Unrestricted Electives: A Recommendation of Interesting Modules
Updated: Jan 26
Another semester, another dilemma. Which module should you study from the endless list of modules available? And what should you consider when choosing your modules?
Many students choose to take modules that are easier to score in, but this can backfire. If a module is notorious for being “easy”, many likeminded students seeking an easy A will register for that module. Worse still, if you go into a module expecting an A right from the start, you could add some undue pressure on yourself to do well, affecting your mental state throughout the semester. The lower difficulty level of a module also means that the infamous bell curve will be steep, making that A you wanted even more elusive.
So instead of taking a module that may seem easier, why not try picking up modules in subjects that interest you? You might have a greater investment in your learning, making studying less of a chore – this may make it easier for you to do well in the module.
That said, here’s a list of some interesting modules you can can consider taking to clear your Unrestricted Electives (UEs).
Disclaimer: This is not a module review, but a mere recommendation of interesting modules. The author has not taken all of these modules.
Disclaimer 2: Only modules available in AY20/21 Semester 2 have been listed.
Disclaimer 3: As this article was written with Communications and New Media (NM) students in mind, the below list contains no NM modules. If you are not an NM student, I strongly recommend any of the NM modules available, in addition to the listed modules.
PS2249 Government and Politics of Singapore (Department: Political Science)
As young adults, many of us may not have much political expertise. However, if you didn’t get to vote in the recent General Elections, you still have time to learn more about Singapore’s political sphere. Why not pick up this module from the Department of Political Science to streamline your learning?
In this module, you’ll learn everything relevant to Singapore’s politics – from our political system to analysis of the various parties’ doctrines. You’re sure to come away from this module with a deeper appreciation of politics in Singapore, making yourself a more well-informed citizen and preparing you to exercise your right to vote responsibly in the future.
SC2220 Gender Studies (Department: Sociology)
The concepts of gender and sexuality has become a hot button issue in recent times, with the evolving definitions of gender and sexuality coming into conflict with more traditional perspectives. To help make sense of this new world, and to decide where you stand on the matter, why not take up this module and educate yourself?
Understanding gender and sexual identity today is undoubtedly a tricky task, and studying it as a module could help you make sense of it all. One more added benefit: gender studies is an important topic in some higher level NM modules (those under the Cultural Studies branch). You can use SC2220 to lay a solid foundation of knowledge in the topic and set yourself up to do well when you take these NM modules in the future!
ACC1701X Accounting for Decision Makers (Department: Accounting/Business)
If you’re a business noob like me, maybe you can consider taking this module to expose yourself to the world of business. This module serves as a basic introduction to business – important knowledge to pick up if you ever intend to get a corporate job. What are assets? Liabilities? Dividends? These are questions that will elude you no further after taking this module.
The module is mounted for non-business students (business students take ACC1701, which allegedly has a tougher final exam), so you don’t have to worry about competing against students with expertise.
CS1010E Programming Methodology (Department: Computer Science)
If you’ve ever thought about picking up coding, doing so in NUS would be a great idea. While coding is something that can be learnt independently using free online resources, the quality of these resources pale in comparison to what you receive when you take a CS module under the School of Computing.
For beginners, CS1010E is recommended as it covers the more beginner-friendly and intuitive of the programming languages, Python. The module also isn’t graded on a bell curve – so you can focus on your own learning without praying to the bell curve god. Buyers beware: this module isn’t for the faint of heart, especially if you have no experience in coding. While the module is made for beginners, the amount of content, as well as the workload, is much higher than your typical arts module (which we all know is a bit intense ;) ).
If you are taking other modules with high workload, stay far away from CS1010E. Otherwise, this module is a great way to hone the skill of thinking computationally.
TS1101E Introduction to Theatre and Performance (Department: Theatre Studies)
As one of the more unique disciplines (and modules) in FASS, TS1101E introduces you to the world of Theatre. In this module, you’ll get to participate in performances and plays as part of your assessments, as well as delve into the analysis of theatre.
This is definitely one of the more interactive modules in FASS, so it is highly recommended for any budding thespians out there. Also some good news: the module will have in-person tutorials for the coming semester, so you won’t lose the interactivity of the module to the dreaded Zoom tutorials.
PLS Series of Modulets (Department: Psychology)
PLS8001 Cultivating Collaboration
PLS8002 Cultivating the Self
PLS8003 Cultivating Resilience
PLS8004 Optimizing Performance
PLS8005 Elevating Interpersonal Communication
The PLS series, part of the Roots and Wings 2.0 programme and offered by the Department of Psychology, focuses on different areas of self-development. They aim to help students cultivate productive habits and behaviours, in order to foster personal growth.
These modulets are conducted over only three 3-hour sessions over a semester, totalling up to 9 contact hours. Each modulet is worth 1 Modular Credit, so they’re perfect for offloading the “missing” 2 MCs you might need after taking CFG1002 (Note: this is not applicable for students enrolled in AY20/21 and after, since FAS1103 is worth 2 MCs and thus fills the missing 2MCs from CFG).
Finally, the modulets are graded on a CS/CU basis, so you can take the PLS series modulets without worrying about your CAP.
I hope this list was helpful! By taking these modules, you can build a more well-rounded education for yourself, and hopefully, grow as a person too.
All the best for ModReg and the coming semester!