The Singapore Management University (SMU) is internationally recognized for its world-class research and distinguished teaching. It is known for its interactive and technologically enabled pedagogy of seminar-style teaching in small class sizes. Home to over 8,300 undergraduate and postgraduate students, SMU comprises of six schools, offering a wide range of bachelor’s, master’s, and PhD programs in various disciplines. SMU’s city campus is a state-of-the-art facility located in the heart of downtown Singapore, fostering strategic partnerships with the business and wider community.
For additional information, visit the Singapore Management University website.
The City of Singapore
The official languages of Singapore are English, Mandarin, Tamil, and Malay. Its population of 5.3 million is comprised of 76.8% Chinese, 13.9 Malay, 7.9% Indian and 1.4% Eurasians and other ethnic groups. Lying almost on the equator, Singapore is one main island (with a total land area of 682 square km) with 63 surrounding islets. Today, Singapore is rapidly taking its place among the world’s premier global cities, where talents from all around the world gather to share innovative ideas and start new businesses.
Did you know…?
The Bukit Timah Nature Reserve in Singapore contains more species of trees than the entire North American continent – and the highest natural point in Singapore is Bukit Timah Hill (only 164 meters high)!
The program at Singapore Management University is for Wharton students and PPE majors (by petition only).
Minimum GPA Requirement: 3.0
Language Prerequisite: No previous language study required.
Additional Course Pre-requisite(s): Successful completion of 1 Area Studies course in language or culture prior to departure is recommended, but not required.
Other Requirements: PPE majors may petition to study abroad at Singapore Management University. The application process and deadlines for petitioning to this program as a PPE major are different from the regular application process and deadlines for a Wharton student.
Instructions on the application process for petition programs can be found here.
Language of Instruction
Penn students must maintain a full course load while abroad and may only enroll in courses at the undergraduate level. A full course load at Singapore Management University consists of four classes per semester at SMU. Students who wish to take a 5th course must have an academic reason for wanting to do so. The request to take a 5th course must be made from the student’s academic advisor for study abroad in the Wharton Undergraduate Advising Office.
A list of courses open to exchange students will be sent via email approximately 2 weeks before the course registration period begins.
As on all Penn Abroad programs, grades are recorded on the Penn transcript and are calculated in the cumulative grade point average. The pass/fail option can be exercised according to the Penn on-campus policy. For more information on Penn Abroad’s academic policies, click here.
All Penn students are required to attend the orientation activities organized by SMU’s Office of Global Learning prior to the start of each semester. The orientation includes important information on student services at SMU, academic matters, and upcoming social events for incoming exchange students. The orientation not only helps incoming exchange students in their stay with Singapore and SMU, it also helps them interact with other incoming exchange students and SMU students.
SMU’s Office of Global Learning organizes a buddy system. “Buddies” are SMU students who have volunteered to assist international exchange students. Buddies will be in touch before the start of the semester and help ensure that the first few weeks in Singapore and SMU are as stress-free as possible.
Participants must be willing to live under local conditions for students.
Singapore Management University does not arrange accommodations for exchange students. Most students elect to live in off-campus housing with other exchange students using one of the many private companies offering short-term accommodation. Visit the SMU website for more information about private accommodation and housing options.
Cost and Finance
Penn Abroad Financial Policies
Students are charged Penn tuition and academic fees for all Penn Abroad programs. Additional expenses will typically include items such as housing, visas, and airfare. Please see the program budget sheets below for more information. For more on Penn Abroad’s financial policies, click here.
Financial Aid and Study Abroad
In most cases, financial aid applies to Penn-approved programs. Student Financial Services reviews program budget sheets each semester to determine how to appropriately adjust your aid package. For more information on how Financial Aid will work during your semester abroad, click here.