Study in Malaysia: the ultimate guide for a Short Course in 2024

The Ultimate Guide to Studying in Malaysia in 2024

Browse all short courses in Malaysia

  • Jan-Jan Academic Year
  • 7 Listed Institutes
  • 89,000 Int. Students
  • 1,193,000 Students
  • 33,181,000 Population

Study in Malaysia

What can you imagine when the modern world mixes with the developing world? Probably something has beautiful as Malaysia. Malaysia has a cultural and historical blend that has made it something of a treasure in Southeast Asia. And, when someone says, “historical blend”, in Southeast Asia, that has got make you hungry. After all, such a combination can only mean one thing: delicious food to make you go wild.

Lately, too, universities and colleges in Malaysia have started introducing English-taught Master’s and Bachelor’s programmes. Students come from everywhere to join in their classes, living long-term in a place that most people only dream of.

Why study in Malaysia?

1. It's affordable

Studying a Bachelor's or Master's programme at Malaysian public universities costs between 500 and 4,500 EUR per academic year. Medicine degrees are the main exception, with tuition fees of up to 27,000 EUR per year.

So for most disciplines, you'll pay a lot less than you would at a university or college in the US, Canada, UK, or Australia.

2. English is widely spoken

Around 50 to 60% of Malaysians speak the English language, at least at conversational level. While this may not sound like much when compared to other nations, keep in mind that you'll spend most of your time in major student cities, like Kuala Lumpur, where you won't have to worry about language barriers.

3. Malaysian universities are among the best in Asia

Global university rankings, which are released each year, place universities in Malaysia among the best higher education institutions in Asia. This includes both public and private universities, and represents another great reasons to study here.

4. Enjoy peace and safety

Malaysia is one of the safest and most peaceful countries in the world according to recent rankings. It has a stable political environment, a growing economy, and a developing industry — key factors that contribute to the overall positive outlook of the local society.

5. It is home to UNESCO World Heritage Sites and natural beauty

The excellent weather, natural beauty, and unique cuisine make Malaysia one of the most popular tourist destinations in Asia.

While studying and living there, don't forget to visit iconic buildings and places like Mount Kinabalu, the Batu Caves, Menara Kuala Lumpur, the Perhentian Islands, the Gunung Mulu National Park, etc.

What it is like to study in Malaysia?

One of the things Malaysia is known for is constantly celebrating different holidays. There is an endless array of festivals going on all through the year; and if you’re a student there, it may not be a requirement to join one, but you may as well.

The lucky thing is there are several languages and ethnic groups present in Malaysia. That means, no matter where you’re from, you’ll find people capable of speaking English to you, and who will happily help you get around.

And, of course, the same rules apply to your classes in Malaysia. Be prepared for every class, and study hard before you decide to join yet another festival this month.

What to study in Malaysia?

In Malaysia, their long history of art, literature, and music has made it an interesting place to pursue topics related to their local culture. At the same time, however, Malaysia has also become a strong, vibrant place for technology and business innovation, allowing young Bachelor’s and Master’s students to find their calling in a place that suits their career goals.

Here is a list of subjects to pursue in Malaysia:

Where to study in Malaysia?

As a country, Malaysia isn’t that big, so there aren’t many places to put a big city. But, if you are interested in knowing, Kuala Lumpur is Malaysia’s biggest city and national capital. You’ll also find other, smaller cities, such as Melaka City, Kuantan, Ipoh, and Georgetown. Surely, travelling between them, you catch a glimpse of big city life, combined with small-town life, all in a short day.

Which universities to attend in Malaysia?

Malaysia has recently started building up their universities, combining different colleges, academies, and institutes together to make larger universities. At the same time, there are large public universities, hugely backed and subsidised by the Malaysian government.

Here are some familiar universities in Malaysia:

How to apply

Each university in Malaysia has its own system on their website that allows future students to apply for and enrol in their degree programmes. So, once you select the university of your choice, you can go through their application and submit your materials there.

