Master of Business Administration Program, Graduate School of Business Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, Malaysia

1. Review Result

ABEST21 Accreditation Result of Master of Business Administration Program, Graduate School of Business, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, Selangor, Malaysia is as follows:

“ABEST21 certifies that the School’s educational and research activities satisfy all or most accreditation standards. The School’s Kaizen plans are excellent, and quality maintenance and improvement of education and research are very promising and excellent. Accreditation commences April 1, 2022 for a five-year period”

2. Review for the Basic Policies

1) “Globalizing the School’s Research and Education”

Overall, UKM-GSB is fully deploying the globalization of research and education. The School has signed many agreements and memorandums of understandings with various universities and institutions around the world. International guest lecture, exchange program, research collaboration are some examples of the globalization programs.

The School should utilize this opportunity for more research collaborations, teaching exchange programs, appointing visiting professors or guest lecturers, than they are currently doing now. With the renowned reputation of the School and the university, it would help create a globalized learning experience, diversity among staff and students, international collaborations in research outputs, and quality programs.

The Covid-19 pandemic has made it difficult to promote the traditional globalization programs, but it showed new possibilities by utilizing the Internet. It is expected to promote new international cooperation in both research and education fields. For this objective, the School should prepare the facilities, staff and faculty members.

2) “Humanizing the School’s Research and Education”

UKM-GSB is offering many activities that aim to humanize its research and education. Interaction between students and also with faculty members is facilitated through various methods. For both academic and non-academic activities, the interaction is in place, and this improves the education quality.

MBA students are encouraged to be involved in projects that provide social benefits to the society. This appears to be a favorite learning activity for students and alumni. It would be good if the School can also find ways to interact with the community and use students’ projects/theses/dissertations to find solutions for the problems within the community.

In many cases, business and political leaders lose their positions due to fraud and corruption. Therefore, it is important for the School to nurture leaders who have a strong sense of ethics and who can develop their business considering the need for sustainable development.

3) “Collaborating with Industries in the School’s Research and Education”

The School more than fulfils this requirement as it has close interactions and collaborations with the various industries. Collaboration with the industries is the prominent strength of the School. As mentioned by the students and alumni, most of them having a professional background, the interaction with industries is a very important thing, not only because it can contribute more to their current work, but also because they can discuss and share their views and experience with other students from the other industries.

The School has also established various endowment funds from leading companies that helped increase the School’s research output via research grants and scholarships for students. Industry leaders have also been invited to be guest lecturers and speakers at various events for students and alumni.

The School can incorporate this collaboration more deeply by hiring a faculty member with a professional experience.

Digital transformation is underway in various fields. Industry-government-academia collaboration is required more than ever. As one of Malaysia’s leading universities, the School has a big role to play.

3. Review for the Accreditation Standards

1) “Internal Quality Assurance”

  • Standard 1: “Administration and Governance”
  • Standard 2: “Self-Check and Self-Evaluation”
  • Standard 3: “Improvement of Education and Research Environment”

The School shows a good internal quality assurance mechanism, not only the one developed by the school itself, but also the one based on university system. Even though the School has become independent and gets more flexibility, it still acts in line with the university and supports the university objective to provide a good quality of education.

And it is a good thing that the School follows internal quality assurance guidelines from the university and from the government, so that the self-assessment would be monitored not only from both internal and external perspective.

The School does regular reviews to check the quality of its education and ensure that its policies, practices, systems, etc. comply with the various standards.

If the School uses the self-check/self-evaluation to find out Key Success Factors to achieve its mid-term goals, the time and energy to prepare the SCR and the accreditation fees will be rewarded. The SCR should not be just judgmental like pass or fail. It makes sense to accurately diagnose the current situation and consider improvement measures.

2) “Mission Statement”

  • Standard 4: “Mission Statement”
  • Standard 5: “Mission Imperatives”
  • Standard 6: “Financial Strategies”

The School has a clear Mission Statement that is in line with that of the university.

The Mission Statement is shared openly within the school and is transmitted to the staff and students via the course structure, activities, training provided to staff, research collaborations, international agreements, and interactions with the various stakeholders.

The development of the mission statement involves the stakeholders, and the mission is regularly reviewed so that it stays in line with the current conditions.

It would be nice if the Mission Statement conveys the uniqueness of the School and is attractive to the targeted students.

