Education System In Malaysia
An Overview
Education is the responsibility of the federal government. The national education system encompasses education beginning from pre-school to university. Pre-tertiary education (i.e. from pre-school to secondary education) is under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Education (MOE) while the tertiary education is the responsibility of the Ministry of Higher Education (MOHE). The vision of the Government is to make Malaysia a centre of educational excellence.
Primary and Secondary Education
Primary education (a period of 6 years) and secondary education (5 years which encompasses 3 years of lower secondary and 2 years of upper secondary) are free. The admission age to the first year of primary education is seven. Primary schooling is mandatory for all children between the ages of to 12. Students sit for common public examinations at the end of primary, lower secondary and upper secondary levels.
Post-secondary Education
Upon completion of secondary education, students can opt to pursue 1 to 2 years of post-secondary education, which is the university entrance preparatory course.
Tertiary Education
At this tertiary education level, institutions of higher learning offer courses leading to the award of Certificate, Diploma and Degree qualifications. Certificate, Diploma, first Degree, higher Degree programmes (at academic and professional fields) are adequately provided for by both public and private education sector. Tertiary education consists of two major components:
Public (government funded) institutions of higher learning, for example, public universities, public university colleges, polytechnics and teacher training colleges.
Private (private funded) higher educational institutions, for example, private universities,private university colleges,branch campuses of foreign universities and private colleges.
Private Education Providers
The private education providers in Malaysia can be broadly categorized into 2 categories depending on the levels of education offered, which range from pre-school to tertiary education. The two broad categories of institutions are:
1) Private Educational Institutions (PEIs), or private schools, providing education at preschool, primary and secondary levels
2) Private Higher Educational Institutions (PHEIs), providing tertiary education leading to the awards of Certificate, Diploma and Degree qualifications
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