Here are some of the basic requirements you’ll need for every application:

  • A scan of your diploma (high school or Bachelor’s degree)
  • A transcript/record of your previous courses
  • A scan of your passport and/or birth certificate
  • Your CV
  • Testing scores
  • Evidence of scholarship or funding
  • Letters of recommendation (between 2-3)
  • Portfolio and/or writing samples

Helpful ways to make sure you qualify for a university in Malaysia

Take Preparation Courses

These kinds of courses enable degree-seeking students to get an extra educational boost just before they start their Master’s degree or other post-graduate degree programmes.

Try a pre-M.B.A., pre-Law, or pre-Medicine programme, as well as any other foundation or preparation courses that will allow you to study in the degree programme of your choice.

Improve your English through an English-language prep course

If you’re attending a degree programme in Malaysia you will need to prove that your language skills are good enough to participate in the classes and understand the lectures. These courses will also prepare you for any of the English-language tests that universities require.

English-language tests

To apply to study in the Malaysia, you’ll need to provide proof you have a diploma for your English proficiency.

The certificates generally accepted by the universities in the Malaysia are:

Living in Malaysia

Let's take a closer look at tuition and living expenses in Malaysia:

Tuition fees

In Malaysia, tuition fees vary based on a number of factors, such as: the type of university (public vs private), degree level (undergraduate vs postgraduate), length of studies (2–5 years), and so on.

Tuition at public universities

  • Bachelor's degrees: 2,000–4,500 EUR/year; some degrees in Medicine can cost as much as 27,000 EUR/year
  • Master's degrees: 500–4,000 EUR/year

Tuition at private universities

  • Bachelor's degrees: 1,350–9,300 EUR/year; some degrees in Medicine can cost as much as 19,850 EUR/year
  • Master's degrees: 1,500–3,000 EUR/year

The tuition fees we've listed here only serve a guiding role. You can find more expensive programmes and sometimes a few that are cheaper. The official university website is the best place to look for up-to-date information.

Cost of living in Malaysia

If you hope to have enough money for festivals, celebrations, and parties, you’re in luck!

Compared to most other locations, especially in South-East Asia, Malaysia is relatively affordable. Rent and food aren't too expensive. In general, you should prepare 450–800 EUR/month for living costs. 

Here is a breakdown of living expenses in Malaysia:

  • Accommodation: 350–700 EUR/month depending on the type of housing
  • Utilities: 50–70 EUR/month
  • Food and groceries: 200–350 EUR/month
  • Monthly transportation pass (train, metro, bus): 21 EUR
  • Medical insurance: 210 EUR/year
  • 3-course meal for 2 at a mid-range restaurant: 12 EUR
  • Milk: 1.36 EUR
  • Bread: 0.69 EUR
  • Eggs: 1.14 EUR
  • Cappuccino: 2.18 EUR

About Malaysia

Malaysia, also known as the Malaysian Federation or Federation of Malaysia, is a federal constitutional monarchy located in Southeast Asia. The capital is Kuala Lumpur, which means ‘muddy Estuary’ in the Malay language, but the federal government is located in Putrajaya.

Interesting facts about Malaysia
  • Malaysia has the tallest mountain in Southeast Asia, known as Mount Kinabalu.
  • Malaysia’s total highway length is longer than the Earth’s circumference: 65,977 km of highway!
  • Malaysians on average have the highest number of Facebook friends. I’m not jealous!
  • Malaysian island Borneo is the largest island in the world
  • Malaysia has the biggest roundabout in the world: 2.2 miles, with a diameter of 3.5km

Universities, colleges and schools in Malaysia

Johor Bahru

Seri Iskandar

Subang Jaya

How to Apply to a Master's in Malaysia

If you've decided to study a Master's degree at a university in Malaysia, you will have to gather the right documents to prove that you fit the university requirements. Provide complete personal information, previous qualifications, financial information, and a personal statement.

What documents do I need to provide to apply in Malaysia?

