Archive for the ‘Polytechnic and Vocational Education.’ Category

Making TVET a relevant choice

Sunday, August 12th, 2018

THE Asia Technical Vocational Education and Training (TVET) Forum 2018 recently concluded with Education Minister Dr Maszlee Malik promising to make it the first choice for students in Malaysia.

Few countries have attracted a majority of their students to join a vocational track as their first choice. An exceptional case is Germany.

I visited Germany last year as a TVET visiting professor. I believe the German students are attracted to TVET due to its first-class infrastructure, industry-driven curriculum and high employability.

When visiting a German Berufsschule (vocational school); it was as if I was at a Technical University with first-class equipment, advanced technology and teachers with Masters’ degrees and craftsman qualifications. No wonder, German students are attracted to making this their first choice.


Elite Meister High School in South Korea has attracted high-achievers to choose the vocational track because of its prestige.

In the Fourth Industrial Revolution, the usage of smart robots, autonomous vehicles and Artificial Intelligence should be ubiquitous. Klaus Schwab, the founder of the World Economic Forum, asserts that the fourth industrial revolution will fundamentally alter the way we live, communicate, work and play.

According to McClean (2018), it is estimated that 75% of future jobs will involve Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) knowledge and skills. We will increasingly need workers who have critical thinking and problem-solving skills; have multidisciplinary and cross-cultural competencies; communication skills, and social, emotional, digital and vocational intelligences. In other words, a learner with multiple intelligences should be welcomed to join TVET.

A Korn Ferry recent report shows that a major faux pas is imminent throughout the world. Demand for skilled workers will outstrip supply in most countries. On the global scale, the report has highlighted a global talent shortage of more than 85.2 million people by 2030. In the context of talent crunch, the shortage in Asia Pacific region could reach 12.3 million people and estimated US$4.23 trillion (RM17.46 trillion) of revenue loss by 2030 due to the talent deficit in certain sectors. Even companies that are using Artificial Intelligence and smart robots foresee a growing need for human talent with advance intelligent skills. The Korn Ferry report shows that 67% of CEOs believe that advanced technology is critical for companies’ growth.

The gap between TVET and industry should be reduced. Lack of specific legislation in Malaysia that requires companies to shoulder training hand-in-hand with the public vocational training institutions as in Germany is evident.

Since 1969, Germany’s Federal Legislation makes it compulsory for industry involvement in Vocational Education and Training.

As a TVET expert, I admire the German Vocational Education and Training System because of its focus on quality without any political interference. Excellence in any system requires two things: quality and merit. We need a critical mass of intelligent-workers who are using cutting edge technologies. Malaysia should also become a magnet for attracting the best foreign talent. But more importantly, the government should be mindful of its citizens’ employability in the context of the global talent market.

Adjusting teaching styles

It is essential that TVET institutions and industry invest in intelligent skilled talent, first-class infrastructure and provide continued access to both formal and on-the-job training opportunities. In this sense, the government should embrace more flexible education and training eco-system and labour laws.

Generation Z or millennials will make up 60% of the workforce by 2020. These techno-junkies and Wifi generation prefer an interactive approach to learning, which blends information through a montage of images, icons, sound, video, animation and Artificial Intelligence. Gen Zs take advantage of the enormous resources of the cyberspace by using digital technologies to create something innovative. Unless teachers possess digital intelligence and skills, Gen Zs will get bored. Educators have to adjust their teaching styles to accommodate the psyche of Gen-Tech. A new digital pedagogy is required.

In the digital age, to accommodate the expectations of the Gen Zs, educators need to possess digital intelligence, digital literacy, creative thinking, agility and flexibility. The future of education will be more virtual, mobile, interactive, personalised, dynamic and innovative. Digital learners prefer customised curriculum, instruction, and assessment. To embrace true digital transformation, the need for visionary, creativity, agility, flexibility and esprit de corps among teachers and learners is a must.

SThe intelligent-based TVET model isn’t only about technology, it is about bringing together the power of innovation, a new culture and a new mindset that embraces the change brought by the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

TVET has been rebranded several times in the past. They mostly focused on enhancing the quality of TVET talent and skills. But building “intelligent TVET” is missing from the reform agenda. An intelligent-based TVET model should be developed to bridge its curriculum with the industry’s needs.

