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Its 'Faculty' for UMS June 1
Published on: Wednesday, May 07, 2014

Kota Kinabalu: Universiti Malaysia Sabah (UMS) will be using the term 'Faculty' instead of 'School' to refer to its academic entities, starting June 1 this year.

The university will also restructure its 13 schools into 10 faculties, as part of its effort in transforming itself into a more formidable international institution.

The university's Vice Chancellor, Prof. Datuk Harun Abdullah, said while changing the names is easy, it is necessary for the university to restructure itself in order to strengthen its undergraduate and postgraduate ecosystem.

"This transformation is necessary because universities in the country are facing current and future challenges, including globalisation, internationalisation, graduate marketability issues, stakeholders' high expectations and decrease of provisions.

"These issues have been underlined in the UMS Strategic Plan 2013-2017 which contained seven Key Result Area (KRA) to determine the university's direction in becoming a reputable university nationally and internationally," he said during the faculty declaration ceremony at UMS Recital Hall, here, Tuesday.

He continued that the name change is justifiable in order to optimise the university's resources and facilities.

The usage of 'School' to refer to the university's academic departments, he said, had brought a lot of confusion especially to parents and the public."In their opinion, the term 'School' is used to represent a level of education that is lower than university level," he said.

Under the exercise, School of Science and Technology and School of International Forestry and Tropical will be merged under Faculty of Science and Natural Resources, School of Social Science and School of Arts Studies will be known as Faculty of Humanity, Arts and Heritage, while School of Psychology and Social Work and School of Education and Social Development will be known as Faculty of Psychology and Education.

Its School of Engineering and Information Technology will soon be called Faculty of Engineering, School of Science Informatics Labuan will be Faculty of Computing and Informatics, School of Sustainable Agriculture will be Faculty of Sustainable Agriculture and School of Food Science and Nutrition will be Faculty of Food Science and Nutrition.

The School of Business and Economy will be Faculty of Business, Economy and Accounting, School of International Business and Finance Labuan will be Faculty of International Finance Labuan and School of Medicine will be Faculty of Medicine and Health Science.

Meanwhile, during a press conference, Harun revealed that the university continues to receive applications from international students who would like to study in the university, especially students from China, Japan, Indonesia and Turkey.

"We are currently working with the government of Timor Leste where we will recruit about 20 students from that country to take short courses in the oil and gas industry. Soon, the courses will be extended to include undergraduate and postgraduate studies.

"As for the question whether the MH370 incident has any effect on our Chinese student intake, the answer is no.

In fact, the number of students from that country is increasing by about 5 to 10 per cent this year," he said.

Foreign students especially from China, Harun added, will be undergoing intensive English courses before they can pursue their studies in the university. Starting this year, the university will be shortening the courses from six months to four months.

"The first batch had already finished their course and the second batch will be starting theirs this month.

The next intake will be on September," he said.

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