An engineer is a specialist responsible for inventing, designing, and maintaining various machines, structures, and data systems. Engineering is using scientific and mathematical concepts to create valuable products. Understanding the breadth of engineering may assist you in determining whether or not engineering is a suitable match for your interests and abilities.
In this article, we’ll talk about the education pathway to study engineering in Malaysia and become a qualified engineer, the top universities in Malaysia for engineering, including their requirements, fee structures and course durations, and what kinds of jobs you can get if you study this field.
Chemical engineers develop the equipment and procedures required to manufacture marketable products from raw materials effectively, and they operate in many different sectors throughout the world.
Chemical engineers handle issues involving the production or use of chemicals and the consequences of those processes by combining their knowledge of chemistry, physics, mathematics, mechanical and electrical engineering. Chemical engineers apply lab procedures to production technologies to maximise efficiency and minimise costs. In addition to developing procedures for manufacturing, chemical engineers also plan and evaluate manufacturing techniques, analyse practices used to handle waste products and oversee various production facilities. The influence of chemical engineering is vital across food & beverage industries, agriculture, manufacturing and testing of pharmaceuticals, and healthcare research to highlight a few.
It is one of the oldest areas of the engineering profession. Civil engineers work on public and private sector infrastructure and environmental projects. They are responsible for everything from planning and design to supervision, construction, and upkeep.
Civil engineering specialists build and maintain all kinds of structures and systems in the world’s infrastructure. Civil engineers must consider construction costs, project completion time, government restrictions, and possible environmental risks, such as earthquakes and hurricanes while establishing and revising infrastructure plans and projects. Civil engineering is crucial in educating local, state, and federal governments about infrastructure needs and solutions.
Electrical & Electronic Engineering
Electronic engineers, in general, are concerned with electronic circuits at the core of computer science. In contrast, electrical engineers are involved with the large-scale transmission of electrical currents as a power source.
Electrical engineering may be your job if you want to be on the leading edge of new technological progress. For example, an electrical engineer is responsible for designing and constructing a motor for the latest electric automobile, a navigation system used in GPS devices, or a wind turbine power system for efficient energy production. The applications are quite vast.
Though the terms electrical engineering and electronics engineering are often used interchangeably, the two fields have significantly different emphases:
- An electrical engineer is in charge of planning, developing, testing, and managing the manufacture of electrical equipment and systems ranging from transportation to lighting and wiring systems to power generation and transmission.
- Electronics engineers’ main work areas are communications, signal processing, and other electronics systems.
Mechanical engineering is a broad discipline that requires developing and constructing anything from tiny individual components and devices (such as microscale sensors and inkjet printer nozzles) to massive systems (e.g. spacecraft and machine tools).
Mechanical engineering is a vast field that encompasses designing and manufacturing mechanical devices ranging from simple hand tools to large equipment. Mechanical engineers operate in various sectors, but they all have in common a concentration on mechanics of motion, whether it’s fluid dynamics in a hydroelectric power system, energy transfer and conversion, or the moving elements of complicated automated industrial equipment. Mechanical engineers often focus on drafting and design engineering, such as product, equipment, or system design. They also work on R&D, production, and testing in the lab or on the job.
Industrial Engineering is a versatile engineering discipline that assists businesses in saving money and increasing efficiency. It is a multidisciplinary field concerned with manufacturing, designing, improving, and installing integrated systems of people, materials, information, equipment, and energy.
While most engineering areas focus on particular products, systems, or processes, industrial engineering concerns people management, company organisation, and optimising technology to boost productivity in various working situations. Today, companies must compete in an increasingly global market. Industrial engineers assist them by improving productivity and quality, whether the result is a streamlined operating room in a health care setting, an optimised manufacturing production schedule, or a long-term detailed financial plan.
Industrial engineers may be asked to undertake a variety of duties to eliminate waste of time, energy, and money in the workplace:
- Employ mathematical models or computer simulations to find the optimal design for information, manufacturing, and distribution systems.
- Strategy planning, financial analysis, compensation administration, and job assessment programmes on a management level.
- Human factors and ergonomics to improve employee interactions with their physical and technology office environments.
Mechatronics Engineering is a multidisciplinary field combining several engineering types—electrical, computer, and mechanical—and refers to the skill sets needed in the contemporary, advanced automated manufacturing industry.
