If you’re an expatriate family that’s planning on moving to Singapore, you probably already have a lot on your plate. Add in the consideration of enrolling your child in a local school and you might feel overwhelmed.
Singapore is well-known for having one of the best education systems in the world. It’s not only of extremely high caliber but also very competitive. As an international student, your child would need to go through either the AEIS or S-AEIS examination to assess if he or she is suitable for this education system.
Finding out more information about the AEIS or S-AEIS examinations can be time-consuming and researching online about the entire process could end up being very confusing. If you decide that you would like your child to pursue an education with the local Singapore school system, the below will not only help you understand more about the AEIS and S-AEIS tests, it will provide you with tips on how to go about preparing your child for this competitive exam.
What is AEIS?
AEIS stands for ‘Admission Exercise for International Students’ examination. It is essentially an exam that international students take to be enrolled in Singapore’s education system. The AEIS exam is held once a year in September or October, costs SGD 672 (inclusive of GST) and is non-refundable. English and Mathematics are the subjects that the AEIS exams are on. The aim of the exams is to assess your child’s literacy, numeracy and reasoning abilities.
The examinations are based on the Singapore education system and are meant to ensure that international students who are admitted to the local schools are able to cope with the rigorous requirements of the Singapore education system and curriculum. Depending on the test results, your child may receive admission to a suitable school. School placements, however, are also dependent on a number of other factors such as available vacancies along with the location of your residence in Singapore.
Once your child has taken the AEIS exam and received admission to the school, you will not be able to request a school transfer. It’s also important to note that admission to a school is not guaranteed. If your child does not pass the AEIS exam, you can either apply to have your child take it again or consider alternative education systems.
Who is AEIS for?
The AEIS examinations are meant for international students aged between seven and seventeen that would like to be enrolled in Singapore’s local education system. Your child should be either entering primary two through five or secondary one through three in January of the following academic year.
If you’re an expatriate that’s moving to Singapore, enrolling your child in the local education system would be more cost effective. While International School fees generally cost SGD 25,000 and above, Singapore local school fees are much more affordable at a cost of SGD 6,000 to SGD 7,000 annually.
If you’d like your child to take the AEIS exam, it’s important to ensure that you register early, make payment and send through supporting documents within one week of your online application. The AEIS exams are popular and spaces fill up quickly, registration for the AEIS exams will close when all available places for the test date are taken up.
AEIS vs S–AEIS
S-AEIS stands for ‘Supplementary Admissions Exercise for International Students’. The S-AEIS has the same testing system as the AEIS – English, and Mathematics based on the Singapore education system. The main key difference is when the examination occurs.
The S-AEIS is conducted around February or March of each year and is meant for international students who do not have a place in local schools and were unable to make it for the AEIS testing in September or October. Some parents also intentionally have their children take the S-AEIS so they have more time to prepare their children for the examination. The S-AEIS is also for international students seeking admission to primary two through four and secondary one through two in April or May of the academic year.
Either than the dates of the exam, most AEIS and S-AEIS rules are the same. Once you have taken either exam and been offered a school placement, you will not be able to take it again in an attempt to possibly change schools. However, if your child has failed either exam, they may apply to take it again at the same or higher level. Your child will not be able to take the exam at a lower level.
How does home tuition help with AEIS exams?
AEIS exams are extremely competitive with numerous individuals taking them each year. Since the AEIS exams are based on the Singapore education system and curriculum, your child might have difficulty familiarizing him or herself with this system.
With home tuition, your child can get some help and have a better competitive advantage on the AEIS exam. The teacher will ensure that your child has a proper understanding of Singapore’s education style, level, and syllabus. Teachers are also trained to be familiar with the AEIS test format and grading system. With that, they’d be able to provide sample tests for your child enabling them to be familiar with the overall structure before sitting for the exam.
Home tuition will ensure that your child is confident and well-prepared for the exam. If you’d like your child to pass either the AEIS or S-AEIS and get a placement in a local school, investing in home tuition is sure to put your child in a more advantageous situation.
The AEIS or S-AEIS is mandatory if you want your child to pursue a local education. With the number of international students in Singapore steadily increasing over the past few years, so has competitiveness to be enrolled in a local school. Whether you choose to enroll your child to take the AEIS or S-AEIS exam, they should be sufficiently prepared for their test and ready to adjust to the rigors of the Singapore education system.
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