KUALA LUMPUR, June 6 — Malaysia’s oldest university ranked 70th out of over 1,400 tertiary institutions in the world latest rankings benchmarked by global higher education analysts QS Quacquarelli Symonds.

The 19th edition of the QS World University Ranking 2023 released today found Universiti Malaya (UM) remained among the top 100 for the fifth year in a row and consolidating its status among the best in the world.

“The Universiti Malaya’s top-100 status is based on outstanding recognition among global academics and employers. Its scores for QS’ reputational indicators — Academic Reputation (AR) and Employer Reputation (ER) — trended upwards, achieving one of the world’s top 50 Employer Reputation scores (35th, 94.9/100) for the second consecutive year.

“UM also improved its score for the indicator measuring the percentage of international students,” Ben Sowter, QS senior vice-president, said in a statement.

He noted that UM only made the cut to its list of top 100 universities in the world five years ago in 2018.

Despite these improvements to its reputational score, QS also recorded a dip in UM’s inability to improve its performance in any of the other indicators used for the rankings.

“The most significant determinant of its drop is in its research performance: UM has fallen 70 places in the Citations per Faculty indicator, dropping out of the top 350 when universities are measured by research impact,” Sowter highlighted.

QS also found a significant increase in the number of Malaysian universities improving their overall ranking this time, and commended the 24 institutions for doing well.

It noted that half of the 24 Malaysian ranked universities have improved both their AR score and ER score.

The AR score is based on QS’ global survey of 151,000 academics while the ER score is based on QS’ global survey of 99,000 employers and hiring managers.

Sowter noted that UM rose two rungs to rank 70th globally for AR (up two places) and 11 spots year-on-year to place 35th for ER.

He also noted that the private Taylor’s University had one of the best 100 scores for ER for the second time, rising 20 rungs year-on-year to rank 70th in ER.

Sowter commended Taylor’s University for ranking 64th as well as UCSI University and Universiti Putra Malaysia for breaking into the world’s top 100 for their ER scores.

“The Malaysian higher education sector also improves in the International Students indicator, with 15 universities rising in this metric,” Sowter said.

?However, QS found that Malaysian higher education overall can still improve in four other indicators, which measure teaching capacity, research impact, and levels of internationalisation.

For example, it noted that 14 of Malaysia’s ranked universities declined in their year-on-year performance in the Faculty/Student indicator, 15 dropped in the Citations per Faculty, a research impact indicator, while 16 have recorded a worse year-on-year performance in the International Faculty indicator.

This year’s QS World University Rankings is the largest ever, with 1,418 institutions across one hundred locations, up from 1,300 last year.

The results account for the distribution and performance of 16.4 million academic papers published between 2016 and 2020 and the 117.8 million citations received by those papers; they also account for the expert opinions of over 151,000 academic faculty and over 99,000 employers.