No streaming, no PT3...

FROM last year, Form Four students were no longer streamed into the Arts or Sciences. Instead, a new subject package system (see infographics) was introduced.

Education Ministry deputy director-general (policy and curriculum) Datuk Dr Habibah Abdul Rahim explained in December 2019, that students would be allowed to pick between the package options that are designed to meet tertiary education entry requirements and a student’s preferred career path from Year


Besides the fixed packages, students can choose an elective subject based on their interest after considering their PT3, school-based assessment and psychometric test, under the guidance of their school counsellors.

However, questions soon arose over which subject package – science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) or Arts and Humanities – students would end up with without the PT3, a vital component that assesses their core competencies, to guide the selection.

StarEdu finds out how several Form Four students ended up with their selections.

I’m interested in STEM but depending on how well I score for my SPM next year, I’m keen on studying accounting related courses or perhaps economics."" – Erfan Emil Sarifudin, KL

He is in the sub-science class. The package involves him studying any two pure science subjects, Additional Mathematics and at least one elective STEM subject in applied science and technology, or a non-elective STEM subject. The mechanism his school used to determine which package suits the student best was the Form Three mid-term exam results.

I’m not too pleased with the selection as my passion is pure science. I want to study forensics in university and I would like to study biology, which unfortunately my class does not offer. I’m now in the process of appealing to my school to allow me to enter the pure science class".

– Birintha Reshimaa Ganesan, KL

Her school has four classes allocated for the arts and two for the sciences. Teachers advised the student which package would suit her best based on her 2020 monthly exams and her Form Two final exam results. She was then encouraged to join the sub-science class which involves her studying any two pure science subjects, Additional Mathematics and at least one elective STEM subject in applied science and technology, or a non-elective STEM subject.

""Although the school determines the package for us based on the ministry’s criteria, we’re also allowed to appeal to them if we want to change classes. I’ve taken the Arts and Humanities package with pendidikan seni visual and German language as my elective subjects. I hope I can obtain a scholarship to study economics abroad.” – Harshaa Selva Kumar, KL

Her school evaluated the student based on her Forms One and Two year-end exams, Form Three mid-term exams and her psychometric test results. The school takes into account her interest as well.

“They looked at our Forms One to Three results and our subject teachers’ comments to see if the package we want would be suitable for us. I’m in a pure science class with accounts as an elective subject; I’m happy with my choice.” – Sonia Raman, KL

She aspires to study forensic science. She and her peers had to fill up a Google form stating which package they prefer. This came after her teachers gave her a brief introduction to every subject the school offers.

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STEM , streaming , PT3 , Covid-19


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