PhD/MSc (Building)

Research students are either self-financed or supported through NUS research scholarships. The graduation requirements include coursework, seminar module and thesis. PhD candidates are required to pass a Qualifying Examination, comprising a written Comprehensive Examination and a defence of thesis proposal, final thesis examination and viva. The graduate research programmes offered by the Department are:

The Department’s full-time researchers are distributed between 4 research clusters:

  • Productivity
  • Sustainable Buildings
  • Project Finance & Construction Law
  • Building Energy Efficiency

Why Choose Us?

Our Achievements

Among Asia's Top University

World class in international construction research.

Our cutting edge infrastructure in CiBest & our laboratories.

Our Research

Wide range of research topics and well published, dedicated researchers.

We Push Limits

Prospective Students


Applicants (except NUS/NTU/SMU graduates) should submit GRE score (minimum scores 320 for the verbal & quantitative sections and 3.5 for the analytical section). GRE scores are valid for 5 years from the test date.

Applicants whose native tongue or medium of undergraduate education is not in English MUST submit documentary evidence of their TOEFL scores. The minimum TOEFL Score ranges from 580 TO 600 or 85 for internet based test. IELTS score should be 7 and above. Applicants are encouraged to take the TSE (Test of Spoken English) and TWE (Test of Written English)

Master of Science (Building) Doctor of Philosophy
Admission to a research Master’s programme normally requires a good Honours degree or equivalent. The Department may also admit students with a good Bachelor’s degree with relevant research or working experience on a case-by-case basis. Admission into a Ph.D. programme requires a good Master’s degree in a relevant discipline, or at least a Second Class Upper Honours degree or equivalent in a relevant discipline.
1-3 years candidature 2-5 years candidature

Credit Transfers & Exemption of Coursework

Credit transfer and exemption for the coursework component of the graduate research programme may be granted for NUS modules taken and passed prior to admission to the programme or for modules completed at another tertiary institution recognised by the University.

Only modules relevant to the degree programme to which the candidate seeks admission, with comparable content and level of sophistication, and read less than five (5) years before the date of admission may be considered for credit transfer / exemption.

There is no limit to the transfer of credit for relevant modules that have not been used towards another degree at NUS or elsewhere.

For relevant modules that have been credited towards another degree elsewhere, up to 50% of the MCs required in the coursework component of the NUS graduate research programme into which the candidate seeks admission may be exempted.

For relevant NUS modules that have been credited towards another degree at NUS, on a case-by-case basis and subject to approval, more than 50% of the MCs required in the coursework component of the NUS graduate research programme may be allowed credit and grade transfer.

Students seeking credit transfer and exemption should apply to the Department within the first semester of study.

Scholarships, Financial Aid & Fees

There is a limited number of research scholarships offered by the university per year. Other research scholarships/awards can be found here. The competition for these is very intense and scholarship is awarded to outstanding candidates, on the basis of academic merit. For financial assistance, tuition fees and loans, please visit NUS Graduate Studies.


There are two intakes per academic year - one in Semester 1 (August) and the other one in Semester 2 (January).

Applications are open all year round. Applications received after the closing date will be considered for the next relevant intake.

Intake Closing Date
Semester 1 (August) 15 November of the previous year
Semester 2 (January) 15 May of the previous year

Application Procedures

Please note that even though an application is submitted online, relevant supporting documents must be sent via post. In order for applications to be considered for a specific intake, the online application, payment of application fees and available supporting documents must reach us by the relevant deadlines.

Applicants are advised to read the general instructions and FAQ first before proceeding to apply online.

There is a non-refundable fee for online application. Please visit SDE Graduate Programmes by Research for application instructions.

Apply Online

Refer here for a checklist of the necessary supporting documents.

Please print the summary of your online application and submit together with your supporting documents to:

Vice-Dean (Research)
Dean’s Office
School of Design and Environment
National University of Singapore
4 Architecture Drive
Singapore 117 566

Current Students

Briefing and Central Library Orientation Programme for New Students

Topics for the briefing shall include

  • Overview of Integrated Virtual Learning Environment (IVLE)
  • Postgraduate module registration
  • ITU services available to students
Central Library Orientation Programme will include Hands-on Sessions @ Central Library Training Room and a tour of the library facilities.
Students should look out for announcements on the library portal regarding Online (WebEx) Session.

Registration of Coursework Modules

Students are advised to:

  • Consult their supervisors or academic advisors on the modules to register before the commencement of each semester.
  • Please visit NUS Registrar's Office for registration of candicature and thesis submission and examination.
  • Collect the class time-table from the host department which offers the module(s).
  • Check the examination dates here, of the modules to ensure that there are no clashes.


Please refer to the recommended timelines to complete PhD and MSc

Useful information for NUS Graduate Students can be found in the student portal.

Academic Calendar is available here.

Graduation Requirements

To find out more about graduation, coursework and continuation requirements, please visit School of Design and Environment (Division of Research and Graduate Studies)

Useful links

For enquiries, please email

Every effort is made to ensure that the information is accurate and current. However, the University and the School reserve the right to make alterations without notice.

Important: The University has not engaged any external agencies to undertake graduate student recruitment on its behalf. Candidates interested in our graduate programmes are advised to apply directly to the University and not through any agents. Candidates who apply through agents will not have any added advantage in gaining admission and the University reserves the right to reject such applications without giving reasons.