By: R.Trisha, Foundation Diploma in Life Sciences
Before embarking on my life science diploma with PSB Academy, I’ve heard many stereotypical views among the public and from people around me. Views such as “private diploma is not recognised in Singapore”, “curriculum isn’t comprehensive”, and “lack of facilities”.
As I started my journey with PSB Academy, I learned that there were really many private school students who managed to find jobs and start their dreams just like everyone else.
It seems that private education isn’t as bad as they were made out to be.
Decision Not to Continue to Higher Nitec
I could qualify for a Higher Nitec course after graduating with a Nitec in Chemical Process Technology at Institute of Technical Education (ITE).
While I did well enough, I lost interest in the course as I realised it was not what I wanted to do. I knew I had always wanted to explore the world of biology. But at that time, there weren’t many options available for me. Day by day, as I started to lose concentration in class, I could not comprehend some topics. It came to a point I had to endure the long travelling hours as well.
Nevertheless, I pressed on to complete my NITEC course so that I do not disappoint the people around me.
My Opportunity To Change
After my NITEC course, I came to know that PSB Academy offers a life science related diploma and I jumped straight at the opportunity.
Compact and Quality Curriculum
After starting the course, it dawned on me why some people felt that private diplomas were not comprehensive because of its fast duration. I’m currently undertaking my Foundation Diploma in Life Sciences at PSB Academy, which can be completed in just 12 months. Well, the duration does sound suspiciously short. But the difference is that we had no long-term breaks. The longest break we had was about a week, which is different from local mainstream schools, where term break breaks could span from maybe a couple of weeks to one or two months. And to top it all off, we had to go for 3 to 4 theory-heavy modules each term.
The life science diploma provided me with a very clear understanding of what life sciences is about, giving me a good vantage point before progressing to a Bachelor of Biomedical Science degree. I was impressed that PSB Academy had laboratory lessons where we get to immerse in real hands-on practical lessons, instead of just lectures, similar to the mainstream schools.
Conducive Learning Environment
The warm and inviting classroom environment and small class size made it convenient for us to learn comfortably. In my cohort, I had 40 classmates, but we were split into two groups to learn different modules. With each term, we would switch. The lessons were also not scheduled one after another, so I had the time to ask the lecturers any questions if I needed to clarify something or to better understand specific topics.
PSB Academy also has a great digital platform called ‘Blackboard,’ where we can easily access our lesson notes, slides and videos, making it very easy for us to prepare for examinations as we can replay the lesson videos repeatedly.
A Future of Opportunities
Upon completion of my diploma, I know that progressing to a relevant life science degree was possible, and I would also be granted module exemptions, which will allow me to complete the degree faster.
Looking back, I didn’t regret my decision to switch from the mainstream educational track of ITE to a private diploma and degree. I was adamant about doing something that I really like, and my family was supportive. I didn’t want to pursue a random course that I didn’t like through the mainstream track even though everyone was doing it. I knew that this was a good opportunity for me.
If you are a GCE ‘O’ Level certificate holder or an ITE graduate keen to explore the world of life science, check out our life science courses.