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Monday, December 27, 2010

Confirmed: IPTAs Change to Summer Break Academic Term - Four Months Semester Break in 2011

Posted by Chong

Rumour has it that all Malaysia local public universities (IPTA such as UM, USM, UKM, UPM...) will follow the summer break semester system from the next intake (2011/2012) onwards. Tracing the origin of the rumour, which has been circulating for a few months now, often reaches lecturers or officials as the sources. Neither Ministry of Higher Education (MOHE) has announced this officially nor do any of the IPTA.

Nonetheless, with MOHE's announcement of important dates for next IPTA intake (2011/2012), which is September 3 and 4, 2011 (register on Saturday or Sunday depending which state the university located), it is safe now to say that this has been confirmed. Not all local public universities have updated their academic calendar to reflect this new change, but a few efficient ones like University Utara Malaysia (UUM) and University Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM) have updated theirs.
UUM Academic Calendar Session 2010/2011:
Second Semester Holidays: Friday, 27 May 2011 – Friday, 9 September 2011 - 15 weeks

UKM Academic Calendar Session 2011/2012:
Pendaftaran Diri Pelajar Baru & Minggu Mesra Pelajar (MMP) / Orientation - 4 Sept - 11 Sept. 2011 - 1 week
Perkuliahan / Lecture commences on 12 Sept 2011
Please take note that first year students will need to attend an one week orientation, which is the reason why their intake registration day is September 3 (Saturday) or 4 (Sunday), 2011 while second year and above will commence their new academic year on September 11 (Sunday) or 12 (Monday), 2011. Also, depending on your IPTA, you will enjoy “summer break” for 15 to 17 weeks!

Note that this unbelievably long (four months!) semester break will only happen in 2011, as the current semester system is adjusting to the newly implemented one for the first time. From that transition onwards, the first semester break in January till February will last for four weeks (one month) and in July till September for 12 weeks (approximately three months).

It is believed that the reason for this change is to attract more international students to further their studies here. By changing the tertiary semester system to be more aligned with the international academic term, it will make local public universities more appealing to international students. Also, this will benefit undergraduates taking programmes with compulsory two months internship during July till September semester break, as now they have a month to rest or recharge themselves before starting their new academic term.

Now, any ideas how will you spend the coming 15 to 17 weeks “summer break”? Internship, part-time, travel, activities, holiday courses? Read our suggestion on how to spend your school holiday wisely.

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