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Open University Malaysia (OUM)

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Institution Profile


OUM.jpeg In Malaysia, providing access to higher education is the biggest challenge faced by the government in its effort to become a fully developed country by the year 2020. One approach is to use technology as an enabler to bring education to the masses. Universities are rising to the challenge by enhancing the content of their programmes but more importantly, by leveraging on the latest technologies to improve the delivery system. This approach is widely used in open and distance education as it facilitates greater access to higher education for the masses.

As a result of this new phenomenon, in August 1999, the Minister of Education invited Multimedia Technology Enhancement Operations Sdn Bhd (METEOR), a consortium of 11 public universities in the country, to set up an open and distance learning (ODL) university. The move by the Minister led to the establishment of Open University Malaysia (OUM) in August 2000, followed by its official launch on 26 August 2002 by the then Prime Minister, YAB Dato' Seri Dr. Mahathir Mohamad.

OUM is the seventh private university in Malaysia. Although incorporated as a private university under the Private Higher Education Institutions Act 1996, the University leverages on the quality, prestige and capabilities of its strategic partners - the 11 public universities. OUM adopts the motto "University for All" which is consistent with its philosophy in democratising education. This philosophy underlies the belief that education should be made available to all, regardless of time, place, age and social economic background. The ODL mode is specifically targeted at working adults who need to take care of their families as well as manage their careers while pursuing higher education. Under the able stewardship of the then founder and President / Vice-Chancellor, the late Tan Sri Dr. Abdullah Sanusi Ahmad, and later the second President / Vice-Chancellor, Prof Emeritus Tan Sri Anuwar Ali, OUM has positioned itself as an alternative avenue for the public to gain quality tertiary and lifelong education.

OUM2.jpeg As the first provider of ODL in the country, OUM has played an important role in providing greater access to people from all walks of life to pursue education at the highest level. In line with our motto, "University for All", we have amongst our learner population; teachers, members of the police and armed forces, civil servants, nurses, employees of private companies and many others.

Quality and flexibility are our strengths as indicated by the increasing number of working adults and school leavers embarking on a new learning experience with OUM. With the diligence and commitment of our founding President and the pioneering spirit of our first batch of academics and management staff, OUM now stands proud to see its learner enrolment exceeding 104,362. The University has grown by leaps and bounds in comparison to its first intake of 753 learners in August 2001.

To be the leading provider of flexible learning

To widen access to quality education and provide lifelong learning opportunities by leveraging on technology, adopting a flexible mode of learning, and providing a conducive and engaging learning environment at competitive and affordable cost.

Academic Strengths & Study Mode

All of OUM academicians, tutors and facilitators are well-versed to teach adult learners and conduct distance learning programmes. Qualified tutors appointed by OUM have bachelor degrees, master degrees or PhDs, and at least 3 years' teaching experience in the relevant fields. The majority of them are academicians from public or private universities, while some are from the public and private sectors. There are about 100 full-time academicians and close to 2,000 part-time tutors and facilitators to accommodate the 47 learning centres throughout Malaysia.

OUM provides administrative and academic support to learners that help shape their academic performances as well as their social lives. The delivery methods include face-to-face tutorials, online forum / discussions, printed modules, CD and web-based education. OUM's distance learning programmes allow learners to graduate with tertiary qualifications without leaving or jeopardising their current careers. Tutorials are held during weekends but learners study mostly through self-managed learning.

Programme Outline

We offer programmes at diploma, undergraduate and postgraduate levels. These programmes are offered by the following faculties, namely :

  • Faculty of Business and Management
  • Faculty of Education and Languages
  • Faculty of Science and Technology
  • Faculty of Information Technology and Multimedia Communication
  • Faculty of Applied Social Sciences
  • School of Nursing and Allied Health Sciences

Academic Facilities & Resources

The main campus in Kuala Lumpur is equipped with various facilities for the learners benefit. The Tan Sri Dr Abdullah Sanusi Digital Library currently, has close to 31,732 volumes of printed books in the library system. The library subscribes to 35 online databases comprising e-books, e-journals, e-theses and more. To date, there are more than 90,998 e-books and 33,215 e-journal titles, about 2.4 million e-thesis titles, three newspaper databases and one local legal act database. Resource centres are also set up at various learning centres throughout the country so that learners can have access to printed books as well as digitally-based books and journals.

