Frequently Asked Questions

​This section contains important information ranging from making an application, academic and financial issues, etc. Please read the following FAQs carefully before making an application.    

 

General

1. What is Summer Studies?

2. What are the Summer Studies participating countries?

3. I'm an international student. Can I apply to a university located in my home country?

4. Who is my exchange coordinator?

 

Application and Selection

5. Why can't I find the latest details of some programs?

6. How do I apply for Summer Studies?

7. Why can't I submit/complete my application?

8. How should I make the selection?

9. What if I miss the deadline?

10. What are the selection criteria?

11. Can I apply for GEM Explorer at the same time?

12. What happens if my application gets rejected?

13. Am I guaranteed a spot once my application is approved and I have accepted the offer from NTU?

14. Can NIE Students apply?

15. What happens if I withdraw from Summer Studies?

 

Academic Issues & Language Proficiency

16.Will academic units be given upon completion of Summer Studies?

17. Am I able to attend two programmes and how many AUs will be awarded?

18. Can I clear core and/or prescribed electives?

19. Do I need to do course-matching?

20. How many courses could/should I submit for approval?

21. What if I cannot find course information for a required field?

22. Can I earn letter grades for courses taken overseas?

23. What is the medium of instruction?

24. Can I apply for if I am scheduled to participate in other academic activities such as IA/PA or In-Camp Training?

25. What should I do upon completion of the program to process the credit transfer?

 

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Financial Issues & Fee-Paying Institutions

26. I did not get an exchange placement. Which institutions accept fee-paying applications?

27. I wish to apply as a fee-paying student. Can I enroll in a summer program not currently endorsed by Summer Studies?

28. I'm a non-NBS student. Can I apply as a fee-paying applicant to NBS-specific partners?

29. Are tuition fees payable?

30. Is there a class limit for courses offered?

31. How much does it cost?

32. How do I apply for financial assistance from the university?

33. I am a scholarship holder. Can I apply?

34. Am I expected to take a minimum number of classes/credits? 

 

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Submission of Online Indemnity Form

35. Is it compulsory to purchase insurance?

36. Where can I find more information on the NTU Group Travel Insurance Scheme?

37. How do I make payment for the insurance premium?

      

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General

1. What is GEM Discoverer Summer Studies?

GEM Discoverer Summer Studies is a collection of summer programmes offered by reputable partner universities around the world. It aims to provide NTU undergraduates with short-term, 3 to 8 weeks exposure into the academic culture and heritage of the host university and country in which it is located.  


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2. What are the participating countries?  

Americas
- United States, Canada and Mexico
 
Europe - Austria, Denmark, France, Germany, Norway, United Kingdom, Sweden , Spain, Croatia and Italy
Asia - China, Hong Kong, Japan, South Korea, Taiwan and Indonesia
Oceania - Australia

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3. I'm an international student. Can I apply to an university located in my home country?

As Summer Studies aims to provide participants with a meaningful overseas experience, applicants will be not allowed to select an university located in their home country. This applies to both exchange and fee-paying applications. If participants proceed to apply to universities in their home country, NTU reserves the right to terminate any credit transfer arrangement and not recognise the courses taken for credit overseas for such participants.

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4. Who is my exchange coordinator?

Please click here for a list of NTU exchange coordinators.  

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Application and Selection

5. Why can't I find the latest details of some programmes?

Details for some programmes may not be made available to NTU by our host universities at your time of application. For unfinalised programmes, you may refer to last year's programme as a guide for planning. Normally, the dates will be similar. GEM Discoverer will post latest updates on the website. In the mean time, please refer to our host universities' website for more information.  

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6. How do I apply?  

You can make an online application on your StudentLink (Academic Matters -> Student Exchange) during the application period, which will be announced via email and info-sessions. All applications, exchange and fee-paying, should be made online and during the NTU application period.   Your application is not valid unless you have successfully completed the entire application, able to view a printable confirmation page and receive an acknowledgment email as receipt of your application to your NTU email address. All applicants will be notified so please stay contactable via your contact details listed in the application form.

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7. Why can't I submit/complete my application? 

When you apply, ensure that you use a compatible version of the Internet Explorer browser. You should receive an acknowledgment email upon completion of your application process. Email GEM-Discoverer@ntu.edu.sg promptly for assistance if you do not receive the acknowledgment or if you cannot complete the online application so that assistance can be provided during the online application period.   

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8. How should I make the selection?  

