Universiti Teknologi MARA

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Universiti Teknologi MARA
Seal of Universiti Teknologi MARA
Seal of Universiti Teknologi MARA
Former names
  • RIDA Training Centre (1956–1965)
  • MARA College (1965–1967)
  • MARA Institute of Technology (1967–1999)
Motto Usaha, Taqwa, Mulia (Malay)[1]
Motto in English
Endeavour, Religious, Dignified[2]
Type Public
Established 1956
Budget RM1.99 billion (2016)[3]
Chancellor HRH King Abdul Halim
Yang di-Pertuan Agong[4]
Vice-Chancellor Hassan Said
Students 168,865 (2015)[5]
Undergraduates 73,671 (2015)[5]
Postgraduates 11,690 (2015)[5]
Location Shah Alam, Selangor, Malaysia
3°04′10.9″N 101°30′13.2″E / 3.069694°N 101.503667°E / 3.069694; 101.503667Coordinates: 3°04′10.9″N 101°30′13.2″E / 3.069694°N 101.503667°E / 3.069694; 101.503667
Campus 13 state campuses
21 satellite campuses
Colours Vivid violet and Prussian blue
Website www.uitm.edu.my
Logo Universiti Teknologi MARA.png

Universiti Teknologi MARA (UiTM) (English: MARA University of Technology[6]) is a public university based primarily in Shah Alam, the state capital of Selangor, some 28 kilometres (17 mi) west of country's capital, Kuala Lumpur. Established in 1956 as RIDA (Rural & Industrial Development Authority) Training Centre (Malay: Dewan Latehan RIDA), it opened its door to some 50 students with a focus to help the rural Malays.[7] Since that time it has grown into the largest higher education institution in Malaysia by physical infrastructure, staff·organization (academic and non-academic) and student enrollment.

The university comprises one main campus, 13 autonomous state campus and 21 satellite campus. With 17,000 of academics and non-academics staff, UiTM offered some 500 programmes ranging from foundation to postgraduate level. It is home to some 168,000 students: bumiputeras and international students, in full-time and part-time mode.[5] The teaching is fully conducted in English.



The MARA University of Technology began as RIDA (Rural & Industrial Development Authority) Training Centre (Malay: Dewan Latehan RIDA), inspired by Onn Jaafar, the founder and former president of United Malays National Organisation (UMNO). The idea was conceived as a result of a study visit to Ceylon in 1951 (now Sri Lanka) to look into its rural development programme. A resulting working paper outlined the establishment of Rural and Industrial Development Authority (RIDA) and its objectives of rebuilding the rural society, as well as improving the economy of rural Malays.[6] A bill Paper No. 10/1951 was passed by the Federal Legislative Council on the same year that led to its establishment; reveals an interesting insight into the connection between RIDA Training Centre and the Malay community. Section 5 of this paper outlines the justification and the necessity of establishing Rural Industrial Development Authority (RIDA). The word kampong (English: village), which is synonymous with the Malays, is also used in Section 8 of the paper.[8]

Training centre[edit]

In November 1956, RIDA Training Centre began operations in Petaling Jaya, Selangor (currently Jalan Othman satellite campus) under its first principal, Syed Alwi Syed Sheikh Alhadi. It was officially opened by Dr Ismail Abdul Rahman, the Minister for Trade and Industry on 14 February 1957. The training centre conducted pre-university courses, business skills training and several external professional courses offered by established international bodies, such as the London Chamber of Commerce, the Australian Chartered Secretaryship, the Australian Society of Accountants and the British Institute of Management. After the formation of the Federation of Malaysia in 1963, the training centre began to admit native students from Sabah and Sarawak, and more academic programmes were offered. In 1964, RIDA Training Centre held its first convocation and 50 graduates were awarded certificates by Tun Abdul Razak, the Deputy Prime Minister of Malaysia.[6]

The first batch of Dewan Latehan Rida students in Jalan Othman campus circa 1956.

