Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Why study in Malaysia?

In this peaceful, plural and modern society, Malaysia, located in South East Asia, is a testimony to the world of what it is able to offer academically, socially, ethnically, culturally and in every other aspect of life to make the stay of any international student worth their time, money and effort. It is a fascinating and enchanting nation.

The past two decades have not only seen Malaysia emerging as new international trade powerhouse but also in other areas, especially in the establishing closer international ties with the invitations and the acceptances of international students into Malaysia.

The presence of more than 40,000 international students, in the beginning of year 2005, from many parts of the world attending schools and pursing tertiary courses ranging from diploma to degrees to PhD in private schools, private higher educational institutions and public universities in Malaysia, signifies the confidence and acceptance of Malaysia as a destination for acquiring academic qualifications.
In her quest for education excellence, Malaysia has the ability to offer all international students a peaceful and friendly environment; an established education system; accredited and high quality programmes; low cost of living and tuition fees; a modern infrastructure, and; an efficient transportation system running across the whole length and breadth of Malaysia. You can be assured of heading home with more than just a tertiary qualification.

Listed below are some of the valid reasons as to why Malaysia should be your ultimate and preferred destination for your pursuit of education abroad:

International Degree Qualifications at Cheaper Tuition Fees

Malaysia is acknowledged as one of the pioneers in this region in the development of transnational educational programmes. Unique collaborative degree programmes such as twinning degrees (for example: 2 years in Malaysia and 1 year in overseas host university) and 3+0 international degrees (where the entire foreign university degree programme is taught in Malaysia) are offered to local and international students at cheaper tuition fees based on the Malaysian Ringgit as compared to the more expensive currencies from countries like the United Kingdom, USA and Australia.

Twinning Degree Programme

Malaysia is well-known for its undergraduate ‘2+1’ twinning degree programme which is offered at an affordable cost.

The Twinning Degree arrangement with reputable international universities from overseas countries such as the United Kingdom, Australia, the United States, New Zealand, France as well as Germany is the hall-mark of ‘Study in Malaysia’ which has helped many local and international students studying in Malaysia save substantial cost in their pursuit for internationally recognised Bachelor’s degree programmes in the last 2 decades.

For example, if you enrol in Malaysia for an Engineering Twinning Degree Programme that offers three years of study in Malaysia with the last one year in Australia (3+1Twinning), you will save up to AUD47,000 in tuition fees and living costs if you were to do the entire 4 years degree in Australia! (Exchange rate AUD1=RM2.8)

3 + 0’ Bachelor’s Degree from Foreign Leading Universities

Many Malaysian private institutions of higher learning have gained confidence and trust from universities in countries like the United Kingdom, Australia and United States to allow these local private educational institutions to offer complete foreign university degree programmes (from the partner universities) in Malaysia. The qualification from these programmes will be awarded by the partner universities. Therefore, these quality-assured foreign degree qualifications (3+0) can be acquired at much reduced education cost in Malaysia.

A 3+0 programme is an extension of a twinning programme. The 3+0 programme allows students to complete the entire foreign degree programme right here in Malaysia, and still be conferred with a degree from the partner university overseas. The tuition fee of a 3-year UK Engineering Degree is about USD12,000. (Exchange rate USD1=RM3.80)

Foreign University Branch Campuses in Malaysia

Since 1998, 5 international reputable universities have set up their branch campuses in Malaysia and offered their own courses to students (both local and international) in order that these students can acquire identical university qualifications at a lower education cost in Malaysia. For example, the tuition fee of a 3-year UK Engineering Degree is priced at about USD24,500.

Low Living Cost

The cost of living for international students to study in Malaysia could be as low as RM10,000 which is approximately US$2,632 per annum (the cost of living in the city is about 10% higher). As such, the low living cost besides the cheaper tuition fee would appeal to both international and local students in terms of great savings of living expenses while studying in Malaysia.


There are off-campus and on-campus accommodations, at reasonable rate, for international students as well as out-of-town local students. These different accommodations which include college hostels, apartments, link-houses and condominiums equipped with full facilities, are designed to suit the student’s budget and lifestyle. Many of these places are also located within walking distance to the institutions.

Focus on Research and Development

Post-graduate studies and research opportunities are also available in public universities and some private educational institutions. Many researches have been commercialised and there had been as many as 170 patents with 50 successful products commercialised in the industry (up to year 2003).

