NUS BBA 19 April 2018

Freshmen’s take on the new Business undergraduate programme

Launched last August, the new Business undergraduate curriculum introduced greater flexibility for students to chart a personalised study plan and new specialisations to meet market trends. NUS BBA students now have the agility to design their curricula based on their study pace, modules of interest and choice of specialisations  through the Centralised Online Registration System (CORS).

NUS BBA freshmen who have gone through the programme share their NUS Business School Year One experience.

Genevieve Khoo, BBA Year 1

After going through the NUS BBA latest curriculum for a year, I find it highly interactive and dynamic. From class participation to the many group works and presentations, I feel that the School has indeed invested a great amount of effort in creating a more rigorous curriculum for that will facilitate my transition into the highly competitive working world. With the rapid and disruptive technology of this era, tertiary education has to be dynamic and adaptive to inculcate a strong sense of perseverance and adaptability into students.

The NUS BBA programme allows students to prepare for change by introducing the breadth of different specialisations in the first and second year of study. This establishes a strong foundation in statistics and programming skills that are crucial today. In my business analytics classes, I learnt to analyse and present my analysis and thoughts clearly.

The wide array of skills and knowledge covered in the Marketing classes ultimately prepares students to be flexible and opens a world of opportunities when it comes to career options. Intertwining modules and learning with current affairs also encourages students to stay relevant and aware of the latest concepts.

The NUS BBA curriculum no doubt is one that is forward thinking and comprehensive for its current and prospective students.

Clemon Ho, BBA Year 1

Before entering NUS Business School, I had numerous queries about what school would be like – Would it fit me? Will it too textbook focused?

Well, almost a year in and I am very satisfied with the programme.

Clemon (third from right) explaining to prospective students about student group NUS Bizad Club at the recent NUS Open Day

The Grade-free scheme, in the form of Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory (S/U) option provides me with more breathing space to be involved in co-curricular activities, such as spearheading Orientation 2018 for NUS Business School in my roles as Vice President of Student Life in the student group – NUS Bizad Club. This system allows me to have a more well-rounded and holistic education, experiencing a full student life beyond the classroom.

The flipped classroom environment is beneficial to students with different learning styles. This is where students self-study through online course materials and bring their newfound knowledge to the classroom for lively debates and discussions. With this format, I can learn at my own pace, making me feel much more at ease as I can spend more time on topics that I am weaker.

Personally, the new curriculum really caters to students’ specific needs, as well as affords us an all-rounded education and university experience.

Lee Wei Hern, BBA Year 1

The three new specialisations – Business Analytics, Business Economics, and Innovation and Entrepreneurship, has thrilled many especially with the fast-changing business landscape. In addition, the allowance of more unrestricted modules lets students “mix-and-match” their modules with greater freedom and variety. Thus, Students are better able to map specific modules that cater to their interests, and tailor a unique module mix that will provide them with a specific amount of experience for their career paths.

NUS Business School’s Career Services Office has been a very useful resource for me.  They arrange career guidance modules conducted by seasoned professionals in various fields, which give students a realistic preview of the real VUCA world. Such training workshops and networking sessions definitely open up many opportunities and equip me with the necessary knowledge and skills required to prepare us fully for my first internship or job attachment.

Wei Hern (centre) with fellow Bizaders dressed up for Bizad Themed Week

Nelson Lim Jun Kang, BAC Year 1

With the rise of Big Data and Internet of Things, business disruption is constant. As organisations continue to incorporate technology in their workplace, the new and improved NUS BBA curriculum differentiates itself from other business schools with its emphasis on data analytics. As an Accounting student, I have learnt useful data modelling and visualisation to augment my accounting skills, to help me prepare for the advent of a technological era.

Nelson (right) with his Marketing project mates after completing final presentation assignments

Shi Fanfei, BBA Year 1

My freshman year has been fun and inspirational. NUS Business School has provided a variety of eye-opening experiences both academically and career-wise. Not knowing exactly what I want to do in the future, the analytical, functional and leadership core modules provide a systematic way of exploring various options such as Business Analytics and Finance.

From the Marketing modules to real world hands-on Innovation and Entrepreneurship specialisation, the classes and professors encourage me to pursue my interests.

I am exposed to countless opportunities to grow and prepare myself for real-world challenges. The Career Creation Starter Workshops conducted by the Careers Services Office impart core skills such as career planning, personal branding; resume creation and how to better showcase myself at interviews. I found this to be extremely relevant to my future.

The Biz Symplicity portal (which connects students, employers and faculty) constantly provides up-to-date internship and job opportunities as well. I am also able to get first-hand job information from renowned companies such as Deloitte and P&G directly through frequent career talks and career booths.

The school’s extensive network of experts and speakers featured in the Leadership Dialogue Series have given me much insight into what makes global business tick. It is definitely an extremely enriching and unforgettable experience that I am grateful to be a part of.

Fanfei (right) with her project mates

Kevin Darmawan, BBA Year 1

I am fortunate to be a freshman in NUS Business School as I get to experience “first” the new curriculum that the School now offers. The extra emphasis on class participation, while challenging, encourages me to step out of my comfort zone and speak up during class discussions to voice my opinions.

Kevin (second row; second from the right) with the newly appointed exco of the NUS Bizad Club for the 31st Management Committee

The newly introduced specialisations  include fields like business analytics, which is extremely relevant to the world that is growingly reliant on data.

In my first year, the grade-free system allows us to explore my interests through the variety of different modules ranging from data analytics to marketing. This emphasis on experiential learning over grades helps me utilise my first year in university meaningfully by taking up more external commitments like internships, or co-curricular activities that can expand my knowledge scope.

With this, I can make more an informed decision about my specialisation, and ultimately pave a career path that best suits my individual strengths and interests.

Sean Heng, BAC Year 1
What I enjoy most about the new curriculum in NUS Business school is how the content taught in classrooms are applicable to real-life scenarios. The variety of foundation modules alone will stretch one’s mental mindscape, while enhancing it with greater in-depth subject knowledge.

I have a new appreciation for topics such as business law and marketing after attending those modules. However, a Management and Organisation (MNO) module made the most impact with me. I was intrigued to learn what it really takes to be a business leader through essential communication skills, the ability to present professionally in actual presentations, as well as daily communications with peers and professors.

While every module differs depending on which prof is teaching, I have to admit that I have had a blast in classes. Unlike previous classroom experiences where teachers “teach” you through rote learning techniques based on stringent by-the-book syllabuses, NUS Business School faculty are genuinely passionate about what they teach. Besides being subject matter experts, their ability to spark students’ interest and inspire them to understand and appreciate the lessons is amazing.

Sean (in blue jacket) with his sectional

So far, I have encountered profs who have sung pop-culture songs in class and cracked hilarious jokes using personal anecdotes, that make the classroom learning environment feel exceptionally relatable. Despite being extremely introverted, I have enjoyed class participation as it offers an avenue to be heard. It also helps that most profs will engage with students on an individual and personal level.

From the Career Development workshop, I learnt how important one’s own branding is, while obtaining vital skills for networking and resume writing. The module really grounded me in reality – my first concrete step in planning for my career, starting from simply envisioning what my personal values are and how this translates to a future job.

This new curriculum allows me greater flexibility to choose my specialisations – more available options and an increased number of unrestrictive electives offered. I am grateful for the enriching experience thus far and hope future cohorts will enjoy their time in NUS Business School.

For more information on the NUS BBA programme, please visit http://bba.nus.edu/.