Monday, January 07, 2008

MQA is here

This blog has been keeping track of the setting up of the Malaysian Qualification Agency (MQA) since early 2006. You can read previous blog entries on this issue here, here and here. I was pleasantly surprised to read that the MQA has published a list of approved courses in both public and private universities in Malaysia.

I think having this kind of information accessible to the public is really helpful, especially for students who want to know if the courses and colleges they are interested in applying to. I had a quick glance through the list of private colleges and was pleased NOT to find any entries for the Irish International University. One may be interested to note the large number of private colleges, many of whom we've probably not heard of. But one has to remember that the MQA is only responsible for ensuring that courses offered by these private colleges fulfill certain minimum criteria. It is not responsible for vetting the quality of these courses.

One still has to use one's judgment when thinking about applying to some of these private colleges. For example, Sunway Monash and Nottingham's campus in Malaysia are obviously more recognized institutes than Kolej Keris - I kid you not - which offers only a diploma in hotel management and tourism in Ipoh, Perak. (I'm sure some of our readers will have fun going through the list of private colleges listed in the MQA website)

Surprisingly, not all of the public universities are listed in the MQA website. I found only ten:

1) Kolej Komuniti
2) Kolej Tunku Abdul Rahman (KTAR) - I didn't know KTAR was an IPTA
3) Politeknik
4) Universiti Malaysia Sabah (UMS)
5) Universiti Malaysia Terengganu (UMT)
6) Universiti Pendidikan Sultan Idris (UPSI)
7) Universiti Sains Islam Malaysia (USIM)
8) Universiti Teknikal Malaysia (UTeM)
9) Universiti Tun Hussein Onn Malaysia (UTHM)
10)Universiti Utara Malaysia (UUM)

Is this because the other public universities had not submitted their courses to MQA? Or is it because we can assume that all the courses being offered by UM, USM, UKM and the likes are all accredited courses because of their status as the more established public universities in Malaysia, compared to let's say UUM? I'm guessing that the other public universities will eventually make it to the MQA website since relatively new universities such as UNIMAS in Sarawak or the new public universities in Perlis, Kelantan and Pahang.

In the meantime, we are still waiting for the 'ranking' or 'grading' system of private colleges in Malaysia to be released, something which the MOHE has been promising for sometime. It would certainly gives us more insight into some of the smaller private colleges such as the aforementioned Kolej Keris and the many other small time operations that offer only a handful of courses for diplomas.


Anonymous said...

bravo Kian Ming for the most efficient update. We have yet to digest the deputy Edu. Minister's launching speech at Midvalley over the weekend and here we have KM across thousand of miles briefing us his analysis =)

Fikri said...

Bit by bit, more things are becoming transparent. Kudos, at least for this. Let's hope more and more will come to the light :>

Anonymous said...

what is this about? i am studying in one of the private institution listed in the site and the information is wrong/not accurate.. =(

Anonymous said...

Tony, there are political issues here.

I ask the questions:
1 - What relationship does our MOHE have with private Universities from overseas (Curtin University in Sabah, Monash University, Swineburne, etc)?

2 - Do we compare their degree level against UM or against places like Sunway or even Kolej Keris? Or against international benchmarks?

3 - Do we even know for fact that some Universities like Curtin are actually Polytechnics "upgraded" to Unis when Australia went on this education money making scheme years ago? That they are still having issues of not getting sufficiently good academia compared to Monash and ANU, hence their degrees are technically "high diplomas" in eyes of many foreign Universities?

4 - Do we DARE to put these overseas setups in Malaysia in the truth of our benchmarks and publish the information?

5 - The political backlash and pressure to give easier accreditation to these Universities by "foreign investors" cannot be ignored.

Anonymous said...

Don't put too much hope on the whatever rankings by MQA (if it is even released). There's a high probability that the ranking will be as vague and toothless as the 'ranking' of IPTAs last year where USM came out as the best Uni in M'sia.
Well, what private institutions will you put money on this time? I've my own list of top 10 private unis in M'sia (Which offer own degrees, excluding partner Unis). What do you think?

TOP 10:
1. MMU
2. Nottingham U
4. Monash
5. UTP
10. MSU

Anonymous said...

Many private colleges don't have a library automation system which is a basic requirement of an academic library. Without an online library system the information literacy skill training cannot be carried out. Students from such colleges are not exposed to online libraries. Is MQA going to make it compulsory for all colleges to have properly trained librarians and standard academic library sysgtem.

Anonymous said...

I just wanna ask is President College is recognized by Government? Former name was Lincoln College I guess? That is what I heard..

Anonymous said...

Kolej TAR is more than 40 years and yet still have not reach the Uni College status. The authorities concerned should have pushed for upgrading this to a Uni level.