UKM Moved Up In World University Rankings


By Saiful Bahri Kamaruddin

BANGI, 11 Sept 2012 – The National University of Malaysia (UKM) has moved up 18 notches in the World Rankings for Universities, from 279 to 261 as compiled by Quacquarelli Symonds Ltd (QS) World University Rankings 2012/3.

In an immediate reaction, UKM Vice Chancellor, Prof Tan Sri Dato’ Wira Dr Sharifah Hapsah Syed Hasan Shahabuddin said this was UKM’s strongest performance since 2008.

UKM had made methodological adjustments to improve the ranking system and she was happy that the university had made improvements in the two areas where it had ranked poorly before that is in citation and employer reputation.

“Our intense effort to achieve excellence in research is beginning to show results in the citations. However this is only the beginning and everyone must continue to embrace the research university culture by demonstrating academic excellence on academic platforms such as publications in reputable journals.

“Looking at the subject rankings, more efforts must be made in the social sciences and natural sciences where the rankings dropped this year, compared to the rise in Engineering and Technology as well as Life Sciences and Medicine.

UKM, she said, should be congratulated for achieving the performance despite being the only research university to receive substantial budget cut last year.

Unlike UM and USM, UKM did not get additional funds over and above the funding given to all research universities expressing the hope that it will be rewarded in the coming budget  “as we have shown we have the grit to persevere and produce these results”.

With more funding we can be better, she said.

Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM), Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM) and the International Islamic University Malaysia (IIU) have also improved their rankings while Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM) remained at its position as last year.

Malaysian Universities in QS World Ranking

Universities 2012 Rank 2011 Rank
UM 156 167
UKM 261 279
USM 326 335
UTM 358 401
IIU 401 500
UPM 601 601

Universiti Malaya (UM) is the only Malaysian higher educational institution that made it to the top 200 for the second consecutive year. It moved up 11 places to 156 this year compared to 167 in 2011 and 207 in 2010.

Intelligence Unit Head for Quacquarelli Symonds Ltd (QS), Ben Sowter which conducts and compiles the annual World University Rankings, said 2,586 institutions were considered this year.

The rankings were still based on the six indicators used last year – academic peer review, employer reputation review, international faculty ratio, international student ratio, student faculty ratio and citations per faculty as well as overall weightage.

The Massachusetts Institute of Technology of USA topped the QS World University Rankings this year followed by Cambridge University of Britain and Harvard University also of USA.