Start of 2019 Direct School Admission-Junior College (DSA-JC) & Polytechnic and ITE Early Admissions Exercises

Published Date: 13 May 2019 12:00 AM

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Students interested in applying for Direct School Admission (DSA) to Junior Colleges (JCs) for admission in 2020 may do so from May 2019. Separately, applications for early admission to the Institute of Technical Education (ITE) and polytechnics based on course-specific aptitude and interests will start in May and June 2019 respectively.

Direct School Admission-Junior College (DSA-JC)

2. DSA provides a pathway for students to gain direct entry to JCs based on their talents and achievements that may not be demonstrated at the GCE O-Level examinations. Upon admission, students can develop these talents further in their JCs. There are 20 schools participating in the 2019 DSA-JC.

3. Students participating in DSA-JC are still required to take the GCE O-Level examination. Students will be informed of the outcome of their DSA application, and if successful, they will need to decide whether to take up the offer before their examination results are released. For a student who takes up a DSA-JC offer, his/her GCE O-Level result must meet the eligibility criteria1 for admission to the JC.

DSA Commitment

4. In accepting an offer of admission through the DSA-JC, students are expressing a commitment to study in that school, to develop their talent in the chosen area, and should honour this commitment. Students successfully admitted to a school via DSA-JC will not be participating in the Joint Admissions Exercise (JAE). They will also not be allowed to transfer to another school after obtaining their GCE O-Level results.

5. Thus, students should carefully consider their DSA application, based on their aptitudes and strengths, the school’s academic and non-academic requirements, and the programmes available to develop their talents.

DSA-JC Application

6. Students applying for DSA-JC are encouraged to check the MOE DSA-JC website for important dates and timelines, and to find out how the exercise will be conducted. Interested students should visit the individual JCs’ websites for more information on application periods, procedures and selection criteria, which may differ across JCs.

Financial assistance schemes

7. MOE provides financial assistance and sets aside resources such as the Opportunity Fund to ensure that underprivileged students are not deprived of developmental opportunities. There are also scholarships such as the Edusave Scholarship for Independent Schools (ESIS) awarded to academically strong students to help defray the higher fees in Independent Schools (ISes).

8. With effect from April 2019, MOE has introduced the new UPLIFT Scholarship for Independent Schools, for eligible students from low-income families. The Scholarship provides a cash award of $800 per annum for two groups of students from low income families: (i) students with talents in specific areas admitted to ISes through DSA, and (ii) academically strong students who are recipients of ESIS. Students from families with Gross Monthly Household Income (GHI) up to $2,750 or Per Capita Income (PCI) up to $690 will be eligible for the scholarship.

9. The tenure of the UPLIFT Scholarship will be for the full duration of studies in the Independent School, starting from year of entry and is subject to the student meeting the renewal criteria2. More information can be found at

ITE Early Admissions Exercise (ITE EAE)

10. Graduating N- and O-Level students can apply for early admission to ITE Nitec and Higher Nitec courses respectively through the ITE EAE, based on their course-specific aptitudes and interest. As with the Polytechnic EAE, applicants may need to submit portfolios, undergo interviews, and take aptitude tests as part of the selection process.

11. Applications will open from 21 May to 27 May 2019, and may be submitted online at

12. Successful applicants under the ITE EAE will be given conditional offers before receiving their GCE N- or O-Level results. For their conditional offer to be confirmed, they must meet the MERs of the offered course. The MERs of the ITE courses and the timeline for the 2019 ITE EAE can be found at

13. Students who accept a place via the ITE EAE will not be eligible to participate in the JAE for Higher Nitec courses, or Joint Intake Exercise for Nitec courses. Students are expected to honour their commitment to their choice of course under the ITE EAE.

Polytechnic Early Admissions Exercise (Polytechnic EAE)

Admission for Graduating O-Level and ITE students

14. Graduating O-Level and ITE students can apply for early admission into courses at the polytechnics3 through the Polytechnic EAE based on their course-specific aptitudes and interest. As part of the selection process, applicants may need to submit portfolios, and undergo interviews and aptitude tests. Where relevant, the polytechnics may also factor in students’ talents and achievements in areas such as sports, arts, leadership and community service.

15. Applications will open from 6 June 2019 to 12 June 2019 for ITE students, and 27 June 2019 to 3 July 2019 for students taking the GCE O-Level examinations.

16. Successful applicants under the Polytechnic EAE will be given conditional offers before receiving their final examination results. For the conditional offer to be confirmed, they must meet the Minimum Entry Requirements (MERs) for the offered polytechnic course. More information about the timeline and MERs for the 2019 Polytechnic EAE can be found at

17. Students who accept an offer via the Polytechnic EAE and have their place confirmed, will not be eligible to participate in all other Polytechnic admission exercises. They will also not be able to transfer to another course within or between the polytechnics. Students are expected to honour the commitment to their choice of polytechnic and course under the Polytechnic EAE.

Admission for Working Adults

18. Starting from Academic Year 2019, the polytechnics will open EAE to working adults. This is part of the broader effort to expand polytechnic admissions pathways for working adults, starting with the Direct Admissions Exercise (DAE) earlier this year, and applies to Singapore Citizens and Singapore Permanent Residents only.

19. Working adults who would like to be considered for admission via the Polytechnic EAE will generally need to have at least two years of relevant work experience. They will need to submit employment records together with their application, as well as employer recommendations, where available. The polytechnics will holistically assess applicants' work experience to determine the relevance of the competencies and skills gained over the course of their work to their course of interest. Applicants who are found suitable, but whose past academic grades do not meet the MERs, will be given an opportunity to demonstrate that they have acquired the pre-requisite competencies for their chosen course through supplementary assessments.

20. Applications for working adults will open from 6 June 2019 to 3 July 2019. More information can be found at

Further Information

21. Students interested in the DSA-JC, Polytechnic EAE, or ITE EAE should visit the websites of the participating institutions for more details. They are advised to do so before the start of the respective exercises. More information is also available at the following MOE websites:

  1. Please refer to for more information.

  2. For students on ESIS, the UPLIFT Scholarship is tenable for the duration of the ESIS award, starting from the year of the award.

  3. All the five Polytechnics – Ngee Ann Polytechnic, Nanyang Polytechnic, Republic Polytechnic, Singapore Polytechnic and Temasek Polytechnic – participate in the Polytechnic EAE.

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