Mechatronics specialists create simpler, smarter systems at the intersection of mechanics, electronics, and computing. Mechatronics is an essential foundation for the expected growth in automation and manufacturing. Mechatronics is an industry buzzword synonymous with robotics and electromechanical engineering. Robotics, control systems, and electromechanical systems fall under mechatronics.
A background in mechatronics engineering provides a strong set of skills and understanding that will enable students to learn the underlying principles of mechanical, electrical, software, instrumentation, and controls engineering and gain hands-on experience in the lab.
Students are trained to work in any mechanical and instrumentation discipline, whether they decide to work in industry or pursue a graduate research degree.
Why Study in Malaysia
Prospective students studying engineering in Malaysia should know what it takes to become a professional engineer and the associated process. To become a professional engineer in Malaysia, a student must complete an authorised engineering degree recognised by the Malaysian Board of Engineers (BEM). The Washington Accord recognises the Board of Engineers Malaysia (BEM) since Malaysia is a signatory, enabling graduates to work in any country that has signed the accords.
There is a difference between BEM (Board of Engineers, Malaysia) and IEM. Engineering graduates must register with a government agency, BEM, and a professional organisation, IEM.
Board of Engineering (BEM), Malaysia
Under the Engineers Registration Act 1967, the Board of Engineers Malaysia (BEM) registers graduates and professional engineers (Revised 2002). The Board of Engineers Malaysia (BEM) is Malaysia’s sole body certifying Professional Engineers. The Malaysian government established this regulating organisation for engineering activities in 1967 under the Registration of Engineers Act to administer and enforce the Engineering Act and its provisions protecting the public interest.
Only Graduate and Professional Engineers registered with the Malaysian Board of Engineers (BEM) can practise engineering in Malaysia. All engineers must register with BEM within six months after beginning practice. A professional engineer (Ir or PEng) is licensed to practise engineering in Malaysia after satisfying all the licensing criteria (e.g., passing the PI Examination).
Institution of Engineers, Malaysia (IEM)
IEM is a professional and educational association for engineers in Malaysia. Since its inception in 1959, the organisation has been a Council of the Commonwealth Engineers member. In Malaysia, the Institution serves as a certifying organisation for practising engineers.
Corporate members may apply for registration as Professional Engineers with the Board of Engineers, Malaysia (a registration authority). The Council of the Institution sets the qualifications required for admission.
Because it covers all engineering specialities, the Institution has a comprehensive industry picture. It is one of the few professional engineering organisations around the globe.
The Washington Accord is a multinational agreement signed in 1989. It recognises the equivalency of engineering degree programmes accredited by the responsible bodies in signatory countries. Malaysia is a Washington Accord signatory; therefore, Malaysia’s degrees that have been accredited by Engineering Accreditation Council (EAC) will be accepted by other Washington Accord signatories.
Members of The Washington Accord are Hong Kong, South Africa, Japan, Singapore, the USA, Canada, New Zealand, Australia, the UK, Ireland, Taipei, Korea, Malaysia and Turkey.
Engineering degrees from Malaysian universities are recognised worldwide. Several reasons have helped broaden the recognition of Malaysian engineering degrees worldwide. These include world-class engineering schools, international standard course curriculum, and strong collaborations between top universities for engineering in Malaysia and prestigious global universities.
Some of the prestigious organizations that recognize Engineering degrees from Malaysia include the following:
- Washington Accords Signatories
- Board of Engineers
- Ministry of Education, Malaysia
After completing the Engineering degree in Malaysia, students can easily transition to other countries and further their careers globally. Accreditation from the Washington Accords enables degrees from Malaysian institutions to be accepted worldwide.
Over the last decade, Malaysia has emerged as a preferred destination for engineering education as it offers many benefits for aspiring students. Some of the top benefits of studying Engineering in Malaysia are as follows:
Affordable Course Fee
The fee required to study engineering in Malaysia is comparatively less than what is charged in many other countries, such as the USA, the UK, Australia, and Canada, which have usually been the traditional international education destinations. However, as the education expenses and living costs continue to increase worldwide, Malaysia comes across as a reliable option to receive a high-quality education at an affordable cost.
Globally Accepted Engineering Degree
One of the major benefits to study engineering in Malaysia is that Malaysian universities enjoy global recognition. This allows students to study the program in Malaysia and then move anywhere globally. Over the past two decades, numerous international students have studied engineering in Malaysia and then migrated to other countries around the world, and have developed very successful careers.