The training centre later became known as MARA College (Malay: Maktab MARA) in 1965. The name change meant that the college no longer operated under RIDA and instead became the most important unit of the MARA Training Division. MARA stands for Majlis Amanah Rakyat (English: Council of Trust for the Indigenous People) under the leadership of Tan Sri Arshad Ayub, took over and strengthened the role and responsibilities of RIDA. In 1966, when the British Institute of Management ceased conducting external examinations, MARA College began running its own Diploma in Business Studies. International recognition for the course came from Ealing Technical College in London, which also became its external examiner.[6]

The logo of MARA Institute Of Technology (Malay: Institut Teknologi MARA, ITM) from 1967 until 1999.

Expansion and growth[edit]

In 1967, the college was upgraded to MARA Institute Of Technology (Malay: Institut Teknologi MARA, ITM). Its establishment came as a response to a need in Malaysia for trained professionals, especially among bumiputeras. This shortage was identified through a manpower survey conducted by the government in 1965 collaboration with the United Nations. Acknowledging the fact that education holds the key to positive social engineering processes, ITM has made education easily accessible primarily to the bumiputera Malays and indigenous bumiputera of the Malay peninsula (such as Jakun, Senoi), and those from the East Malaysia (such as the Kadazan-Dusun, Melanau, and Dayak).[9] It mainly catered to semi-professional courses predominantly in the science and technology in fields such as engineering, applied sciences and architecture, building and planning. However, realizing the importance of other complementary nation-building fields, it has also included a repertoire of other salient 'management and humanities-based' fields such as business studies, hotel and catering management, mass communications, public administration, law, secretarial science, as well as art and design.[10] By 1973, branch campuses had been set up in Perlis, Sabah and Sarawak. The development of ITM was in three stages. The first phase (1967-1976) came with the declaration of the institute as an autonomous body with its own 300-acre campus in Shah Alam, and was placed under the Ministry of Rural Development. The second phase (1976-1996) saw ITM rapidly harnessing its potential as an institution of higher learning. It led to the passing of the ITM Act of 1976 that placed the institute directly under the Ministry of Education.[6]

University status[edit]

The third phase (1996-1999) came about as a result of an amendment to the ITM Act 1976 which granted the institution all the powers of a university and on par with all the universities in the country, despite retaining its name. Among the significant change was a creation of Board of Directors and Senate. Many principal officers of ITM were re-designated such as the Branch Director was renamed Rector, the Head of Campus became the Provost, while Principal and Senior Lecturers were re-designated as Professors and Associate Professors, respectively; each School was redesignated as a Faculty; ITM was given the power to confer degrees up to Doctor of Philosophy level; ITM was given the unique power to establish courses and campuses abroad with permission from the Minister of Education; the Institute was conferred additional powers to enable it to conduct business, invest in shares, set up companies and engage in commercial research; disciplinary powers over staff were transferred from the Minister to the Board of Directors; to improve staff accountability, the Institute was bestowed the power to impose a surcharge; and the procedural rights of students in disciplinary proceedings were strengthened.[6]

In August 1999, the Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad announced the change in name of ITM to MARA University of Technology (Malay: Universiti Teknologi MARA, UiTM).[11] With such acknowledgement from the government, a major restructuring exercise was carried out in order to consolidate the University's resources for optimum productivity. As UiTM moves forward, it remains focused on academic excellence, innovation, socio-economic goals, worldwide accreditation, globalisation and new technologies in order to contribute to industry and national development.[12] The Universiti Teknologi MARA Act 173 was drafted in conjunction with the establishment of UiTM. It is deemed essential as the Act provides guidelines for maintenance and smooth administration as well as other pertaining matters. The Act also serves as an acknowledgement of the institution’s transition from an institute to a university, and the authority bestowed upon it to function like any other university. This includes the offering of courses of studies and the conferment of degrees at all levels.[6]

