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USM makes top 50 in world subject rankings

March 4, 2014 | National News

IMPROVEMENT: Eight Malaysian universities on the list for a range of disciplines

KUALA LUMPUR: THE quality of higher education in Malaysia shows signs of progress after eight local universities were named as the top 200 across 30 academic disciplines in the QS World University Rankings by Subject released yesterday.

Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM) led the pack in terms of performance as it became the only Malaysian university to reach the top 50 in the survey, as it ranked 28th for the environmental sciences discipline. USM also made the top 100 in subjects such as computer science and information systems, chemical engineering, civil engineering and mechanical engineering.

University Malaya (UM) performed consistently, after it was ranked in the top 100 in six of the 30 disciplines surveyed.

The six disciplines that UM excelled in were modern languages, computer science and information systems, chemical engineering, electrical engineering, mechanical engineering, and education.

QS head of research Ben Sowter said the rankings demonstrated that Malaysian universities were operating at a higher level within a range of academic disciplines.

"Through taking a more targeted approach to ranking universities, we have been able to pick up on the particular strengths of Malaysian higher education institutions much more effectively than is possible under overall institutional rankings."

The number of Malaysian universities that made the top 200 in the survey increased from six to eight this year, with the two new entries being Universiti Teknologi Petronas and Multimedia University for chemical engineering and computer science, respectively.

Universiti Putra Malaysia was listed in the top 100 for agriculture and forestry studies, and in the top 200 for communication and media studies. Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia was recognised in the top 100 for politics and international studies, while Universiti Teknologi Malaysia was ranked in the top 150 for chemical engineering. Globally, Harvard University in the United States retained its position as best all-round institution, ranking first in 11 of the 30 disciplines surveyed.

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