The Institute of Technical Education (ITE) and the five polytechnics in Singapore will conduct selections for the Early Admissions Exercise (EAE) largely online for most courses. This is to ensure the safety and well-being of applicants and staff amid the Covid-19 outbreak.

Graduating N-and O-level students can apply for early admission to ITE Nitec and Higher Nitec courses respectively, from May 27 to June 3.

As for polytechnic courses, final-year ITE students can apply from June 11 to 17, while graduating O-level students can apply from June 25 to July 1.

Implemented in 2016, the EAE allows students to gain conditional admission to a course based on their aptitude and talent, even before their qualifying final exams.

Students may have to submit portfolios, undergo interviews and take aptitude tests as part of the selection process. They will also have to meet various minimum entry requirements before their conditional offers are confirmed.

The Ministry of Education (MOE) said yesterday that it is proceeding with the exercise amid the Covid-19 situation as the EAE is “an important admissions route that takes into account students’ demonstrated aptitudes and interests, beyond academic grades”.

“It has been a key route of admissions for many students who aspire to pursue specific courses in the polytechnics or ITE in line with their passions and interests.”

The institutions will try to use electronic means such as online interviews or portfolio submissions over e-mail, but on-campus selection will be needed for some courses “where the selection process cannot be meaningfully replicated in a remote manner”.

Examples include ITE’s Nitec in nursing and Nanyang Polytechnic’s diploma in oral health therapy.

In the event that applicants need to be on campus, “appropriate safe management measures” will be in place, MOE added.



    For graduating N-and O-level students respectively. They can apply from May 27 to June 3.


    • Final-year ITE students can apply from June 11 to 17.

    • Graduating O-level students can apply from June 25 to July 1.

These include staggering assessment slots and designating waiting areas to prevent the intermingling of applicants.

Ngee Ann Polytechnic will be using an artificial intelligence (AI) platform to help with its EAE assessment and selection process.

It started with three schools – business and accountancy, film and media studies and health sciences – last year. This year, two more schools have been included – infocomm technology as well as life sciences and chemical technology.

The AI platform can read application write-ups submitted by students and interact with them through an online chat to gauge their aptitude and competencies.

MOE said that the polytechnics and ITE will be ready to render additional support to applicants who face difficulties with the online selection process. These may include students from disadvantaged backgrounds.

Students can also approach their schools for assistance, MOE added. For example, online interviews and assessments may be conducted at students’ schools instead of at home, with information technology equipment borrowed from the school.

Working adults can also apply to polytechnics via the EAE from June 8 to July 5. This is the second year since the scheme was opened to them. Applicants should be Singaporeans or permanent residents with at least two years of relevant work experience, and should submit employment records and employer recommendations.

Those who are found suitable, but whose past academic grades do not meet the requirements, will be given the opportunity to show they have the specified skill sets for their chosen courses via supplementary assessments designed and administered by the polytechnics.