In your online application, you can select either an exchange or fee-paying programme but not both. Up to three choices from the current exchange destinations is available for selection. For those selecting a fee-paying programme, only one destination is available. You may wish to select a programme with finalised details, ranking them highly in your preference list, and give a lower ranking of programmes whose details are currently unavailable. Please check the host university website or our programme summary for latest updates on schedule, budget and other details.   

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9. What if I miss the deadline?  

No applications will be accepted after the stipulated application deadline.
 

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10. What are the selection criteria?  

For exchange programmes with limited vacancies, there are f
our main criteria -  

a. Academic Performance. The cutoff cumulative GPA for exchange placements is 2.5.
    
 
b. Overseas Exposure Record with NTU. E.g. if you have participated in an exchange-based (i.e. tuition waiver programme such as Explorer), you will be placed on a lower priority for the subsequent exchange-based programme. You will not be placed on a lower priority if you had participated in a fee-paying programme (ie. Prelude, Work & Study and all fee-paying Summer Studies programmes).
However, if the number of applicants exceeds the number of places available, a selection may be made to finalize the list of applicants. The selection criteria will be based on the following –

       i.          Academic Performance and cGPA.

      ii.          Overseas Exposure Record with NTU.

     iii.          Priority will be given to Singaporeans and Singaporean Permanent Residents.

  

c. Priority will be given to Singaporeans and Singapore Permanent Residents.   

For fee-paying applicants, please note that your school's approval is still essential for credit transfer purposes. The cGPA cutoff for participation is recommended at 2.5. Please note that some fee-paying programs have limited vacancies for certain courses offered (e.g. Berlin School of Economics). If the number of applicants exceed the number of places available, a selection based on the above selection criteria will be used and priority for consideration will be given to those who have made an online application during the formal application period.        

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11. Can I apply for GEM Explorer at the same time? 

You may only apply for both GEM Discoverer and GEM Explorer if the GEM Discoverer programme you are applying for is a Fee-paying programme. For example, you may participate in a Fee-paying Summer Studies programme during the May - July vacation, followed by an Explorer programme that commences in Semester 1 or 2. If have applied for two exchange based programmes and receive two exchange offers from us within a single application intake, you must reject one of them.

Students are only allowed to participate in one exchange based programme during their undergraduate course of study in NTU. Hence, students who apply for a GEM Discoverer exchange based programme will not be eligible to apply for a GEM Explorer exchange programmes. Vice-versa, students who have applied/attended a GEM Explorer exchange programme will not be eligible for a GEM Discoverer exchange based programme. 

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12. What happens if my application gets rejected?

Interested applicants or those who failed to secure a placement may indicate their interest with GEM Discoverer on assistance regarding application procedures and related matters. Please submit an appeal form available at our website. 

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13. Am I guaranteed a spot once I have accepted the offer from GEM Discoverer?

No. Approval and acceptance of offer from GEM Discoverer does not guarantee you a spot in the host university. Students are still subjected to the entry requirements of the host university and the possibility that some classes are closed due to overwhelming interest. Acceptance is only confirmed when students receive the acceptance package from the host university. It is the students' responsibility to be aware and ensure that they at least meet all entry requirements/ pre- requirements of the host university before making an application to GEM Discoverer.
Please do not apply directly with the host university if you did not receive any placement from GEM Discoverer. 

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14. Can NIE Students apply?

Yes. Applications are open to NIE students as well.  

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15. What happens if I withdraw from Summer Studies? 

GEM Discoverer reserves the right to impose a S$500 penalty should you withdraw after your formal acceptance without a valid reason. This also applies to fee-paying programmes especially when your school has reviewed your course matching requests. You may also be placed on a lower priority for other GEM Discoverer programmes in future. In addition, please note that your host university may impose high cancellation fees, which Gem Discoverer has no control or influence over.

 

Please inform GEM Discoverer immediately if you need to cancel your participation, especially for those nominated as exchange students so that the placement can be passed on to the next worthy candidate. All candidates are strongly advised not to withdraw as exchange spots are limited. Summer Studies programs are also only offered once a year.Please note that OGEM also reserves the right to cancel, withdraw or postpone any programme without prior notice or consultation with its participants at its discretion.    

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Academic Issues & Language Proficiency  

16. Will academic units be given upon completion of Summer Studies?

Generally, Summer Studies participants will obtain 3 AUs or 6 AUs towards the UE upon successful completion of the programme depending on the intensity of the course(s). As a guiding principle -
 

At least 80 Contact Hours – 6 AU Awarded towards the UE
Less than 80 Contact Hours – 3 AU Awarded towards the UE

The Credit Transfer Policy is given in each programme summary. AUs will only be granted if you complete the programme successfully. The Office of Academic Services will credit the AUs at least 10 weeks upon receipt of transcript. Please allow time for the AUs to be credited to your degree audit.

