previous experience and he was really good in english. It was about how information technology can support the financial service industry. It was  focused on companies and culture in Singapore, which made it a bit difficult sometimes. It was also very business focused, but also how IT can be a competitive strategy and how it complies with regulations and laws. Our project work was about blockchain and I learned a lot.

  • Information Security Policies

    • This module was not an Information Security course, which the professor was very clear with. I learned more about the importance of a security policy in a company. Management, political leadership and how technical community work together to make an effective strategy and policy. We got examined on areas like: how to determine vulnerabilities and risks.

  • Software Project Management

    • This module seemed very interesting, but I chose to drop it because it was focused on previous work experience. Also, the examination was about a project in your work that has failed or succeeded. Besides these modules, I had two courses at KI which I did online.

The modules are on different levels, 1-3 is for bachelor, 4-5 is for master and 6 is for PhD. I did courses on level 4 and 5. The courses on level 5 are scheduled on late evenings so there was people taking the course after work.

Besides lectures, two of my modules had tutorials. During the tutorials we got a case study that was related to that week’s topic. You are a smaller group and it’s similar to a seminar. Sometimes we worked in groups. Also, every modules had project work. There are not that many exchange students in School of Computing, which was good since I got to know some locals.

University Hall

Språk och kultur

The official language is Malay, but everyone speaks english or singlish. Sometimes I only understood half of what my local classmates said, but that is something you get used to. Chinese and Indian are also languages that are spoken frequently. Singapore is full of different cultures. The MRT (metro) can take you anywhere and there are stations like chinatown, little india and holland village. There are several temples and a beautiful mosque in bugis. The climate is very warm and it was very difficult to move around in the beginning, but that is something you get used to. It also rains a lot, but usually for a short while. Some nights there could be a great thunderstorm so intense me and my roomie woke up.

Fritid och sociala aktivteter

I wanted to try something new when I arrived to Singapore and in the beginning of the semester a sport event was arranged. The event included all the activities you could participate in. Everything from swimming, climbing, running to muay thai. I started Karate, since the muay thai group got full quickly. The Karate was every monday and thursday 7-9 PM. It was very hard to train in the heat in the beginning. I paid 20 SGD per month, which is around 120 SEK. Besides the sport club, there was a pet club which you could volunteer to take care of dogs and a makeup club to learn about beauty.

Students from NUS arranged some activities, for example a biking trip and a trip to Bintan outside of Singapore. Since I got accommodation at PGP in the beginning, I joined their WhatsApp group. They arranged things together. One day we went for a hike in the Southern Ridges. The exchange students were very good at arranging things by themselves. Me and my roomies went on some trips to Malaysia and Vietnam as well. You can find cheap flight tickets and hostels to countries close to Singapore.
My Karate Group


To summarize the experience: so far this is the best thing I’ve ever done. I’ve learned more about myself, people and cultures. I think it’s a valuable experience that future employer appreciates. People are in general very interested and I get questions about my exchange.

Langkawi, Malaysia