International Education Standard
The standard of engineering education in Malaysia meets international standards. The international benchmarking helps international students to learn the most up-to-date curriculum and work with the current technologies of the market. The course curriculum is rigorously developed to ensure that students are able to compete on a global level and work in an increasingly internationalised workforce.
Excellent Campus Facilities and Infrastructure
Malaysia offers excellent campus facilities, modern infrastructure, and innovative teaching aids for engineering. The universities in Malaysia offer a great learning atmosphere. A number of leading engineering universities have developed in-house labs and testing facilities dedicated to helping students learn with hands-on experience, operate with state-of-the-art machinery and stay up-to-date with the latest innovations in engineering and technology.
Practice-Oriented Engineering Training
Students undergo practice-oriented engineering training in Malaysia. This enables them to put their academic knowledge into practice and understand the concepts better.
Engineering graduates are in high demand in a wide range of disciplines, ranging from industry to academia, and they are educated in a number of soft skills and hard skills that make them highly competitive, such as the following:
Analytical & Critical Thinking
Being able to analyse critically is crucial. Even though a design may seem flawless, searching for any defects that may affect the product’s operation is still important. It may seem small, but it can save money and time for businesses and maybe even lives. To maintain developing your designs, you should identify and fix any flaws in other people’s designs and your own.
Effective Communication, Team-work & Leadership
Effective communication skills are essential if you’re an engineer since you’ll be working in a team, and you’ll need to convey your thoughts and ideas in a way that encourages others to follow your lead. This is crucial while attempting to convince others to follow your design in the case of a collective effort. Explaining your thoughts is also vital because sketching an idea in your brain is more complex than creating a picture of something you’re looking at, so the best approach to practice is to imagine an item in your head and draw as you see it.
Learning & Development
The world is changing at an alarming pace, and it’s impossible to predict if what we learn now will be adequate in the far future. That’s why you need to maintain learning outside of your engineering education so that you may build any skills that may be useful in the future. Whether the subject is related to science or not, broadening your knowledge scope can only boost your current position in the workforce.
Maths & Programming
Math is the most often utilised topic in all of the engineering programs. Therefore, if more time is spent in mathematics, it will naturally help other modules finish maths worksheets first and attempt to employ new approaches gained in different modules to simplify answering a question. In addition to that, programming is a valuable talent to acquire. It will become more critical in engineering positions in the future, making it a wise investment of time and money to get some training in it now.
The duration to study engineering in Malaysia is four years for the bachelor’s program. English is the medium of instruction followed in engineering schools across all major international private universities. The first year will have a number of common subjects between different engineering specialisations. As students progress to years two and three, their modules and subjects will become more specialised as per their field of choice. Students can sometimes switch from one engineering specialisation to another, but it will require approval from the University faculty and the relevant authorities in Malaysia.
Students who want to opt for program transfers to another University will usually need to prepare the transfer paperwork and start processing from their second year onwards to ensure all the paperwork and approvals are in place so the program transfer can be done.
The Malaysian qualifications agency sets the entry requirements and guidelines for university admissions in Malaysia, which all universities must adhere to. As minimum entry requirements are set universally, all international students must meet those requirements, as these guidelines will be considered during the application approval and processing by the Ministry of Higher Education.
Universities are also at liberty to increase the entry requirements to ensure that the students can cope well with the program curriculum. So international students are advised to check and confirm details with their admission advisor about the specific entry requirements for the university they are planning to join.
As such, the admission requirements to study engineering in Malaysia for international students may vary to a certain degree from one university to another. However, the basic general requirements are the same for most universities.
Students can join a foundation program after completing their secondary schooling, O levels, or equivalent qualifications. After completing the foundation in an engineering program, they can continue to study bachelor’s degree in engineering in Malaysia, as per their choice.
The second option will be for students to complete their higher secondary school, A levels, or equivalent. After meeting the minimum entry requirements, students can join the bachelor of engineering in Malaysia directly into year one. Do note that if the minimum entry requirement for direct entry into a bachelor’s degree programme is not met, the faculty may provide a pathway through the foundation or even a diploma program.