Key resolutions from the Asia TVET Forum 2018 are to enhance the 3As: Accessibility, Articulation and Accreditation. But what is lacking is the fourth A – Autonomy for TVET institutions.

American philosopher of education, John Dewey argued that in order for education to flourish, it requires “substantial autonomy” for institutions, teachers and learners.

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The value of technical skills

Wednesday, June 13th, 2018
Hanis Syuhada works with cows as it has been her ambition to care for the well-being of large animals since her primary school days.

Hanis Syuhada works with cows as it has been her ambition to care for the well-being of large animals since her primary school days.

ALBERT Einstein once said: “Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing it is stupid.”

Yet in this corner of the world, many people – the older generation in particular – still do so by holding on to the mindset that achieving high academic scores equates to success.

They deem university education as most prestigious and believe nothing else, including Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET), can beat that.

However, TVET graduates Nur Izzati Athirah Mohamad Yusof, 21, and Hanis Syuhada Abd Halim, 21, beg to differ.

Nur Izzati Athirah, now a full time certified underwater welder and trainer, said she chose the tough profession as it presented challenges, which allowed her to improve her skillsets through experiential and practical learning.

Nur Izzati Athirah dressed in full gear as she prepares to carry out her job under water.

Nur Izzati Athirah dressed in full gear as she prepares to carry out her job under water.

“Some misconceptions people have towards vocational training is that it doesn’t offer job opportunities and that it is hard to enter university with it. We all have opportunities, but it is up to us to find and secure them,” said the lass who completed her diploma in welding technology from a vocational college in Taiping, as well as underwater welding training from Weldzone Training Centre Sdn Bhd.

Hanis Syuhada, a full time assistant veterinarian in a dairy farm in Desaru, Johor, said TVET allowed those – like herself – who are not academically inclined to pursue something which they are passionate about.

“The perception whereby academic achievement is deemed as success is wrong. Getting a string of As in exams does not determine our success in the workplace.

“Those who are good in academics are idea contributors, but it is skilled workers who execute the work,” said the animal lover who now tends to the cows on the farm, caring for their every need from feeding, nursing to performing surgery during their labour.

“Caring for the well-being of large animals was my ambition since primary school, even though I knew it wouldn’t be easy and that not all ladies can handle it,” said Hanis Syuhada who graduated from Kolej Vokasional Datuk Lela Maharaja, Rembau, Negri Sembilan in August last year.

Challenges and advantages

Fondly known as “cow girl” due to the nature of her work, Hanis Syuhada – who wants to be the top in her field – said it was tough breaking into the male dominated sector.

“I have faced discrimination where my male colleagues would tell me that I’m doing is a man’s job.

“I turn their negativity into motivation. The more they tell me I can’t do it, the more I’ll do it to prove to them and myself that I can,” she said, adding that no one should be afraid of pursuing their dreams.

“TVET also made me realise that I can do what my male colleagues can do, and this gave my confidence a boost,” said Hanis Syuhada who hopes more females would follow in her footsteps to take up a course of their liking in TVET.

Fortunately for Nur Izzati Athirah otherwise known as the Iron Lady, she did not face discrimination in the workplace. However, her work environment is its own challenge.

The brave lass has to muster her courage to overcome her fear of water and has to risk running into wild marine animals each time she carries out her job underwater.

Hanis Syuhada works with cows as it has been her ambition to care for the well-being of large animals since her primary school days.

On the advantages, Nur Izzati Athirah said it helped her be braver and toughened her up.

“TVET helped me advance in my career and created healthy competition between me and my male colleagues.

“The training is also important to produce skilled workers that the country lacks,” she said.

Hanis Syuhada agreed, saying that the country can gradually reduce its dependence on foreign workers if more skilled and certified workers are produced locally.

“TVET can also help raise the reputation of Malaysia’s skilled workers sector because the country does have talented individuals,” she said, adding that good skilled workers can also venture overseas to make a good living as well as expand their knowledge in their respective fields.

