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mageicial
05-07-2013, 08:37 PM
Hello, I'm currently studying in my 2nd year in polytechnic, so I'm doing some homework in advance.

1) I see that some people mentioned in previous threads that polytechnic students are classified as transfer students. Is this true?

2) What's the difference between freshman and a transfer student? Any advantage or disadvantages?

3) I see that universities such as MIT only accepts transfer students who have not completed more than 2.5 years of college (does this mean that people who study in polytechnic are not accepted?)

4) Some say that you only pick your major when in the second year of study. Is this true and does it apply to transfer students as well?

5) Double major means studying two things during the period of study right?

6) After getting my diploma, I have to finish my NS before going to university as I cannot defer NS right? After NS, am I still considered a transfer students (considering that I have not studied for quite some time)
"Harvard College encourages admitted students to defer enrollment for one year to travel, pursue a special project or activity, work, or spend time in another meaningful way - provided they do not enroll in a degree-granting program at another college. Deferrals for two-year obligatory military service are also granted. Each year, between 50 and 70 students defer their matriculation to the College."
Does this mean that if I got enrolled into Harvard, but I need to serve NS, they will allow me to attend school 2 years later without applying again?
If that's the case, then should I apply directly after I get my diploma and then apply for deferment in Harvard?
Considering that you can only apply to some universities once per year, if I got rejected for the first time, I can apply 1 year later when I'm still serving NS, and again after my NS.
So I can have 3 chance?

7) What is transfer credits? Does it to help you lessen the number of subjects you are going to take?

8) Does CCA affect the admission process? What if I have no CCA but I have participated in some school activities? e.g. overseas community project, overseas study trip, helping out in some events, etc.

9) I've seen many posts about when to take SAT test, but they're mainly JC students. When is it a good time to take the SAT test for a polytechnic student?

10) How many universities does an average student apply to?

Thanks for helping out.

patryn33
05-08-2013, 09:31 AM
1) Yes, U could apply as freshman and if you have enough transfer credits usually admission office would reclassify U.

2) No real difference, though some said it is easier to get admitted as freshman. Was not able to verify such claim.

3. Polytechnic isn't college, U can still apply.

4. U don't pick your major 2nd yr. U only get to study subjects which belongs to your major in sophomore yr. U can declare your major the moment U apply. Transfer student depends.

5: Double major means U major in 2 different area. Don't understand what U mean by study 2 things. In US Edu U study alot of things. a Major could mean taking 6 classes of a specific area, a minor maybe 3. Some Uni certain Major does not allow double major, only double degree. it mean pretty much the same thing.

6: if u are done with Dip at 16.5yrs old, U can defer NS and put like SGD$250K as guarantor. Should U not return that money belong to Gov. Don't see many ppl capable of doing that. Otherwise no way to defer, regardless of how long U left school U are still a transfer student. Don't think U can skip SAT, U still need that cause U don't know if U have ample credits that would transfer over. With Harvard yes if U can get in, when they mail you your acceptance letter then U apply for defer. Defer means "put to later time, postpone", if defer means reapply why use the word defer? Uni have 2 intakes a yr on rare occasion 3, U have alot of chance. Not many top Uni allow U to defer 2 yrs.

7) Yes, note not all transfer applies to your total number of credits needed to graduate. For most poly holder, on avg ppl gets around 4-10 classes which applies to one's major.

8: U looking at Harvard and MIT, the ans here is a BIG YES! no School CCA is ok but U need other activities to shine much like those overseas scholars. They are your competition. otherwise different Uni different req.
with top Uni, the things which affects your chances are grades from O levels, Poly GPA, SAT 1 & 2, essay, Poly Lecturers recommendation letters and your CCA records. if u represent the country to compete and won a medal great!

9: SAT is valid for 5yrs. U can take SAT today. Most post are from JC as not many Dip holders goes to USA. Go UK as it only takes 2yrs to get a honors degree whereas OZ can be as little 1.5yrs to get a degree at a GO8 Uni, however go USA is 3-3.5yrs if U were to do the suggested schedule.

10. On Avg 4-7 Uni.

11. unlike UK/OZ, some profession do not have undergrad entry. ie Law/Medicine/Pharm.

mageicial
05-08-2013, 07:07 PM
So it doesn't really matter if I apply as a freshman or a transfer student since they will reclassify me?

Sadly, I don't have any CCA, but I'll try to participate more in school activities (hopefully it'll help, at least a little). Also, my O level score isn't really that good, but my poly GPA is quite high.
But I'll still try applying to some USA universities.

What's the difference between admission to USA and UK universities? Do UK university require SAT test as well?