General Entry Requirements
|STPM||2 Passes in STPM with a minimum Grade C (GP 2.0) in Mathematics and Physics (or Chemistry).|
|A – Level||2 Passes (Grade A-E) in A-Level, including Mathematics and Physics (or Chemistry).|
|UEC||5 Grade B’s in UEC, including Mathematics and Physics (or Chemistry).|
|Foundation||Passed the relevant Foundation programme (minimum CGPA of 2.0)|
* (Relevant Foundation in Science or Engineering etc.)
International students must also provide proof of English language proficiency with IELTS or TOEFL exams. Students who have studied the British or American curriculum are exempted from the English proficiency requirements since the medium of instruction for that curriculum is in English by default. Students who have studied other curriculums where the medium of instruction is also English will usually need to provide a letter from the school stating that the instruction language for their schooling has been English. With that letter, the English proficiency requirement will be met.
Fees & Cost
Students sometimes only look at the tuition fee during the comparison. However, depending on how forthright and clearly the fee guidelines from the university are, the extra fees can be a hefty amount that could be a surprise. So students are advised to correctly add all the fees and decide which university fits their budget requirements to study engineering in Malaysia.
Various factors will contribute to the overall cost structure, such as:
- Tuition fees
- Accommodation fees
- Admission fee
- Registration and Visa fees and
- Other one-time fees.
These fees vary from university to university and can depend on varying factors. The quality, infrastructure, facilities and teacher-to-student ratio will also determine how much a university charges.
You must find the right balance between quality and cost to get the best education possible. The average cost to study engineering in Malaysia is between RM30,000 to RM50,000 per year, depending on the University.
For reference, that’s around USD $7,500 to $12,000 per year for a 4-year engineering degree program at the current exchange rate.
Accommodation cost is going to be another recurring fee for international students. Generally, students have two options: they can either stay at the on-campus accommodation provided by the university or at private accommodation. The prices will differ according to which university and area you choose.
Generally, campus accommodations at major universities start at around US$150 per month and can go up to $400 per month. The pricing for on-campus accommodation is determined by the size of the room, whether a student will be sharing the room or will be staying alone, or if the student is taking a master room which generally comes with an attached bathroom or decides to stay at a sharing room with shared bathroom.
Some universities also offer cooking facilities and on-campus accommodation, which are shared facilities which will also be factored into the accommodation costs. Utility costs are generally an add-on fee.
While choosing the university, you can check with your admissions advisor on the options available for accommodation and how much they will cost so that you have an idea of how much of a monthly budget you will require as a student.
Researching, applying and managing overseas admissions is a tedious, time-consuming and often confusing process. Incorrect application submissions can lead to lengthy processing, delayed approvals, or rejections. You can visit education, exhibitions and fairs to collect information. However, that is not enough. You can only collect cursory information at these places. However, your admission processing will usually take much longer. During that time, you will need consistent and dedicated support to ensure your application is in the right experienced hands.
This is where we help.
Edmates helps international students from around the world with complete admissions processing. Our integrated one-stop centre helps international students with everything. We help you find future-driven programs that match your abilities and interests in leading universities.
We handle the entire process from the beginning until you have joined the university. Our international support system will manage everything for you, absolutely free.
Each student is assigned with a dedicated admission advisor who will manage the complete admission process and also guide the student throughout the admissions process. The advisor will also liaise with the university admissions department to ensure clear communications and faster processing.
You can speak with your assigned advisor anytime by booking a free call online through the website. You will also receive regular updates regarding your application via emails, SMS and WhatsApp.
To learn about each step of the admission process, you can read our complete guide to start applying for your higher education the right way.
How many years does it take to study Engineering in Malaysia?
It takes 4 years to complete an engineering degree program in Malaysia.
Is Malaysia a safe destination for students?
Malaysia is among the most peaceful and safest nations in the world. The country ranks among the top 20 nations in the world regarding safety.
Can international students get an education loan to pursue Engineering in Malaysia?
The possibility of getting an education loan for pursuing Engineering in Malaysia will depend on the loan regulations in the student’s home country and the bank from which the loan is availed.
Do international students need to sit for any entrance test in Malaysia to study Engineering?
International students do not need to sit for any entrance test to study Engineering in Malaysia
Do Malaysian Universities offer the option of global transfers?
Yes, some Universities offer the facility of transferring to other global universities.
How are hostel facilities for Engineering students in Malaysia?
Universities in Malaysia offer well-equipped hostel accommodations for students. The hostels have modern infrastructure and ensure a good atmosphere for studying.