INFORMATION and Communica-tion Technology (ICT) programmes offered at public universities will be the first to be rated. The results of the rating exercise will be published on the Higher Education Ministry's website by this year.
Deputy Higher Education Minister Datuk Fu Ah Kiow said an independent panel commissioned to conduct the rating exercise had begun its task in April.
The panel will judge the programmes based on nine criteria including infrastructure, curriculum, governance and teaching and come up with a rating of between one (weak) and five (best).
Students can make their choice based on these results, he told reporters after officiating at the Malaysian Association of Private Colleges and Universities (Mapcu) National Higher Education Conference on Monday.
The rating exercise is aimed at identifying the strengths and weaknesses of various programmes at public universities.
We hope that by making the ratings public, we will create a healthy and competitive environment and provide an impetus for universities to improve themselves, he said.
Fu added that although the ministry hoped to introduce a similar system for private higher education institutions, this would not be possible in the foreseeable future.
Even for public universities, we will take this one step at a time, rating one or two courses first.
The rating of ICT programmes will not be done annually as we do not have the manpower, said Fu.
The independent panel conducting the rating exercise comprises academics, representatives from industry and professional bodies.