Study Medicine (MBBS) in Malaysia

The medical profession is one of society's most valuable assets, so it’s no surprise that medical degrees are long and all-consuming
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study medicine in malaysia

Maintaining health level has always been on the red underlined by the government. Medicine study intends to promote and maintain health and wellbeing.

The study of pre-clinical medicine and clinical medicine will teach you the many facets of a human body, how to diagnose and treat diseases.

The medical and health line has been a popular choice. So much so that some of the world’s first universities were medical schools turned into universities as there’s always a high need for doctors.

You will spend five years in university - four if you only count the graduate course - then you’ll be able to work with patients. But, it will take many further years of training to become a specialist in a particular branch of medicine.

What is Medicine all about?

Medicine is the field of health and healing. Health is tightly related to doctors, nurses, and various other specialists.

Medicine covers diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of disease and unfit medical conditions, medical research, and many other areas of health.

Conventional modern medicine is also referred to as allopathic medicine. This involves the use of drugs and surgery supported by lifestyle measures and counselling.

The complementary and alternative types of medicine include herbal medicine, acupuncture, traditional Chinese medicine, art therapy, etc.

What are the fields in Medicine?

Modern medicine has many fields and aspects. Here are some of them.

1. Clinical medicine
Clinical practitioner works directly with patients in a hospital or other healthcare setting, like doctors, nurses, psychotherapists. Laboratory workers and researchers are not considered as clinical practitioner as they don’t deal with patients.

2. Biomedical research
Biomedical scientists use biotechnology techniques to study biological processes and diseases. This are of science seeks ways to prevent and cures to diseases.

3. Clinical research
This area of research finds out the diseases that are present, what causes them, what can treat or prevent them, and so forth. It also aims to find out if certain drugs are safe and effective to treat specific conditions.

4. Surgery
Surgery is necessary to treat some injury, disease, or malformation. A surgery is carried out when the surgeon needs to remove or replace ill organs or tissues, or even, for biopsy.

5. Psychotherapy
Counseling and other forms of ‘talking cure’ can be helpful for people with conditions affecting their mental health, such as trauma, depression, chronic pain, or stress.

What kind of subjects are taught in Medicine course?

Medicine is a broad subject area that can take you into a wide range of jobs. Graduates who wish to specialise in a particular field will have more options than ever.

You will learn the human body’s function, sociology and psychology of ill health and illness. The teaching on general medicine and surgery will come with subsequent years of covering major clinical specialties, such as neurology, oncology, etc.

Many universities will have their own teaching hospitals, which allows you to gain practical experience early ahead on while equipping you for the realities of working life in the medical field.

Some courses are split into pre-clinical and clinical portion; others are more integrated. Some employ a systems-based approach (the nervous and cardiovascular system), others a problem-based approach.

The early stage of the course will nurture your basic skills and knowledge to get you prepared for hospital experience.

Medicine study is carried out in a block system that lasts for 9-16 weeks.

The pre-clinical part spans over the first two years and subjects are delivered in 4 blocks through an integrated approach. The clinical part also encompasses 4 blocks, but in a span of 3 years.

A glimpse of subjects that are offered in MBBS degree at SEGi University:

Year 1 & 2

Block 1

  • Foundation in Medical Sciences
  • Human Anatomy
  • Human Physiology
  • Basic Biochemistry
  • General Pathology
  • Basic Pharmacology
  • Medical Microbiology
  • Medical Immunology

Block 2

  • Introduction to Behavioural Science, Clinical and Community Medicine
  • Biostatistics & Introduction to Community Medicine
  • Research Methodology & Mini Research Project
  • Clinical Methods & Medical Ethics
  • Introduction to Behavioural Science

Block 3

  • System-Based Medical Sciences I
  • Cardiovascular System
  • Respiratory System
  • Haematopoietic System
  • Gastrointestinal & Hepatobiliary System

Block 4

  • System-Based Medical Sciences II
  • Endocrine System
  • Genitourinary System
  • Central Nervous System
  • Musculoskeletal System
Year 3, 4, 5

Block 5 (Junior Clerkship)

  • Clinical Foundation
  • Internal Medicine 1
  • General Surgery

Block 6 (Specialty Clerkship I)

  • General Paediatrics
  • Obstetrics & Gynaecology 1
  • Orthopaedics & Emergency

Block 7 (Specialty Clerkship II)

  • Community-Based Medicine
  • Psychiatry, Rehabilitation & Palliative Care
  • Combined Specialties Postings
  • Ophthalmology
  • Otolaryngology
  • Forensic Medicine
  • Anaesthesiology

Block 8 (Senior Clerkship)

  • Electives
  • Internal Medicine 2
  • Surgery & Critical Care
  • Obstetrics & Gynaecology 2
  • Paediatrics & Neonatology

What are the skills and characteristics needed for Medicine course?

Medicine degree suits those who are ready to make a long-term commitment to become a doctor. Check the following qualities before you decide on taking this course to ensure that you’re prepared:

1. Ability to work under pressure

Working as a doctor, you cannot afford to make mistakes as it can cost you your career, and maybe even your freedom. Therefore, doctors in general, are under a great deal of pressure on a daily basis, and get paid a huge salary as a result.

2. Analysis of varied types of information

Diagnosing a patient involves understanding the symptoms exhibited and putting them together to understand what is wrong with the patient. The doctor may then treat the patient.

3. Communication and interpersonal skills

In order to interact with patients and the general public, doctors must have excellent people skills. This includes being able to explain difficult subject matter while displaying empathy and compassion when dealing with patients.