UiTM's 1 University 2 Systems


MARA University of Technology (UiTM) is Malaysia's largest institution of higher learning in terms of size and population. Beside the main campus in Shah Alam, the university has expanded nationwide with 13 state campuses and more than 21 state satellite campuses, which collectively offers more than 500 academic programmes. UiTM established a system called 1 University 2 System (1U2S). Based on this system, there is an anchor university and 12 state universities.[13]

The anchor university assumes the role of the administrative centre and the state universities will be the autonomous state administration. UiTM headed by a Vice Chancellor while the state campuses is headed by a Rector, who is directly accountable to the Vice Chancellor.[14] The anchor university consists of the Shah Alam Main Campus and satellite campuses (Puncak Alam, Selayang, Sungai Buloh, Puncak Perdana, Jalan Othman, Section 17 and Dengkil), while the autonomous state campuses consists of all the state campuses and state satellite campuses.[15] All branch campuses will be given the autonomous status in phases. As of June 2014, there are seven state campuses which have been given the autonomous status namely, the Perlis, Perak, Terengganu, Sarawak, Melaka, Pulau Pinang and Pahang campuses.[16]

  • Only Faculty of Music is part of UiTM since INTEC has been privatized

Shah Alam Main Campus[edit]


The establishment of ITM Library began with the establishment RIDA Training Centre in Jalan Othman, Petaling Jaya. In the beginning, it was known as RIDA Library loaded with reading materials to on book keeping, accounting and examination preparation course for the London Chamber of Commerce (LCC). In 1965, the library has been changed to MARA College Library administered by a qualified librarianship. The library collection at that time consists of books, journals, magazines, newspapers and other publications.

Then in 1972, ITM main campus was built in Shah Alam. The four storey building was designed in consultation with the Chief Librarian following the specification of an academic libraries. The library was inaugurated by the Prime Minister, Tun Abdul Razak on 29 July 1972. To commemorate the event, the library was named Perpustakaan Tun Abdul Razak (PTAR), after the name of the Prime Minister. In the 1970s, despite a large number of printed materials acquired for the collections, there is also a collection of micro-form (microfilm, microfiche and 16mm film).[17]

With the rapid development taking place in UiTM, the library can not accommodate more collections, reading area, academicians and students. Since the existing library building can not be expanded due to limited area, an additional library buildings have been developed around the main campus in Shah Alam. Currently, there are thirteen faculty libraries and satellite libraries located in the vicinity of Shah Alam, Puncak Alam, Puncak Perdana and Sungai Buloh. In 2003, UiTM established electronic distance education, called Virtual Faculty. The faculty can be accessed through the Internet from cyber cafe, office or home. The learner is able to print out the notes, communicate with other students, e-mail, chat and so forth.[18]

Residential colleges[edit]

There are 13 residential colleges which provides accommodation to students in the main campus. These colleges differ from one to another in terms of room capacity, where some colleges accommodate two students per room while some accommodate up to eight students per room. Residential colleges are not autonomous as they fall under the jurisdiction of UiTM. However, the director of each college has vast power endorsed to them in governing these colleges.[19]

The colleges are segregated by gender where different colleges cater for different sex, with the exception for Kolej Teratai where different sex living in the different block.[20] Residential colleges in Shah Alam campus is free for first year students. However, a minimum fee is charged for second year students and above. First year students are not allowed to drive their own vehicle except motorcycle. All colleges have access to free Wi-Fi service, which is part of the integrated wireless internet connection for the University itself.

