Singapore Management University

Singapore Management University is an exchange destination for bachelor students of LAW, ECONOMICS AND GOVERNANCE.

Student experiences

Student experiences Singapore 


General information: study in Singapore!

Important information for international students


Academic calendar

All full-credit courses at SMU last for an entire term, with the rest (half-credit courses) being held over a period of half a term (approximately 6 weeks).

SMU encourages to attend the Spring Term/Term 2 as they have greater capacity in courses during that period. 

Fall Term/Term 1 = late August to early December
Spring Term/Term 2 = early January to late April
Academic calendar

Global Summer Programme (requires fees!)

Areas of study open to exchange students

Only undergraduate programmes/schools (Accountancy, Business, Economics, Information Systems, Law, Social Sciences) are open to exchange students, except for those on Themis programme. Students who are nominated via school-level exchange agreements may be restricted to courses offered by the school. A list of courses available for exchange students will be sent to applicants about two weeks before course registration.

Students in your final term are not encouraged to apply for the SMU’s ISEP programme. The nature of the course bidding system and the release timeline of final transcript might delay your graduation/higher education plan.

Language of instruction/language requirements


English Proficiency TestMinimum Score
TOEFL PBT (paper-based test)583
TOEFL IBT (internet-based test)93
International English Language Testing Systems (IELTS)7.0
C1 Advanced (Cambridge) Test185

Due to the COVID-19 testing restrictions, the scores from the TOEFL iBT® Special Home Edition and IELTS Indicator will also be accepted.

These requirements only apply to students whose language of instruction is NOT English. Validity of certification must be within two years at the point of application.

Housing assistance

The SMU campus is situated in the heart of the city with many private housing options that are within walking distance to SMU and conveniently accessible to amenities and transportation networks. Students have the flexibility and choice to source and arrange for their own accommodation based on their needs. Arrangements are at the sole responsibility and discretion of the student.
For rental of private apartments/condominiums, it is important that students read and understand Singapore’s governing policies on rental/leasing of accommodation, from the Singapore Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) website.
Students are also strongly advised to read and understand all terms and conditions of the leasing agreement before committing to the lease. Once the lease has been accepted and signed, the signatories have a legal obligation to fulfil all the terms stated in the agreement. Please note that Airbnb is strongly discouraged as residential properties in Singapore are not allowed to be used for short-term accommodation under the law.
SMU does not represent either party in any disputes arising from the rental/lease of the property.

More information here 

Estimated living costs per month

Exchange students can expect to spend approximately S$1,800–S$3,000 per month (including housing rental).

Estimated monthly expenses:

Accommodation (subjected to type of accommodation)S$900 – S$1,500
FoodS$600 – S$800
TransportationS$100 – S$200
TelecommunicationsS$30 – S$50
Books and StationeryS$50 – S$100
Personal Expenses (entertainment etc.)S$100 – S$300

Actual expenses will differ depending on the choice of accommodation and lifestyle of each individual.

Course information

In general, here is a quote from a former exchange student:  "choosing anything with "Advanced" is much more advanced then at UU. It would be advised to choose courses number around 200 as it matches more from what we cover in UU 3rd year".

SMU course catalogue

Course load: 

Full course load per term: 4.0 SMU credits.
Minimum course load per term: 2.0 SMU credits.
Students may be permitted to enrol for a maximum course load of 5.0 SMU credits per term, subject to approval by the home university and SMU only if it is a graduation/exchange requirement.

Course enrolment is via a bidding process. The result is NOT guaranteed and subject to SMU’s academic policies. Flexibility in the course plan is advised to avoid disappointment. Please note that all students will be granted the same amount of e-dollars (e$100 per term) for their course bidding regardless of how many courses they can bid. Therefore, requesting for the 5th course unnecessarily will make it more difficult for students to secure their desired courses, and will affect their academic performance throughout the term. We seek your kind assistance and cooperation to request for the 5th course only if it is a graduation/exchange requirement. Approval of the 5th course is subject to SMU academic policies and availability of the courses.

Postgraduate courses are not open to exchange students. All incoming exchange students can only take undergraduate courses.

To view the course catalogue and course descriptions for a specific semester, please visit: Undergraduate Student Information - Course Catalogue Class Search -> Select the correct Academic Term -> Select Courses with Sections Offered -> Select the corresponding letter of the course name -> View Class Section -> Course Outline
(More information about the courses can be obtained in the course outline).

Some courses require students to fulfil certain pre-requisites before reading the course. The pre-requisites are listed in the online course catalogue. If students have done similar pre-requisites in their home university, they are advised to check with the SMU course instructors on the fulfilment of these pre-requisites.

Students are encouraged to prepare a course outline (in English) of the courses they have taken that meets the pre-requisites, for review by the SMU course instructor up. Reviews may be done up till the first week of the academic term.

Exams: All exams are in-person. Students are required to sit for the final exams as scheduled by SMU. No rescheduling of exams will be allowed!


You can find information on this university’s credits in the credit conversion table

Grading system
GradeGrade PointMark Range
A+                 4386 and above
A4083 to 85
A-3780 to 82
B+3377 to 79
B3074 to 76
B-2770 to 73
C+2366 to 69
C2063 to 65
C-1760 to 62
D+1353 to 59
D1050 to 52
F0049 and below


Number of places available

6 places per year (4 in Fall / 2 in Spring/Summer)

Health insurance

It is mandatory for all students to purchase the SMU Medical Insurance, for coverage during their study term in Singapore. It is included as part of the miscellaneous fee*, which is applicable to all students. Students are strongly advised to purchase additional travel insurance at their own cost and discretion as necessary, for personal travel or leisure trips overseas. The SMU Student Travel Insurance only applies to students on official travels approved/sanctioned by SMU.

*Miscellaneous fee: All students are required to pay a miscellaneous fee (approximately S$250 for one term or S$400 for one year) which covers registration, matriculation, medical insurance, IT services and student activities. This fee is mandatory and non-refundable and non-transferable under any circumstances including the outcome of the Student’s Pass. 


All international exchange and visiting students are required to hold a valid Student’s Pass during their study term in Singapore. The Student’s Pass is a legal document that enables the student to live and study in Singapore, as well as serves as a multiple-entry visa into Singapore (subject to terms and conditions). The cost for the Student’s Pass ranges between S$90 and S$120 and includes the application fee, issuance fee and multiple-entry visa fee (if applicable).
SMU will initiate the application of the Student's Pass. Nevertheless, students bear the responsibility to complete and fulfil the application requirements for the Student’s Pass before their arrival in Singapore. More information on the Student’s Pass application process will be provided two months before the start of the study term.

More information here


Compulsory, approximately 4 working days before term begins. 

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Do you have any questions about this partner university or would you like to know more?

Contact the International Exchange Office of the Faculty of Law, Economics and Governance.

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