+603-79672190 sastera@um.edu.my



Regardless of the student application paths (international or local students), all first-year undergraduates are introduced to major theoretical ideas and various approaches about politics and international relations, examines how states and international institutions functions in practice, and attend a series of introductory compulsory courses (see the academic porgramme structure) where they will use qualitative and quantitative methods to investigate and to observe international historical and political events or questions. 

The programme’s objective are to equip the students with the knowledge of international relations, foreign policy, security studies, defence analysis and strategic studies, particularly by examining international interactions between state and non-state actors, as well as the emerging trends and long-term effects of both global and regional issues. 

At the end of the programme, graduates will be able to achieve the following objectives 
(Programme Learning Outcome): 


Master knowledge in the field of International Relations. 


Apply knowledge from the field of International Relations to analyse the international phenomena. 


Display concerns towards the international phenomena in implementing social responsibilities. 


Practice values, ethics and professionalism in addressing issues in International Relations. 


Possess communication skills, leadership attributes and the ability to work as a team in multicultural and multiracial environments.


Possess skills to contribute ideas and resolutions in addressing international issues.


Practice knowledge from the field of International Relations in life-long learning process. 


Possess skills to undertake research and consultancy in the field of International Relations.

Many students ask “What type of job could I get with a degree in International and Strategic Studies?” The answer depends on your choice of specialisation, interests, experiences, skills. The discipline of International Relations, creating a literal world of opportunity. Your task, as a scholar, is to define your area of expertise and map out how You want to make a difference. Do you want to study the military and terrorism as they influence foreign policy, or observe factors that contribute to a credible peace process in war-torn society? Are you interested in the role international organisations play in agenda-setting and the creation of international norms? Do you think culture and society are the key drivers for current events? Do you want to work in public sector for the government or semi-governmental agency in the private sector for a multinational corporation, bank, or firm, or in the non-profit sector for a non-governmental organisation or research institute?  Whatever your personal philosophical endeavours, opportunities abound.

Since 1998, we have produced the first batch of graduates who specialised their degree programme (either at the undergraduate and postgraduate level) in International and Strategic Studies. The ability of our students to master various fundamental and soft skills with global outlooks, lateral thinking and international concerns (see the Programme Outcome) in resolving various tasks and issues has allowed them to secure a better job prospect within 6 months after graduation. The diversity and interdisciplinary nature of the discipline, namely the International and Strategic Studies have allowed students to secure a working attachment in various organisations and corporations. 

Some opted for a career path in diplomatic services and foreign affairs, attached as the civil servants in various governmental ministries (both at the federal and state governmental levels), defence and intelligence sectors, various local, regional and international branches or agencies under the United Nations system, banking and financial sectors, and private firms, especially in human resource division, marketing strategists and insurance companies.

Others opted for more challenging yet global working environments, including working with multinational corporations (MNCs), international and local non-governmental agencies, civil societies, and charity works, professional and freelance writers, volunteer services, further studies and teaching options in various local and international universities, and as well as in pursuing study or professional development enhancement upon completion of their study in UM. 

With the growing numbers of international students, the biggest ratio amongst all of the departments in Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences in UM and Malaysia, many of our international students secured the job attachments and intern placements at either their respective embassies or diplomatic missions in Malaysia or major firms and banking sectors at their home countries. Our strength lies in the ability to offer a degree programme with similar international recognises universities that specialised in International Relations with a strong encouragement to master more than one language or medium of instruction.

Additionally and apart from rigorous academic training, we focus on providing the extra-curricular activities among the Department’s multinational students, including the public lecture from retired diplomats and foreign services, one-day study visit to various public, diplomatic and think-thank organizations and the diplomatic simulation games of the Model United Nations (MUN) Conference. You may find out more about this from our Department’s website.

Given the competitiveness of working market and intense competitions of labour forces from other local universities, the Department has taken a step further in having a compulsory and an additional course that provides industrial training exposure, aiming at providing students with the pre-professional degree experience before the actual graduation. The course is compulsory upon all of our final year students (undergraduates). You can find out more about the syllabus and assessment from our Department’s webpage.

