NUS to introduce 10 new Cross-disciplinary Degree Programmes for hyper-flexibility in a complex world

New CDPs effectively integrate complementary disciplines to equip students with the knowledge and skills to solve real-world problems

The National University of Singapore (NUS) is transforming its educational model to give students the flexibility to pursue programmes across disciplines. 

NUS is planning to pilot 10 Cross-disciplinary Degree Programmes (CDPs) across a variety of disciplines in Academic Year 2021/2022, as part of the University’s effort to adopt fresh approaches in higher education. Some possible pairing of complementary disciplines include economics and data science, computing and project management, as well as engineering and business. 

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Ten new Cross-disciplinary Degree Programmes, to be introduced in Academic Year 2021/2022, will give students the flexibility to pursue programmes across disciplines. 

The CDPs are designed with two key goals in mind: to leverage synergies between complementary disciplines, and increase the relevance of an NUS education. To graduate, a student needs to complete 160 modular credits, the same requirement for a four-year Bachelor with Honours degree programme. This comprises 40 credits covering the fundamentals for each of the two majors, 20 credits on integrative projects involving both majors, 20 credits on general education, and 40 credits on unrestricted electives in any discipline. 

NUS Senior Deputy President and Provost Professor Ho Teck Hua said, “The world is changing at an unprecedented rate. There is no better time for NUS to make a bold move to ensure that our students benefit from the expertise we have on our campuses. We believe that this novel cross-disciplinary model will enable our graduates to not just meet market demands, but to have mastery of a unique set of skills which they themselves have created. They will be better-equipped to thrive in a fast and complex world.” 

Traditional Double Degree or Double Major programmes are designed based on a specialist educational model, where students will acquire in-depth knowledge in two distinct disciplines. NUS’ new cross-disciplinary approach, on the other hand, breaks down the boundaries of two disciplines and focuses on the integration of these disciplines.  

Prof Ho, who is also the Executive Chairman of AI Singapore, is himself a product of many disciplines - artificial intelligence, marketing, computing and engineering. “The Cross-disciplinary Degree Programmes allow NUS to offer our students the best of both worlds – the flexibility to explore and the knowledge to specialise. This hyper-flexible model opens up new avenues that cater to more students with a wide range of aptitudes and interests,” Prof Ho added. 

The University is currently working with Faculties and Schools to implement CDPs. More details will be available by the end of the year.