Bright futures for certified grads

Weldzone Training Centre Sdn Bhd chief executive officer Mohd Shukri Mohd Abdul Aziz said he was proud of Nur Izzati Athirah, noting that she is a good role model for the youth.

“She is doing very well. She tries very hard to do her best because she is competing in a male dominated occupation,” said the man who has over 30 years of experience in the field.

Nur Izzati Athirah’s achievement can open the eyes of other youths, helping them realise that underwater welding can provide one with a promising career, he said.

She has a bright future ahead of her as she has had many job offers coming from within and beyond the country, he added.

Former Deputy Education Minister Datuk Chong Sin Woon previously said TVET students are highly sought after and are being offered good jobs – with about 90% out of 13,000 TVET students securing jobs even before graduating last year.

He noted that the starting salary of TVET graduates started from RM2,000, reaching up to RM5,000 a month – which is comparable to university graduates.

“Vocational and technical graduates don’t just end up opening beauty salons or bakeries, many of them work for multinational companies like (aircraft manufacturer) Boeing, which has a service centre in Malaysia.

“If your children aren’t interested in academic studies, don’t force them. Let them choose their career paths according to their interests,” he said previously.

More to be done in TVET

Mohd Shukri said TVET enables individuals who are not academically inclined to excel in whichever field they are capable in.

“They are able to gain valuable hands-on experience as well as get good certification upon completing a certified programme,” he said.

However, he pointed out that initiatives to propel TVET are still lacking in the country.

“There are roughly 53 institutions in Malaysia that train welders, but sadly many of them train students using outdated machines and technology.

“I engaged about 100 TVET graduates previously and they didn’t know how to operate the new machines. They had to go through another round of intensive training and that cost time and resources,” he shared, noting that there is a gap between TVET institutions and the industry that needs to be filled.

“Institutions need advisors who are from the industry to keep them updated on what is happening at grassroots level. They also need to be more open to suggestions and should not get angry when issues are brought up,” he said.

He also shared that success stories of TVET graduates as well as those who draw a salary of RM5,000 a month make up a very small percentage and this should change.

For more females to break into male dominated fields, Mohd Shukri said workers’ – the males in particular – need to improve their proffesionalism.

“Some female welders I have trained were prohibited from entering their work premises to carry out their jobs, not because they were not good in what they do, but because the management was concerned on their safety as the number of male workers greatly overshadowed them,” he said.

With only about 8% of secondary students involved in TVET last year, Chong had reiterated to parents to change the outdated view that university education was more prestigious, especially when university graduates were struggling to secure jobs.

He pointed out the country must catch up to advanced countries like Germany and Switzerland, where almost 60% of their students are in TVET.

During the Going Global 2018 international conference held in Kuala Lumpur last month, Asean Secretariat deputy secretary-general for socio-cultural community Vongthep Arthakaivalvatee said Asean was trying to give TVET the recognition it deserves and a special working group has been formed “to push TVET to a higher level within Asean.” He added that these are all part of efforts to prepare the region for the fourth industrial revolution.

By Lee Chonghui
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TVET, fulfilling human capital needs

Monday, May 14th, 2018
Equal value: One of the aspirations of the Malaysia Education Blueprint 2015-2025 (Higher Education) is to have academic and TVET pathways valued and cultivated equally. — Bernama

Equal value: One of the aspirations of the Malaysia Education Blueprint 2015-2025 (Higher Education) is to have academic and TVET pathways valued and cultivated equally. — Bernama

TECHNICAL and vocational education and training (TVET) is not only meant to fulfil the human capital needs of the industry, but also to provide social mobility opportunities to the marginalised.

Higher Education Ministry Polytechnic Education director-general Prof Dr Mohd Ismail Abd Aziz said about 80% of students in polytechnics are from families in the B40 category.

“Many people enrol in TVET courses because they’ve missed the opportunity to enter university.

“This isn’t because they are not smart but it’s because they come from difficult backgrounds,” he said.

For those who are less academically inclined, he added that, the TVET pathway still allows students to gain professional certification, obtain decent jobs and move up the social ladder.