During their industrial training placement, Students develop many widely transferable skills during their studies including excellent written and verbal communications skills, research skills and notably, an understanding of complex political and cultural issues. Particular skills gained include the ability to research using a variety of sources. Students can create, evaluate and assess a range of options, sift material and weigh up arguments. Students are able to critically analyse information and can assess problems and arguments, reach conclusions and discuss them clearly. You may find out more about our recent graduates and alumni testimonials from the Department Website, and check on the Alumni and Development section at

University Courses

Malaysian Students:

GIG 1001: Islamic and Asian Civilization (TITAS)
GIG 1002: Ethnic Relations
GIG 1003: Basic Entrepreneurship Culture
GIG 1004: Information Literacy
GIG 1005: Social Engagement
Co-Curriculum Course (CITRA)
External Faculty Electives
Communication English

International Students:

GIG 1003: Basic Entrepreneurship Culture
GIG 1004: Information Literacy
GIG 1005: Social Engagement

GIC 1006: Introduction to Malaysia
Co-Curriculum Course (CITRA)
External Faculty Electives
Communication English

GTEM 1101: Elementary Malay (prerequisite for graduation)





Not Applicable


20 Credit Hours

Faculty Core Courses

AIX 1001: Introduction to Social Sciences and Humanities
AIX 2001: Research Methodology for Social Sciences andHumanities
AIX 3001: Ethics and Professionalism in Social Sciences




8 Credit Hours

Faculty Elective Courses (AIX courses)

(selected courses offered by other Departments and students must complete 3 courses. Please check with the Dean Office (FASS) when registering for these courses, and at the beginning of each semester

9 Credit Hours

Core Courses Programme

Semester 1

Semester 2

First Year

Compulsory Courses

AIE 1001: Introduction to International Relations
AIE 1004: Evolution of International Society

Compulsory Courses

AIE 1002: Introduction to Politics
AIE 1005: Research Methodology in International Relations

Second Year

Compulsory Courses

AIE 1003: Political Economy of International Relations
AIE 2001: Theories of International Relations I
AIE 2003: Social Movements and Democratization

Elective Courses

AIE 2010: Development of Modern Strategy
AIE 3011: Government and Politics of Europe
AIE 3012: Islam in World Politics
AIE 3013: International Dispute Settlement


Compulsory Courses

AIE 2005: Theories of International Relations II
AIE 2004: Foreign Policy Analysis
AIE 2013: National Security of Malaysia

Elective Courses

AIE 2011: Politics of Developing Countries
AIE 2012: Foreign Policy of Southeast Asian States
AIE 3013: International Dispute Settlement
AIE 2005: Comparative Regionalism
AIE 2006: International Law

Third Year

Compulsory Courses

AIE 3002: Academic Project
AIE 3001: International Organisation
AIE 3003: International Security

Elective Courses

AIE 2014: Political Thought
AIE 2015: International Politics of Resources
AIE 3006: Central Asia in International Relations
AIE 2007: International Law of the Sea
AIE 2008: The United States in World Politics
AIE 2009: Non-State Actors in International Relations

Compulsory Courses

AIE 3002: Academic Project
AIE 3004: Foreign Policy of Malaysia
AIE 3005: Foreign Policies of Major Powers

Elective Courses

AIE 3007: South Asia in International Relations
AIE 3008: Human Rights and International Politics
AIE 3009: Conflict Analysis
AIE 3010: Theory and Practice of Diplomacy
AIX 3002: Peace Studies
GIA 2009: Governance and International Development

Fourth Year

AIE 4001: Practicum

The minimum duration of study for Bachelor of Arts (International and Strategic Studies) is range between the minimum of 7 semesters (3 and half years) and maximum of 11 semesters (5 and half years).

In total, a student who wishes to obtain Bachelor of Arts in International and Strategic Studies MUST obtain a total number of 122 credit hours in 3 and a half (3.5) years.

The breakdown of these credit hours based on types of courses (as required by the Programme and for the purpose of awarding the degree programme), as followings:

Types of Course

Credit Hours

Total Courses

University Courses



Faculty Core Courses



Faculty Elective Courses



Department Core Courses



Department Elective Courses






Language Requirement and Medium of Instruction. 

For the English language requirements, international applicants must obtain either ONE of the following categories of the English test:

the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) with total score of either 550 and above for the Paper based Test (PBT), OR 213 and above for Computer-based Test (CBT), OR 79-80 and above for Internet-based Test (IBT), OR

the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) with total score of Band 6 and no lower than the said band for every each of the section of the test, OR

the General Certificate of Secondary Education (GCSE), University of Cambridge with a credit pass in either Ordinary (GCSE O) Level or Advance (GCSE A) Level.

