Daniel - Nanyang Technological University

B. Engineering
Semester 1, 2016

Academic experience

I studied computer engineering subjects which included content on operating systems, FPGA's, Database management and Human Computer Interaction. The system over there seemed much lighter in the first half of semester and then really picked up towards the end which was a bit different to the constant load over the whole semester at UQ. I just had to put in a bit more time towards the end to finish everything off.

Personal experience

I got to travel to a few different countries (Singapore is great for this!) and got to experience a real mix of cultures as even the suburbs in Singapore all take on different feels from the mix of people that live there. In terms of personal skills, it was a big change and it forces you to roll with the flow and not be able to control everything which I think I was used to from studying for years back at home.

Accommodation

I lived off campus with another UQ student. On campus was assigned so you couldn't choose your roommate and the campus was a bit further out of the built-up area. Living off campus we each got a large room and the whole apartment to ourselves so we were able to have plenty of family and friends come and stay with us. Depends on your preferences but I'm used to having my own space and couldn't stand living in the same room as another person.

Budget

Rent was pretty expensive compared to what I pay back in Brisbane. SG$1000 / month each ($2000/month for a whole apartment) and you have to pay a months rent as a security deposit. This was much more expensive than on-campus accommodation but you also get a lot more. We didn't have time to check the apartment before we signed up which was a mistake as it wasn't quite what was shown in the photos on the internet. Food was much cheaper than Australia. If you eat in Hawker centres you can get a pretty decent sized meal for $3-4. Going out is really expensive. Alcohol is way more expensive than Australia and eating at restaurant incurs both GST and a Service charge which often caught us out.

Professional development and employability

I picked up some really useful skills as I was able to pick a few subjects that wouldn't have fit into my plan back home.

Highlight

All the travel I got to do. I managed to get to Thailand, Malaysia and Borneo as well as do pretty much everything Singapore had to offer. At the end of my third year, it was a great way to refresh myself for a big final year at Uni.

Top tips

  • It's a great experience but it takes a lot of planning and preparation to make sure you are still able to graduate on time with the right credits.
  • I had to quickly rearrange what I did overseas as it didn't work with the timetables they had.
  • You need to be flexible and roll with what happens but also not sit back and throw away the chance to learn content in a different way.
Daniel - Nanyang Technological University