Malaysian University English Test

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The Malaysian University English Test (MUET) is a test of English language proficiency, largely for university admissions. The test is set and run by the Malaysian Examinations Council (which also runs the Sijil Tinggi Persekolahan Malaysia examination). MUET is largely recognised only in Malaysia and Singapore. However, there are still a small number of universities outside of Malaysia and Singapore which recognise MUET.

Most candidates who sit for MUET do so to apply for admissions in public and private universities and colleges. MUET is a prerequisite in applying for admissions into all public universities and colleges in Malaysia. MUET is also accepted for admissions into most universities in Singapore including National University of Singapore, Nanyang Technological University and Singapore Management University, as well as a few universities outside Malaysia and Singapore such as University of East London, Manchester Metropolitan University, University of Gloucestershire, Robert Gordon University, Upper Iowa University, Nagoya University, Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Hong Kong Baptist University, Hong Kong Polytechnic University and United International College.

The universities set different target band scores for different courses. For instance, most courses in the Malaysian universities set the minimal requirement of a Band 3 in MUET, while students who want to study Medicine, Law, TESL, English Linguistics, and English Literature are required to obtain at least a Band 4. MUET is also compulsory for graduating from a local university. Thus, candidates are advised to take the MUET as soon as possible to avoid delays in their graduation.[1]

Public (government) servants also take MUET for promotion opportunities. For instance, police officers, teachers and administrative staff take MUET as an English qualification.

Candidates usually have to register via their institution, private candidates with their State Education Department, with a registration fee which used to be RM 61, but has now gone up to RM 101. Candidates can register for MUET online via the Malaysian Examinations Council website. Although Malaysian government has decided to abolish government examination fees from 2007 onwards,[2] MUET will remain as a paid test. From the year 2012 onwards, MUET is administered thrice a year, in March, July and November. It is advisable to allocate sufficient time for preparation, to obtain the band score required for university. On average, 85,000 candidates sit for the MUET each time.[3]

Components, Scoring and Grading[edit]

There are four components in MUET: [4]

  • Listening (800/1) - (45 marks)
  • Speaking (800/2) - (45 marks)
  • Reading (800/3) - (120 marks)
  • Writing (800/4) - (90 marks)

The maximum scores for each component is 45 for Listening and Speaking, 120 for Reading Comprehension and 90 for Writing, with an aggregate score of 300. The scores are then graded in six bands, with Band 6 being the highest while Band 1 the lowest.[5]

Aggregated score Band User Communicative ability Comprehension Task performance
260 - 300 6 Highly proficient user Very fluent; highly appropriate use of language; hardly any grammatical error Very good understanding of language and context Very high ability to function in the language
220 - 259 5 Proficient user Fluent; appropriate use of language; few grammatical errors Good understanding of language and context High ability to function in the language
180 - 219 4 Satisfactory user Generally fluent; generally appropriate use of language; some grammatical errors Satisfactory understanding of language and context Satisfactory ability to function in the language
140 - 179 3 Modest user Fairly fluent; fairly appropriate use of language; many grammatical errors Fair understanding of language and context Fair ability to function in the language
100 - 139 2 Limited user Not fluent; inappropriate use of language; very frequent grammatical errors Limited understanding of language and context Limited ability to function in the language
Below 100 1 Very limited user Hardly able to use the language Very limited understanding of language and context Very limited ability to function in the language

Locations and test dates[edit]

The Malaysian Examinations Council test centres are largely in public secondary schools (Malay: Sekolah Menengah Kebangsaan) that offer Form 6, matriculation colleges, certain universities, as well as certain private and semi-private colleges. The test is run thrice annually, in March, July and November starting from 2012.

Three components - Listening, Reading Comprehension and Writing, are usually tested on the same day - normally the second or the fourth Saturday of the month, with the same paper nationwide. The Speaking component is tested both as an individual task and in groups of up to four, usually with different papers for different groups. When a test centre uses the same question paper for the Speaking component for more than one group, other groups are sequestered until every group has either finished the test or is in the examination room.

See also[edit]

External links[edit]


  1. ^ Chong (27 July 2011). "New Format & Free Syllabus for STPM & MUET in 2012". Malaysia Students. Retrieved 26 March 2017.
  2. ^ Chong (2 September 2006). "National Examination Fees Abolished from 2007 onwards". Malaysia Students. Retrieved 26 March 2017.
  3. ^ Wan Salman Wan Sallam (11 October 2014). "MUET, English and dilemma at IPTAs — Wan Salman Wan Sallam". Malay Mail Online. Retrieved 26 March 2017.
  4. ^ Regulations, Test Specifications, Test Format and Sample Questions (PDF). Malaysia: Malaysian Examinations Council. 2015. p. 9.
  5. ^ Regulations, Test Specifications, Test Format and Sample Questions (PDF). Malaysia: Malaysian Examinations Council. 2015. p. 10.