The main medium of instruction for all courses in our department is in English, and sometimes in dual languages (English and Malay). However, we do encourage students to use mainly English. Meanwhile, some of other courses offered by other departments within and outside Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences however may use the Malay or Arabic Language as the medium instructions. For more information on the actual medium of instruction for the courses offered by other departments, you are advisable to directly contact the department that responsible in providing the courses before attending the lectures and tutorial sessions.




Sarjana Muda Sastera Pengajian Antarabangsa dan Strategik

(7 Semester)

(Tahun Semasa)





Aliran Sains dan Sastera

Lulus STPM dengan mendapat sekurang-kurangnya PNGK 3.00;


Mendapat sekurang-kurangnya Gred B pada peringkat STPM dalam mana-mana dua (2) mata pelajaran:

  • Bahasa Melayu
  • Bahasa Tamil
  • Bahasa Cina
  • Bahasa Arab
  • Literature in English
  • Kesusasteraan Melayu
  • Sejarah
  • Geografi
  • Mathematics (M) / Mathematics (T)
  • Ekonomi
  • Pengajian Perniagaan


Mendapat sekurang-kurangnya Tahap 2 (Band 2) dalam MUET.

Aliran Sains, Perakaunan, TESL dan Undang-undang

Lulus Matrikulasi/Asasi dengan mendapat sekurang-kurangnya PNGK 3.00;


Mendapat sekurang-kurangnya Tahap 2 (Band 2) dalam MUET.

Lulus sekurang-kurangnya tahap Jayyid Jiddan dalam peperiksaan Sijil Tinggi Agama Malaysia (STAM);


Mendapat sekurang-kurangnya Tahap 2 (Band 2) dalam MUET.

Aliran Sastera


Memiliki Diploma UM/setaraf yang diiktiraf oleh Senat Universiti dengan mendapat sekurang-kurangnya PNGK 3.00 dalam bidang berikut:

  • Pengurusan
  • Pengurusan Sumber Manusia
  • Pengurusan Perniagaan
  • Perakaunan


Mendapat sekurang-kurangnya Tahap 2 (Band 2) dalam MUET.



Memiliki Diploma dari mana-mana institusi yang diiktiraf oleh Kerajaan Malaysia dan diluluskan Senat Universiti dengan mendapat sekurang-kurangnya PNGK 3.00;


Mendapat sekurang-kurangnya Tahap 2 (Band 2) dalam MUET.


Memiliki kelayakanGCE A-Level dengan mendapat sekurang-kurangnya Gred Bdalam mana-mana tiga (3) mata pelajaran;


Mendapat sekurang-kurangnya Tahap 2 (Band 2) dalam MUET;

Intake Schedule and How to Apply

The academic programme is by the semester system and commences in both September (Semester I) and February (Semester II).

Deadline for Malaysian applicants: April for Semester I intake

Deadline for International applicants: June for Semester I intake and November for Semester II intake

Applicants are advice to check the University Website regularly in order to get the latest update on the next availability date of submitting your application document. For the latest updates, see also:

Local (Malaysia) Applicants

For the local (Malaysian) undergraduate admissions, you application document must be submitted through the online system - the official portal of the Student Admission Management, Ministry of Higher Education: 

Please carefully check the instructions that have been provided on the above website in order to guide you application processes.

It is important for the Malaysian applicant to regularly visit and to check the UM Admission Website
(https://www.um.edu.my/how-to-apply-bachelor) in order to stay up-to-date on when is the next available date of the admission, the deadline of the application and the entry requirement to our programme.

Please check the Entry Requirement as well. Or alternatively, you browse from here:

For the international undergraduate admissions, you application document must be submitted through the online E-Application for International Undergraduate Admission:

Please carefully check the instructions that have been provided on the above website in order to guide you application processes. For the user manual on how to create your application profile, please visit:

It is important for the international applicant to regularly visit and to check the University Admission Webpage in order to stay up-to-date on when is the next available date of the admission, the deadline of the application and the entry requirement to our programme. See also: https://maya.um.edu.my/

Please check the Entry Requirement section as well. Or alternatively, you browse from here: https://maya.um.edu.my/sitsvision/wrd/siw_lgn
Briefs Guidelines for Online Application (International Applicants)

Please ensure that you have scan and upload complete documents through online. Documents required for a complete online application:

  • Recent passport-sized photographs with BLUE background
  • Front page of passport (First page only)
  • Academic certificate with detailed academic transcript. Official translation is required for documents which are not written in English or Malay.
  • Financial statement showing financial capability from the bank or relevant institution for self-financing or a letter of guarantee for sponsored students.
  • Transaction slip of a US$50.00 processing fee made payable by telegraphic transfer to:
    • Payee – Bursar University of Malaya
    • Bank Account – 8001279998
    • Address – CIMB Bank Berhad

