Most O Level candidates take their exams as a school student and information on the exams are easily available during classroom sessions. Whereas as a private candidate, information may not be as forthcoming and you may have to constantly update yourself on MOE website.
Here we are making it easy for you by gathering all the key info you need if you are taking your O Levels as a private candidate.
What are the Private candidate registration requirements?
To qualify as a private candidate for the GCE O Levels, you need to have the following requirements:
- You must be 15 as of January 1 of the year you plan to take your O Level
- You are not a school candidate
- If you are taking science subjects that have Practical paper requirements, you must have either taken the subject previously or currently attending or will be attending your Science practical in any school. If you meet the requirements, you will be allowed entry to your science subject.
- You must select only 9 subjects for the test
Once you fulfil all your requirements, you can sign up for the test as a private candidate.
Review the latest examination syllabuses
Before you check what subjects you will register for as a private candidate, you should check the exam syllabus for private candidates on the official website of the Singapore Examinations and Assessment Board and our latest education news here.
There are two reasons why you should do this before your exams:
First, there are subjects that are not going to be offered to private candidates which are only offered to those in government schools.
For example, you won’t be able to get your exams for Computing, Art and Design and Technology if you are not a school candidate. The SEAB has the full list available for private candidates to take for their exams or simply review on their own time.
Secondly, the SEAB regularly updates the subject syllabus for the examinations to keep up with the changes in the subject. This is the reason why it will be best to get the new exam syllabus for your review. You can check out the latest changes here.
When can I register?
If you plan to become a private candidate for your O Level, you can start filling up your application every March. Applications can be done online on the official website of the SEAB.
What are the fees?
Each candidate will have a different amount for their examination fees based on their citizenship.
For Singaporean citizens, they will usually pay $64 as a basic fee. For permanent residents, the fee is around $65 while international students have to pay $75. Every subject will also have different prices based on the candidate’s citizenship. Aside from the subject and exam fees, students will also have to pay the GST for their examination.
Payments for the O-Levels can be done online through credit or debit card payment or through any SingPost office. Students may also pay through Self-Automated Machines.
When will I receive exam entry proof?
Once you pay, you will receive your entry proof by mail by July if you will be taking the year-end exams and by May if you will take the mid-year exams. You will need to present the proof and your NRIC to enter the examination hall and take your exam.
What happens when I am sick?
If you are sick or hospitalised because of any contagious disease, you need to contact the SEAB through the Ministry of Education’s Customer Service Hotline before the examinations. You will need to present a certified medical certificate that will explain your condition and send your official request to the SEAB to sit your examinations outside the testing center due to your condition.
The SEAB can make special arrangements for you to take your exams in the hospital or a specified examination center. You will need to bring your own exam materials if you will be allowed to take your exam in the hospital.
In case that you can’t sit for your exams or have taken it under adverse conditions, Special Considerations can be requested. It will be granted if:
- If you completed at least 50% component score of the total assessment score for the subject you took,
- You have all the right supporting documents to support your application such as medical reports.
For other unexpected situations, contact the SEAB immediately for assistance. Please make sure you stay healthy during the stressful revision period by following these tips.
Where can I sit for my examination?
You can find your seat number and all the key details you need to know about your exam on your exam entry proof. It is predetermined by the Ministry of Education.
Is there a late examination registration period?
In case you missed the March application period, the SEAB does open a late examination registration period in April. However, you will be charged a late fee on top of your exam fees.
Candidates are also advised to mail the Ministry of Education if they missed the registration period.
What can I not bring into the exam hall?
Before you enter or even go to the examinations hall, you must make sure you are not carrying the following with you:
- Any gaming device or electronics that can store, capture or receive any audio, visual or verbal information in the examination hall such as tablets, smart watches, music players and others.
- Any reference materials, paper or notes that are unauthorised in the examination hall such as a conversion table and even study notes. Sticky notes and well-wishes cards are also not allowed in the exam hall.
- Any dictionary or calculator that is not in the approved list.
When will I receive the GCE O level examination results?
O Level results are released after 2 months of the entire examination once it ends in January.
The Ministry of Education will announce the actual examination result date a few days before the date so students can check accordingly. The news will also announce the result date in case candidates are unable to check the MOE’s website.
Results will be sent through mail and for Singapore nationals, they can check the results online through their SingPass account.
Make sure to review all these key information before you apply for your O Level examinations. Remember, it is better to be informed rather than panic during the exams.
Here are more tips for private candidates: