NTU introduces changes to grading system

SINGAPORE — Nanyang Technological University (NTU) kicks off the new academic year with the opening of two new residential halls and introduces changes to its grading system for students today (Aug 6).

Starting from Academic Year 2014, freshmen can automatically exclude up to six courses for Grade Point Average (GPA) computation, if they do not attain a pass for their first attempt in their first year. They will retake the exams for those exempted courses and the grade for the second attempt will then be used to compute the student’s GPA. These changes was made to ease the freshmen’s transition into university.

The university has also adjusted the way it awards the passing grade for the existing Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory (S/U) option for all undergraduate general electives starting this coming academic year. Students who obtain a pass — grade ‘D’ or above — will now be given the satisfactory grade, as compared to the current ‘C’ grade and above. This fine tuning is to encourage students to be more adventurous in their choice of broadening courses.

A total of five new General Core Courses (GER-Core) will also be introduced for the new cohort of freshmen, which consists of single-AU (Academic Unit) courses in key subject areas like sustainability and career basics. Content and course assessment for these courses will be delivered entirely online and will be on Pass/Fail basis.

To integrate learning beyond the formal curriculum, NTU has also piloted new pedagogical models within the two new residential halls, named the Pioneer and Crescent Halls. The halls, which can accommodate up to 1250 students, will be a vital test-bed for innovative green technologies like solar panelling and include environmentally-friendly features like a rain garden.

Plans to build three more residential halls are also in place and is set to be completed by 2016

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