Thanks for your help.

patryn33
05-09-2013, 12:27 AM
Apply as freshman if u don't know.
Without good Os u just have to aim to be a gold/silver/bronze medalist of your cohort since u are looking at Harvard or MIT etc. quite high GPA is all relative.

There are over 2600 uni and colleges in USA if u are gunning down ivy or MIT I am sure you can find a uni for u.

Some u I takes O level grades, ie Purdue or Indiana.

As for us vs UK shall let u do your own research.

randomtty
05-09-2013, 08:09 AM
Since you're applying to Harvard/MIT, you'll need to have
1. almost perfect GPA + academic-related accomplishments
2. extra-curricular achievements
3. leadership positions
4. SAT score of 2250+ (2300+ would be safer)
5. strong essay and recommendations

If you're applying to UK schools (i.e. Oxbridge, Imperial) you'll need
1. almost perfect GPA + academic-related accomplishments
2. strong STEP, MAT test scores if required

pokkaGT
05-09-2013, 08:23 AM
Nah, for MIT, they look for some crazy thing you did. It is easier to get into Harvard than to MIT (looking at numbers). As a matter of fact, I cannot remember any poly graduate admitted into MIT at undergraduate level.

Other than that, randomtty is mostly right.

Anyway, what course are you looking at? I think everything Harvard is good at, MIT is terrible/non-existant at it. Vice-versa.

mageicial
05-09-2013, 09:22 AM
Nah, for MIT, they look for some crazy thing you did. It is easier to get into Harvard than to MIT (looking at numbers). As a matter of fact, I cannot remember any poly graduate admitted into MIT at undergraduate level.

Other than that, randomtty is mostly right.

Anyway, what course are you looking at? I think everything Harvard is good at, MIT is terrible/non-existant at it. Vice-versa.

I'm looking mainly at Computer Science.

These are the schools I have in mind:
Harvard
Yale
Stanford
MIT
Cornell
Pennsylvania
Duke
And lastly, NUS (should I even apply for this, or will I be rejected and none of the above will accept me and this is my backup?)

patryn33
05-09-2013, 10:36 AM
Nah, for MIT, they look for some crazy thing you did. It is easier to get into Harvard than to MIT (looking at numbers). As a matter of fact, I cannot remember any poly graduate admitted into MIT at undergraduate level.

There is one back in 2009 iirc, top the cohort at SP went on to read civil engineering in MIT. She completed her SP diploma in 2yrs GPA a near perfect 4.
Alot of CCA in school and outside to show off her leadership qualities.

Not come across any dip going to Harvard.

patryn33
05-09-2013, 10:41 AM
I'm looking mainly at Computer Science.

These are the schools I have in mind:
Harvard
Yale
Stanford
MIT
Cornell
Pennsylvania
Duke
And lastly, NUS (should I even apply for this, or will I be rejected and none of the above will accept me and this is my backup?)

Can't ans your final qns u didn't share your GPA and Os results.
Right now without strong CCA is at your disadvantage.
U have 4 yrs to show u can lead, NS being an officer can help esp if u can get a 2 crab officer and above to write u a recommendation.

Lastly iirc not all the above are need blind. U are looking at usd$300k-450k in fees and living 5 yrs from now. I am sure u can afford the cost.

pokkaGT
05-09-2013, 11:58 AM
I'm looking mainly at Computer Science.

These are the schools I have in mind:
Harvard
Yale
Stanford
MIT
Cornell
Pennsylvania
Duke
And lastly, NUS (should I even apply for this, or will I be rejected and none of the above will accept me and this is my backup?)

Yale??? Where is CMU? Anyway, I am sure you have your own preference and methods to find the university to suit your needs.

There was another top SP student who got into Harvard Electrical Engineering AND scholarship. Not merely GPA 4.0 but also has straight distinctions. Multiple CCAs and working part time. Won international competition. BUT, mature foreign student. Who doesn't like a failure-case-turned-success-story? Also, Harvard Engineering was 1 year old at that time.

baneblades
05-09-2013, 05:36 PM
Actually poly might be a disadvantage to you. Some unis will automatically classify you as a transfer and you can do nothing about it. Transfer admission is your worst enemy. (E.g. Purdue Engineering doesn't accept transfers) Also, our poly diploma do not fulfill most uni's transfer requirements which means no chance at admissions. You will have to check with each individual uni what are their policies regarding poly diploma. (speaking from experience) I got denied at many universities simply because my diploma does not fulfill their transfer requirements and I cannot be classified as a freshman (most unis)

Anyways, for CS I think you should only consider the big 4. (MIT, Stanford, CMU and Cal)

mageicial
05-09-2013, 06:04 PM
Actually poly might be a disadvantage to you. Some unis will automatically classify you as a transfer and you can do nothing about it. Transfer admission is your worst enemy. (E.g. Purdue Engineering doesn't accept transfers) Also, our poly diploma do not fulfill most uni's transfer requirements which means no chance at admissions. You will have to check with each individual uni what are their policies regarding poly diploma. (speaking from experience) I got denied at many universities simply because my diploma does not fulfill their transfer requirements and I cannot be classified as a freshman (most unis)

Then which university did you ended up in? Mind sharing your experience?


