Choose to study in Malaysia and you’ll discover that the country’s natural beauty extends way beyond its ancient rainforests, national parks and glorious beaches. In the cities too, there’s plenty to keep all the senses occupied, from colorful and varied markets to the mosques, Buddhist temples and Hindu shrines that are often found side by side, and the profusion of annual festivals celebrating both traditional and modern aspects of Malaysian culture.

One of the world’s most politically stable countries, Malaysia may be second to Singapore in terms of regional economic clout, but it offers a much more organic lifestyle than its city-state rival. This is where the highest ranked universities in Malaysia can be found, along with the most diverse and vibrant urban areas. The other half, Malaysian Borneo, shares an island with Indonesia and remains the quieter of the two halves, offering solitude, authenticity and jungle life.


  • The western and eastern halves of the country, separated by the South China Sea, are 640km apart and known respectively as Peninsular Malaysia and Malaysian Borneo.
  • Peninsular Malaysia shares a border with Thailand in the north, while Malaysian Borneo shares an island with Indonesia and Brunei.
  • The country is divided into thirteen states and has three federal territories: Kuala Lumpur, Putrajaya and Labuan.
  • The constitution recognizes Islam as the official religion, but there are also
    sizable Christian and Hindu minorities. The religious plurality in the region means individuals should feel free to practice any religion.
  • The tropical climate means warm and humid weather all year round.
  • Singapore used to be part of Malaysia!
  • It has a UNESCO listed mountain!
  • Famous Designer Jimmy Choo is from Malaysia!


Primary Education
The admission age to the first year of primary education is seven. Primary schooling is mandatory for all children between the ages of 7 and 12. Students sit for common public examinations at the end of primary school.

Primary education starts at the age of seven and lasts for a duration of six years.
Parents are required to register their children at a local school before they reach this age to ensure that a place is reserved for them at the appropriate time.

Primary schooling develops a solid foundation for life-long learning in children.
A standardised curriculum has been established which ensures that important and fundamental subjects are well covered. To measure a child’s progress at this level, public examinations known as the UPSR (Ujian Pencapaian Sekolah Rendah, or
Primary Schooling Achievement Tests) is conducted at all public schools.


Secondary Education
Secondary education lasts five years and is comprised of three years of lower
secondary and two years of upper secondary. Students sit for common public
examinations at the end of lower secondary and upper secondary levels.

Secondary schooling represents the second tier of formal education, a stage of
academic development where the foundation developed at the primary level is built upon and strengthened in preparation for tertiary or vocational training.

This level of schooling in Malaysia is regulated by the Ministry of Education.
A standardised curriculum ensures consistency in learning and standards.
Progress is measured at different levels by a series of public examinations.
Secondary schooling typically starts at the age of thirteen and lasts for a duration of six years.

Students in transition from primary to secondary schooling may require registration, depending on their primary education.

Upon completion of secondary education, students can opt to pursue 1 to 2 years of post-secondary education. This is the university entrance preparatory course.
In total, the 12 years of school education serves as the basic entry requirement into Year One of a bachelor’s degree programme in higher educational institutions.


Higher Education
Higher educational institutions in Malaysia are governed by the
Ministry of Higher Education. 2 categories of educational institutions exist namely the public and the private.

Public institutions are government funded public universities, polytechnics and
colleges. Private higher educational institutions which are not funded by the
government include non university status institutions like colleges, university status institutions such as university colleges and private universities and foreign university branch campuses.

Higher education comprises certificate and diploma education at polytechnics or
colleges from the age of 18. At teacher training institutes, education commences from age 18 onwards. Bachelor’s degree programmes range from age 19 or 20 for three to five years.

Postgraduate studies involve studying for master’s or PhD studies following
acquisition of a Bachelor’s degree for one to five years.

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