You'll be asked to present supporting documents including:

  • high school or Bachelor’s diploma;
  • academic transcripts of previous studies;
  • passport and/or birth certificate scan;
  • CV;
  • test scores (GRE, GMAT, GPA);
  • proof of funds;
  • letters of recommendation;
  • portfolio and/or writing samples.

Prove your language skills

To show that you have the right English skills, you'll have to also present an IELTS, TOEFL or C1 Advanced language certificate. If you don't meet the minimum language scores you will have to improve them by taking an English preparation course.

Application deadlines for Malaysia

The deadlines for applying to a Master's in Malaysia are usually during autumn (September- October), or in spring (May-June). Many universities have rolling applications, which means you can apply whenever you are ready.

Interesting programmes for you

Find Short Courses in Malaysia

Numerous education initiatives in the world were formed to promote international cooperation and academic exchange between universities as well as attract students and staff worldwide. This focus on international student education provides high quality programmes in various fields of study and prepares students for future careers anywhere in the world.

Studying, for instance, in Australia, Asia, Europe or America represents a wide range of opportunities to see the world and interact with other students from different countries. Different study options allow students to hold a job during their study years in order to pay for their education, if they wish to do so. Online programmes help you get an international education without having to leave home.

The number of English-taught short courses in Asia, Australia, Europe and The United States are continuously rising in popularity in the last few years. Many countries offer English-taught study programmes, including: Australia, China, Denmark, Finland, Belgium, Italy, Switzerland, France, Spain, Sweden, Germany, the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, the United States and more. Other English short courses may be found in the rest of the European countries as well.

Short courses / Summer Courses

Short courses offer a great variety of subjects for a short and fixed period. This period can vary between a week to six weeks, depending on country, institution and course. This is an excellent opportunity to gain academic, cultural and social experience if you are not able to access long-term study opportunities. A wide variety of countries and institutions offer summer and short courses in all kinds of subject areas. It is a great opportunity to get some background information for your own research, to learn a language or to gain knowledge on a related topic.

Sometimes summer and short courses provide students with short-term housing. Therefore, it is useful to find out if housing is included in the fee of the summer or short course you wish to apply for.