Graduating students who attend Summer Studies after final exams (i.e. fulfilled all AU requirements for graduation) will not be able to transfer the Summer Studies participation records (i.e. institution as well as AUs earned) to the transcript. You may treat it as personal enrichment. However, if the summer programme clashes with NTU convocation ceremony, you risk being unable to attend the event.

Graduating students who need to complete courses taken at Summer Studies for graduation need to be prepared that graduation may be delayed (ie. end of the next semester), resulting in you attending convocation a year later. 

Students should also take note on the total number of AUs allowed for credit transfer from overseas exchange/ fee-paying studies. For NBS students, you may find this information on NBS Intranet, Exchange Programmes, Credit Transfer Guidelines.

Important Notes on Credit Transfer:

Students who are transferring credits from another university must comply with the following requirements for graduation:

  • Cu​rricular requirements for your degree programme
  • Minimum candidature period
  • Minimum AU of graded courses
    • ​Credits that are transferred to NTU are not graded courses and therefore not counted towards the minimum AU of graded courses.
    • The total AU from graded courses that a student has earned to-date is shown in your degree audit.
  • ​Minimum years of study spent at NTU
  • Minimum CGPA for graduation

For more details, please click here.

​AU of graded courses that a student has earned to-date is shown in your degree audit.

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17. Am I able to attend two Summer Studies programs? 

 

You may attend only one Summer Studies programme per intake over your undergraduate course of study. For example: During the Summer break between AY 2017/2018 Semester 2 to AY 2018/2019 Semester 1 (May – July 2018), you may only attend one Summer Studies programme, for such as a Fee-paying Summer Studies programme in Hanyang University.

You may attend more than one Summer Studies programme during different intakes over your undergraduate course of study. For example: You have attended one Fee-paying Summer Studies programme in Hanyang University during the Summer break between AY 2017/2018 Semester 2 to AY 2018/2019 Semester 1 (May – July 2018). You may attend another Summer Studies programme during the next Summer break between AY 2018/2019 Semester 2 to AY 2019/2020 Semester 1 (May – July 2019), such as a Fee-paying Summer Studies programme in Waseda University . 

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18. Can I clear core and/or prescribed electives? 

Certain summer programmes offer extensive course offerings. Up to a maximum of 8 AUs can be awarded in all course categories, subjected to your school's internal guidelines and approval. Refer to Course finder which is found in StudentLink for details on previously approved records.  
 

Please note that if you participate in programmes that award 3 or 6 AUs towards the UE, the AUs can only be used to fulfil your UE course requirement and cannot be transferred to other course categories like PE. No exceptions.    

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19. Do I need to do course-matching for Summer Studies?

No, this is not needed if you participate in programmes that grant you 3 or 6 AUs towards the UE. Upon successful completion, the AUs will automatically be updated into your degree audit.
If you apply to institutions that grant you up to 8 AUs in all course categories, you are expected to submit a course matching request. Please research on the following information, which will be asked for to complete the course matching request -   

a. Overseas course information such as title, code and syllabus
b. Number of contact hours
c. Prescribed textbooks and chapters covered
d. Mode of assessment
e. Number of credits awarded by Host University
f. Teaching staff details

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20. How many courses could/should I submit for approval?

You may submit more course matching requests as a form of back-up for your school's approval (if class limit for other course(s) is reached or if the class is cancelled, etc). However, please note that the school's approval is not an absolute guarantee that the AUs will be transferred back to your course of study. Failed courses or those which exceed the maximum number of AUs (this is normally 8AUs) will not be recognized for credit even if they have been approved.

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21. What if I cannot find course information for a required field? 

If you do not have information for any of the required category above, input a 'dash' in the online course matching portal to move the page forward or you can exit the page and return to complete the blanks at a later date.


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22. Can I earn letter grades for courses taken overseas?

Letter grades earned during all overseas study programmes will not be transferred. As a result, your participation in the overseas programme will not contribute to or affect your cGPA and honors classification.

Hence, it is also recommended that you do not clear courses to meet requirements for Minor or second Majors as such courses need to be graded.

 

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23. What is the medium of instruction during Summer Studies?

All Summer Studies programmes are taught in English. Where a language course is taught, it will be in the native language and prior knowledge of the language may not be necessary.   

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24. Can I apply for Summer Studies if I am scheduled to participate in other academic activities such as IA/PA or In-Camp Training?  

