Arshad Ayub Graduate Business School- Shah Alam, Universiti Teknologi MARA, Malaysia

1. Management Accreditation Review Results

  • The SER is well-written, detailed and organized. Many issues were acknowledged and highlighted with specific recommended initiatives to complement. The School has applied for accreditation of only its MBA program based in Shah Alam. However, the School offers 5 masters and 3 doctoral programs in over 12 campuses nationwide (p.3). The SER refers to ONLY one school.
  • The 3-year action plan is comprehensive and based on the issues highlighted.
  • There is a tendency to overstate practices, since some of them might be applicable only for the undergraduate students and not necessary suitable for the postgraduate environment.
  • Although the School has 2 different types of MBA, full-time and part-time, they are treated in the same way. The School needs to be aware that the issues/problems/challenges faced by full and part-time students are different.

“ABEST21 hereby certifies that the program Master of Business Administration, Arshad Ayub Graduate Business School at the Shah Alam campus, Universiti Teknologi MARA, Malaysia has generally met ABEST21 Management Accreditation Standards and the quality maintenance and improvement of education and research in the Masters of Business Administration Degree Programs are assessed as good. The School’s KAIZEN plans are good and quality maintenance and prospects for the improvement of education and research are promising. Accreditation commences April 1, 2015 for a five-year period.”

2. Good Practice in Management Education
“Customized Programs designed for Diversity”

The School implements many good practices to be emulated and learnt. For example, the School:

  • Acknowledges the support for non-business students and offers foundation courses (SER, p.8).
  • Offers the core course “Global Business Issues” (GBI 751) to inculcate awareness of the business impact on the social issues in the local and global context (p.29).
  • Uses case studies in classes.
  • Organizes “Round Table Dialogue” with industry for feedback (p.19).
  • Obtains a consistent inflow of financial contributions in the form of dividends from shares valued at RM5.432 million (USD1.64 million) apart from allocation of funds from the Ministry and the University (p.23).
  • Analyzes student results based on closing the loop (CDL) and Course Quality Improvement (CQI) to be completed by every faculty member (p.41).
  • Conducts entrance and exit surveys at the 2nd and 12th week of every semester (p.45).
  • Conducts internal audit every year since 2013 through its internal quality unit (p.46).
  • Requires students to contribute RM5 every semester. In the event of death, a sum of RM7,000 is bequeathed upon student’s next of keen (p.56).

3. Matters to be noted

  • The School seems to have an ambitious mission and plans to realize this mission. It is interesting to learn how the School implements its plans. Many initiatives and efforts need to be further explained to determine how they are implemented and whether they have been executed effectively.
  • Many general initiatives and program management operations are catered mainly by the University, which might be suitable for undergraduate program and to some extent – for the full-time MBA students. There is a need to focus on the needs of MBA students, especially part-time ones.
  • The School did not report on their rules and standards for recruiting and promoting faculty members. The system that ensures that evaluation of each faculty member is conducted fairly and objectively is also absent.
  • The School intends to introduce blended learning mode. However, this requires a different approach to both student and instructor training and time. No specific plan was laid out for such introduction (p.75).
  • The School claims that it functions as a truly autonomous entity with sufficient financial and human resources and will operate as a strategic business unit by 2017. The School needs to elaborate and explain more about this as currently it is still funded by the Ministry and the University, and utilizes the University staff.
  • The issue affecting the School’s supporting staff and infrastructure is mainly the shortage of administrative staff, particularly technically competent (database expert), and other supporting administrative staff able to assist the School members in terms of educational and research activities.
    • Although these matters are significant, they are not grave in nature. As such, there is no need for immediate action.
    • The matters raised are for the accreditation committee to take note.
    • However, the explanations provided during the on-site visit were satisfactory at this juncture as many of them were at the planning stages. A more comprehensive and detailed review could be ascertained after the implementation.