with selected courses from Academic Year (AY) 2022, the Institute of Technical Education
(ITE) will introduce a new enhanced three-year curricular structure leading directly to a Higher Nitec certification.
2. The enhanced
curricular structure seeks to equip our ITE graduates with deeper
industry-relevant skills for employment, as well as provide a stronger
foundation for further education and skills upgrading over the course of their
careers. This move is in line with the Ministry of Education’s (MOE)
commitment to provide opportunities for all ITE graduates to upgrade beyond a Nitec
qualification over the course of their careers by 2030.
Enhanced curricular structure in ITE
the two-year Nitec programmes, and the Higher Nitec programmes
which are mostly two years in duration are offered separately by ITE. As such, GCE
N-Level holders who enter Nitec courses will typically attain a Higher
Nitec certification after four years. Currently, more than seven in 10 Nitec
graduates progress to Higher Nitec or pursue other publicly-funded
upgrading pathways over the course of their careers, such as the ITE Work-Study
Diploma (WSDip) Programme.
the enhanced curricular structure, the Nitec and Higher Nitec curricula
will be streamlined into a three-year programme by removing overlapping
competencies between related Nitec and Higher Nitec courses. In
Year 1, students will undertake broad-based foundation courses exposing them to
fundamental skills needed for the relevant industry sector. In Years 2 and 3, they
will then take more specialised modules, leading to a Higher Nitec
this is a significant shift involving curriculum redesign and restructuring, ITE
will adopt a phased implementation approach. 16 courses – eight Nitec
and eight Higher Nitec – have been identified for the first phase of
implementation from AY2022. This will involve about 2,000 students admitted
into Year 1 and about 1,200 students admitted into Year 2 directly. The list of
courses under the enhanced curricular structure is in Annex A.
will ensure sufficient flexibility in the curriculum to cater to a diverse range
of learner profiles with different strengths, interests and learning needs. For
instance, students with the abilities and aptitude will be able to attain a Higher
Nitec in a shorter duration of two years via an accelerated pathway. This
includes GCE O-Level holders as well as those who enrol into ITE via the Direct Entry Scheme to
Polytechnic Programme (DPP). Conversely those who find it more difficult
to cope will be given additional learning support. For those who are unable to
complete the full three-year Higher Nitec programme, they can also go
out to work first with a Nitec qualification (with a transcript that
documents modules already taken), and return to ITE to complete the rest of the
modules at a later stage.
who graduate with a Higher Nitec can look forward to further upgrading
opportunities – such as the expanded offerings of ITE’s WSDips. Currently, ITE has 30 courses under
the WSDips, offering more than 600 places for students to upgrade themselves
while mastering their skills in a workplace environment as employees.
Leveraging strong industry partnerships to deliver
quality workplace learning
Attachments (IA) will remain a key component in the enhanced curricular
structure so that students continue to be equipped with industry exposure and
relevant work-ready skills. Leveraging its strong network of industry partners
and its unique brand of hands-on learning, ITE’s enhanced curricular structure will
strengthen the student learning experience with two industry attachments in the
three years – a three-month IA in Year 2 and a six-month IA in Year 3, with the
latter stint designed to build on the competencies of the former.
Review of Opportunities and
Pathways in Applied Education
enhanced curricular structure was studied as part of the Review of
Opportunities and Pathways in Applied Education, led by Second Minister for
Education Dr Maliki Osman. Engagements with ITE’s stakeholders as part of the
Review showed that students aspire to pursue further education, upgrade their
skills, and remain nimble amid economic transformations. They welcomed the
opportunity for ITE students to be equipped with a stronger foundation for future employment and
lifelong learning prospects. ITE’s industry partners also look forward to ITE
graduates who are equipped with deeper skills and enhanced workplace learning
10. Ms Low Khah Gek, Chief Executive Officer
of ITE, said, “The ITE curricular structure is built to be flexible and
responsive to the changing and rising skills demands of industry, as well as
enable ITE students to be better equipped to secure good jobs, pursue skills upgrading and build their
11. Members of the Review of Opportunities and
Pathways in Applied Education shared their views on the enhanced ITE curricular
structure. One of the members, Mr Ryan Lim, Founding Partner of QED Consulting
said, “The enhanced
curricular structure offers more opportunities for students to achieve higher
academic aspirations as well as acquire more valuable industry-relevant skills.
This will definitely help students access better career options upon
12. Another committee member, Mr Farhan
Firdaus, Partner of MEET Ventures also commented, “Future students can now
expect to graduate with a Higher Nitec directly via a three-year pathway.
They will also gain more industry exposure from the two industry attachments,
which will provide students with a stronger understanding of industry and thus
be in a stronger position skills-wise when entering the workforce or
pursuing further studies.”
will review the outcomes of the first phase of implementation, and make
necessary adjustments to the curriculum including implementation approach and
student support measures, before transiting more courses to the enhanced structure
in subsequent phases after AY2024. A list of frequently asked questions on ITE’s
enhanced curricular structure can be found in Annex B.
COURSES INVOLVED IN THE FIRST
PHASE OF IMPLEMENTATION OF THE ENHANCED ITE CURRICULAR STRUCTURE
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
THE ENHANCED ITE CURRICULAR
were these 16 courses selected to be part of the first phase of implementation
of the enhanced ITE curricular structure? When will the rest of the courses be
These selected 16 courses cover all three
course clusters in ITE and have a wide range of entry requirements to better
cater to the diverse spectrum of students who enrol into ITE. Given the
significant enhancement to the curriculum, ITE is adopting a phased
implementation approach to carefully study the outcomes of the first phase
before more courses are transited onto the enhanced curricular structure.
will ITE streamline the curriculum such that students entering at Year 1 are
able to complete their Higher Nitec in three years?
ITE will streamline its curriculum by removing
overlapping competencies that exist today between complementary Nitec and
Higher Nitec courses. For example, networking technology is currently taught in
the Nitec in Infocomm Technology and Higher Nitec in IT Systems & Networks.
With the removal of the overlapping competencies taught in the modules of these
two courses, the curriculum can be streamlined to allow students to acquire and
deepen the skills needed for specialisation alongside the broad skills needed
for the sector.
students on courses not under the enhanced curricular structure be disadvantaged
in their learning and academic progression?
Students who are on courses not under the
enhanced curricular structure will continue to have access to Higher Nitec
courses, polytechnic diplomas, Work-Study Diplomas and Technical Diplomas using
their Nitec qualifications. These students will thus not be
disadvantaged as they embark on their lifelong learning as compared to their
peers on this new structure.
will the admissions to the eight Higher Nitec courses for AY2022 take
Students can apply for admissions to the eight courses under the first
phase of implementation through the Early Admissions Exercise (EAE) in May
2021, or the Joint Intake Exercise (JIE) in December 2021. These students will
automatically be enrolled into the three-year curricular pathway leading to a Higher
students on these eight courses be expected to pay Higher Nitec fees
throughout their three years of study?
Students enrolling in the enhanced three-year programme in AY2022 will
pay the AY2022 Nitec fees for the first 2 years. When these students
progress to the Higher Nitec component in January 2024, they will pay
the AY2024 Higher Nitec fees, same as the new student intakes who start
the typical Higher Nitec courses from April 2024.