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

1. Comprehensive Review
  • Overall, The School has implemented the action plans comprehensively and thoroughly good. The School is also very responsive in adjusting to environmental changes that occur, especially with the Covid-19 whereby no face-to-face classes are allowed, the MBA program continues online, foreign students are not able to travel to Malaysia due to the closure of international borders, and there are rapid changes of technology. The School also changes the curriculum to deal with future job demands by getting input from stakeholders.
  • The School presented comprehensive information to the PRT during the review process. There was active participation and information sharing by all members involved in different meetings. The School has presented adequate evidence in support of the action items that were achieved. The reasons for non-achievement were discussed satisfactorily along with the reasons.
  • The School reviewed the internal audit procedure on administrative operations and revised the frequency of audit to 2 times per year.
  • The School’s annual report has available on its website as it serves as the first reference document for external parties. The audit results have been shared with Industrial Community Advisory Panel members.
  • The School has implemented most of its plans as intended, and has met the standards and criteria in ABEST21.
  • In the case of the action plans that were not implemented, the School gave clear reasons, and modified the action plans in accordance with changes in the environment.

The School’s Feedback:

Thanks for the feedback. The Covid-19 pandemic has brought huge challenges to the School (and the world). The faculty members have worked very hard to navigate through it. We are glad that the PRT is satisfied with the action plans and justification given. We will continuously review and improve the School’s practices to meet all the standards and criteria of ABEST21.

PRT Responses:

The reasons are acceptable.

2. Dramatic Quality Improvement


“MBA and Online MBA Programs’ Curriculum Review”


GSB introduced two new specializations, Business Analytics and Digital Leadership, with a total of 8 new courses in the 2020/2021 academic year. This new specialization will pave the way for aspiring learners to acquire new competencies, so they are well prepared to seize arising opportunities in a rapidly changing business environment that is driven by Digitalization and Automation. This is in line with the focus on IR4.0 and is also aligned with the requirements of the industry/ workforce in the vicinity. This will further enhance academia-industry collaborations and also improve employability of graduates.

  • The School has developed an in-house system to collect important data (publication profile, student profile, AOL) and evidence. The AMS is 60% complete.
  • Academic staff have secured various grants for research and publication purposes as follows:
    • 20 academic staff members received a University grant (e.g., Bridging, Short-Term, and RUI grants)
    • 10 academic staff members received an industry grant from TEKUN
    • 2 academic staff members received FRGS
    • 3 academic staff members received a national grant
    • 1 academic staff member received an international joint-research grant
    • 1 academic staff member received an international research grant.
  • The university provided funds for the School to hire supporting faculty members. Effective July 1st, 2021, the School has three supporting members of foreign nationality who do research and teaching virtually due to the mobility restrictions in place. The appointment is for one year and on a contractual basis.
  • Hope to nurture business leaders who are able to ride on this new wave and make an impact in their respective job functions. Undoubtedly, this new specialization also serves as a window to new career opportunities.
3. Matters to be noted
  • Due to the changes in environment, the School has to adapt quickly to 100% online mode. Adapting to online mode of working is a challenge for the faculty and staff. For example, conducting exam online can be a challenging task. Therefore, the School may want to focus on the assistance given to faculty and staff members in terms of training, IT facilities (hardware and software), or perhaps to subsidize data plan (since they are working from home), etc.
  • Similarly, students are also facing similar challenges when attending 100% online class, because some of them are used to face-to-face class. Some students are in different countries with different time zone. Therefore, services rendered to them need to be fast, efficient and perhaps beyond the School’s official working hours.
  • The School is encouraged to focus on digitalization of its systems and processes to provide better learning for students and improving staff productivity.
  • The School needs to continue to support its students and staff to ensure an environment that encourages both learning and health & safety (physical and mental well-being) during these challenging times.
  • Campus must focus on improving problem solving in the online learning and teaching process because some students come from various countries that have time differences.
  • IT facilities must be improved because all affairs are fully digitized, as in IR4.00. Even now the IR5.0 was already introduced.
  • In this Covid-19 situation, it is hoped that the School will provide scholarships to students, and the will seek other sources of funds for this purpose as well.
  • Critical thinking, analytical writing is very important in assessing prospective new students who will enter the School. CGPA and working experience have not been able to measure it, so School needs to consider it as a condition for new student admission exams.
  • The School has reviewed all the strategic goals, and the progress of the goals is fulfilled as planned because the 5-year strategic plan (2018-2022) will be completed next year. The School intends to measure achievements and their alignment with Mission, Expected Outcome, and Supporting Strategies.
  • Link and match between faculty and industry is very important to broaden faculty members’ knowledge, improve their knowledge and skills in providing lecture materials in the classroom and to achieve the School’s vision and mission. But for students, this industrial attachment must also be planned.

The School’s Feedback:

The School really appreciates the ten “Matters to be noted”. As each of the comments has been addressed at the particular sections, we will not repeat here. Lastly, the School will continue to put efforts in establishing and maintaining first-class education programs.

PRT Responses:

Well done, and always do the best.