Student's Guide: Studying in Singapore

As a nation with world-class universities and top-notch educational programmes, Singapore is a great place to explore the many study options available for students of all ages. If you’ve already set your eyes on studying in Singapore, here’s a list of the things that you need to keep in mind before taking the next step: 


All schools in Singapore use English as the medium of instruction, so if you’re looking to enrol in a tertiary institution, equipping yourself with the basic knowledge of the English language is the first step to getting accepted. 

To help you get started in learning English, British Council offers a variety of programmes – from full-time courses and part-time courses to preparation courses for IELTS – to pick from to cater to your learning needs.  


To study in Singapore, a local sponsor is needed, so as soon as you’ve picked the school or institution to study at and they’ve accepted you as a student, the respective educational provider will provide you with the student visa application documents. 

Presently, there are 18 different types of local universities, polytechnics and foreign universities with offshore campuses listed under Institutes of Higher Learning (IHL). And if you’re interested in studying in a private institute, be sure to check if the institute has been listed under Council for Private Education (CPE) ( and stamped with the EduTrust seal. 

Step 1: To begin the process, you need to first be accepted by a university or institute. 

Step 2: Upon receiving acceptance from your school, you will receive a medical report form and several declaration forms, which are required for the application process of Singapore’s student visa.  

Step 3: Complete the necessary e-forms found on the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority of Singapore (ICA) website ( You may also ask the school where you are going to for the forms. 

Step 4: Compile the necessary documents needed to process the student visa, such as a copy of your passport and birth certificate, academic transcripts, bank statements, and supporting documents like your parents’ income statement. 

Step 5: Send all the documents over to the chosen educational institute, so that they can submit these to the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority of Singapore for their review and consideration. To get your student pass approved promptly, send in the required documents as soon as you’ve signed the contract with your institute, as it takes approximately four to six weeks to process. 

For those looking to take up an English course with British Council, the institute will assist in submitting your documents over to Immigration and Checkpoints Authority of Singapore for review.


Applicants with student passes approved by the Singapore Immigration will then be given an in-principle approval (IPA) letter that is handed to them by their university/institution. With that letter, they’ll be able to book their air tickets to Singapore, and cross Singapore’s immigration without any hassle. 

To complete the formalities, upon reaching Singapore, you will have to report to the Student’s Pass Unit located on the level 4 of the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority of Singapore. Through that, you will then be able to retrieve your Singapore visa. For this visit, remember to bring along: 

  • Your passport
  • Your disembarkation/embarkation card, which they received when entering Singapore
  • Your medical report
  • One coloured passport-sized photo
  • S$60 - S$90 issuance fee

Good luck in your academic journey!