Education System in Malaysia

Courses in Malaysia

Malaysia is the 11th most desired study destination, according to a UNESCO ranking. Around 100,000 international students from over 100 countries come to Malaysia for their higher studies. The country is a global education hub for offering internationally recognized qualification with most affordable cost, excellent infrastructure, modern facilities, amenities and student friendly policies. A wide range of study options is available in private higher educational institutions, foreign university branch campuses as well as public universities.

Higher Education system in Malaysia is categorized into 2 categories: namely the public and the private.

Public Institutions:

Public institutions are government funded public universities, polytechnics, and colleges. There are 20 public universities, 30 polytechnic institutions and 72 community colleges in Malaysia. Study in Malaysia for international students is most affordable. According to the Ministry of Education, Malaysia, more than 25000 students enroll in public institutions. Public Institutions in Malaysia offers program from Diploma level to Doctorate in various fields of study like Business and Management, Engineering and Technology, Travel and Tourism, Computer Science & Mathematics, Law & Humanities, Art, and Design. Public Universities and colleges in Malaysia have world class academic standards with qualified lecturers and professors who use innovative teaching methods in the classrooms. The government provides ample research grants and opportunities to ensure that universities in Malaysia maintain their academic excellence and high rankings.

Private Institutions:</span

Malaysia is home to 53 private universities and 6 foreign university branch campuses; 403 active private colleges. All programmes offered by private higher education institutions in Malaysia are subjected to the accreditation requirements of the Malaysian Qualifications Agency (MQA). The private universities in Malaysia impart quality education with best of the infrastructures available across the globe. The programme curriculum includes detailed study and practical training program with a concentration on research and scientific innovative developments. The Private institutions offers various qualifications from Diploma to Bachelors and Masters to Ph.D. in study areas like Business and Management, Engineering and Technology, Travel and Tourism, Computer Science & Mathematics, Law & Humanities, Art, and Design.

Medium of Instruction:

English is used as the primary medium of instruction at Public and private higher educational institutions for all level of courses.

Quality Assurance

Higher education in Malaysia is well structured. Quality assurance and accreditation in higher education across Malaysia is a carefully regulated process. The accreditation and quality assurance of education in Malaysia is administered by the Ministry of Education, Malaysia. The department ensures that public, as well as private higher educational institutions in Malaysia, have facilities which are conducive and comparable to global standards.

Higher Education System

The higher education system in Malaysia is divided into the following level of qualifications:

  • Diploma
  • Undergraduate Degree
  • Post Graduate Diploma
  • Masters Degree
  • Doctoral Degree



Diploma programs are conducted by private colleges and other foreign Institutions and are available in various study fields. Duration of the course is 1 to 2 years and entry or the program is successful completion of Grade 12.


The duration of an undergraduate course in Malaysia is three to four years. The degrees awarded after completing the undergraduate courses are Bachelor of Arts (BA), Bachelor of Science (BS) and Bachelor of Engineering (B.Eng). Students are eligible for the Bachelor’s degree after GCE A level, Grade 12 or a Polytechnic degree. Some degree programmes are offered as Honours Degrees (Hons), which generally require a higher academic standard than just a pass and the duration of the programme will be 4 years.


The duration of a postgraduate full-time course is one to two years. Students require a bachelor’s degree or its equivalent to pursue a Master’s course.

Doctor of Philosophy Degree:

A doctoral programme can be taken up after a student has completed both his Bachelors and Masters programme. The duration of a Ph.D. programme is from two to five years. A Ph.D. degree is awarded after a minimum of 2 years of research or study in a specific area.

Language Requirements:


Generally, Malaysian Institutions do not require IELTS, TOEFL or any other language exams for entry to their courses. However few of public Universities and all foreign Universities have set language requirements for various UG & PG degree admissions. Students have to qualify the language tests like IELTS, TOEFL, PTE or any other exams advised by the University.