3) “Educational Programs”

  • Standard 7: “Learning Goals”
  • Standard 8: “Curriculum Policy”
  • Standard 9: “Management of Curriculum”
  • Standard 10: “Improvement of Educational Quality”
  • Standard 11: “Diploma Policy”
  • Standard 12: “Learning Outcomes Review”
  • Standard 13: “Globalization of Educational Programs”

UKM-GSB has great educational programs. Applying PDCA and based on its own and the university’s policies, the School puts a lot of effort to increase and maintain a good quality of educational programs.

Learning goals, curriculum, syllabi and related guidance are set up in order to achieve the School’s mission. Self-assessment and inputs from stakeholders are used to provide better educational programs.

Learning goals, curriculum, syllabi and related guidance are set up in order to achieve the School’s mission. Self-assessment and inputs from stakeholders are used to provide better educational programs.

The School’s educational programs are also regularly reviewed and updated based on the feedback from the stakeholders, particularly the alumni and industry leaders.

To ensure the quality of the programs, qualified faculty members are hired to teach in the programs. Industry leaders are also invited to give talks to the students to further enhance their learning experience.

The educational programs of UKM-GSB meet the ABEST21 standards. However, given the progress of the digital economy, as pointed out in the SCR, it is necessary to review the curriculum to ensure swift adaptation.

4) “Students”

  • Standard 14: “Student Profile”
  • Standard 15: “Admission Policy”
  • Standard 16: “Student Selection”
  • Standard 17: “Student Support”
  • Standard 18: “Student Incentive”
  • Standard 19: “Student Diversity”

Starting with the student profile, and followed by recruitment and selection process, the School screens its students properly. Its recruitment policy is in line with that of the university.

5) “Faculty”

  • Standard 20: “Faculty Structure”
  • Standard 21: “Faculty Qualifications”
  • Standard 22: “Maintenance of Education and Research Environment”
  • Standard 23: “Responsibilities of Faculty Members”
  • Standard 24: “Faculty Diversity”

The faculty members are highly qualified and experienced in their area of specialization. More faculty members can be hired to have a better student-teacher ratio. At the same time, more diversity of faculty members would also create a diverse learning experience for the students.

The School provides all the support and facilities so that faculty members can develop and improve their performance in both teaching and research. Each faculty member is encouraged to improve their competency. Good incentives are provided, financial and non-financial.

It can be said that the need to increase the number of teachers is an opportunity for building a curriculum that is in line with the changing times. The School should systematically increase the number of faculty members so that they can open new courses.

The School can also work on creating a succession plan as many of their current staff members are nearing retirement age.

6) “Educational Infrastructure”

  • Standard 25: “Educational Infrastructure”
  • Standard 26: “Globalization of Educational Infrastructure”

UKM-GSB has excellent educational infrastructure that creates good learning and research environment for students and faculty members.

The School has provided updated infrastructure at its various campuses – at the main campus and city campuses. The facilities available are more than adequate to cater to the needs of the students and to provide quality education.

Even during pandemic situation, the School has been able to provide a sufficient infrastructure needed by the students and faculty members. Online education requires new skills, from switching between cameras and PC screens and providing recorded video to instructional design and teaching methods. It will be necessary to enhance the help center that can provide individual support.

4. Good Practice in the Program Management Education

Title: “MBA with Excellent Collaboration with Industries”
Reason: The School has established good collaboration with industries for management education and research.

The School has been able to optimize its relationship with the industry and connect it with education and research programs.

  • Connection with the industry has opened an opportunity of getting source of finance (through research grant and endowment fund).
  • Connection with industry has produced a lot of educational activities, such as sharing session with the CEO, career opportunities, and feedback for the education program itself (for curriculum, teaching methods and assessment of learning goals).
  • In developing competencies, a good collaboration with the industry and alumni that are already working in the industry is a strong advantage for the School. A lot of alumni would like to give contribution to the School, especially in terms of sharing sessions and MBA Project programs.
5. Matters to be noted

Even though the School is one of the best business schools in the country, innovation is important. As society’s transformation into a digital economy accelerates, the School will be more competitive if they drive the Kaizen and transformation well. It is necessary to instill a mindset that it is important to identify issues and take concrete actions for Kaizen, rather than self-affirming that the current situation is satisfactory.

Disruptive innovations are taking place in many fields including education. The School can show the importance of “Action Learning” by doing swiftly itself. Action learning is an effective learning method, and it is also applicable for the School itself to prepare the online programs.

The School should put additional effort to update information regarding alumni. The updated database would show the learning outcomes and the quality of graduates.

Even though they are aware of the challenges the School is facing, administrative staff, alumni and students are very satisfied with the School.