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SMU & Carnegie Mellon Fast Track Programme

The SMU- Carnegie Mellon Fast Track allows Singapore Management University (SMU) students to graduate within four to four and half years with both a Bachelor of Science (Information Systems) : Information Systems Major degree from SMU and a master's degree in IT from Carnegie Mellon University.

Students admitted to this programme begin with a solid foundation at SMU-SIS and finish their studies at Carnegie Mellon, an elite and world-renowned American university in the field of information technology

As part of the national strategy to develop talented professionals in the fast changing infocomm industry, this Fast Track programme is offered primarily through the National Infocomm Scholarship and also open selectively to SMU BSc(IS) : Information Systems major students who are not under the National Infocomm Scholarship.

Timeline Options At-a-Glance

The SMU-Carnegie Mellon Fast Track programme has three timeline options. All timeline options typically begin with two years at SMU and end with one or one and half years in a CMU Masters programme.

The timeline options are different in where the third year is spent. Depending on the availability of openings, time of application, and the students’ backgrounds, not all timeline options will be available to all students.

For National Infocomm Scholarship scholars, they have the flexibility to self-source their own organisations to fulfill their bond obligation upon graduation (subjected to IMDA's approval):

  • 4 years for the Fast Track Bachelors-Masters Scholarship
  • 1 - 4 years for Mid-Term Local/Overseas Scholarship (dependent on the duration of sponsorship)

IMDA has a list of recommended industry partners that they can link scholars up with for mentorship, internship and job opportunities.

Undergraduate Phase (Year 1 - 2/+)

Students spend the first two years in Singapore at SMU's SIS. During this time, they take a mixture of IT and business courses as well as liberal arts foundation courses (see BSc (Information Systems) : Information Systems Major curriculum for details).

Students get deeply rooted in the distinctive SMU experience and in the highly innovative approach to business oriented IT education. SMU will arrange for Students to do internship in the infocomm industry during or after their second year. During the first two years, students will receive special guidance from both SMU and Carnegie Mellon to prepare for the subsequent years in the United States .

Undergraduate Phase (Year 3/+)

Students will spend the third year at Carnegie Mellon in Pittsburgh, continuing to take a mixture of IT, business and liberal arts courses in order to satisfy the requirements of SMU's Bachelor of Science (Information Systems) degree. Students' home base at Carnegie Mellon will be the university's Information Systems undergraduate programme.

Both Carnegie Mellon and SMU faculty will advise Students on completing their SMU undergraduate degree in Pittsburgh, and on preparing for the Masters programme in IT at Carnegie Mellon.

Masters Phase (Year 4+)

Students commence on the Masters programme at Carnegie Mellon in the fourth year while also finishing up any remaining requirements for the SMU bachelors degree.

An attractive aspect of this SMU-Carnegie Mellon collaboration is that Students can opt for one of seven different IT related specialisation Masters programmes:


Carnegie Mellon Masters Programme Options

Master of Computational Data Science

@ School of Computer Science


MCDS equips you with the skills and knowledge you need to develop the layers of technology involved in the next generation of massive information system deployments and analyze the data those systems generate.

MCDS programme trains professional master's students in all aspects of design, engineering and deployment of very large information systems. In the programme, you'll delve deeply into topics like databases, distributed algorithms and storage, machine learning, language technologies, software engineering, human-computer interaction, and design.

Master of Science in Information Technology (eBusiness Technology)

@ School of Computer Science


Prepares students to play a variety of mission critical roles in leveraging the power of technology across the enterprise. Whether in an entrepreneurial start-up or within an existing company, students are prepared to provide technical leadership and an informed strategic vision.

Carnegie Mellon has transformed the programme into a story-centered curriculum. It consists of an integrated series of projects designed to help you acquire and practice the essential skills and knowledge that you will use upon graduation.

Master of Science in Information Systems Management (MISM)

@ HeinzCollege


Designed for individuals who have demonstrated an ability to synthesise complex quantitative and qualitative concepts. It is a pragmatic, problem-solving oriented programme that combines information technology practices with business practices.

‘Teched-up' MBA. Powered by Carnegie Mellon's IT thought leaders, learn to master technical and applied business skills through this programme.

Master of Science in Information Security Policy & Management (MSISPM)

@ HeinzCollege


Addresses the growing need for Information Security professionals that possess a balance of analytical skills and business acumen. The programme is unique in its emphasis on the policy, management, and technology aspects of information security and risk management.

The strength of Carnegie Mellon's MSISPM education is in the real-world knowledge of the faculty and the cutting edge research at the University and CERT®.

Master of Science in Information Security (MSIS)

@ Information Networking Institute


The programme offers a technical focus in security and computer systems, further developed through research opportunities.

It is ideally suited to students who want to assume leadership positions in the information security arena.

Master of Science in Software Engineering (MS-SE)

@ College of Engineering


To improve the software engineering skills of beginning or mid-career students wishing a short, sharp experience.

There is currently a shortage of software developers and there has been a half-century-long shortage of outstanding software architects and designers. This programme is designed to bridge that gap.

Admissions Processes

Admittance to SMU and SIS BSc (Information Systems) : Information Systems Major is required to be part of the fast track programme.

You can find information about applying for admission to SMU here.
All Fast-Track students must apply to the School of Information Systems in their application.

Programme Coordinator


Associate Professor of Information Systems
Lee Kong Chian Fellow

1a. Entering Students

Students will apply via the SMU Admissions process with SMU application materials and interview to determine eligibility to join the Fast Track programme. Please inform the programme coordinator, that you are interested. Please also indicate if you will self fund if not awarded a National Infocomm Scholarship.

Students considering the fast track should also apply for the National Infocomm Scholarship and indicate the SMU-Carnegie Mellon Fast Track as their programme of choice.

Entering students will be informed of admission in June.

1b. Current Students

If you are a second year student at SIS, with a GPA of 3.65 or above and a strong leadership record while at SIS, you can apply to the Fast Track Programme.

Submit your application to the programme coordinator.

Applications are due the second week of January of the current academic year.

2. Carnegie Mellon Undergraduate

Carnegie Mellon requires a mid-course application.

One term before entering Carnegie Mellon, please check with Associate Professor GAO Debin on procedures required.

For students admitted as entering students, if Carnegie Mellon expresses concerns regarding current performance, you will have one term to make improvements at which time you must resubmit the updated information for a second review.

  1. A cover letter to introduce yourself discussing what you want to do while at Carnegie Mellon: courses and other things (projects, extra-curricular, etc) you are interested in, your intended masters programme, and something about yourself such as past activities or future goals or reasons for pursuing the fast track.

3. Carnegie Mellon Masters Programmes

Each Masters programme at Carnegie Mellon sets its own admissions requirements.

You must make a standard application and fulfill the admissions requirements of those programs you apply to.

See the programme web sites for details:

Last updated on 25 Apr 2018 .


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