He explained that students can pursue their certification at one of the 105 community colleges in Malaysia before continuing their diploma at a polytechnic.

From there, they can study for their degrees in university and even continue right up to PhD level.

During the recent Going Global 2018 international conference, Prof Mohd Ismail said Malaysia is actively promoting TVET as the educational pathway of choice to its citizens.

He said one of the aspirations of the Malaysia Education Blueprint 2015-2025 (Higher Education) is to have academic and TVET pathways valued and cultivated equally.

Under the Economic Transformation Programme, Malaysia will require a 2.5-fold increase in TVET enrolment by 2025.

Pathway of choice: Prof Mohd Ismail (standing) speaking to delegates during the Going Global 2018 international conference.

Pathway of choice: Prof Mohd Ismail (standing) speaking to delegates during the Going Global 2018 international conference.

Presently, there is an undersupply of TVET workers in 10 of the 12 National Key Economic Area sectors.

Prof Mohd Ismail was one of the presenters during the “What Skills Do Learners Really Need?” during the conference.

He said that the ministry has also been actively and continuously engaging with the industries to find out how TVET institutions can fulfil industry needs.

“We ask them what it is they want from the education institutions? What do they want in the curriculum? What type of graduates do they want and when do they want them?” he elaborated.

He said that industry representatives also come to the polytechnics to teach students.

They have also given their input and helped design our programmes, he added.

The Malaysian polytechnics and community colleges have a very good employability record.

“Around 95%, which is the expectation set by the Higher Education Ministry for our TVET programmes,” he added.

“The industries expect students coming out from our TVET institutions to be able to start work immediately after completing their courses.”

There are many industry-led components to ensure TVET graduates are highly employable.

One of them is work-based learning, said Prof Mohd Ismail, where the students spend a year or more working in the industry to gain experience.

There are about 16,000 industry partners working with the ministry to improve and promote TVET education in Malaysia.

Based on their discussions, he said the industry has asked that students coming out from TVET institutions be holistic, entrepreneurial and balanced.

To achieve this, Prof Mohd Ismail says all 37 polytechnics, 105 community colleges and 20 public universities have implemented the Integrated Cumulative Grade Point Average (iCPGA) system to gauge student outcomes.

The iCGPA assesses students across eight domains of learning outcomes including knowledge, social responsibility, communications, leadership and teamwork, problem solving skills, entrepreneurial skills, as well as values and ethics.

With these skills, combined with the “hard skills” they learn at the TVET institutions, these students are ready to meet the needs of the fourth industrial revolution, he added.

During the Redesigning Higher Education for 4.0 Industrial Revolution – The Asean Experience session, Higher Education deputy secretary-general and chief information officer Datuk Dr Kamel Mohamad said the Higher Education Ministry wants to recognise the importance of TVET professions.

“Right now we are promoting TVET no longer as a second choice,” he explained.

He added that the government has taken various initiatives to promote TVET including the formation of the Malaysia Board of Technologists to recognise technologists and technicians as recognised professions.

The ministry, he added, has merged the department of polytechnics and department of community colleges to ease collaboration among the departments.

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TVET, the way forward

Sunday, March 25th, 2018
Fajura (second from right) says there is no age limit for those interested in joining Limkokwing TVET International as there is no barrier to lifelong learning.

Fajura (second from right) says there is no age limit for those interested in joining Limkokwing TVET International as there is no barrier to lifelong learning.

CRUCIAL emphasis is placed on the importance of technical and vocational education and training (TVET) and its role in equipping young Malaysians for the fourth industrial revolution.

The Government has also frequently conveyed its aspirations of producing highly skilled Malaysians who can contribute to its aim of positioning the country among the top 20 nations by 2050.

In line with this, Limkokwing University of Creative Technology has launched the Limkokwing TVET International, an initiative by the university to spearhead TVET education and training.

“The TVET (landscape) is huge. “We need to change the mindset of Malaysians who think only students who do not pass or do well in school sign up for it.

Fajura said courses will begin on April 15, and the varsity expects a minimum of 15 students per course.

There is no age limit for those interested in joining Limkokwing TVET International as there is no barrier to lifelong learning, she added.

