KUALA LUMPUR, May 2 ― Universiti Malaya (UM) reached a new milestone by breaking into the top 40 of this year’s Times Higher Education (THE) Asia University Rankings.
The result is also an eight-rung improvement on UM’s previous showing in the ladder comprising over 400 universities across 27 countries.
THE judges the universities based on performance in areas such as teaching (the learning environment), research (volume, income and reputation), citations (research influence), international outlook (staff, students and research) and industry income (knowledge transfer).
“Malaysia makes its debut in the top 40, with Universiti Malaya rising eight places to joint 38th, largely thanks to improvements in its scores for teaching environment, citation impact and industry income, as well as a large boost in its international outlook score,” THE said.
The improvement adds to UM’s recent achievements that include breaking into the top 350 of the global THE rankings and being rated 149th for producing the most employable graduates globally.
UM was also not the only local university to show improvement, with Universiti Teknologi Petronas (UTP) placing 98th, up by 16 places from last year’s edition.
Overall, six of the nine Malaysian universities from the 2018 rankings improved in this year’s evaluation.
National University of Singapore (NUS) was also finally unseated at the top of the ladder after a Chinese university ― Tsinghua University ― topped the rankings for the first time ever.
NUS has held the number one spot in the rankings since 2016 and is in second place this year.
THE chief knowledge officer Phil Baty indicated that Chinese institutions continued success in the rankings reflected the country’s large and sustained investment in the higher education sector over many years.
“Leading universities in Japan and South Korea have made significant gains, many institutions in Malaysia are soaring up the list and there are pockets of excellence in India and Indonesia,” he said.
Japan featured the most universities in the rankings, with 103 institutions, while China is the second best-represented country, claiming 72 positions.