Education System is the system of formalized transmission of knowledge and values operating within a given society.Education is the act of knowledge or skill obtained or developed by a learning process. In Malaysia the education system is defined by the National Philosophy of Education.
National Philosophy of Education
As per National Philosophy of Education, Education in Malaysia is an on-going effort towards further developing the potential of individuals in a holistic and integrated manner, so as to produce individuals who are intellectually, spiritually, emotionally and physically balanced and harmonic, based on a firm belief in and devotion to God.
The national education system comprises of the following levels of education:
- Pre-school / Kindergarten education for children aged 4 to 6
- Primary education from age 7 to 12 (Standard 1 to Standard 6 for 6 years)
- Secondary education from age 13 to 17 (Form 1 to Form 5 for 5 years)
- Lower secondary from age 13 to 15 (Form 1 to Form 3 for 3 years)
- Upper secondary from age 16 to 17 (Form 4 to Form 5 for 2 years) with the option to choose either: (a) Academic secondary education or Technical/Vocational secondary education or (b) Religious secondary education
- Post-secondary education / Pre-university from age 18 (for 1 to 2 years)
- Tertiary / Higher education
- Certificate and Diploma Education at Polytechnics / Colleges from age 18 onwards
- Education at Teacher Training Institutes from age 18 onwards
- Undergraduate studies from age 19 or 20 (for 3 to 5 years)
- Postgraduate studies [Master’s Degree or Ph.D studies, after acquiring a Bachelor’s degree] (for 1 to 5 years).
Categories of Educational Institutions
At Pre-tertiary Level
The governing authority of pre-tertiary schools is the Ministry of Education. In the Malaysian education structure, there are six categories of educational institutions, namely:
1. Government and Private Sector Kindergarten: Follow the National Pre-school Curriculum
2. Government Schools: Follow the Malaysian National Curriculum & National Examination
3. Government-aided Schools: Follow the Malaysian National Curriculum & National Examination
4. Private Schools: Follow the Malaysian National Curriculum & National Examination
5. Foreign System Schools: International schools and expatriate schools International schools follow an international curriculum and use English as its medium of instruction while expatriate schools follow the national educational system of other countries using the respective national language of these countries as the medium of instruction. These schools are not bound by the Education Act 1996 but are under the supervision of the Ministry of Education.
6. National-type Schools: There are two categories of public-funded primary schools, namely, National schools. The medium of instruction is the National language.
(a) Chinese National-type schools: The medium of instruction is Chinese.
(b) Tamil National-type schools (the medium of instruction is Tamil)
In all schools, the National language is a compulsory subject and English is taught as a second language.
At Tertiary Level
The governing authority of higher educational institutions is the Ministry of Higher Education. These institutes can be categorized as:
- Government-funded public universities, polytechnics and colleges
- Private Higher Educational Institutions (i.e. institutes not funded by government), which include: non-university status institutions such as private colleges, university status institutions such as private universities, foreign university branch campuses e.g. Monash University Malaysia and The University of Nottingham Malaysia Campus.
Last Updated on: 18-11-2009