Some of the objectives behind the initiative include educating people on the kind of opportunities that are available when one is skilled in areas they did not expect would be available to them.

In addition, the Limkokwing TVET International is a platform for working adults to gain professional recognition in order to progress in their careers.

Acknowledging the potential the country has, Fajura said Limkokwing TVET International also aims to make Malaysia the hub of skilled resource.

The programme has at least 450 modules and is open to the public, both Malaysians and non-Malaysians.

Fajura said the courses are flexible as there are short and long courses.

The former runs between one day to a month, while the latter runs between six months to one-and-a-half years.

Limkokwing University of Creative Technology Industry Empowerment senior vice president Datuk Raja Aznil Raja Hisham said the university does not aim to produce mere job seekers but job creators.

The university is a strategic partner with the Human Resource Ministry to develop structured courses and nurturing existing programmes, Fajura said.

By the end of the course, students will be assessed by the university through examinations and projects.

Assessments will also be carried out by industry partners, where students will be evaluated through their work portfolio.

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TVET System Vital to meet Needs Of Industry 4.0

Sunday, January 14th, 2018

NILAI, Jan 12 (Bernama) — As Malaysia’s premier Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) institution, polytechnics under the Higher Education Ministry should play a big role in that field of education.

Polytechnic Education Department director-general Prof Datuk Dr Mohd Ismail Abd Aziz said this was because the TVET system was now seen as one of the most important education fields to drive the country’s future and meet the needs of the Fourth Industrial Revolution (Industry 4.0).

As such, he said, lecturers and students at polytechnics should be prepared to face the global challenges in a bid to realise the country’s aspiration to become a developed nation.

“Lecturers should not confine themselves to the existing knowledge in their field, they are very talented and they must be willing to relearn and get the second skill. For students, they must be mentally and physically prepared to meet future challenges,” he told reporters after delivering the 2018 New Year message at the Nilai Polytechnic here today.


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Recognition for tech and vocational job holders.

Saturday, December 30th, 2017
Idris and Ahmad Zaidee (right) lifting up the plaque at the closing of the summit. Looking on is Dr Hamisah.

Idris and Ahmad Zaidee (right) lifting up the plaque at the closing of the summit. Looking on is Dr Hamisah.

TECHNOLOGISTS and technicians can no longer be considered as “second class engineers”.

In fact, thanks to the establishment of the Malaysia Board of Technologists (MBOT), jobs under these categories will now receive the recognition and accreditation they deserve.

Higher Education Minister Datuk Seri Idris Jusoh said the board formed by the Government, plays an important role in upholding the integrity of the professions.

“MBOT also gives a space to technologists and those in the technical and vocational fields to receive proper training because they are required to face the fourth industrial revolution,” he said during the recent closing of its Technology and Technical Accreditation Summit 2017.

Recognising these professions is not something new as this is already practised in countries like France and Korea, said Idris.

“TVET (Technology and Vocational Education and Training) is growing just as fast as conventional academics in this country,” he added.

Idris also said that MBOT has partnered with Malaysian Qualifications Agency (MQA) to give accreditation to courses for technologists and technicians.

The Technology and Technical Accreditation Council and the Technology and Technical Accreditation Secretariat is the result of this partnership, he said.

To date, the agency has received more than 30 accreditation applications from public institutions of higher education for their courses.

During the summit, 17 higher education institutions, which were given self-accreditation status by MQA, and four programmes from Universiti Teknikal Malaysia Melaka (UTeM) were accredited by MBOT and MQA.

Also present at the event was MBOT President Tan Sri Ahmad Zaidee Laidin and Higher Education director-general Datin Paduka Dr Hamisah Tapsir.

Meanwhile, Bernama quoted Idris as saying that students who are currently pursuing their PhD under the ministry’s sponsorship will be allowed to extend the duration of their studies.

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Skilled workers at the ready

Thursday, October 26th, 2017
Mohd Ismail Abd Aziz (right) and Marufah Jailan, the Malaysia representative of Worldskill Competition 2017. NSTP/ROSELA ISMAIL

OFTENTIMES, when a school-leaver fails to meet the entry requirements of public universities, the assumption is that he will be denied the opportunity of a good job or a promising career.