Can't ans your final qns u didn't share your GPA and Os results.
U have 4 yrs to show u can lead, NS being an officer can help esp if u can get a 2 crab officer and above to write u a recommendation.

Lastly iirc not all the above are need blind. U are looking at usd$300k-450k in fees and living 5 yrs from now. I am sure u can afford the cost.

My current GPA for year 1 is 3.77, O level results is 22
For recommendations, how many can you submit? Cause I'm planning to get 2 lecturers to do it for me, didn't consider of NS.
And I plan to apply for financial aid.

pokkaGT
05-09-2013, 06:27 PM
lol, reminds me of the reason why I used to despise poly students.

Depending on your diploma, 3.77 can be considered high but far from top. That also means no Ivy or MIT... Well, of course it is not impossible per se but anything is possible, like an asteroid striking Singapore. Getting the LKY award might be that asteroid............

Well, there is always SUTD. If you read the papers today, don't let the numbers scare you. It is much easier to get in than you think.

randomtty
05-09-2013, 07:11 PM
Then which university did you ended up in? Mind sharing your experience?

My current GPA for year 1 is 3.77, O level results is 22
For recommendations, how many can you submit? Cause I'm planning to get 2 lecturers to do it for me, didn't consider of NS.
And I plan to apply for financial aid.

I think you'll need 3 recommendations, not too sure about that. But you'll need to get your GPA to 3.99ish to stand a realistic chance. Plus, take part in every single Comp. Science competition you can find. And I suggest that you don't apply for financial aid for the non-need-blind schools, apply for overseas scholarships instead.

BTW, CMU is Carnegie Mellon University, which is more famous/better at engineering and IT related stuff than some of the other universities on your list.

patryn33
05-09-2013, 07:26 PM
Harvard is need blind, most elite ppl cannot pay the crazy cost of usd$60-70k a yr. scholarship in these need blind uni isn't a big thing as long as they can get in.

There are only 6 need blind uni for international students

1) Amherst College
2) Dartmouth College
3) Harvard University
4) Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)
5) Princeton University
6) Yale University

Those without stellar GPA ie 3.9-3.6 can try for uni such as
- uiuc
- uni of Wisconsin
- UC Berkeley
- UT Austin
- UMich

Yes Purdue does not accept transfer but their are plenty of poly student in Purdue engineering, my pal has like 2 or more sub paper every term but has 10 pt for her o levels got into Purdue applying as freshman. Austin they need GPA of 3.7 and above plus good SAT score, one of my school mate went there. Not all uni reject u just because u are a dip holder.

If u are Singaporean chances are u don't qualify for financial aid, most uni that are no need blind don't even hand out full scholarship to Singaporean. If u are indo, msian, Thai etc chances are better. Even in states if one family is making more than usd$60k a yr (very normal for a family with a degree holder, typical engineer makes us$80k after 5-8yrs of experience ), one does not qualify for aid already!

mageicial
05-09-2013, 09:37 PM
There are only 6 need blind uni for international students

1) Amherst College
2) Dartmouth College
3) Harvard University
4) Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)
5) Princeton University
6) Yale University

If u are Singaporean chances are u don't qualify for financial aid, most uni that are no need blind don't even hand out full scholarship to Singaporean. If u are indo, msian, Thai etc chances are better. Even in states if one family is making more than usd$60k a yr (very normal for a family with a degree holder, typical engineer makes us$80k after 5-8yrs of experience ), one does not qualify for aid already!

Need-blind for international students means that they provide financial aid for international students right? Because my family only has an income of around 2-3k SGD per year, around 36k annually, so it's ok for me as long as I am able to admit into any of the 6 universities right?

mageicial
05-09-2013, 10:48 PM
Also, for grades, do they look at 'A' and 'Distinction' in different manners? Or do they treat it as equal (since they weigh the same in terms of GPA).

patryn33
05-10-2013, 12:13 AM
With these 6 need blind uni, its about AD your competition are not your every day avg ppl.

Yes u will get $$ if u can into these 6 uni, others expect to pay $$.

baneblades
05-10-2013, 12:24 AM
Then which university did you ended up in? Mind sharing your experience?