As the main campus received an increasing of students’ enrollment each year, this causes constraints on the student residential facilities. Many students in UiTM Shah Alam have to rent off-campus residential facilities on their own. In ensuring the welfare and safety of the non-resident students who stay off-campus, the college management has established a Non-Resident Management Unit to manage all the living environment matters connected with them. This unit normally will help non-resident students for searching houses around Shah Alam area.[21]

There are some facilities offered to the non-resident students. Prima Siswa Complex located inside the campus, providing a student lounge. It features a large screen television, day lockers, information racks, bulletin board, pool table, foosball, indoor games, prayer room and student activity room. UiTM Student Service Centre located outside the campus in Section 7 Commercial Centre, Shah Alam. It includes free internet surfing (wired and Wi-Fi), self-service laundry and small lounge.[22]


Faculty founding
Faculty/academy Year founded

Business & management
Faculty of Accountancy 1956
Faculty of Business & Management 1956
Faculty of Hotel & Tourism Management 1967
Faculty of Information Management 1970
Social science & humanities
Faculty of Administrative Science & Policy Studies 1965
Faculty of Law 1968
Faculty of Art & Design 1970
Academy of Language Studies 1972
Faculty of Communication & Media Studies 1972
Academy of Contemporary Islamic Studies 1975
Faculty of Music 1984
Faculty of Education 1996
Faculty of Film, Theater & Animation 1998
Science & technology
Faculty of Computer & Mathematical Sciences 1966
Faculty of Applied Sciences 1967
Faculty of Architecture, Planning & Surveying 1967
Faculty of Civil Engineering 1967
Faculty of Electrical Engineering 1968
Faculty of Mechanical Engineering 1968
Faculty of Sports Science & Recreation 1995
Faculty of Health Sciences 1996
Faculty of Pharmacy 1996
Faculty of Chemical Engineering 2000
Faculty of Medicine 2002
Faculty of Dentistry 2006
Faculty of Plantation & Agrotechnology 2010

The university is made up of a number of faculties and academies. It is categorised into three main cluster namely business and management; social sciences and humanities; and science and technology. The Academic Affairs Division, headed by a Deputy Vice-Chancellor, is responsible to ensure the soundness of the academic programs as well as the robust, uniform and standardised academic delivery throughout the whole UiTM system across the nation.[23]

Senate is the highest authority in the UiTM for all academic matters. It is chaired by the Vice Chancellor and the membership comprises all Deans of faculties and academic centres, representatives from the Rectors of campuses, senior members of the academic staff, and a registrar. The Senate are responsible to create curriculum and academic programs; to set the standard of teaching, learning and training conducted at the UiTM; to determine the entry qualifications into any academic programs offered; and to endorse the results of student assessments and awards of all academic degrees at doctoral, master, bachelor, diploma and certificate levels.[24]

As of May 2015, 470 programmes offered by UiTM consisting of degrees at doctoral, master, bachelor, diploma and certificate levels. A total of 286 programmes based on science and technology while another 184 programmes are non-science and technology. In addition, 94 professional programmes (local and international) are offered by UiTM. This include programmes certified by University of London International Programmes, the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA), the Institute of Chartered Secretaries and Administrators (ICSA), the Chartered Institute of Transport (CIT), the Institute of Electrical & Electronics Engineers (IEEE), the Institute of Electrical Engineers (IEE), the Chartered Institute of Building (CIOB), London College of Printing, Institute and Faculty of Actuaries of United Kingdom[25] and many more.[26]

In 1973, UiTM (then ITM) established ITM-Off Campus with the aim to provide opportunities for working adults to further and obtain a quality tertiary education. Classes are held after office hours on weekdays and on weekends, and courses are patterned after the full-time mainstream programs. The success of external program propelled UiTM toward embarking upon the distance mode.[18] After several improvements and revolution, Institute of Neo Education (iNED) was formed in 2012 offering several diploma and degree courses on distance and out-campus mode.[27]


MARA University of Technology (UiTM) is a self-described "research-intensive entrepreneurial university"[28] considered by the QS World University Rankings to have "very high research activity".[29] In 2011, UiTM's research publication was ranked 5th nationwide by Web of Science.[30] Scopus reported, a total of 6,863 papers has been published in academic journals by UiTM faculties from 2009 until 2013. It was cited in 7,479 papers with 32.7% of it was self-cited by UiTM's researchers.[29]

