Student Info & Guide

Tips for SPM Students: How to Choose a Better Study Route

by on April 9, 2017 | Career Guide, Top Stories

Tips for SPM Students: How to Choose a Better Study Route

When you have decided on your choice of career, the next important step is to find out what education qualifications you need and how you plan to gain these qualifications.

To begin, here are some questions which will help you consider the education pathway that would be most suited for you and your needs.

Do you want to pursue an academic based programme or would you prefer a vocational based programme which requires more hands-on work? Your answer may lie somewhere in between the two choices but having an idea of what type of programme you prefer will help point you to courses that are more fitting to your nature. In addition, you should scrutinise the coursework and curriculum of a particular course as different institutions could offer very different course methodologies and curricula.

It is important that you understand your academic ability and the career you want to pursue.

Choosing a Course

Another guide is to consider your background and subjects you have studied so far. The list below provides a general guide to areas of study grouped according to your education background (art/science/technical stream). That being said, it is often possible for students from one stream to switch to an area of study of a different stream provided he/she meets the admission requirements of the institution.

Table: A list of disciplines at tertiary education level available to students from the arts or science streams, or both.

Arts stream courses available to Arts Stream candidates Science stream courses available to Science Stream candidates Arts & Science Stream courses available to both the Arts and Science streams candidates
  • Literature**
  • Religious Studies**
  • Performing Arts
  • Fine Arts
  • Others
  • Applied Sciences
  • Life/Biological Sciences
  • Physical Sciences
  • Medicine
  • Dentistry
  • Pharmacy
  • Engineering
  • Health Science
  • Others
  • Accounting
  • Art & Design
  • Architecture
  • Business Administration
  • Banking & Finance
  • Communication Studies
  • Education
  • Environmental Studies
  • Humanities
  • History
  • ICT
  • Geography
  • Graphic Design & Multimedia Production
  • Language & Literature
  • Law
  • Management
  • Mathematics & Statistics
  • Marketing & Sales
  • Quantity Surveying
  • Social Sciences
  • Sports Science

** Might require proof of portfolio

Source: Education Guide Malaysia (14th edition), published by Challenger Concept

Study Options After SPM

If you have just completed your secondary schooling with an SPM qualification, you may be thinking of furthering your education. Before you decide on which institution to apply to, first consider all the study options available to you in Malaysia:

Pre-University Programmes
  • Form 6 STPM
  • Matriculation college under the Ministry of Education Malaysia
  • Matriculation programmes offered by public universities
  • UK 'A' Level, and Australian and Canadian pre-university programmes
  • Pre-university and university foundation programmes offered by private higher educational institutions

Read more about pre-U options:

Tertiary Level Qualifications
  • Certificate or diploma programmes at private colleges
  • Diploma programmes at private universities
  • Certificate or diploma programmes at community colleges or polytechnics
  • Skill qualifications at skill training institutions (offered by government agencies as well as private institutions) - link
  • Industry apprenticeship schemes
  • Certificate or diploma programmes offered by an external examination body at private higher educational institutions
  • Bachelor's degree programmes at Malaysia Teacher Training Institutes

Read more about getting a tertiary level qualification:

Education Guide Malaysia 14th Ed.Source: Education Guide Malaysia 14th Ed.

Need a Copy? Download Order Form here

All rights reserved. No part of this editorial contents may be reproduced, copied, translated, or stored in a retrieval system or transmitted in any form or by any means without the written consent from the publisher Challenger Concept (M) Sdn Bhd (

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