Unis plan new courses on data analytics, sustainability

NUS to offer such courses this year as it helps students deal with workplace transformation

The National University of Singapore (NUS) and other local universities will launch new courses this year in areas such as data analytics and sustainable urban development.

NUS said in a statement yesterday that the courses are part of its efforts to help students keep pace with workplace transformation.

Professor Bernard Tan, NUS senior vice-provost (undergraduate education), said: "The overall goal of all our education reform efforts is to advance a university curriculum that prepares students well for a Fourth Industrial Revolution world and workplace."

This comes as Singapore gears up to reskill its workforce amid a quickly evolving economy.

Last December, SkillsFuture Singapore launched the first Skills Demand For The Future Economy Report that pinpoints the top 20 clusters of skills in the digital, green and care sectors most needed in the next one to three years.

Education Minister Chan Chun Sing said then that globally, there is a huge demand for digital skills, and the Singapore Green Plan 2030 and demographic changes will see the local sustainability and care industries expand rapidly in the next few years.

Some of the new courses at NUS include a new full-time undergraduate programme known as the Bachelor of Engineering (Infrastructure and Project Management). It will cover modules in engineering, design, management, technology, building science and law to help graduates "excel in the built environment", said the university.

NUS also announced a second major in sustainable urban development, which "aims to train the next generation of urban problem-solvers". The course will be open to all undergraduate students. It can be stacked with students' primary major in any field and completed in four years with no extra academic workload.

Students will learn interdisciplinary knowledge and skills to create sustainable urban environments in the context of the changing climate, said NUS.

Singapore's other autonomous universities are also launching new courses this year, many of which cater to skills in the areas outlined by the SkillsFuture Singapore report.

The Singapore University of Social Sciences launched a Master of Built Environment programme last month and is set to launch a Master of Digital Marketing for its July intake of students this year.

The Nanyang Technological University is launching a second major in data analytics, while the Singapore University of Technology and Design will take in the first cohort of students for its design and artificial intelligence programme.

Meanwhile, Singapore Management University is launching new modules in areas such as sustainability and climate change law.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on February 25, 2022, with the headline Unis plan new courses on data analytics, sustainability. Subscribe