WHAT ARE YOUR OPTIONS AFTER SECONDARY SCHOOL?
Now that secondary school is over, it is time to take the next step in your education journey. Here are some popular pre-university programmes you can consider.
GCE Advanced Level (A Level)
A Level is one of the most widely recognised pre-university courses in the world. In Malaysia, A Level is offered by two examination bodies which are the Cambridge board and London Edexcel board. A minimum of three A Level subjects is required to enter most universities. A Level subjects are assessed through final examinations and graded from A* to E. Estimated fees for A Level range from RM19,000 to RM38,000 and take up to two years to complete.
SACE International and Western Australian Matriculation (AUSMAT)
SACE International and AUSMAT are two popular Australian pre-university programmes in Malaysia. Both programmes are recognised by Australian universities, a number of Malaysian private universities and most universities around the world. Students are assessed through 50% coursework and 50% examination. Both SACE and AUSMAT take a year to complete. The fees for SACE International range between RM21,000 and RM28,000, and AUSMAT between RM17,000 and RM25,000.
Canadian Pre-University Programme (CPU)
The Canadian Pre-University Programme (CPU) and Canadian International Matriculation Programme (CIMP) are currently offered in Malaysia. Both programmes lead to the Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD) to students and take up to 18 months to complete. In order to graduate, students have to fulfil at least 10 hours of community service and pass the Ontario Secondary School Literacy Test (OSSLT). Canadian pre-university programmes can cost anywhere between RM27,000 and RM30,000.
American Degree Programme (ADP)
The ADP is a pre-university qualification that leads directly to a degree and takes approximately four years to complete. Most institutions offer credit transfer options which allow students to pursue their degree in American universities. Students can opt for 2+2 (two years in Malaysia and two years abroad) or 1+3 (one year in Malaysia and one year abroad). Some colleges also offer 4+0, allowing students to complete the entire ADP locally. Fees are approximately RM30,000 per year.
International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme (IBDP)
The IBDP is a challenging pre-university programme that is offered by selected international schools. Students have to undergo an entrance exam and an interview to get into the programme in addition to having excellent academic qualifications. The IBDP takes two years to complete and requires students to study six subjects, which are assessed through assignments, oral presentations and examinations. Each subject is graded from 7 to 1, with 7 being the highest. The IBDP has an estimated tuition fee of RM115,000.
University Foundation Studies
Foundation studies are offered by universities to students who wish to pursue their degree in the same institution. Taking a year to complete, foundation courses are assessed through a combination of assignments, quizzes and exams. Foundation courses are suitable to individuals who know what they want to study at degree level at the same institution. In addition, students who enrol in foundation programmes can complete their degree in less time. Depending on the institution, foundation courses can cost between RM10,000 and RM25,000.
Other post-secondary courses include diploma and certificate courses as well as vocational courses. Make sure you do ample research before choosing a programme after completing secondary school. Course information is easily obtained on websites of institutions and private schools. You can also visit institutions and talk to their representatives on open days.