Dunman High DSA Tips
Dunman High is a good school that has a very good school culture. It is strong in several CCAs (Co-curricular activities). Its Chinese Orchestra is exceptionally good (and large in terms of numbers), in fact most likely the top in Singapore among Secondary Schools, throughout the history of Singapore.
DSA Interview May be Conducted in Mandarin
According to reliable sources in Kiasuparents.com, Dunman High may well conduct the DSA Interview in Chinese, as a surprise, to test how the child reacts. This is also in line with the strong Chinese culture in Dunman High.
Quote 1: Hi All, congrad (sic) to all parents who have already got confirm CO. For those who are still going through the interviews just wanted to give a heads up to DD that are interviewing for SAP schools. My DD went to interview at DHS for sport and was asked to do the interview in Mandarin which caught her off guard. Unfortunately, she was only able to converse 50% of the interview in Mandarin but we were proud that she persisted instead of freezing up ..”
Quote 2: “Yes, Dino.
Dunman High interview for DSA both Western music and Chinese music section, were conducted in Mandarin. I shared this at DHS website
My friend’s child is a Singapore citizen. Luckily, child could converse in Mandarin fluently. On that day for music interview, other candidates were very nervous. One interviewee asked politely, if others can go first, before his (her) turn, because he (she) was so nervous, wasn’t ready. He (she) was still flipping through and reading his (her) interview notes.
Come to think of it, how about the other way round ? Not sure if interviewers at DHS interview candidate in English, ie. the other way round instead, if the DSA applicant (interviewee) happen to be a foreigner, from China, just to test and assess their level of proficiency in English Oral conversation ?
Hence, the conclusion is that the student needs to brush up more on Chinese / Mandarin skills (possibly reading some idioms or poetry) in order to prepare well for the Dunman High DSA Interview.
A favorite DSA Question may be to ask “What is your favorite Chinese book?“. It is good to make sure that your child has read at least one Chinese book and can conduct a decent conversation about it.
Since Dunman High can conduct its DSA Interview in Chinese/Mandarin, it is reasonable to expect that many SAP schools with strong Chinese culture may well do the same. The key idea may be to surprise the child so as to take him/her out of any home-prepared preparation, and make it more natural as opposed to memorizing a pre-determined script written by the parents.
For instance, some of the SAP schools with strong Chinese culture are:
- Singapore Chinese Girls’ School (IP) DSA
- Catholic High School 公教中学 DSA
- Chung Cheng High School (Main) 中正中学 (总校) DSA
- Hwa Chong Institution 华侨中学 DSA
- Nan Chiau High School 南侨中学 DSA
- Nan Hua High School 南华中学 DSA
- Nanyang Girls’ High School 南洋女子中学校 DSA
- River Valley High School 立化中学 DSA
The above schools are all good schools that either already have DSA or may be soon in line to adopt a DSA (Direct School Admission) program.
Hence, for the above schools, it is wise to prepare and practice the DSA Interview in both languages — English and Chinese.
Bad News for Purely English-Educated Kids
This is another bad news for purely English-speaking kids who are not good in Chinese (Mother Tongue), since they may be disadvantaged in the DSA Interview which is conducted in Chinese/Mandarin.
Under the new PSLE System, we have already analyzed that the most disadvantaged students are the English-Educated Kid and the Math/Science Whiz.
It may not be too late though, to brush up on one’s Chinese. Usually children can pick up languages very fast compared to adults. The preparation may need to start at least several years before the DSA Interview.