Choos­ing the right path­way

> Speak to qual­i­fied coun­sel­lors who can help iden­tify your strengths and in­ter­ests

The Sun (Malaysia) - - SUNBIZ - ON

them into univer­sity later with­out know­ing they may not need to do that course at all. For ex­am­ple, a stu­dent who wants to be a chef should be look­ing at culi­nary cour­ses at Cer­tifi­cate and Diploma lev­els and not a Pre-Univer­sity pro­gramme.

If stu­dents are un­de­cided, then a tra­di­tional path­way would be best but they still need to know the com­bi­na­tion of sub­jects and where they in­tend to con­tinue their stud­ies.

What is your per­sonal ad­vice? Jerry:

My ad­vice to stu­dents would be to speak to qual­i­fied coun­sel­lors who can help them iden­tify their strengths and in­ter­ests, and then map out the cour­ses which they may ex­cel in once they grad­u­ate.

No one path­way is cor­rect for ev­ery­one. It should be tai­lored to the stu­dents’ ca­pa­bil­i­ties as well as their bud­get. Some may need to study a tra­di­tional Pre-Univer­sity path­way while oth­ers are bet­ter off study­ing Cer­tifi­cate and Diploma or Vo­ca­tional cour­ses.

What is the dif­fer­ence study­ing over­seas and lo­cally? Tony:

In over­seas schools, col­leges and uni­ver­si­ties, the dif­fer­ence be­comes more acute be­cause stu­dents are able to choose their lec­tur­ers, their choice of study times and a wide va­ri­ety of sub­jects.

Stu­dents in most uni­ver­si­ties are able to cross fac­ul­ties to take up sub­jects out­side their ma­jor. Stu­dents choose what they are in­ter­ested in by study­ing out­side of their core sub­jects. That al­lows them to gain the knowl­edge in other ar­eas they may be look­ing at work­ing in when they grad­u­ate.

Stu­dents also gen­er­ally de­velop a more con­fi­dent per­son­al­ity upon their re­turn and are able to work in­de­pen­dently. That is why over­seas grad­u­ates have an added ad­van­tage from the lo­cal grad­u­ates, but we have to take into con­sid­er­a­tion of their in­di­vid­ual per­son­al­ity and at­ti­tude as well.

The ben­e­fits out­weigh the weak­nesses in this choice. The only weak­ness would be the higher costs, but this can be mit­i­gated by a care­fully planned path­way.

What are the cur­rent ed­u­ca­tion trends? Tony:

Stu­dents in Malaysia pre­fer to go for tra­di­tional cour­ses like Medicine, Den­tistry, Phar­macy, Ac­tu­ar­ial Science, Bio­med­i­cal Science and Engineering. But they are un­aware there are al­ter­na­tive cour­ses in their area of in­ter­ests.

There are al­ter­na­tive ca­reers for those in­ter­ested in science like Chi­ro­prac­tic Science, Phys­io­ther­apy and Oc­cu­pa­tion Ther­apy which earn more or just as much as doc­tors and spe­cial­ists over the same pe­riod of time and the tu­ition fees costs half of what a med­i­cal de­gree.

In­stead of Engineering, why not go for Project or Lo­gis­tic Man­age­ment if a stu­dent is not in­clined to­wards Science, but is bet­ter at man­age­ment. Look at how many things are mar­keted on­line to­day and how grad­u­ates are needed to un­der­stand lo­gis­tics, ware­house and ship­ping. Or even Marine Engineering where you de­sign and build oil plat­forms as part of your stud­ies. or they are do­ing it out of pas­sion – but gen­er­ally, they blend both rea­sons to­gether,” he told theSun.

When asked if there is a trend for peo­ple to un­der­take these post­grad­u­ate and doc­toral cour­ses, Siow noted that it was based on the in­dus­tries that they are in.

“For ex­am­ple, there are some coun­tries like Viet­nam and Cam­bo­dia that re­quire its lec­tur­ers to have a PhD to teach in the uni­ver­si­ties. Here, lec­tur­ers need to have a Masters or a PhD, ac­cord­ing to the re­quire­ments of the uni­ver­si­ties,” he added.

He noted that com­pa­nies would en­cour­age their em­ploy­ees to have these qual­i­fi­ca­tions to get re­search 1. Not know­ing your strengths and ca­pa­bil­i­ties and study­ing a course not of their in­ter­ests or to their strengths. 2. Tak­ing the wrong Pre

Univer­sity pro­grammes. 3. Tak­ing the wrong sub­jects in

Pre-Univer­sity. 4. Not check­ing the course struc­ture and course re­quire­ments. 5. Not check­ing the in­sti­tu­tion’s

strengths and fa­cil­i­ties. 6. Be­ing ob­sessed with univer­sity rank­ings rather than the fac­ulty rank­ings. 7. Ac­cept­ing schol­ar­ships

with­out check­ing the de­tails. 8. Not check­ing em­ploy­ment op­por­tu­ni­ties and re­quire­ments. 9. Blindly fol­low­ing friends. 10. Study­ing some­one else’s

dream. done for the or­gan­i­sa­tions.

Siow also added that there are re­tirees who are un­der­tak­ing the doc­toral pro­gramme.

“These peo­ple, es­pe­cially re­tirees, do not want to sit at home ... they want to take the course as part of their self-ac­tu­al­i­sa­tion process,” he said.

AeU is a unique col­lab­o­ra­tive multi­na­tional univer­sity es­tab­lished un­der the aus­pices of the 34 Asia Co­op­er­a­tion Di­a­logue Coun­tries (ACD). All aca­demic pro­grammes are in­ter­na­tion­ally bench­marked, ap­proved by the Malaysian Min­istry of Higher Ed­u­ca­tion and ac­cred­ited by the Malaysian Qual­i­fi­ca­tions Agency.

Tony (left) said there are al­ter­na­tive cour­ses in stu­dents’ area of in­ter­ests, while Jerry (right) said no one path­way is cor­rect for ev­ery­one.

Roshayu: “Stu­dents take up such cour­ses to climb the man­age­ment lad­der.”

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