Would you love to travel to Malaysia for studies? Are you looking for the top universities in Malaysia for your undergraduate degree or MBA? Well, we have compiled a list of the best universities in Malaysia for international students that offer diverse programs.
Basically, Malaysia has several institutions that offer affordable education. Because we are constantly looking out for the best options for international students, we will take you through a tour in the country of Malaysia. Hence, expect to find answers to why you should study in Malaysia in this article. Also, this article will give information on how much it may cost you to study in Malaysia alongside how to get a student visa with ease.
Malaysia is a land rich in culture, nature, heritage, and modernity. It sits at the heart of Asia, the biggest and fastest-growing economic region in the world. Basically, Malaysia is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world. In fact, it is one of the top countries to get a wholesome international student experience.
The application process to any of the best universities in Malaysia can be frustrating for international students. However, the process to get into Malaysia as a foreign student is very straightforward and simple. As an international student, you’ll have the opportunity to share your student experience with 122,000 other international students from over 160 countries.
- Why Study in the Best Universities in Malaysia?
- How much will it cost me to study in a Malaysian University?
- How can I get a student visa to study at a top Malaysian University as an international student?
- Can I work while studying in Malaysia?
- What are the best universities in Malaysia for an MBA?
- Which are the best universities in Malaysia for International Students in 2020?
- List of the best universities in Malaysia for undergraduates
- #1. University of Malaya
- #2. Universiti Tunku Abdul Rahman (UTAR)
- #3. Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia(UKM)
- #4. Universiti Malaysia Perlis
- #5. Universiti Putra Malaysia
- #6. Universiti Sains Malaysia
- #7. Universiti Teknologi Malaysia
- #8. Universiti Teknologi Petronas
- #9. Universiti Tenaga Nasional (UNITEN)
- #10. Universiti Utara Malaysia
- #11. Universiti Malaysia Sarawak (UNIMAS)
- #12. Multimedia University (MMU)
- #13. Universiti Teknologi MARA
- #14. Taylor’s University
- #15. The Management & Science University (MSU)
- FAQs on the Best Universities in Malaysia for International Students in 2020 rankings
Why Study in the Best Universities in Malaysia?
International Student life in Malaysia is a fantastic experience because of the many advantages that students get to enjoy. These advantages include low cost of living, diversity in culture and food, and the weather. International students also enjoy the ease of traveling to nearby countries and the convenience of language as English is widely spoken.
Actually, Malaysia is becoming a top study place for students from all over the world. Currently, it ranks 9th on UNESCO’s top countries for international students. If you study in Malaysia, you’ll have a better understanding of Asia’s growing importance in today’s globalized world.
The low cost of tuition fees for accredited programs in Malaysia is very affordable. The cost of living is also very low. A student can comfortably live in Malaysia for about RM10,000 a year (USD3,300).
International students who want a degree from countries like UK, USA, Australia can enroll in collaborative degree programs with reputable international universities. An example of such is the 2+1 programs or 3+0 programs that enable students to complete the entire international degree programs in Malaysia and still earn a degree from the partner university overseas.
Alternatively, international students can study at international university branch campuses located in Malaysia.
On the other hand, the official language of Malaysia is Malaysian, which is a standardized form of the Malay language. But since the majority of the people in Malaysia understand and speak English very well, there is no need for you to know the Malaysian language.
The Star reports that Malaysia’s internet speed is 26th fastest in the world, with an average speed of 61.97 megabits per second (Mbps). The global average is 50.88 Mbps.
Finally, Malaysia’s law permits students that have students pass or permit to work while studying. This gives students the opportunity to supplement their living and earn extra money for traveling and leisure activities. Students can work part-time for a maximum of 20 hours per week in Malaysia.
How much will it cost me to study in a Malaysian University?
Tuition fees differ at each institution but will be lower at some of the many public universities in Malaysia. The average tuition which an international student can expect to pay is around MYR 7,000 per year for a bachelor’s degree. In addition, master’s degrees tuition fee is around MYR 11,000 per year for international students.
The tuition fees for private and foreign institutions may be higher especially for professional courses like medicine.
The cost of living in the country is low. It will be wise if you budget between MYR 10,000 and MYR 15,000 per year for your stay in Malaysia. This includes food, travel, and accommodation. The cost of living in a bigger city like Kuala Lumpur is higher than that of a smaller city or town.
How can I get a student visa to study at a top Malaysian University as an international student?
Before you can be eligible to study in Malaysia, you will need to apply for Student Pass which acts as a student visa. You can apply for it online before your arrival. However, it is very common for your institution to apply on your behalf the moment you accept their offer of admission.
