Singapore University of Technology and Design

Singapore University of Technology and Design (SUTD) was identified as one of the foremost 'emerging leaders in engineering education' by a global benchmarking study on engineering education (Graham, 2018). SUTD is a research-intensive university and was established in collaboration with Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and Zhejiang University in 2009. 

SUTD’s educational approach is unique and innovative in several ways. SUTD adopts a T-shaped (Rogers & Freuler, 2015), interdisciplinary curriculum so that students have a solid foundation and broad perspective of engineering in the context of humanities, arts and social sciences. SUTD delivers this through design-centric, project-based learning teaching methods. Undergraduate students are given multiple opportunities to work on authentic and hands-on problems in the form of design projects, industry internships, and research/learning engagements throughout the course of study. SUTD students are reputed for their adaptability and intrinsic motivation (Graham, 2018), and multiple indicators suggest that they are sought by employers.

There are several features of SUTD’s education which makes its undergraduate programme unique and distinctive. More than the individual features, it is the combination and interplay of these features that add to the innovativeness and the success of SUTD’s education. Graham (2018) has broadly identified these features as:

  1. design and maker-based learning,
  2. a collaborative culture,
  3. interdisciplinary approach; and
  4. a breadth of student experience

Holistic Support for Technology-enabled Learning at SUTD: Pedagogical Support and Technology Innovation 

Technology and Design are the double helix of SUTD. Technology is infused in all aspects of SUTD’s education. 

Given that SUTD’s pedagogy is student-focused, that technology is typically a tool, and the effectiveness of technology-enabled learning is dependent on the pedagogy, SUTD has emphasised on faculty educational development. 

Pedagogical Support for Technology-enabled Learning

SUTD’s goals for pedagogical support are:

  1. We move from individual-oriented educational development to include community-oriented educational development

  2. Include all types of instructors such as graduate teaching assistants in educational development

  3. Include staff members who play supportive roles in teaching and learning educational development

  4. Include a change from teaching to scholarly teaching that is evidence-based, reflective and peer reviewed

  5. Shift from short-term training workshops to self-directed and lifelong learning to enhance teaching through Scholarship of Teaching and Learning

  6. Leverage training opportunities for professional recognition

  7. Connect SUTD members with local and overseas universities and other industrial partners/stakeholders on educational development

To this end, SUTD has taken a holistic approach in its pedagogical support for technology-enabled teaching and learning (EduSCAPES 2017-2021). This includes:

SUTD’s "Fit for Purpose" framework for online teaching (to choose technology tools for online/blended learning)


Continual professional development through Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (SOTL)


Communities of Practices through interest groups, mentoring, and inclusive participations (students, industry partners etc.)


Multiple educational funds and research support to spur EdTech innovations

Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (SOTL) projects often need time and resources, which translates to finances. There are several sources of funds/grants - internal and external funds/grants, to support SOTL research projects.

Find out more about SUTD's grants and funds for SOTL here.

Faculty and staff members are recognised for their teaching excellence through institutional recognitions and the international Advance Higher Education Fellowship Programme

Read more:

More detailed examples of these initiatives can be found at:

The concerted efforts have seen high level of faculty participation (over 85% of 140 members), 55 educational technology projects in last 5 years, multiple educational research grants, and various SOTL projects that provide insights on student’s learning outcomes, experiences and needs (218 reports in 5 years), with increasing numbers in international, peer-reviewed publications. 

CampusX: Towards Technological Innovations

In the past 5 years, the TEL-SOTL projects tend to use existing technology tools in general. However, the existing technology tools have limitations in terms of active/interactive learning. For instance, how can we teach practical skills online? Or how can we get teams to co-design and build a prototype synchronously. While technologies such as Zoom and Microsoft or Google allow certain level of collaboration, there are limitations when it comes to higher-order student-centered active, collaborative learning as suggested by various studies.   

SUTD realised that we have to go beyond the aim of using existing tech tools to possibly innovating our own tech tools/adopting emerging tools and to this end, has initiated the campusX initiative in 2021.   

The campusX initiative is set up to create a human-centric cyber-physical learning environment that focuses on the needs and experiences of students and instructors using data analytics and learning sciences. The four key areas that we are focusing on are

  1. Personalised and Customised Team learning,
  2. Socialisation of Learning Technology,
  3. Tech Latency: Extended Reality; and
  4. Learning Intimacy.

These are supported by IT and Data Governance and 5G technology.

SUTD Provost, Professor Phoon Kok Kwang, said 

"We are also working on a new 'campusX' initiative which looks at how new technologies or existing technologies can be used to enhance the quality of teaching and learning at SUTD and beyond.  This will help us to refine and implement SUTD pedagogy more effectively in the changing learning environment.  The pandemic has shifted teaching (and the way we live, work, play, etc) to be more online and this means that we have to redesign our mode of delivery.  We do not want to just substitute face-to-face to online mode but want to create learning environments that are more personalised and more enjoyable.  It is important to emphasize here that campusX is learner-centric and will consider leveraging learning science as much as enabling technologies to make the SUTD learning experience as enriching and rewarding as possible."

(Extracted from 'An Interview with SUTD's Provost', EduScapes 2021)

Associate Provost for Digital Learning, Professor Pey Kin Leong heads the campusX project. Hear from Prof Pey as he shares about the project at the SUTD Pedagogy Day 2021.

CampusX: A Human-Centric Cyber Physical Learning Platform

The new campusX initiative is coupled with the existing pedagogical support, and involves new collaborations with tech-industry.

To date, we have set up the campusX community, pedagogical support, industry collaborations, funding and conducted several pilot studies in our campusX. This has provided valuable insights. Examples of campusX projects include survey of student readiness, eye tracking to support students in online learning, using robots as tele-instructors, and metaverse/gamification to engage students.

Overall, SUTD’s holistic approach of pedagogical support and technological innovations through the campusX initiative involves multiple stakeholders and addresses the needs of student-centered digital learning in a systematic, concerted manner. The SOTL approach provides deeper insights, evidence and direction on what is working or not.