Professor Datuk Dr Mohd Ismail Abd Aziz said this is a perception that needs to be corrected.

The director general of the Department of Polytechnic Education at the Ministry of Higher Education (MOHE) said students who miss out on a place at university have every chance to achieve success in the form of employment or establishing their own businesses after a Technical and Vocational Education (TVET).

“Due to economic reasons during their schooling years, many students — particularly those who did not have the privilege of extra academic assistance — do not make the grade for university. But this shouldn’t be perceived as a major hurdle in acquiring knowledge for a successful working life and aspiring to move up to a higher level in life.

“TVET education develops competitive human capital that is highly skilled and ready for employment in the technical sector, and trade and services. And such skilled workforce is in demand to meet the country’s needs in embracing global challenges. The ministry is committed to the mainstreaming and improving the quality of TVET to make it a popular choice among students.”

At present universities produce 52 per cent of the workforce; the TVET stream generates 36 per cent. “Under the 11th Malaysia Plan 2016-2020, we want TVET’s contribution to increase to 47 per cent by having polytechnics complement universities.”

Mohd Ismail emphasised that the range of workers graduating from polytechnics is different from those from universities. The employability rate in polytechnics is at more than 90 per cent while at community colleges, it is more than 96 per cent.

“Our mandate is to be industry-driven so, therefore, we ensure our graduates are employable and industry-ready through formal, non-formal and informal learning. We strive to empower learners through the enculturation of lifelong learning and development of entrepreneurial skills. We also aim to enhance industry-driven programmes through active engagement with industries and communities.”

Since stepping into his current position slightly more than two months ago, Mohd Ismail has been engaged in talks with captains of industry.


“Our approach is this: Tell us what you want, we can produce it. Our curriculum can be modified accordingly,” he said, citing the newly introduced Diploma of Digital Technology for the present academic year as an example of how adaptive and responsive the Polytechnic Department is.

“The programme is a result of talks with the industry that started in June. The industry wanted graduates ready for the digital revolution. We discussed the curriculum through July and August. By September, it was ready and open for enrolment.

“We have freedom to change 30 per cent of our curriculum as approved by the Malaysian Qualifications Agency (MQA) and we are able to quickly adapt our curriculum to industry demand. We have to be agile to be relevant. And this is as important as technology, things are moving very fast.”

Polytechnics staff who started their careers some 20 years ago pose one of the challenges of the current pace of changes. “I promote reskilling and upskilling, and encourage them to get a second skill. This is important because they are in danger of becoming irrelevant. We cannot be hiring new people all the time.”

There are 7,559 teaching staff at the 36 polytechnics under MOHE across the country. Some 6,460 are lecturers with industry exposure. Fifty-seven per cent of the total are bachelor degree holders, 37 per cent have master’s degree and one per cent are doctoral holders.

Staff who share the same vision is important to produce graduates with creativity, integrity, agility and professionalism, said Mohd Ismail.

On the quality of education in polytechnics, he said TVET programmes are accredited by the Asia Pacific Accreditation and Certification Commission as TVET providers.

“The country has eight out of the Top 10 polytechnics in the Asia Pacific. We are recognised internationally and by engaging with industry, we make sure our curriculum is always relevant and ensure employability. We don’t compromise on quality and are compliant with requirements as stipulated by MQA. While we get 100,000 applications for our programmes annually, we want more quality students to join,” he said.

Mohd Ismail added that polytechnics are responsive to the industry and industry-driven. “The name ‘polytechnic’ denotes a multi-skilled institution. It meets the demands of the industry by supplying a workforce with the right skills — highly skilled workers who can value-add products and services. This is our charter and we don’t want to lose sight of it.”


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Vocational College Graduates Have Opportunity To Pursue Tertiary Education – MOE

Saturday, September 30th, 2017

LABUAN, Sept 29 (Bernama) — The Ministry of Education (MOE) has assured vocational college graduates that they will have the opportunity to pursue tertiary education in institutes of higher learning (IPTs) nationwide.