The requirements for a Student Pass include:
NOTE: Student Pass lasts for a year. So, you will have to be renewing it if your course is longer than 12 months.
For more inquiries about the visa process and requirements, please visit the Education Malaysia website.
Can I work while studying in Malaysia?
If you are planning to work in Malaysia while you are studying, then you must know and understand the working conditions and the general eligibility criteria specific to Malaysia.
International students have permission to work part-time if they fulfill the following conditions:
- If you have the will to work then you must have a valid ‘student pass’.
- International students should file an application for the approval of part-time work.
- International students are allowed to work part-time during semester breaks, festive holidays or more than seven days of holiday for a maximum of 20 hours a week.
- Foreign students can work in restaurants, petrol kiosks, mini markets, and hotels except in the following positions: cashier, singer, masseur, musician, Guest Relations Officer or any activity deemed to be immoral.
- International students looking to work part-time in Malaysia should submit a copy of their passport, address, contact number, and a letter from the prospective employer.
To be eligible for the part-time work, application for the same must be forwarded by the representative of the Educational Institution, in the presence of the student at the Immigration Department Headquarters Malaysia.
Once you complete your studies, you do not need to apply for the work permit by yourself. At this stage, your prospective employer will apply on your behalf. You just need to wait for the “landing order” from the Immigration Department of Malaysia which will be forwarded to you by your employer. The actual cost should be less than US$500; visa fee, levy, work permit fee & processing charges, medical screening depending on circumstances, and is paid for by your employer.
What are the best universities in Malaysia for an MBA?
In Southeast Asia, Malaysia’s education system is actually one of the best. Many Malaysian universities are internationally acknowledged as well.
Most of the best universities in Malaysia offer MBA programs either on a full time or part-time basis. You can also get other options like executive and accelerated MBA courses. You can choose anyone that best matches your schedule and meets your needs.
We in World Scholarship Forum have put together a list of some of the best universities in Malaysia for international students that offer MBA programs. So, based on this, below is the list of the best universities in Malaysia for MBA:
Which are the best universities in Malaysia for International Students in 2020?
List of the best universities in Malaysia for undergraduates
#1. University of Malaya
The University of Malaya is a public research university in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia that was founded in 1905. This school is one of the best 100 universities in the world and the oldest university in Malaysia. According to several ranking bodies, the institution is the highest-ranking Malaysian institution of higher education.
The school also offers bachelor’s degrees and doctoral qualifications across a range of other disciplines such as Economics, Law, Engineering, Accountancy, Linguistics, and Education. It has partnerships with several universities in Australia, France, Japan, and the UK.
Address: Jalan Universiti, 50603 Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
#2. Universiti Tunku Abdul Rahman (UTAR)
Universiti Tunku Abdul Rahman is a non-profit, private institution in Malaysia that was founded in June 2002 through the UTAR Education Foundation. Currently, this school which is among the best universities in Malaysia for international students has an enrollment of 2,500 students.
Presently, UTAR offers more than 110 academic programs from Foundation Studies to Bachelor’s, Master’s, and Ph.D. degrees in Accounting, Business and Economics, Actuarial Science, Mathematics and Process Management, Agriculture and Food Science, Arts, Social Sciences and Education, Creative Industries and Design, Engineering and Built Environment, Information and Communication Technology, Life and Physical Sciences, and Medicine and Health Sciences.
The institution is known for graduating several notable alumni in the Malaysian Chinese community.
Address: Jalan Universiti, Bandar Barat, 31900 Kampar, Negeri Perak, Malaysia
#3. Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia(UKM)
UKM also is known as the National University of Malaysia, was founded in 1970. This institution which is among the top universities in Malaysia for international students has extensions in Bangi, Cheras and Kuala Lumpur.
The university has 13 faculties, a Graduate School of Business (GSB-UKM), and 16 research institutes of excellence in education.
UKM attracts students by offering a vast number of postgraduate programs and education here is subsidized by the government.
Some of the notable alumni include the country’s first astronaut, Sheikh Muszaphar Shukor, the former deputy prime minister, Datuk Razali Ibrahim, and singer Jess Lee.
Address: UKM, 43600 Bangi, Selangor, Malaysia
#4. Universiti Malaysia Perlis
This is a public institution of higher learning in Perlis that was founded in 2001. Initially, it was known as Kolej Universiti Kejuruteraan Utara Malaysia.
Currently, UniMAP has around 14,000 students over six diploma programs, 37 bachelor’s degree programs, 20 master’s degree programs, and 12 doctoral programs.
Also, the campus is spread across 30 locations in Perlis with the three main permanent locations.
