Study history? But I am a business student.

So we had to take history as part of our common core module. For what? We are business students- majoring in Accountancy, Finance, HRM, Marketing and not arts students.

However, to use a narrow minded approach to education, is similar to the blinders on a horse, restricting it to only a straight movement forward, neglecting the beautiful sights that are on its sides. The study of CCO107 World History attempts to create a holistic approach to a UNISIM student’s education.

Through the various history chapters, we have come to appreciate that we are living in an era where we do not have to be afraid that we might stumble across an opium den or be forced upon a ship across the Atlantic trade route to be sold. History engages us, and it is fascinating to learn about how the various countries of the world interact with one another. Historical events shape how countries interact with one another now. For example, the frosty relations between China and Japan, as well as Russia and USA.

For our individual assignment, we were asked to write up on modern slavery. Here would be my artefact. Tay Yu Siang_CCO107_TMA

Does family income determine the academic performance of a polytechnic student?

The recent spate of news articles over elitist advantage in Singapore education system has created a big hoo-ha within our little red dot. Many Singaporeans have come out debating against the ‘Elite schools’ over the presumed majority of its student population hailing from the affluent class.  Critics have sharpen their knives saying that the unfair education policies in place have enabled the children from wealthier families to get a head start such as primary schools accepting students based on their household proximity, and the presumably better primary schools such as Raffles Primary School (located within Bukit Timah area) gives an unfair advantage to the rich households living in Bukit Timah.

However, through my own experience, in my entire school life, even through National Service, I believe that family income does not necessarily affect your performance in schools. Yes, definitely, there would be advantages where students from lower income group might not be able to afford such as Overseas Immersion Programme where the fees can easily hit up to tens of thousands dollars. However, knowing that not all students are able to afford such programmes, schools do not take into account such programmes when grading the students. At the end of the day, it is not the amount of overseas trip the student went, but his projects and exams that count in his final GPA.

There are many articles that are based on how students are able to perform well academically against all odds. These stories are usually inspiring and they are able to serve as potential role models for the next batch of students.

For CCO105 Social Research, under the tutelage of Professor Lim Chee Han, I was a social scientist attempting to understand how the society works by conducting my own research and consolidating my findings. Honestly, this journey was not easy. It was like a throwback to my PW days in JC where sleepless nights were the norm in rushing to adhere to the various deadlines. However  at an advanced level in University, we were instead tasked to recreate the whole PW style of assignment on an individual basis. It allowed me to step out of my comfort zone and challenged my boundaries.

I stepped into Ngee Ann Polytechnic (my sample population), found a spot at the cafe and immediately set upon completing my task by asking random students to fill up my surveys. After the consolidation of my findings, there was more to come. We had to contextualise our findings and present it in the form of a report. The entire project was completed during the revision week, a few days before my finals. It was indeed the first challenge after National Service, where I had to meet deadlines, and yet revised for the finals. And it certainly felt very sweet when I saw the end product of my research findings!!!

And indeed, family income does not determine a student’s academic performance in polytechnic. My hypothesis is correct.

Research: ECA T07 Tay Yu Siang

Work Hard Play Harder.


During CCO101 Thinking and Reasoning ( I will prefer to label it as Philosophy since we are learning about the works of the great thinkers), we are asked to evaluate an article and we are to follow it up with our own opinions. Inside of me, I was thinking, will this be too much to ask of us to evaluate the opinions of these great philosophers? However, it has to be done, and with careful planning, and the careful scrutinising of the article, I was able to identify the main points of the article which I want to comment.

At the end of this course, I felt that I was able to think deeper and provide insights as to why a society might choose to allow themselves be dominated by another social class instead of fighting for their own rights  (probably due to the influence of the works of the great thinkers, and of course my lecturer, Adrian Kwek, a Harvard Alumni).


BUS100 Excel Spreadsheets

Artefact: BUS100 TMA Submission

The learning of the usage of spreadsheet models, BUS 100. To be honest, I have been using excel for quite a bit during National Service. Yet, after attending the first lesson, I realised that what I know is close to zero. All I have been doing is simply called – Hardcoding.  Throughout the entire module, I have benefitted greatly from the lectures under my stern but candid Professor Leong who shares many of his life experiences  which is not something we can get through any textbooks.  At the end of BUS100, my skills as an excel user have definitely improved tremendously. It would certainly be an essential tool while working.