5 Degrees Singaporeans Can Get in Australia That are Now Recognised Here

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Australia used to be thought of as that country you sent your kids to if they didn’t make it into NUS. But these days, more and more Singaporeans are heading there simply because their parents can afford it and it’s an easy way to test-drive living abroad.

Walk through the city centre of Melbourne or Sydney and you’re likely to bump into some guy you knew in the army or a classmate from primary school.

Of the 200,000+ Singaporeans living abroad, 50,000 are in Australia, and many never return after their PR applications are approved.

The Singapore government has decided to start recognising more Australian degrees in Singapore, so those who are considering taking advantage of the weak Australian dollar to study there need not worry about finding a job when they come back. Here are some degrees that are now officially recognised in Singapore.


Law Juris Doctor

While Singaporean law students in Australia used to all get awarded bachelors’ degrees, those in who want to study at the better universities are now encouraged (or forced, in the case of Melbourne University) to study law as a postgraduate degree. In order to be admitted to the Singapore Bar, JD graduates had to make a special application begging for their degrees to be recognised.

The Ministry of Law will now recognise the JDs of all the ten universities that have already been approved, namely:

  • Australian National University
  • Flinders University
  • Monash University
  • Murdoch University
  • University of Melbourne
  • University of New South Wales
  • University of Queensland
  • University of Sydney
  • University of Tasmania
  • University of Western Australia.


Postgraduate medical degrees

A while back, I had an eye infection and ended up in one of our public hospitals. From my first consultation to my final appointment, I interacted with at least three different doctors. All three of these doctors were Indian nationals.

Now, I’m not complaining—they did a great job. But it is clear there’s a skills shortage when it comes to doctors. So it’s probably a good thing that postgraduate medical degrees from the following schools will now be accepted:

  • Australian National University
  • University of Queensland


Master of Physiotherapy

For a country that’s got a population that’s aging at such alarming rates, we do not have the infrastructure to groom physiotherapy professionals. Students who want to enter the field but don’t want to go abroad have to enter Nanyang Polytechnic after their A levels, and then get a degree at SIT. Before SIT was set up in 2009, these students basically had no choice but to go overseas.

Instead of taking the poly route, Singaporeans who can’t afford to spend 5-6 years abroad can now dive straight into undergrad studies at local universities after their A level studies and then go on to get their Master of Physiotherapy at the following schools:

  • Curtin University of Technology
  • La Trobe University (together with Bachelor of Applied Science)
  • University of Sydney
  • University of Queensland


Master of Occupational Therapy

It’s a similar story for Singaporeans with occupational therapy qualifications. While before the only recognised Australian degrees that were recognised were bachelor degrees, the list has now been expanded to include masters’ degrees at the following universities:

  • Curtin University of Technology
  • La Trobe University (together with Bachelor of Health Science and Bachelor of Applied Science)
  • University of Sydney
  • University of Queensland
  • University of South Australia


Speech-language therapy degrees

The only speech therapy degree offered in Singapore is an NUS master’s degree, so it’s no surprise that many Singaporeans end up going abroad, mostly to Australia, to pursue speech therapy at bachelor’s level. The list of degrees has been expanded slightly to allow a wider range of degrees from La Trobe University (one of the most popular universities for Singaporean speech therapy students), including the following:

  • Master of Speech Pathology
  • Bachelor of Health Science and Master of Speech Pathology
  • Bachelor of Applied Science and Master of Speech Pathology

Are you planning to study in Australia or are you a current student or graduate of an Australian university? Share your experiences in the comments!