Above all, UniMAP has partnerships with the Universiti Tun Hussein Onn Malaysia, the Universiti Teknikai Malaysia Melaka, and the Universiti Malaysia Pahang.
Address: Sg. Chuchuh, Arau, Jalan Wang Ulu, 01000 Kangar, Perlis, Malaysia
#5. Universiti Putra Malaysia
UPM formerly was an Agricultural school that was later transformed from 1931 to 2012 to a leading Research University.
There are about 24,000 students at UPM including approximately 4,500 international students. Actually, more than half of the student body is made up of undergraduates with around 10,000 postgraduate students.
UPM offers full-time programs to qualified candidates with STPM/equivalent, Matriculation/Foundation, Diploma/equivalent qualifications. These are the entry requirements for its bachelor’s degree. Students that have SPM/equivalent qualification can apply for Diploma and Foundation for Agricultural Science programs.
Address: Serdang, 43400 Seri Kembangan, Selangor, Malaysia
#6. Universiti Sains Malaysia
The Universiti Sains Malaysia was founded in 1969. It is the second oldest university in Malaysia and one of Malaysia’s leading science universities.
Its main campus is situated on Penang Island with another two branch campuses in Kelantan and Nibong Tebal.
USM which is one of the largest universities in Malaysia has a total of 30,000 undergraduate and postgraduate students.
Universiti Sains Malaysia also has 17 research centers dedicated to a range of specializations, including archaeology, policy research, and international studies.
The institution operates a ‘school’ system supported by a large array of extracurricular activities. This gives students the opportunity for a more interdisciplinary and well-rounded experience, producing graduates that are multi-skilled.
Address: 11800 Gelugor, Penang, Malaysia
#7. Universiti Teknologi Malaysia
Universiti Teknologi Malaysia is a public research-intensive university in engineering, science, and technology located in Skudai, Johor and it has a branch campus in Kuala Lumpur.
UTM that is among the best universities in Malaysia, is home to more than 24,000 students from various countries pursuing undergraduate and postgraduate studies.
In 2018, Career Centre UTM organized UTM Career Carnival to facilitate and give direct exposure to industries to meet UTM graduates in various fields like Science & Technology, Engineering, and Management.
Some of the notable alumni include the Malaysian politicians Wee Ka Siong and Sim Tze Tzin.
Address: Sultan Ibrahim Chancellery Building, Jalan Iman, 81310 Skudai, Johor, Malaysia
#8. Universiti Teknologi Petronas
Universiti Teknologi Petronas which is one of the leading research universities in the region was founded in 1997. In fact, it is the only private university in Malaysia that ranks in Top 100 Times Higher Education Asian University Rankings.
The school’s courses are arranged into 3 separate faculties for undergraduate study. Also, a number of scientific-based postgraduate degrees are available here. Universiti Teknologi Petronas also tries to link students with internships to help in their transition into industry, as well as investing in the research itself.
Address: Persiaran UTP, 32610 Seri Iskandar, Perak, Malaysia
#9. Universiti Tenaga Nasional (UNITEN)
UNITEN is a private university in Selangor, Malaysia that was founded in 1976 and owned by a utility company in South East-Asia, Tenaga Nasional Berhad (TNB).
The university has two campuses, Putrajaya Campus and Sultan Haji Ahmad Shah Campus.
The school’s library is one of the leading private university libraries in Malaysia. It has a reputation for providing information resources and excellence in customer service.
Address: Jalan Ikram-Uniten, 43000 Kajang, Selangor, Malaysia
#10. Universiti Utara Malaysia
This is a public university that was founded in 1984. The institution’s initial specialization was management education. UUM which is among the top universities in Malaysia has three main colleges: UUM College of Business, UUM College of Arts and Sciences and UUM College of Law, Government and International Studies.
Address: Sintok, 06010 Bukit Kayu Hitam, Kedah, Malaysia
#11. Universiti Malaysia Sarawak (UNIMAS)
UNIMAS is a public university in Kota Samarahan, Sarawak, Malaysia that was officially incorporated on 24 December 1992. The university has eight faculties, 14,000 undergraduate students, and 1,400 postgraduate students.
Popular majors in this university include applied and creative arts, cognitive sciences and human development, computer science and information technology, economics and business, medicine and health sciences, resource science and technology and social sciences.
On the other hand, UNIMAS is very strong in research areas like biodiversity and environmental conservation, emerging tropical infectious diseases, ICT development, renewable and green energy, and industrial design.