In addition to that, computer labs are also available both at the main campus and learning centres around the nation. All of the learning centres have wi-fi accessibility for the benefit of the learners. At OUM, IT plays a vital role in the learning process. Hence, computers and software are maintained and updated regularly for the benefit of learners.

Besides computers, the University uses an effective Learner Management System that allows interaction among learners and tutors as well as has learning resources loaded with links and interactivities. The system has evolved throughout the years and learners can now enjoy an enriching learning experience anywhere they go.

With more than 47 learning centres nationwide, there are also more than enough tutorial rooms and exam halls to meet the growing number of learners in the country.

Student Support Services & Student Development Activities

OUM recognises the importance of creating a learner-centred environment to enrich learners' experience and knowledge that leads to high academic achievement and better retention rate. In realising its goal of learner-centredness, the following three attributes are given priority : catering to the needs of the learners, improving the quality of learning experience and using learners' satisfaction results for continuous improvement.

In line with this, the Centre for Student Management (CSM) was established to co-ordinate and administers all matters pertaining to the provision of services to learners. These include Advising and Counselling, Student Support Services, Student Activities, Student Development, Student Welfare, Student Discipline and Student Retention. CSM also conducts regular workshops on learning skills at the various Learning Centres so that adult learners can easily adjust to the blended learning approach at the University and ultimately succeed in their pursuit of higher qualification. Frequent dialogues are also held between learners and management to gain valuable feedback from learners.

CSM's other main responsibilities include giving support besides coordinating all activities run by learners and staff at the Learning Centres. These activities may be those organised by the University, Learning Centres or organisations in collaboration with OUM. CSM encourages learners to form their own informal clubs at the various Learning Centres as a platform for planning and organising activities that are of benefit to them. The counselling service is available free of charge to all registered learners. The service aims to assist learners achieve their personal goals and to help them discover more effective ways to cope with their studies.

Besides counselling, CSM works closely with a centre known as Learner Service Centre where learners can channel their enquiries to the University through various means such as face-to-face, telephone or through a 24-hour enquiry-tracking system known as e-Customer Relationship Management (e-CRM).

In OUM's quest to create an enriching learning environment, there is the Centre for Instructional Design and Technology (CIDT) responsible for the development of learning materials for all OUM learners such as print-based modules, web-based materials and interactive contents. CIDT is also the home for iRadio, a radio webcast service, which disseminates information on academic programmes and provides supplementary learning to all the learners.

Scholarships & Financial Aid

  • National Higher Education Fund Corporation (PTPTN)
  • Employee's Provident Fund (EPF), Account 2 Study Loan
  • Easy and flexible installment scheme (0% interest rate)
  • 10% discount upon full payment of semester fees

Recognition & Achievements

We offer 33 programmes accredited by MQA / PSD and all our courses are recognised and approved by the Ministry of Higher Education Malaysia. We have also achieved many accolades both locally and abroad for our contribution to education particularly distance education :

  • Award of Excellence for Institutional Achievement in Distance Education, the Commonwealth of Learning (2010)
  • Asia HRD Congress Award (Contribution to the Organisation) (2009)
  • Asia Pacific Mobile Learning & Edutainment Advisory Panel (APACMLEAP) – Mobile Learning Initiatives Recognition (2008)
  • Technology Business Review Award for Excellence in Education for Continuous Learningand Adult Education (2007)
  • Technology Business Review Award for Excellence in Education Management – Provision of Continuous Education (2006)
  • Award for Excellence in Distance Education Materials – Learning Skills for Open and Distance Learning, the Commonwealth of Learning (2006)
  • E-Learning Recognition Award, Eszterhazy Karoly College, Hungary (2006)
  • Multimedia Super Corridor Asia Pacific ICT Awards – Best of Education and Training (2006)

Contact Details

Open University Malaysia (OUM)