Discover other countries

The Netherlands is a very popular study destination. Internationals choose this beautiful country because Dutch universities are some of the best in Europe, the living standards are high, foreigners are always welcome, and you get to live in one of the happiest and safest countries in the world. The Netherlands is also renowned for innovative technologies and engineering solutions, which is reflected in the wide range of Engineering degrees offered by universities. English is spoken by around 90% of Dutch citizens, so forget about language barriers. Also, bike lanes and the “cycling culture” will help you to stay fit and healthy, and there are diverse job opportunities and internships for international students.
Finland is an excellent choice for all internationals and especially for EU/EEA students who can study at local public universities for free. The beautiful Nordic country has one of the best education systems in the world and ranks among the safest and happiest nations in the world. You can also choose from over 400 English-taught programmes. In your spare time, you can explore the breathtaking Finnish nature and landscapes, as well as the numerous lakes that give the country the nickname ‘The Land of a Thousand Lakes.’ From here, you can easily travel to neighbouring countries like Norway, Denmark, Sweden, Russia, or Estonia.
Ireland is among the top countries in the world in terms of quality of life, peace, safety, and development. It represents an appealing blend of beautiful landscapes, English-speaking environments, and a strong, welcoming, and rich culture — of which the Irish people are very proud. International students also enjoy the full support of Irish universities, which hire and train staff that are able to help with accommodation, studies, visa details, or any other challenge.
Norway is a paradise for anyone who wants to study abroad for free. Public universities don’t charge any tuition fees. This policy applies to all international students, regardless of their nationality. The academic standard is very high, and professors are easy to approach, always willing to go the extra mile for their students. Additionally, classes are organised in small groups, which further improves learning and cooperation. You can choose from a wide range of English-taught programmes, and you don’t need to worry about language barriers outside of classes either, because most Norwegians speak English as a second language. Internationals should find it easy to adapt to Norway’s society, which is based on equality and fair opportunities — reflected both in the legal system and in people’s behaviour.
Greece is the cradle of European civilization and the birthplace of philosophy. Greek universities and colleges have a long history in academics, attracting international students from all over the world. Classes are not typically formal, so you can expect open discussions between students and professors, in line with the classical philosophical debate tradition. EU/EEA students don’t pay any tuition at public universities, while non-EU/EEA citizens pay low fees. In Greece, you’ll also enjoy the well-known local hospitality and the wonderful Mediterranean climate. There are many landmarks and monuments waiting to be explored, including the Acropolis, Delphi, the Parthenon, and many others.
Sweden is a very ambitious, eco-friendly, and visionary country. For example, by 2040, it aims to produce all its energy from renewable sources. Universities play an important role in achieving development goals, thanks to their world-class research facilities. If you’re from the EU/EEA, you can study at public universities for free. As a student, you will discover and easily adopt the three main values of Swedish society: freedom, equality, and sustainability. These values are reflected in every aspect of the local society, and you’ll quickly learn to appreciate them. Language barriers are also almost non-existent since around 80% of Swedes speak English.
Switzerland has one of the most advanced free-market economies, which is reflected in the high living standards and the satisfaction of people living here. In terms of higher education, Swiss universities are constantly ranked among the best in Europe, and they shine in areas like Business, Tourism, Culinary Arts, and Engineering. When compared to Western universities, tuition fees in Switzerland are affordable, and all studies — especially PhD programmes — are world-class. You’ll have the opportunity to develop in a multilingual environment and try learning international languages like German, French, or Italian. If you settle down here, the unemployment rates are low, and salaries are well above the European average.
United Kingdom
United Kingdom
Universities in the UK are some of the most highly regarded in the world, and for good reasons. Some of the world's most highly regarded research takes place in British universities, which are regularly featured in international rankings. While studying in the UK, you will be able to develop in a highly multicultural environment with high chances of pursuing lucrative careers after graduation. The teaching in the UK is designed to encourage new idea generation, encouraging individual research and group cooperation, through class discussions and creative assignments.
Canada is one of the most popular study destinations in the world due to its high focus on the quality of its universities and its emphasis on attracting international students who can later immigrate. Canadians are very welcoming to international students and they invest a lot into making sure students are safe, treated fairly, and enjoy their stay in the country. Study in one of the strongest economies in the world while enjoying a high living standard and a flexible study environment. Classes have smaller student groups ensuring everyone gets the attention they need, and encouraging group assignments and debates.
United States
United States
The United States is home to some of the most prestigious universities and colleges in the world. With over 150 universities featured in international rankings, the U.S. has some of the best business schools, medical schools, and engineering schools. Universities and colleges in the U.S. are well known for academic flexibility and ways to customize your study experience with optional studies and extracurricular activities. Depending on where you will be studying, you will be able to visit iconic places like the Statue of Liberty, Empire State Building, Goldengate Bridge, The Grand Canyon, Mount Rushmore, Disney's Magic Kingdom Park, and much more.
Israel attracts international students through high standards of education and a wide range of English-taught degrees. Local universities shine in areas like Technology, Sciences, Business, and Entrepreneurship. In fact, Israel is a renowned land of innovation, having earned itself the nickname ‘Start-Up Nation’. While living and studying here, you will discover a wonderful culture developed throughout 4,000 years of history; different cultural influences are noticeable everywhere, especially in Israeli food, art, and history. In major cities, English is widely spoken, so communication shouldn’t be a problem. In your spare time, you can visit one of the over 400 nature reserves and 80 national parks.
By studying in Australia you will take advantage of the great student environment both inside and outside classrooms. In addition to some of the best business and engineering schools in the world, you will be able to explore a greatly developed country that still retains its wild side with its warm climate, beautiful beaches, and the Great Outback, with over 500 national parks. Many Australian universities provide internships and work placements, preparing students early on for the job market.


Go to your profile page to get personalised recommendations!