What You Need To Know About Full Subject-Based Banding (Full SBB)

2.2/5 - 4 reviews

What is Full SBB?

Full Subject-Based Banding (Full SBB) is part of the ongoing efforts of the Ministry of Education (MOE) to foster a love of learning and develop multiple pathways to accommodate the diverse strengths and interests of our students.
With Full SBB, we are moving toward a secondary education in which students learn each subject at the level that best accommodates their overall strengths, interests, and learning needs.
Under Full SBB, there will be no longer be separate Express, N(A), and N(T) courses; instead, students will be placed in mixed form classes where they can interact with peers who have varying strengths and interests.
Under Full SBB, the Ministry of Education (MOE) will expand Subject-Based Banding (SBB) beyond the four PSLE subjects, allowing eligible Secondary 2 students to offer Humanities subjects at a more challenging level.
Additional subjects, such as Art, Design and Technology, Food and Consumer Education, and Music, will be offered as a complement to the Common Curriculum at the lower secondary level.

The elimination of Express, Normal(Academic) and Normal(Technical) courses

The courses Express, N(A), and N(T) will be eliminated.
Students will continue to be placed in secondary schools based on their PSLE scores, which continue to be a good indicator of their overall academic ability and subject level placement at the start of Secondary One.
Information will be provided at a later date.
Throughout their secondary school education, students can choose from three subject levels, referred to as G1, G2, and G3 (G stands for General), which correspond to the current N(T), N(A), and Express standards.
Students will be able to choose subjects at G1, G2, and G3 based on their strengths, interests, and educational requirements.
Students will then have access to programs and post-secondary pathways based on the subject and level combinations they have chosen.

Mixed form classes at the lower secondary level

Once students are assigned to a school, they will be grouped into mixed form classes, with each form class containing students with varying learner profiles.
Mixed form classes provide students with more opportunities to interact with peers who are pursuing different subject combinations and have varying strengths and interests.
How has this been handled in schools up until now?

Offering courses at varying levels of difficulty

Subjects that are more difficult

Based on their PSLE Achievement Level (AL) for each subject, all secondary school students are permitted to offer English Language, Mother Tongue Languages, Mathematics, and Science at a more rigorous level beginning in Secondary One.
Based on their performance in secondary school, students may also offer these subjects at a more difficult level beyond the beginning of Secondary One.
Secondary Two students will also be able to offer Humanities subjects (Geography, History, and English Literature) at a more rigorous level.
The criteria for taking Humanities at a more difficult level will be based on a student’s aptitude and enthusiasm for these subjects in Primary School.

Subjects with a lower difficulty level

At Secondary One, students typically begin with subjects at a subject level based on their PSLE Score or at a more difficult level based on their PSLE performance in individual subjects.
Secondary One students may have the option to take certain courses at a less rigorous level in certain instances.

A less demanding level of Mother Tongue Languages (MTL)

Students with exceptional difficulties in mastering MTL will have the option of taking G1 or G2 MTL.
This is consistent with the purpose of Full SBB, which is to encourage students to better tailor their learning to their strengths. Secondary schools will discontinue MTL ‘B’ due to the increased flexibility afforded by MTL offerings at grades G1, G2, and G3.
In due time, additional information regarding the guidelines for students to enroll in less rigorous courses will be made available.
Students who initially offer a subject at a less rigorous level may later offer the subject at a more rigorous level as they acquire greater competence and confidence in the subject.
The increased flexibility enables students to take greater responsibility for their education in accordance with their subject-specific strengths and passions.

Subjects at the lower secondary level

Common Curriculum disciplines

In their mixed form classes, students will spend approximately one-third of their time on a set of common-level subjects. This would allow students in mixed form classes to spend time in these subjects together.
These subjects are:

  • Art
  • Character and Citizenship Education
  • Design and Technology
  • Food and Consumer Education
  • Music
  • Physical Education

Teachers will utilize a variety of instructional strategies to accommodate the diverse learning needs and rates of their students within the same form.

Subjects Offered at the G1, G2, and G3 Levels

At the G1, G2, and G3 levels, English Language, Mother Tongue Languages, Mathematics, Science, and Humanities will be offered. Students may take these courses at a more or less rigorous level, depending on eligibility requirements and guidelines.
Students will be placed in different classes for each subject based on their subject level.

Subjects at the secondary level

Mandatory subjects

Students will take their required courses at the same level as in lower secondary school. Students who meet the eligibility requirements will also have the option of taking the course at a more or less rigorous level.

  • English Language
  • Mother Tongue Languages
  • Humanities
  • Mathematics
  • Science

Students offering mainly G1 subjects at upper secondary must offer at least one of the following subjects โ€“ Computing and Science.

Elective courses

Students have the option to enroll in elective courses, such as Additional Mathematics, Art, and Design & Technology, at subject levels that correspond to their individual interests and abilities.

National examinations

Students will take the new Singapore-Cambridge Secondary Education Certificate (SEC) examination beginning with the graduating class of 2027. The SEC will reflect the courses and subject levels offered by students.
This is comparable to the A-Level examination, in which students take subjects at the H1, H2, and H3 levels, and the PSLE examination, in which students take subjects at the Standard or Foundation levels.

