S’poreans kids only taught one relevant skill, not three

In Economy on 17/02/2017 at 5:47 am

The skills young S’poreans must pick up to get high paying jobs are EQ, maths and coding skills. Taz what the data from the US tells us:


But although coding is now being emphasised in the curriculum, EQ is still not. So out of the three skills only maths is emphasised.

But then maybe MoE, like a tua kee from The Middle Ground, no not the Sith Lord wannabe that saw the light after she retired, thinks the US data are “US BS”.


  1. Common sense & anecdotal observation would tell you that the number 1 skill is EQ or playing politics in a way that most people will still like you, or at least those in power who are able & willing to help you. Next most important skill is actually critical thinking — the eagerness & ability to soak up varied information & sieve it for nuggets of gold, & to synthesize them into innovative and/or profitable actionable ideas. 3rd skill is math — NOT the ability to solve complex equations but the ability to be numbers aware and able to apply figures so as to make rational judgments, comparisons, measurements of different options / scenarios.

    Coding per se is not that critical. Useful to teach about logic & structured thinking but not critical. My concern with PAP approach is that they turn coding into a very polytechnic-style skill that is good for producing workers who are able to fill current or near-future jobs requiring flavor-of-the-month coding languages and just ability to quickly produce working software or systems as per customer specs i.e. so-called productivity. But these same workers will become unemployable digits when technology / flavor-of-the-month languages change.

    If Warren Buffet were a young man, or if he was advising his young relatives, wouldn’t go into a coding or technology-focused profession as it is very very hard to create a sustainable economic moat. Changes & industry improvements happen too fast, and there are practically no barriers to entry particularly for low-wage countries. Experience, age & length of time in such as industry is seen as a liability not a virtue.

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