University students studying regional languages up 10% from 5 years ago

According to Lianhe Zaobao on 9 October 2018, MOE reported that university students taking courses in ASEAN languages have gone up 10% compared to five years ago. Around 1,730 students at NUS, NTU and SMU took these courses last year, compared to around 1,550 in 2013. The languages include Bahasa Indonesia, Malay, Thai and Vietnamese.

Assoc Prof Titima Suthiwan, director of the NUS Centre for Language Studies, said the centre offers classes in those ASEAN languages. An average of 1,350 students take these classes each year. Courses in Bahasa Indonesia, Malay, and Thai languages have been popular with students in the past 10 years.

Tang Renxuan, a fourth-year student at NUS, became interested in learning ASEAN languages when she was doing voluntary work around the region in junior college. She is currently taking Southeast Asian Studies in NUS and is learning Thai , after completing a course in Bahasa Indonesia.

A/P Chris McMorran’s new podcast – This little dot we call home

Associate Professor Chris McMorran from the Department of Japanese Studies, together with a team of students, recently produced a podcast series called “Home on the Dot” and the project was featured in NUS News.

The podcast consists of 10 episodes, each revolving around a particular aspect of Singapore related to the idea of home, such as public housing and hawker centres.

The podcast is available at the Home on the Dot blog or via iTunes by searching for “Home on the Dot”. Six episodes, each about 20 to 25 minutes in length, have been posted, with another four to be shared in the weeks to come.


WP chief addresses grads at NUS commencement (20 Jul, Home, Page B4)

This was a report on the NUS commencement ceremony organised on 19 July 2018 for NUS Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (FASS) graduates. The ceremony featured Mr Pritam Singh – an FASS alumnus and Secretary-General of the Workers’ Party – as guest speaker. About 470 political science, psychology and global studies graduates were conferred their degrees at the ceremony.

Click here to read the article.

In conversation with Syed Farid Alatas (29 Jun)

The Daily Observer

This was an interview with Professor Syed Farid Alatas from the Department of Sociology at NUS Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, who shared his views on the emergence and augmentation of alternative discourses of non-western thinkers in the process of universalising and internationalising the social science.

Click here to read the article.

Subject ranking places FASS top in Asia

NUS is the only Asian university to gain a position in Quacquarelli Symonds’ (QS) list of 10 best universities worldwide, with 11 subjects attaining a top-10 ranking in the QS World University Rankings by Subject 2018. The University is also ranked in the top 50 for 34 subjects out of the 48 disciplines analysed by QS. 11 of those subjects are housed in the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (Environmental Sciences is co-hosted with Faculty of Science). Overall, FASS is ranked in the global top 20 in the broad subject areas in Arts & Humanities and Social Sciences & Management.

Broad Subject Areas:

Broad Subject Areas
Global Asia
Arts & Humanities 18 2
Social Sciences & Management 7 1


By Subject:

Subject Global Rank Asia Rank
Anthropology 21 1
Communications & Media Studies 14 2
Economics & Econometrics 20 1
English Language & Literature 15 1
Geography 10 1
History 24 2
Linguistics 21 4
Modern Languages 14 4
Philosophy 51-100 6
Politics & International Studies 12 1
Psychology 51-100 3
Sociology 17 1
Environmental Sciences 10 1

Learn about heritage through Malay identity

Friday, 9 February 2018

Suria News Online

This was an article contribution by Dr Norshahril Saat from the Department of Malay Studies at the NUS Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences who discussed the debate on the Malay identity and the thinking that should be developed with regard to this issue. He shared that from politics to cultural issues, much has been discussed about who the true Malays are as well as who is lesser of a Malay or not a Malay.

Singapore and China professors examine large societies through inscriptions (Page 16)

Thursday, 1 February 2018

Lianhe Zaobao

It was reported that for the past 30 years, Professor Kenneth Dean, Head of the Department of Chinese Studies at NUS Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, and Professor Zheng Zhenman from Xiamen University have gone on trips together to collect historical information from temples and places of worship to study the cultural history of Fujian province in China.

Schools join fight against fake news (Page 7)

Monday, 8 January 2018


The New Paper

It was reported that tertiary institutions have introduced courses to help students differentiate fact from fiction in order to tackle the growing problem of fake news. It was mentioned that the Department of Communications and New Media at NUS Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences had started a new module called ‘Fake News, Lies and Spin: How to Sift Fact from Fiction’ in August 2017. About 60 students took the module and another 100 are expected to take it this semester.

Commenting on the phenomenon of fake news, Assistant Professor Elmie Nekmat from the Department of Communications and New Media said that when people are exposed to fake news, it has a “drip effect” where people build up ideas pertaining to the issue they read. He suggested that media literacy courses dealing with misinformation can be taught to secondary and even primary school students as it is good for schools to engage the young about this.

Click here to read the article.

Despite show of solidarity, Pakatan not any closer to winning elections

Thursday, 11 January 2018


This was an article contribution by Dr Norshahril Saat, Adjunct Lecturer from the Department of Malay Studies at NUS Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, in which he noted the announcement of the opposition coalition Pakatan Harapan on the two former nemesis – Dr Mahathir Mohamed and Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail, the wife of Anwar Ibrahim – who will lead the opposition in the next Malaysian polls. Dr Norsharhril discussed the reactions of the Malaysian voters and party activists to the so-called Mahathir-Anwar reconciliation and opined that this election is not a contest between personalities, but political vision operationalised in systems they represent. He added that Malaysians want change, thus what will define the upcoming general election is which coalition can offer them a better way of life.

Click here to read the article.