Address: Jalan Datuk Mohammad Musa, 94300 Kota Samarahan, Sarawak, Malaysia
#12. Multimedia University (MMU)
MMU, also known as Universiti Telekom, is a private university in Malaysia. This university which is ranked as one of the best universities in Malaysia for international students has three campuses in Melaka, Cyberjaya, and Johor. Multimedia University has 9 faculties and 8 research institutes.
MMU has approximately 18,000 students, more than 1,500 of whom are international students from more than 70 countries. The majority of the students at this institution are undergraduates.
The campus in Melaka offers Business and Accounting, Engineering, Information Technology, Computer Science and Law, and some postgraduate courses.
In the same vein, the Johor campus offers cinematic arts in collaboration with the University of Southern California.
Finally, Multimedia University has also established collaborations in the global industry with companies like Nokia, Dell, Intel, Microsoft, and Motorola.
Address: Persiaran Multimedia, 63100 Cyberjaya, Selangor, Malaysia
#13. Universiti Teknologi MARA
Universiti Teknologi MARA is a public university in Shah Alam that was founded in 1956 as RIDA Training Centre. UiTM is a school for Bumiputeras which is unique, strong and pure.
This school’s research arm is the Research Management Centre (RMC). The RMC aims to initiate new research and innovation activities. The RMC which late became the IRMI has five divisions that are responsible to manage, monitor and assist in grant applications. The divisions include Research, Consultancy, Innovation, Publication, and ICT Support.
UITM alumni have gone on to hold important positions in government, business and the judiciary. They include Minister Azalina Othman Said, Chief Judge Richard Malanjum and Air Asia co-founder Kamarudin Meranun.
Address: Kolej Amira Uitm Puncak Alam Road, 42300 Shah Alam, Selangor, Malaysia
#14. Taylor’s University
Taylor’s University is a private university in Subang Jaya, Selangor, Malaysia. This institution was established in 1969 as a college and university status was pronounced on it in 2010.
On the other hand, this school offers a host of courses in tertiary education including foundation, diploma, degree, post-graduate, and professional programs.
Popular majors include Medicine, Pharmacy, Biosciences, Architecture, Computer Science, Engineering, Quantity Surveying, Law, Business, Communications, Design, Hospitality, Tourism, and Culinary Arts.
The institution is a member of the Taylor’s Education Group.
Address: 1, Jalan Taylors, 47500 Subang Jaya, Selangor, Malaysia
#15. The Management & Science University (MSU)
MSU is a non-profit, private university in Shah Alam, Selangor, Malaysia. In 2007, it officially became a full-fledged university as Management & Science University.
The MSU Research Seed Grant scheme provides an internal source of research funding to MSU academic staff. The Research Seed Grant scheme offers initial funding for the development of research projects which new investigators, supporting individual investigators as well as small research teams inspect.
Address: University Drive, Off Persiaran Olahraga, 40100 Shah Alam, Selangor, Malaysia
All the natural attractions, rich culture, and gorgeous scenes in Malaysia attract students from all over the world. Malaysia has a special combination of ancient and modern architecture, mix cultures and ethnicities. Malaysia’s location makes it the perfect destination for any international student looking for a new experience for their studies.
I am certain you will find the best university that suits your budget and other educational needs. So, try applying to any of the best universities in Malaysia for international students in 2020.
FAQs on the Best Universities in Malaysia for International Students in 2020 rankings
What is the best course to study in Malaysia?
Here is a list of the top courses in Malaysia with high job demand:
1. Computing & Information Technology (IT) Artificial Intelligence (Ai) or Intelligent Systems
2. Actuarial Science
6. Business & Management
What are the best jobs in Malaysia?
The top paying jobs in Malaysia are:
2. Marketing Director
3. Clinical Research Associate
4. Real Estate Brokers
5. Risk Management Director
6. Strategy Director
8. Legal Services Director
Can international students work in Malaysia while studying?
Yes. All international students studying in Malaysia are permitted to work part-time for at most, 20 hours per week ONLY during semester breaks or holidays of more than 7 days at restaurants, petrol kiosks, mini markets, and hotels as long as their student passes remain valid.
Can I pursue two degrees at the same time?
No. You can only study one full-time degree at a time.
What major requirements do I need for a study in Malaysia?
If you’re an international students, you must have at least twelve (12) years of education and have undergone a national/international examination recognized by the Ministry of Education for the sake of admission to diploma or degree programmes.
How can I get an entry visa into Malaysia?
For you to obtain an entry visa, you will have to visit the nearest Malaysian Embassy in your home country along with:
1. your offer letter from the Malaysian education institution
2. the Visa Approval Letter issued by the Immigration Department of Malaysia
3. all other important documents and forms duly completed
4. payment as specified by the Malaysian Embassy for the application of an entry visa.
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