My current GPA for year 1 is 3.77, O level results is 22
For recommendations, how many can you submit? Cause I'm planning to get 2 lecturers to do it for me, didn't consider of NS.
And I plan to apply for financial aid.

Well, I managed to get into UIUC as a freshman (they allow me to transfer credits - nothing lost)

I applied to all the universities as a freshman but I got reclassed as a transfer. I tried emailing the admissions office but to no avail. You can try appealing but doubt it will change anything.

BTW dont think you stand a chance at HYPSM. Imagine all those 4.0s and straight As A-level students fighting for a slot. And then factor in that you are applying for aid? Without any good ECs as well? And the fact that HYPSM accept less than 10% of their applicants? I think you stand a better chance with the lottery.

Most schools don't provide aid for undergrad internationals. Or if they do, its very competitive e.g. you need superb stats.

Sorry if my post is a little offensive. I think that if you really want to consider studying overseas, you might have a better shot with a SAF scholarship rather than international finaid (which is hard to get every year)

patryn33
05-10-2013, 02:16 AM
Emailing admission doesn't help, best way is call. Yes international phone calls are costly.

SAF overseas award is easier relatively.

Comp sci - heard of this competition?
http://icpc.baylor.edu/worldfinals/results

mengshuen
05-10-2013, 07:37 AM
Well, I managed to get into UIUC as a freshman (they allow me to transfer credits - nothing lost)

I applied to all the universities as a freshman but I got reclassed as a transfer. I tried emailing the admissions office but to no avail. You can try appealing but doubt it will change anything.

BTW dont think you stand a chance at HYPSM. Imagine all those 4.0s and straight As A-level students fighting for a slot. And then factor in that you are applying for aid? Without any good ECs as well? And the fact that HYPSM accept less than 10% of their applicants? I think you stand a better chance with the lottery.

Most schools don't provide aid for undergrad internationals. Or if they do, its very competitive e.g. you need superb stats.

Sorry if my post is a little offensive. I think that if you really want to consider studying overseas, you might have a better shot with a SAF scholarship rather than international finaid (which is hard to get every year)
I agree with this assessment. I see so many 4.0s being rejected at Stanford and MIT, along with hundreds of A level student.

I don't know how rigorous the admissions of Caltech is, since I don't sit on the admissions committee, but there are no polytechnic students from Singapore here. 100% A levels.

baneblades
05-10-2013, 09:51 AM
If you're really interested in studying in the US, you can do some research here.

http://talk.collegeconfidential.com/international-students/

There are some threads that post information for internationals requiring finaid.

mageicial
05-10-2013, 02:38 PM
Most of the posts here seems so demoralizing. How about Yale-NUS?

pokkaGT
05-10-2013, 03:59 PM
Most of the posts here seems so demoralizing. How about Yale-NUS?

Yeah, well, that is because the posts are. We have seen and heard many students so we know fully well the standards of universities. It is never too late to improve your portfolio.

Yale-NUS does admit poly students. Most of them studied social sciences or arts-related courses. What is your diploma course you are currently studying?

Ergodicity
05-10-2013, 04:29 PM
Most of the posts here seems so demoralizing. How about Yale-NUS?

I would say that Y-NUS might be harder to get in depending on how you portray yourself.

I do have a friend who got in from poly but he does music which is very unique compared to the other students.

patryn33
05-10-2013, 06:57 PM
Most of the posts here seems so demoralizing. How about Yale-NUS?

Well it's the reality, nothing against u or poly student.
The world we live in is a competitive place, on top of that no one is handing easy free lunches.
We not giving any false hope, imagine every 3.7++ and Os of 20+ can walk into ivy or MIT around u how many ppl must they accept and award free money?

NUS do publish COP don't know it includes NUS Yale program. 20% of your Os is taken into consideration.
http://www.nus.edu.sg/oam/specialprogrammefaq/sprogramme-faq.html

pepsicap
05-10-2013, 10:17 PM
Okay no offence but 3.77 doesn't really make the cut.

mageicial
05-10-2013, 10:57 PM
Well it's the reality, nothing against u or poly student.
The world we live in is a competitive place, on top of that no one is handing easy free lunches.
We not giving any false hope, imagine every 3.7++ and Os of 20+ can walk into ivy or MIT around u how many ppl must they accept and award free money?

NUS do publish COP don't know it includes NUS Yale program. 20% of your Os is taken into consideration.
http://www.nus.edu.sg/oam/specialprogrammefaq/sprogramme-faq.html

I'll still like to give it a try.
Anyway, thanks for giving your honest opinion.