DO NOT apply if you are already scheduled for other academic activities or personal commitments during the period of the summer program. However, you may
select a summer programme that does not clash. Plan in advance.  GEM Discoverer will not entertain any early release/NS deferment request.

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25. What should I do upon completion of the programme to process the credit transfer?  

If you receive a transcript or certificate of participation directly from the host university, submit a copy to GEM Discoverer promptly to facilitate credit transfer. You can keep the originals. The credit transfer process will not start until the Office of Academic Services (OAS) receives it. If the transcripts are mailed to GEM Discover directly, GEM Discoverer will contact participants to collect their transcripts. The transcripts will then be handed over to OAS for processing. Please contact OAS for issues related to credit transfer.  

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Financial Issues & Fee-Paying Institutions  

26. I did not get an exchange placement. Which institutions accept fee-paying applications?  

You can submit an appeal form during the stipulated period.

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27. I wish to apply as a fee-paying student. Can I enroll in a summer programme not currently endorsed by Summer Studies? 

Summer Studies comprises unique, one-to-one agreements with reputable universities around the world. NTU participants are also granted a reduced programme fee and/or a certain known number of AUs upon successful completion of the summer programme with exchange partners. 

GEM Discoverer is unable to administer applications for non-partner universities. Please seek approval from your school to ensure that the courses taken overseas are at least equivalent to the standards offered in NTU. Do note that the courses to be taken and the number of AUs to be awarded must be approved before embarking on the programme.

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28. I'm a non-NBS student. Can I apply as a fee-paying applicant to NBS-specific partners?  

Yes, provided you satisfy the entry requirements of the host university.
 

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29. Are tuition fees payable?  

Fee-paying applicants pay tuition fees charged by host universities. Some institutions charge tuition fees according to the number of academic units you take like UCLA Summer Sessions. Hence, the more courses you take, the higher the course fees. Refer to the host university websites for details on tuition fees.  

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30. Is there a class limit for courses offered?  

Fee paying students should also take note of the class limit set by the host university. This is usually stated on the online course catalog. Generally, you should apply early to avoid disappointment as course enrollment are on a first-come-first-serve basis.   You should not apply if classes are due to start in a month as you need time for visa/flight arrangements.

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31. How much does it cost to go for a Summer Studies exchange?  

Refer to the programme summaries listed in our website. The programme fees for exchange placements usually cover room/board, meals, field trips, and other special curricular features. In your budget, include return air-tickets, insurance, visa (if applicable) and personal expenses. For fee-paying applications, you may be expected to bear additional costs associated with housing, meals, and other academic fees. Refer to the host university website for details.  

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32. How do I apply for financial assistance from the university?  

Check out NTU financial assistance schemes from the Office of Admissions and Financial Aid (OAFA). You can make an online application via StudentLink during the application period. For more details on Financial Aid, please click hereIf you have a PSEA Account, you may also use it for Summer Studies. Please contact Ms Leong Lai Kuen of OAFA at finaid@ntu.edu.sg for more details.   

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33. I am a scholarship holder. Can I apply for Summer Studies?  

Yes. Scholarship holders are advised to check back with their sponsors on possible financial aid and approval for participating in Summer Studies.
 

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34. Am I expected to take a minimum number of classes/credits?  

Currently, only UCLA requires a minimum of 8 units to be taken. For LSE and University of Sydney, you may only study one course per summer session.

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35. Is it compulsory to purchase insurance?

If you are travelling before 1 June 2019, please ensure that you have the appropriate health and travel insurance coverage. The travel insurance should offer continuous coverage for the entire programme duration (at least the day you depart for the programme and the day you return to Singapore). The policy should offer a wide range of travel inconveniences benefits (ie. flight delays, loss of baggage). It should cover medical expenses for both illnesses and accidents, any emergency or medical evacuation expenses. You can choose any suitable travel insurance policy underwritten by an insurance corporation, as long as it is managed by a reputable agency and fulfills the requirements.

If you are travelling on or after 1 June 2019, you are automatically enrolled in the NTU Group Travel Insurance scheme. The certificate of insurance will be issued to you and you will be informed of the premium payable.                        

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36. Where can I find more information on the NTU Group Travel Insurance Scheme? 

For more information, please click on the below link.

http://www.ntu.edu.sg/SAO/WhoWeAre/OneStop/OurServices/Insurance/Pages/Travel-Insurance.aspx

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37. How do I make payment for the insurance premium? 

You will receive a payment notification from One Stop. Upon receipt, please proceed to make payment by the due date.

Please refer to the GEM Discoverer Insurance Payment Guide for step-by-step instructions.  

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