Blok B, Jalan Tun Ismail,
50480 Kuala Lumpur
Wilayah Persekutuan

Type: Private University & University College

Tel: 603-2773 2755
Fax: 603-2697 8852
Website: http://www.oum.edu.my

Location Map

Key Personnel

Y. Bhg. Prof. Emeritus Tan Sri Anuwar Ali

President/Vice-Chancellor, Open University Malaysia (OUM)

Professor Emeritus Tan Sri Anuwar Ali is one of the leading figures in Malaysian academia. He is currently the President/Vice-Chancellor of Open University Malaysia (OUM) and Chief Executive Officer of Multimedia Technology Enhancement Operations Sdn Bhd (METEOR), the holding company of OUM. Prior to joining OUM, he was the Director of the Higher Education Department at the Ministry of Higher Education (1995-1998) and later, moved on to become the Vice-Chancellor of Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM).

Professor Emeritus Tan Sri Anuwar began his career as an Assistant Director at the then Ministry of Trade and Industry in 1970. Three years later, he joined UKM as a tutor at the Faculty of Economics. His career with UKM spanned over 30 years where he held various posts including the Dean of the Faculty of Economics and Deputy Vice-Chancellor before his appointment as the Director of Higher Education.

During his tenure as the Vice-Chancellor of UKM, he strived to uplift the status of the university to where it is now – a world-class institution. He was actively involved in research and publications particularly in the field of industrial and technological development. In recognition of his expertise, he was appointed as a consultant to prepare the Industrial Master Plan (1986-1995), Action Plan for Technology Development and the Action Plan for Small and Medium Scale Industries for the Malaysian government. He was also the Chairman of the Malaysian Examination Council, member of the Securities Commission and board member of SIRIM Training Services Sdn Bhd.

Professor Emeritus Tan Sri Anuwar was born in Jasin, Melaka, on 11 July 1946. He received his primary education in Tanjung Malim, Perak, and Jasin, Melaka, before joining the Melaka High School. He graduated with a BSc (Economics) degree from the Queen's University in Belfast, Northern Ireland, in 1970. During his early years as a tutor and lecturer at UKM, he furthered his studies and obtained his masters and PhD from the University of Leicester and University of Kent, Canterbury, United Kingdom.

Student Views

Felix Desmond

Bachelor (Hons) in Business Administration

Slide 10

“I was driven to continue learning but at the same time, I wasn’t willing to leave my job. So, I searched for an institution which would be able to provide me with a flexible learning environment. I came to know about OUM through newspapers and after making a familiarization trip, I was convinced. Five years have passed and I am proud to be a degree holder,”

Hafizah Ja’afar & Nor Azize Ja’afar

Bachelor of Education (TESL)

Slide 11

“OUM has opened it’s heart and given us a chance to study with variable learning method such as tutorial and online discussions.”

Nazatul Najahah bte. Ismail

Diploma in Management

Slide 12

OUM  offers the most flexible learning method to cater for busy working adults like me”.

Sanjeev a/l Janardhanan

Master of Management

Slide 12

"The programme has been structured so well that for me, I was very comfortable with it as I had enough time to study, do assignments and also interact  with my lecturers and fellow colleagues”.

Tan Liam Sing

Bachelor Of Business Administration

Slide 11

“Studying in OUM gives me the opportunity for career advancement and promotions.”

Walter Sandosam

Master of Management

Slide 9

“With its blended pedagogy of online, seminars and modules, OUM is truly appealing. I am able to draw up my own learning routine without getting it entangled with my personal or social commitments.”

Ian Murray Mackechnie

PhD (Business Administration)

Slide 12

“Open University, with its flexible learning system, supported by committed staff, was definitely the right choice to pursue my doctoral Studies”.

Kyaw Ahr Kar Nyunt

Master in Information Technology

Slide 9

“I am glad that I chose OUM where learning is fun and less stressful. I have the freedom of learning anywhere at anytime. Unlike conventional learning, I do not have to stick to a routine and attend classes even if I do not feel like doing so. Learning becomes much easier when I have the liberty of doing it at my own pace. For professionals like me, OUM’s open and distance learning (ODL) option is delightful,”