4. Integrity

Today, the role of a doctor is at risk of being reduced to doing what his/ her patient demands. The autonomy of the patient trumps all. A doctor must be able to maintain their integrity and conscience and refuse to participate in care that they reasonably believe to be harmful to the patient.

5. Attention to detail

If you have ever watched the television show "E.R.", you’ll notice the incredible amount of detail that doctors pay attention to while simultaneously enduring a great deal of pressure. Did we mention the ability to work under pressure is one key trait of becoming a doctor?

What are the top universities in Malaysia for Medicine course?

The table below showcases the top universities in Malaysia for their Medicine course, according to QS Universities:

University Location
Taylor's University Selangor
Sunway University Selangor
University Malaya Kuala Lumpur
Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia Selangor
Universiti Sains Malaysia Penang
International University of Malaya-Wales Kuala Lumpur
International Medical University Kuala Lumpur
Cyberjaya University College of Medical Sciences Selangor
Monash University Kuala Lumpur
University Tunku Abdul Rahman (UTAR) Perak
UCSI University Kuala Lumpur
Management and Science University (MSU) Selangor
International Islamic University Malaysia Kuantan

Also read: Best Medical, Dental & Pharmacy Schools in Malaysia, according to D-SETARA ratings

study mbbs in malaysia

What is the career outlook for Medicine graduates from Malaysia like?

As mentioned previously, the career opportunity for this major is great and can always be found across industries and sectors.

Here are some of the career options that you can consider as a graduate:

  • Doctor
  • Nurse
  • Midwifery
  • Medical research and development
  • Paramedics
  • Emergency medical
  • Paediatrician
  • Physician
  • Medical teacher
  • Clinical forensic medical examiner
  • Therapist
  • Surgeon
  • Anaesthetist
  • Chiropractor
  • Obstetrician
  • Psychiatrist

The wage that you will make while working in this field in Malaysia is comparatively high, but it is not the same across, depending on the occupation.

The below table showcases the different types of jobs that a graduate from medical professionals in Malaysia and the expected salary according to PayScale:

Occupation Estimated Salary (per year)
Doctor RM82,000 - 200,000
Nurse RM30,000 - 60,000
Midwifery RM60,000 - 90,000
Medical researcher RM40,000 - 70,000
Paediatrician RM200,000 - 600,000
Surgeon RM70,000 - 200,000
Psychiatrist RM120,000 - 400,000
Obstetrician RM50,000 - 100,000

How long is the duration of studies for Medicine course in Malaysia?

The duration of studies will depend on the level of studies that is taken.

Bachelor's Degree 5 years
Master's Degree 2 - 4 years

What are the entry requirements for Medicine in Malaysia?

Each university has different entry requirements and the list below does not generalise the entry requirement of universities in Malaysia as a whole.

SPM A pass in SPM / O-Level or equivalent with 5Bs each in Biology, Chemistry, Physics and Mathematics / Additional Mathematics and another subject at school level or its equivalent.
English IELTS (minimum 5.5 - 6.0 overall), TOEFL (minimum 550 or 80)
A Level BBB, ABC or AAC in Biology, Chemistry, Physics or Mathematics
International Baccalaureate Diploma 3 subjects at grade 5 at Higher Level and 3 subjects at grade 4 at Standard Level
UEC Pass with min. B4 in Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Mathematics and Advanced Mathematics
Diploma or Foundation Min. CGPA 3.5
STPM Min. BBB, ABC or AAC in 3 subjects: Biology, Chemistry and Physics/Mathematics
Additional Prerequisites Interview
Bachelor’s Degree Minimum CGPA of 2.5 - 3.0
Working Experience Min. 6 months to 2 years (vary on the universities)
English IELTS (minimum 6.5 - 7.0 overall), TOEFL (minimum 650 or 98)
Additional Prerequisites Pass interview
Supporting Documents Recommendation letter and updated CV

How much is the tuition fee to study Medicine courses in Malaysia?

There is a different variant to tuition fees in Malaysia, depending on the course and university that is chosen.

The estimated tuition fee per year for Medicine course in the top universities in Malaysia can be seen here:

Programme Estimated Fees (per year)
Bachelor's Degree RM25,000 - 130,000
Master's Degree RM20,000 - 60,000
PhD RM16,000 - 50,000

The fee above only covers the tuition fee and not other additional fees nor living expenses.

Living expenses of students in Malaysia depend on the location of the university and the city that you live in.


1. What’s the difference between MBBS vs MD?

MBBS stands for Bachelor of Medicine-Bachelor of Surgery, while MD stands for Doctor of Medicine.

MBBS is an undergraduate study, the first degree that a professional in medicine must take. It’s meant to train students in all fields of medicine.

MD is a Master’s/ Postgraduate degree that you can take only after you complete MBBS degree successfully. MD is an advanced academic degree in the field of medical, similar to a PhD.

2. How long does housemanship last?

Following successful completion of the medical degree, you are entitled to provisional registration by the Malaysian Medical Council. Upon the end of the service, you’re eligible for full registration in Malaysia.

As a Malaysian citizen, you’re required to undergo two years of compulsory service by the Ministry of Health. As for international students, you’re not allowed to do housemanship in Malaysia.

3. Is the internship already included in the course?

Yes, an internship program is already embedded in the medicine study curriculum.

4. Do I need a first-class degree to become a doctor?

No, although real academic evidence is important, hospitals are also looking for the right personalities and traits. Someone with a great personality and a second-class grade can have a higher chance than a first-class graduate with an inability to interact with people.

5. When can I enrol to a university in Malaysia?

If you’re interested to continue to study in Malaysia, the general admission will be different for each university.

For instance, Taylor’s University opens its intake in early March and August every year.

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