Materia Medica Malaysiana

May 31, 2004


Filed under: Uncategorized — malaysianmedicine @ 6:35 am

Medical faculties lack lecturers

New Straits Times:
There are simply not enough lecturers at local medical faculties to cope with the demand for more places. And this situation is likely to persist for the foreseeable future. What this means is that straight-A students are still going to face rejection in the future.

Education Ministry Higher Education Department director Datuk Prof Dr Hassan Said said this trend would most probably continue in future, as demand outstripped the availability of medical seats in such institutions every year.

Responding to disappointment this year among top students unable to secure medical seats in local public universities, he said the bar was being raised for entry into specific faculties every year.

A total of 128 of 907 students with 4.0 cumulative grade point averages were unsuccessful in their bid for medical seats, and allocated seats in other faculties.

Of the 779 successful candidates, 439 (56.4 per cent) were Malays, 297 (38.1 per cent) Chinese and 43 (5.5 per cent) Indians.

Hassan said the medical faculty’s lowest CGPA last year was 3.88, adding that it was 3.94 this year compared to 3.83 last year for pharmacy, and 3.50 this year for law year compared to 3.38 last year.

He said the Government was not willing to compromise on the quality of medical students by increasing seats in medical faculties without a corresponding increase in lecturers.

The ministry also wanted to maintain the current 1:6 medical student-lecturer ratio, which was the most equitable for the country, he added.

Hassan said this at a briefing for editors organised by the National Economic Action Council at the Ministry of Higher Education, following complaints today from top non-Malay students over their failure to obtain seats in medical faculties in local public universities.

The general unhappiness with the meritocracy system was a repeat of last year, where a number of non-Malay science students who performed well did not get medical seats.

He said the ministry was taking stock of the nation’s long-term need for doctors, and working with the Health Ministry and the Malaysian Medical Council on incentives for more medical lecturers.

Hassan said unsuccessful candidates, including those who had applied for medical seats, could lodge appeals with the department “as the door is not closed yet, as a few may not accept offers”.

Appeals will have to be submitted by June 7.

Another option was to apply for Public Service Department scholarships, to be advertised in local newspapers next month, which also allow study at private medical institutions.

Hassan advised students to be realistic when applying for university courses by providing alternative choices of courses.

On overall entry into universities this year, he said 72,199 of the 85,966 who applied managed to obtain places.

Of this, 73.3 per cent (52,914) were Bumiputeras, 20.7 per cent (14,923) were Chinese and six per cent (4,362) were Indians.

Bumiputera performance improved by 1.2 per cent, Chinese fell by 1.9 per cent and Indians improved by 0.7 per cent, he added.

Successful applicants will have to register at designated universities on June 13 [Google News Search: malaysia medical]

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