Education System in Malaysia

Learn about Education Levels in Malaysia

  • The higher education structure in Malaysia aligns with global norms, encompassing bachelor’s degrees, professional diploma programs, and postgraduate studies for master’s and doctoral levels, consistent with educational systems worldwide.
  • The diploma application requires only the Malaysian secondary school certificate (SPM), while admission to bachelor’s programs necessitates Malaysian post-secondary certificates (STPM). Alternatively, candidates may present the GCE General Certificate of Education, Level A, or equivalent certificates like Egyptian secondary certificates, Jordanian, Saudi Arabian, or other Arab countries’ secondary school certificates for pre-bachelor’s education.
  • Malaysia remains a popular destination for international students across all academic levels. In recent years, the country has welcomed over 15,000 students from abroad to enroll in diverse Malaysian universities, be they governmental, private, or international. Presently, Malaysia stands prominently among the top choices for students seeking higher education opportunities.

Education Levels

The Malaysian education system, like those in developed nations, follows a standard formal structure, typically comprising 6 years of primary education, followed by 5 years of secondary education, and concluding with 2 years of higher secondary education.


Higher Education in Malaysia

Higher Educational Institutions divides into two types:

  • Public universities, technical institutes, and government-funded Malaysian colleges.

  • Private educational institutions in Malaysia, independent of government funding, encompass private colleges, universities, and branches of foreign universities known as international universities, such as Monash University Malaysia and the University of Nottingham. These institutions are supported by individuals, private entities, or foreign countries.

Language of Instruction for Higher Education Institutions

Private and international universities in Malaysia language of instruction is English, whereas public universities typically use the Malaysian language as the medium of instruction.

Higher Education Academic Credentials

All academic programs across different degree levels offered by Malaysian higher education institutions, registered in compliance with Malaysian education legislation, fall under the oversight of the Malaysian Qualifications Framework (MQF) as mandated by the Malaysian Accreditation Authority Act 2007.

Please be informed that the minimum credit hour requirements for eligibility for academic degrees within higher education institutions are as follows: 60 credit hours for a graduation certificate, 90 credit hours for a diploma, 120 credit hours for a bachelor’s degree, 40 credit hours for a master’s degree, and for master’s and doctoral degrees. Credits earned through scientific research grants are not counted towards the accumulated credit hours.


Public High Educational Institutions

Public universities provide bachelor’s degree programs, graduate programs, and in some cases, access to professional diplomas. Interdisciplinary colleges and university colleges offer regular graduation certificates and diplomas.

Public Universities, Multidiscplinary Faculties and University Colleges:


Private High Educational Institutions

University education in Malaysia, whether in governmental, private, or international institutions, holds a prestigious position globally. Malaysia is renowned for its excellence in teaching various disciplines, notably engineering, software and technology sciences, economics, and business administration. With the growing number and diversity of universities in Malaysia, competition has intensified, resulting in enhanced educational quality.


Some of top private Turkish Universities:

Admission Requirements for Malaysian Universities

The general procedures students must adhere to for enrollment in different stages of higher education in Malaysia.


General requirements for pre-university education stages| Diverse Diplomas| Internal Certificates at Private Educational Institutions 

Academic LevelAdmission Requirements
Pre-University Studies(SPM/IGCSE (O LEVEL %5 or Equivalent
University Certificate(SPM/IGCSE (O LEVEL 1 or Equivalent
Diploma(SPM/IGCSE (O LEVEL with 3 or Equivalent
First year University Certificate(GCE (A LEVEL + English Certificate or Equivalent

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