Its deputy minister, Datuk P. Kalamanathan urged students with diploma from their respective colleges to sit for the Accreditation of Prior Experiential Learning (APEL) with working experience or at least score Cumulative Grade Point Average (CGPA) of 3.67 and credit in Bahasa Melayu in the Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia (SPM) examination.

“Parents of children studying at vocational colleges must not worry that their children will be left behind in the admission to IPTs, there is no issue about this,”he told a press conference after attending An Evening with Labuan Teachers at Labuan Matriculation College, here today.

The Malaysian Qualification Agency (MQA) had issued statement early this year that vocational college graduates who received Malaysian Vocational Diploma (DVM) can pursue their education at IPTs immediately subject to passing the equivalent of SPM-Malaysian Vocational Certificate (SPM-SVM) set by the Malaysia Examination Board and others set by the MOE and Ministry of Higher Education.

MQA said vocational college graduates still have the opportunity to pursue higher studies even though they began working early as the APEL certificate issued is a replacement for SPM and recognised by the Ministry of Higher Education.


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TVET to meet industry needs

Sunday, September 10th, 2017

MORE educationists and institutions are realising the importance of technical and vocational education and training (TVET).

One of them is Majlis Amanah Rakyat (Mara), which believes that through TVET, the Government’s National Transformation 2050 (TN50) initiative can be achieved.

It is confident that the the economic and technological development of the country can be realised with TVET.

In its effort to achieve this, Mara recently launched an Industrial Centre of Excellence (ICoE) in the field of Electronic Engineering at the Mara-Japan Industrial Institute (MJII) in Beranang, Selangor.

Mara director-general Azhar Abdul Manaf congratulated MJII for their effort. “MJII has earned international recognition as a ‘MikroTik Academy’.

“The institution has also become a ‘LabVIEW Academy’ collaborator with Mara and National Instruments, which focuses on graphic software programming, testing and measurement instrumentation.

“By establishing these academies, students will be prepared with a curriculum that is aligned to industry needs, besides obtaining international recognition as an added value to their engineering diploma,” he said at Mara’s Industry and Institution Engagement 2017 programme.

The certification is also open to students from other higher learning institutions, as well as those in the workforce who wish to enhance their curriculum vitae.

Azhar said the additional certificate students receive will be able to accommodate the market demand for skilled manpower.

Mara also has ICoE’s located in other centres which focuses on specific areas such as Plant Design and Modelling Excellent Centre in Kolej Kemahiran Tinggi Mara (KKTM), Kemaman, Terengganu, Additive Manufacturing Research and Innovation Centre in KKTM Kuantan, Pahang and International Welding Inspection & Certification Centre in Institut Kemahiran Mara in Jasin, Melaka among others.

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Vocational training to keep students out of trouble.

Thursday, June 22nd, 2017

PUTRAJAYA: The Education Ministry wants to use a vocational pilot programme to keep students with disciplinary problems out of trouble, said Deputy Education Minister Datuk Chong Sin Woon.

He said the Upper Secondary School Industry Apprenticeship (Pima) programme, introduced at a national school in January, was producing positive results.

The programme, which the mi­­nis­­try plans to roll out in all secondary schools next year, was to dis­­courage students from skipping classes or dropping out entirely, he said.

Under Pima, students who are not academically inclined will have a chance to acquire vocational skills and industrial training during school hours, Chong said at a press conference yesterday.

Feedback from the school which conducted the pilot project showed that students’ attendance rate was high, he said.

Pima, which involves Form Four and Five students, is an extension of the National Dual Training System, which was introduced by the ministry in 2012.

These students will spend 70% of their time on industrial training and 30% on academic studies.

At the end of the programme, they will be given either a Sijil Pela­jaran Malaysia or Sijil Kemahiran Malaysia certificate.

Companies participating in Pima should be located near the school to provide training to students while prioritising their safety.

On last week’s death of 18-year-old T. Nhaveen, who was targeted by bullies, Chong said records showed that the boy had never lodged any official complaint about his attackers, known to be his former schoolmates.

He said it was important for detailed reports to be lodged, adding that teachers, students and victims should make official complaints about bullying.

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