Admissions to postsecondary institutions

The Ministry of Education is reviewing the admissions processes for various postsecondary institutions. Changes to postsecondary admissions will be introduced gradually and fully implemented by the Academic Year 2028 admissions, in order to better recognize the various subject combinations and subject levels of students.

Expansion of the Polytechnic Foundation Programme (PFP) beginning with the 2024 academic year

As a first step, the PFP will be expanded to allow a greater number of students to benefit from a practice-based preparatory pathway to a polytechnic education, while ensuring that they are capable of coping with the curriculum. This will be accomplished by:

  • Relaxing the grade requirement of two ‘Best’ subjects in ELMAB3 (English Language, Mathematics, Best 3 subjects), from G2 Grade 3 to Grade 4.
  • While retaining ELMAB3 (English Language, Mathematics, Best 3 subjects) at a raw aggregate score of 12 points of better (excluding CCA bonus points); and the subject requirements for English Language and ‘Relevant’ subjects

This strikes a balance between increasing the flexibility and porousness of pathways, while ensuring that students enter a pathway they can manage as they advance.
Additional information regarding changes to postsecondary admissions and pathways will be provided in due course.

Schools Implementing Full SBB

More than two-thirds of secondary schools, or approximately 90 schools, will have implemented Full Subject-Based Banding by 2023. (Full SBB).
In 2024, the remaining secondary schools implementing Full SBB will join the program.
Schools that are implementing Full SBB (since 2020)

  • Ang Mo Kio Secondary School
  • Assumption English School
  • Bedok Green Secondary School
  • Bowen Secondary School
  • Clementi Town Secondary School
  • Deyi Secondary School
  • Edgefield Secondary School
  • Evergreen Secondary School
  • Gan Eng Seng School
  • Greendale Secondary School
  • Jurong Secondary School
  • Jurong West Secondary School
  • Mayflower Secondary School
  • Montfort Secondary School
  • Paya Lebar Methodist Girls’ School (Sec)
  • Pei Hwa Secondary School
  • Ping Yi Secondary School
  • Queenstown Secondary School
  • Riverside Secondary School
  • St. Andrew’s Secondary School
  • St. Anthony’s Canossian Secondary School
  • St. Patrick’s School
  • Swiss Cottage Secondary School
  • Temasek Secondary School
  • West Spring Secondary School
  • Whitley Secondary School
  • Yuying Secondary School
  • Zhenghua Secondary School
  • Schools that are implementing Full SBB (from 2022)

  • Admiralty Secondary School
  • Anderson Secondary School
  • Anglo-Chinese School (Barker Road)
  • Beatty Secondary School
  • Broadrick Secondary School
  • Bukit Panjang Government High School
  • Bukit View Secondary School
  • CHIJ Secondary (Toa Payoh)
  • CHIJ St. Joseph’s Convent
  • CHIJ St. Theresa’s Convent
  • Christ Church Secondary School
  • Commonwealth Secondary School
  • Damai Secondary School
  • East Spring Secondary School
  • Geylang Methodist School (Secondary)
  • Holy Innocents’ High School
  • Hougang Secondary School
  • Hua Yi Secondary School
  • Juying Secondary School
  • Kranji Secondary School
  • Marsiling Secondary School
  • Ngee Ann Secondary School
  • Northbrooks Secondary School
  • Orchid Park Secondary School
  • Regent Secondary School
  • St. Hilda’s Secondary School
  • Teck Whye Secondary School
  • Xinmin Secondary School
  • Yishun Secondary School
  • Yishun Town Secondary School
  • Yusof Ishak Secondary School
  • Schools that are implementing Full SBB (from 2023)

  • Ahmad Ibrahim Secondary School
  • Bartley Secondary School
  • Bedok South Secondary School
  • Bedok View Secondary School
  • Bendemeer Secondary School
  • Bukit Merah Secondary School
  • Changkat Changi Secondary School
  • CHIJ Katong Convent
  • Chua Chu Kang Secondary School
  • Chung Cheng High School (Yishun)
  • Compassvale Secondary School
  • Fairfield Methodist School (Secondary)
  • Hai Sing Catholic School
  • Hillgrove Secondary School
  • Jurongville Secondary School
  • Kent Ridge Secondary School
  • Kuo Chuan Presbyterian Secondary School
  • Manjusri Secondary School
  • Meridian Secondary School
  • Naval Base Secondary School
  • North Vista Secondary School
  • Northland Secondary School
  • Pasir Ris Crest Secondary School
  • Peirce Secondary School
  • Presbyterian High School
  • Punggol Secondary School
  • Queensway Secondary School
  • Seng Kang Secondary School
  • Serangoon Secondary School
  • Tampines Secondary School
  • Westwood Secondary School
  • Woodgrove Secondary School
  • Woodlands Ring Secondary School
  • Woodlands Secondary School
  • Yio Chu Kang Secondary School
  • Yuhua Secondary School
  • Zhonghua Secondary School

Source: MOE

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *