Eight higher education institutions in the country were among the top 1,000 universities according to the Times Higher Education (THE) World University Rankings 2018.
State University Universiti Malaya (UM) made it to the top 400 of the university rankings. The varsity ranked at the 351-400 band. Meanwhile, Universiti Tunku Abdul Rahman (UTAR).
Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM), Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM), Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM), Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM) and Universiti Teknologi Petronas (UTP), all ranked 601-800. Universiti Tenaga Nasional (UNITEN) is at 801-1,000 band.
“Malaysia is one of the leading emerging university nations in Asia. It has one of the world’s fastest growth rates in research paper outputs (albeit from a low base), the Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) training capacity has increased and it has the wealth needed to invest in the higher education sector.
“If Malaysia takes advantage of these characteristics, it may continue to improve in the rankings in the years to come,” said THE.
According to THE Global Rankings Editorial director Phil Baty, it was great to see Malaysia improving its standing in the rankings, although the rankings were becoming increasingly competitive, with several other Asian countries soaring up the table.
"The nation has long been tipped as one of Asia's leading emerging university nations and the results this year suggest it is beginning to bear the fruit of its labour," he said.
Baty said Malaysia would need to ensure it could maintain its investment in universities if it wanted to improve its global standing.
THE World University Rankings are the only global performance tables that judge research-intensive universities across teaching, research, knowledge transfer and international outlook.
The University of Oxford, UK retains first place in the THE World University Rankings 2018; University of Cambridge, UK is second; California Institute of Technology, US, third; Stanford University, US, fourth; and Massachusetts Institute of Technology, US, fifth.