Malaysia is a country in Southeast Asia with a total land surface of 3,29,847 square kilometers. It is a relatively open state-oriented and newly industrialized market economy. Geographically, Malaysia is divided into two parts by the South China Sea - the Malaysian Borneo situated on the Malay Peninsula and the Peninsular Malaysia bordered by Thailand on the north.
Malaysia has one of the best economic records in entire Asia. Although the Malaysian economy was based on mining and agriculture in the 1970s, it has now transformed into a more multi-sector economy.
East Malaysia has a coastline of 2,607 kilometers and is divided between a mountainous interior, hills and valleys and coastal regions. The western part comprises 40 per cent of the country’s land area. It includes a string of mountains that are heavily forested.
The Malaysian society is diverse and is home to various ethnic groups like Malays, Chinese, and Indians. The total human population of the country is 29 million. While Islam is the most prevalent faith in Malaysia, Buddhism, Hinduism, Christianity, Animism, Taoism and Sikhism are also practiced.
In terms of students choosing International Universities to pursue their higher studies, Malaysia is rapidly gaining momentum in the last decade. Affordability, consistently pleasant weather, education standard, and quality of life are some of the many reasons contributing to this positive interest in the education system of Malaysia. The staggering literacy rate of over 95% is a proof of the progress Malaysia has made in developing a respectable and effective education system.
Malaysia is a cheaper alternative to education systems of Australia, the USA, and the UK. The tuition fee in Malaysia is around $5000 and an accommodation costs approximately $4000 per annum . Political stability, low crime rates, and a shortage of natural disasters are other reasons why more students choose Malaysia as their education destination. The education system in Malaysia is run under the direct control of the central government and they have signed many treaties with international countries and universities, thus making the education program truly global.
An English language test is required for international students, with the accepted minimum score of 6.5 in IELTS or 580 in TOEFL.
In Malaysia, students are allowed to work while studying, which helps them to earn money and supplement their living . With English as the primary language of education in Malaysia, students find it easy to adapt to living there. The ethnic diversity of Malaysia provides students with an understanding of different cultures and a truly global outlook.
The high quality of education and world-class infrastructure has attracted students from more than 100 countries to join various education programs in Malaysia. Collaboration with many international universities is an indicator of the global outlook of their programs.
The Malaysian Education Ministry governs the educational institutes through a National Accreditation Board to ensure a comprehensive world-class education environment.
Popular study options like the twinning degrees and 3+0 degree programs offer a low cost option of pursuing the courses. The ‘2+1’ twinning degree program offers students, a unique opportunity to complete the final year of their course in reputed universities of the US and the UK among other European countries. After graduation, students can choose to complete a post-graduate degree from the same university. Universiti Malaya, Universiti Teknologi Malaysia, and Universiti Sains Malaysia are some of the many reputed universities offering courses in Engineering, Medical Research, and Multimedia. Economic stability, effective programs, and the location of various multi-national companies within Malaysia provide a student with good job opportunities.
The Malaysian government has also started the Malaysia International Scholarship program under which deserving international students can obtain subsidized air tickets, full tuition fee waiver, a grant for books, a monthly allowance, and a medical insurance. Students holding an education visa are permitted to work for a maximum of 20 hours per week to supplement their living and other personal expenditures.
In Malaysia, every International student requires both a Student Pass and a Visa. A Student Visa is granted only after a student obtains a “Student Pass”. The Student pass is the letter of approval provided by the concerned University.
Documents required to obtain a Visa are:
1) A personal bond document that serves as an endorsement of good character.
2) A letter of approval from the concerned University.
3) Copy of Identity and a valid passport.
4) 5 passport size photographs.
5) A Medical certificate.
It takes about 7-14 days to process the visa application and for a decision to be reached. Additionally, an express service enables students to obtain a visa within 3 working days.
1) Personal bond document fee varies from $91to $457 depending upon country of origin.
2) A mandatory Health Insurance package of $152- $269.
3) Visa fees between $4.50 and $27.
4) The Express visa costs $100.
Malaysia is one of the fastest developing countries in Asia, with a booming economy performing beyond expectations over the last two decades. Its geographical proximity to similar developing and developed economies like India, China, Japan, and Singapore, make Malaysia ethnically diverse and vibrant. A population consisting of all major religions makes Malaysia an easy place to adapt.
EXPENSES: The tuition fee varies from $4500to $5500 depending upon the applied course. The cost of accommodation outside campus is around $350 per month, although certain neighborhoods in Kuala Lumpur will cost significantly more. A residence facility offered by the universities costs around $290 per month.
TRANSPORTATION: Malaysia has a world-class network of monorail, light rail transit train, and roads, with the monthly cost of transportation ranging from $10to $20. Additionally, students can obtain a temporary driving license after passing a test, which enables them to drive a vehicle.
MEDICAL/HEALTH: In Malaysia, it is mandatory to buy a health insurance plan after applying for a visa. The cost of a health insurance plan varies between $152and $269. In terms of facilities, Malaysia has developed state of the art hospitals.
FOOD: With multiple ethnicities and external influences, huge varieties of cuisines are represented in Malaysia. Whatever your taste, you will always find something suitable: Chinese, Indian, Japanese, Malay, Middle East, Thai, or Western. An approximate monthly cost of food is between $500 and $700, depending on your taste.
Malaysia has a zero tolerance to drug abuse. Possession of even small amounts of hallucinogenic drugs can lead to the death penalty. During the month of Ramzan, it is mandatory to be aware of, respect, and appreciate the local sentiment.