Institute of Research Management & Innovation (IRMI) is the research arm of the university. It was created to manage research, consultancy, intellectual property protection, commercialisation, initiate new research and innovation activities. IRMI conducts seminars, workshops and roadshows to encourage and train the academics and non-academic staff on research and consultancy, securing research grants and projects, managing their finances and publishing research work. It also handles the university’s Research Ethics Committee. In the same vein, IRMI organises expositions of innovations and research to encourage innovations and inventions within the university’s environment.[31]

UiTM in Shah Alam main campus and its satellite campuses in the Klang Valley have been focusing on research excellence and postgraduate training since 2009 in response to the 10th Malaysia Plan, which included the Research and Development (R&D) Roadmap Action Plan. The UiTM R&D Roadmap specifically emphasized on two research performance indicators, namely to increase number of principal investigators and students to publish in Web of Science and Scopus journals. Research funding in UiTM has been steadily increasing from just over RM14 million in 2006 to RM50.4 million in 2011. Social science and humanities research made up around 20% of the secured funding.[30]

To steer Malaysia towards becoming an innovation-based and knowledge-based economy, Ministry of Higher Education (MOHE) in 2009 recognized six research institutions as Higher Institutions Centre of Excellence (HICoE) including UiTM's Accounting Research Institute (ARI) for its research niche area in Islamic Finance Criminology.[32] In 2014, UiTM's Malaysian Institute of Transport (MITRANS) conferred as HICoE for the niche area of Halalan Toyyibban Supply Chain.[33] Six UiTM's research institutions has been granted Centre of Excellence (CoE) status namely Institute of Science (IOS), Institute of Infrastructure and Environmental Services and Management (IIESM), Institute of Pathology, Medical and Forensic Laboratory (I-PPerForm), Atta-Ur-Rahman Institute for Natural Product Discovery (AuRIns), Integrative Pharmacogenomic Centre (iPROMISE), and Institute of Business Excellence (IBE).[34]


As one of the leading universities in Malaysia, UiTM has been rated positively by local and international bodies. In 2010, UiTM was rated 'Tier 5: Excellent' in the 2009 Malaysian Qualifications Agency (MQA) Rating System for Higher Education Institutions in Malaysia (SETARA '09).[35] UiTM maintained its rating of 'Tier 5: Excellent' in the 2011 Malaysian Qualifications Agency (MQA) Rating System for Higher Education Institutions in Malaysia (SETARA '11).[36] In the same year, UiTM was rated 2 stars in 2011 Malaysian Research Assessment Instrument (MyRA) where universities are given “star ratings” for their research, development and commercialisation efforts.[37] In 2013, UiTM was awarded by Ministry of Higher Education as Entrepreneurial University Of The Year.[38]

In global rankings, UiTM best performance was in 2014 when it positioned as 168th best university in Asia, despite maintaining its 7th position locally.[39] In 2016, five subjects were ranked in QS World University Ranking by Subject, an increase of two subjects from 2015 ranking.[40]

International partners[edit]

The university holds a number of formal links with institutions from around the world to share teaching and research and facilitate staff and student exchanges. As of January 2016, a total of 110 Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) has been rectified with global partners.[46]


UiTM graduates have found success in a wide variety of fields, and have served at the heads of diverse institutions both in the public and private sector. As of November 2014, more than 600,000 alumni have graduated from UiTM over the course of its history.[39] A dedicated UiTM Office of Alumni Relations was established in 2000 which aims to maintaining and updating a database of alumni in collaboration with faculties and campuses; promote strategic relationships; maximizing social capital and to promote the generation of income through entrepreneurial activity with alumni.[71] Fraternity among alumnus was further uphold with the establishment of UiTM Budiman Foundation which helps the needy students and give financial support to current student who further studies in postgrad level.[72] Some of the notable alumni include the following:


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External links[edit]