Quality of Education Assured by the National Quality Assurance Body

Malaysian Private Higher Educational Institutions offer world standard and high quality education that are internationally recognized. The courses offered here are benchmarked against international standards, meeting the standard criteria and stringent requirements set by Malaysian national quality assurance body, i.e. the National Accreditation Board (LAN). The courses and the institutions also comply with legislative requirements and the governing legislations such as The Education Act 1996, as well as The Private Higher Educational Institutions Act 1996.

Offering Career Relevant Courses

Being recognised as one of the fastest growing economies in the world, one of the success factors is the ability of the higher educational institutions to provide professional, career-focused education. The institutions here work closely with leading companies, industry professionals and foreign partner universities to ensure that the courses offered are up-to-date and market relevant so as to enhance the employability of their graduates.

Dedicated Academic Staff with Diversified Global Qualifications

The academic staff here are dedicated and possess globally-recognized qualifications and extensive teaching experience at the tertiary level. Most of them graduated from recognized universities from countries such as the United Kingdom, United States, Australia, New Zealand and Germany.

English is the Medium of Instruction for All Study Programmes Conducted

English is used as the primary medium of instruction for all courses and study programmes conducted at the private higher educational institutions (PHEIs).

Malaysia being a multi-ethnic country has elaborate experience in using effective methodologies to teach the English language to non-English natives. Therefore, Malaysia makes an ideal place for international students from non-English speaking countries to learn English.

Simple and Hassle-Free Immigration Procedures For You and Your Family

The immigration procedures for international students to gain entry into Malaysia are hassle-free and relatively simple. In addition, the immigration staff at the entry point are also friendly, assuring students of a warm treatment and sincere welcome upon their arrival in Malaysia. The uncomplicated, minimal and straightforward requirements mean that the families of international students can also come along to stay with the students studying here in Malaysia.

Working While Study in Malaysia

Another good reason on why international students should study in Malaysia is that the holders of student pass or permit are allowed to work while studying to supplement their living. Subject to others immigration requirements, students are allowed to work part-time for a maximum of 20 hours per week only during semester breaks or holidays of more than 7 days.

Truly International Environment

Students from all over the world will find Malaysia a country that they can adapt to and settle in easily as Malaysia possesses a global setting that enables them to mingle and relate to one another with a sense of belonging.

Some of the Malaysian campuses have the “Truly International” environment. Their students comprise the 3 major Malaysian races i.e. Malay, Chinese and Indians as well as the other minority groups mixing together harmoniously, alongside 10 to 20% of student population from many parts of the world.
There are currently more than 40,000 international students in Malaysia and 95% of them are from 40 different countries.

Politically Sound and Geographically Safe Country

Malaysia is a politically and socially secure country that is governed by a stable government with safety measures incorporated in the laws of the country. It is also free from racial and religious mishaps. The tropical climate is warm and humid throughout the year without any drastic weather changes. Malaysia is also geographically safe from major natural disasters as it is located in a natural catastrophe-free zone.
As such, from the political, geographical, social and economical point, Malaysia is a very suitable place for students, especially international students to study and live in.

Harmonious Multi-Ethnic Population/ Multicultural Society

There is much for international students to learn here besides academic education. The different races and religions, that make up this multi-ethnic population of Malaysia, co-exist in harmony, tolerance and understanding, thus depicting the fine example of a country that promotes peace and prosperity to the world.

Rich in culture, it will be a unique experience for international students to understand and ‘research’ at close range the unique community of Malaysia. This experience will expose students to a value-added life, global outlook and better understanding of different cultures, ethnic groups and traditions throughout the world.

Strategic Location in Harmony with the Spirit of Truly Asia

The strategic location of Malaysia makes the country an ideal base for students to travel and explore neighbouring countries (at cheap air rates). Malaysia can also be easily accessed by flight or other alternative transportations at a minimal cost.

The country is also a food haven and presents a colourful feast to locals and visitors with its display of culinary delights of different cultural traits and traditions, living up to its name as the one-stop window to Asia - portraying the true essence of Asia.

Warm Reception upon Arrival in Malaysia

There are more than 200 educational institutions in Malaysia (comprising private schools, international schools, private colleges, private universities, foreign universities branch campus, English language centres and public universities) that gladly welcome International students to study here. These students will be warmly greeted at the airport upon their arrival in Malaysia, by the institutions’ representatives.
In addition, the International Divisions of Malaysian educational institutions are accustomed to working with foreign students of various ethnic, cultural and educational backgrounds. Thus, educational institutions will also provide special support and make necessary arrangements for accommodation and transportation to help international students settle down comfortably in Malaysia.

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