SMU PhD Scholarships in Singapore

SMU PhD Scholarships in Singapore 2023/2024 – Fully Funded

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The SMU PhD Scholarships in Singapore cover registration and subsidised tuition fees (see SMU PhD Programme Fees for details). As a scholarship recipient, you will receive a monthly living stipend (as shown in the table below according to your citizenship).

These scholarships are renewed yearly, conditioned on good academic performance, for the first 4 years of your Ph.D candidature.

Beyond the scholarship duration, you may receive continued support through research assistantships and teaching assistantships (see Financial Assistance Schemes in Year 5) or industry grants at SMU.

SMU PhD Scholarships in Singapore 2022

Scholars under this scheme are not allowed to engage in any other gainful employment.

Table 1A: Premium (Tier 1) Stipend Rates for PhD Students* 

Citizenship Monthly Stipend (S$)
Singapore Citizen 3,600
Singapore Permanent Resident 3,400
Foreign Student 3,100

*Applicable to PhD students from SOA, LKCSB, SOE, SOSS and SCIS**.

Table 1B: Premium (Tier 1) Stipend Rates for STEM PhD Students Admitted from 1 Aug 2018 Onwards

Citizenship Monthly Stipend (S$)
Singapore Citizen 5,000
Singapore Permanent Resident 4,000
Foreign Student 3,750

Table 2: Non-Premium (Tier 2) Stipend Rates for PhD Students

Citizenship Monthly Stipend before
Qualifying Examination (S$)
Monthly Stipend after
Qualifying Examination (S$)
Singapore Citizen 2,800 3,300
Singapore Permanent Resident 2,400 2,900
Foreign Student 2,200 2,700

Notes

  • The monthly stipend rates are from 1 August 2021 onwards.
  • These rates are not applicable to the PhD in Business (General Management).
  • The PhD Qualifying Examination assesses students’ mastery of the foundation required for the next stage of the PhD programme, the dissertation.
  • From August 2015, Singapore Citizens will be provided with 17% CPF Contribution.
  • Scholarship recipient must pass the Qualifying Examination before the 25th day of the month to be eligible for stipend increment in the next immediate month.

SMU PhD Scholarships in Singapore Terms and Conditions

Scholarship recipients will have to observe the terms and conditions (for Singapore Citizens/Singapore Permanent Residents and for International Students) of the scholarship offer. Recipients will have to sign a letter of undertaking.

SMU Doctoral Fellowships

SMU offers two types of doctoral fellowships.

SMU Presidential Doctoral Fellowships

The SMU Presidential Doctoral Fellowship is provided to exceptionally qualified students who are offered candidatures into SMU’s PhD programmes. The Fellowship also recognizes existing PhD students who are outstanding in their studies.

The Fellowship is a one-year award. At the end of the award term, the Fellowship recipient may be offered another Fellowship award or a Full Scholarship. The award provides a higher monthly stipend than a Full Scholarship, as shown in the table below.

SMU Interdisciplinary Doctoral Fellowships

(Formerly known as Multidisciplinary Doctoral Fellowships) 

This award is intended for existing PhD students who have shown exemplary pursuit of research that crosses traditional disciplinary boundaries. Interdisciplinary research may include research output from two or more disciplines across Schools, or across two or more research areas or disciplines within the same school.

Recipients of this award should show that they are able to integrate knowledge and methods from two or more research areas or disciplines to advance fundamental understanding or to find solutions that are beyond the scope of a single disciplinary knowledge.

The Fellowship is also a one-year award. At the end of the award term, the Fellowship recipient may be offered another Fellowship award or a Full Scholarship. The award provides a higher monthly stipend than a Full Scholarship, as shown in the table below.

Both awards provide each recipient with a S$3,500 research trip (to be utilized within 2 years from the start of the award duration), over and above the higher monthly stipend.

Citizenship Monthly Stipend (S$)
Singapore Citizen1 3,500
Singapore Permanent Resident 3,200
Foreign Student 3,000

1Singapore citizens will be provided with 17% CPF contribution. 


SMU Presidential Doctoral Fellowships in Computing

The SMU Presidential Doctoral Fellowship (PDF) in Computing is provided to exceptionally qualified students who are offered candidatures into SMU’s Computer & Information Systems (CIS) programmes. The Fellowship also recognizes existing PhD students who are outstanding in their studies.

The Fellowship is a one-year award that is renewed annually, for up to four years. The award provides a higher monthly stipend than a Full Scholarship, as shown in the table below.

Citizenship Monthly Stipend2 (S$)
Singapore Citizen1 5,000
Singapore Permanent Resident 4,000
Foreign Student 3,750

1 With effect from 1 August 2015, Central Provident Fund (CPF) contributions shall be provided at a rate pegged to the prevailing employer’s contribution rate set by CPF, on top of the monthly stipend received.
The released PDF monthly stipend rates are only applicable to intakes starting from 1 Aug 2018. For cohorts that joined prior to this date, please refer to SMU Presidential Doctoral Fellowships above for the rates.

Financial Assistance Schemes in Year 5

After you cease to receive the scholarship stipends at the end of Year 4 of your PhD programme, you may work as a Research Assistant (RA), Teaching Assistant (TA), or Graduate Instructor (GI) on a part-time or full-time basis. If you work full-time, you will have to complete your studies on a part-time basis (as approved by the respective School).

If you are a foreign student, you may work up to 16 hours per week on a part-time basis. If you are working on a full-time basis, you will either be on an Employment Pass or an S-Pass to be approved by the Ministry of Manpower. However, to be granted approval to work on a full-time basis, you should have completed all requirements of the PhD programme except your dissertation.

The hiring procedures and rates of payment are based on prevailing guidelines.

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Students’ Training (such as workshops by the SMU Centre for Teaching Excellence and Centre for English Communication) are available to SMU PhD students. These programmes will strengthen your skills to better contribute as a RA, TA or GI.

Other Available SMU Scholarships/Fellowships

SMU-China Scholarship Council (CSC) Joint Scholarship Scheme

Citizens and permanent residents of the People’s Republic of China are invited to apply to the SMU-CSC Joint Scholarship Scheme for postgraduate studies. Click on the link for details on eligibility and application requirements.

AI Singapore (AISG) PhD Fellowship Programme

The AISG PhD Fellowship Programme, which is part of AISG’s Research Programme, supports top Artificial Intelligence (AI) research talents in pursuing their PhD in Singapore-based Autonomous Universities (AUs).

The objective of the programme is to nurture and train local AI talents to be able to perform advanced fundamental AI research and produce state-of-the-art AI algorithms, models and systems. AISG hopes that these talents will eventually contribute to the other pillars of AI Singapore, the local AI eco-system and the society.

The AISG PhD Fellowship Programme welcomes all nationalities to apply.

Singapore International Graduate Award (SINGA)

The Singapore International Graduate Award (SINGA) is a collaboration between the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR), NTU, NUS, SMU and SUTD.

This award is open for the SMU PhD in Computer Science programme. Awarded students joining SMU’s programme would do research related to machine learning and Artificial Intelligence.

International students with a passion for Science and Engineering research are welcome to apply.

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