       University of Malaya Branch, 50603

       Kuala Lumpur, MALAYSIA

  • Swift Code – CIBBMYKL
  • NOTES – The University will not process applications sent without the required documents and processing fees. Cash is not acceptable and the processing fees is non-refundable.
  • TOEFL, IELTS, or GCRE (O/A) Level result
  • In case of submitting copies of documents, the documents must be certified by your previous school, the University of Malaya Offshore Offices, OR respective embassy

In the online system, please confirm the application after uploaded complete documents and wait for the result from the University of Malaya.

Selected application will be contacted through email within 2 months after the application closing date of each semester and must undergo the interview session before being accepting by the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, University of Malaya.

To check your application status: https://www.um.edu.my/check-application-status-bachelor

Academic Fees

For the local (Malaysian) applicants, academic fees are normally provided inside the UPU system when you apply for the programme. Any specific inquiry on the fees, please contact 
Admission & Record Section, Academic Division, University of Malaya.

For the International applicants, click

Accommodation and Living Costs

Detailed instructions on the accommodation will be provided in the offer letter. There are two types of accommodation options for all students at the University of Malaya:

On-Campus Residential College

Eleven residential colleges are located within the University (walking distance to the faculties) and two outside the University. These colleges are equipped with a cafeteria, photocopy shop, laundry, sport facilities, meeting and project rooms, study rooms, computer and printing facilities. There are two major options for residential rooms for the students:


Twin Sharing Rental per month (self-catered or without a meal) – RM450 (US$ 150)

Triple Sharing Rental per month (self-catered or without a meal) – RM360 (US$ 120)


Off-Campus Residential College

Rental of private accommodation within 5 kilometers from the University campus as follows:

A Room in a shared flat – RM450-RM650 (US$ 150 - US$ 200)

An Apartment (2-3 Bedrooms) – RM2,000 - RM3,200 (US$ 625 – US$ 1,000)

The rental of off campus can be different depending on accommodation types and may or may not include water and electricity (utility) bills, which subject to the tenancy agreement with the landlord or owner of the property.

Living Expenses

Living expenses depend on the needs and lifestyles. An estimated cost of food, books, clothes, entertainment, local travel and miscellaneous per month for a single student is approximately around RM700 to RM1,000 (US$ 250- US$ 350).

VISA Application

International applicant who is offered a place to study in Malaysia is required to apply for Visa with Reference (VWR) before entering the country.

Visa with Reference (VWR) is a visa issued by the Malaysian Representative Office abroad to a non-citizen enable individual(s) to enter Malaysia after the visa is approved by the Immigration Department Headquarters in Malaysia and Education Malaysia Global Service (EMGS). To find out more about VDR application process in UM, please visit UM Visa Webpage Information:


The VWR process will normally take between 1 and 2 months. Therefore, applicants are advised to take immediate action upon receiving the offer letter from the University.

Submission of documents to apply for VWR can be done through online:


The International Student Centre (ISC) processes all visa applications. ISC also provides consultation and advisory services related to immigration issues and matters.

For further information and inquiries please contact:

Visa Unit
International Student Centre
Level 2, Block G
Perdanasiswa Complex
University of Malaya
Tel: +603 79677857/7858/7859
Fax: +603 79677029

Further details regarding immigration matters, please visit:

Additional fees to be charged to a successful applicant:

Medical Check-Up Fee

Insurance Fee

International Student Fee


(US$ 57-79)

RM300 (US$ 94) per year


(US$ 407)

All the above mentioned fees are subject to change from time to time in accordance with decision of the University Management.

University of Malaya Offshores Office

Prospective students from Bangladesh, China, Indonesia, Iran and Pakistan may also contact University of Malaya offshore offices for further information.

Applicants may check the list of the University of Malaya Offshore Offices and contact details from the following link:
 http://isc.um.edu.my(scroll on the ISC/offshores offices)

Inquiries and report about Offshores Office, please contact: 

For further information please contact:

International Student Centre
Level 1, Block G
Perdanasiswa Complex
University of Malaya
50603, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Email: isc@um.edu.my
Website: http://isc.um.edu.my
Tel: +603 79677711/7718/
Fax: +603 79677710

Last Updated: 30/04/2021