So you’ve probably been taught how to differentiate between the live, neutral and earth wires typically found in a 3-point plug (remember Kemahiran Hidup?). And you may also have learned plenty about electrical circuits if you’ve taken Physics (with lots of formulae involved!), and then some.
For those who absolutely loathe playing around with I, P, and V variables, what you learned in Electromagnetism, Electricity and Electronics chapters in Life Skills and Physics probably won’t make much sense to you.
However, if there’s a spark between you and these topics, then it’s time to make sense of them all with an Electrical & Electronic Engineering course.
But before you take the plunge and risk getting electrocuted, it’s best that you check out what lies ahead for you in an Electrical & Electronic Engineering course in Malaysia.
#1. The Basics of Electrical & Electronic Engineering
a) What Is Electrical & Electronic Engineering?
An Electrical & Electronic Engineering course covers two separate fields – electrical and electronics.
In Electrical Engineering, you will learn how to design various ways to effectively and efficiently use electricity. On the other hand, Electronic Engineering deals with using and controlling electrical power to interpret an instruction and / or perform a desired task.
An example to put it into perspective would be a ceiling fan. It has an electrical circuit that consists of an on / off switch and a motor that spins the fan. At the same time, it also contains an electronics circuit that controls how fast the ceiling fan spins. Both electrical and electronics come into play to enable to fan to work.
Most institutions tend to offer both Electrical and Electronic Engineering as a single course because it enables you to get a better overview and understanding in order to design an end product or goal with both fields combined.
b) What Are the Various Fields of Electrical & Electronic Engineering?
Electrical & Electronic Engineering can be one of the broadest fields of engineering, covering a wide variety of disciplines.
Here are some of the common disciplines associated with Electrical & Electronic Engineering.
|Field||What It Is All About
|Power Engineering||Involves generating and distributing of electricity by utilising of transformers, generators, motors and various other devices|
|Microelectronics||Deals with the design and creation of micro-sized electronic circuits and components typically used in small devices like mobile phones|
|Signal Processing||Involves controlling and analysing of signals for radar, communications and broadcasts (e.g. mobile phones, TVs, GPS systems, etc.)|
|Telecommunications Engineering||Focuses on the transmission of information across a channel (e.g. wire cables, optic fibres, satellites, etc.)|
|Computer Engineering||Deals with the designing of computers and computer systems in terms of hardware such as hard disks, motherboards, keyboards, etc.|
#2. Studying an Electrical & Electronic Engineering Course
a) Entry Requirements & Qualifications
In order to pursue a course in Electrical & Electronic Engineering, you will have to meet the minimum entry requirements set by the respective colleges and universities.
(i) Diploma in Electrical & Electronic Engineering
If you’re thinking of pursuing a Diploma in Electrical & Electronic Engineering, the minimum requirements that you need to meet are:
- SPM / O-Level: Minimum 3 credits including Mathematics and one Science subject (preferably Physics) plus a pass in English.
In general, a typical Diploma in Electrical & Electronic Engineering is 2.5 years long. You will learn the necessary engineering concepts and applications to utilise and control electrical energy as well as design and build simple electronic devices.
You will also pick up the essential IT skills to run analyses, simulations and tests with various computing software such as PSPICE, MATLAB and C++ programming.
Upon completion of your Electrical & Electronic Engineering Diploma, you can then choose to join the working realm to earn valuable working experience.
However, if you’re seeking for more in-depth knowledge, then you can opt to continue your studies with an Electrical & Electronic Engineering Degree, starting from Year 2.
(ii) Degree in Electrical & Electronic Engineering
To pursue a Degree in Electrical & Electronic Engineering, you’ll have to complete a Pre-University course, Foundation or Diploma programme after your SPM or an equivalent qualification.
The minimum requirements that you need to meet are:
- A-Level: Minimum 2Es in Maths and Physics; or
- STPM: Minimum 2Cs in Maths and Physics; or
- Australian Matriculation: Minimum of ATAR 60.0 including Maths and Physics; or
- Canadian Pre-University: Average of 60% in 6 subjects including Maths and Physics; or
- Diploma: Minimum CGPA of 2.00; or
- Foundation in Science: Minimum CGPA of 2.00
In addition to the above requirements, you will also need to obtain at least a pass in your SPM English.
Also, it’s advisable to check whether the degree that you want to pursue is recognised by the Board of Engineers Malaysia (BEM), in case you want to pursue a career as a Professional Engineer.
A Degree in Electrical & Electronic Engineering is usually 4 years long.
You’ll gain a more comprehensive insight on various fundamental theories and concepts of electrical and electronics engineering.
As a result, you will be able to conduct your own analyses and investigations on complex engineering problems and utilise modern engineering and IT tools to develop sustainable and feasible solutions.
In most universities, you will also be required to go through compulsory industry training in your Degree studies. This is where you’ll get the opportunity to experience real working environment to gain more practical skills and apply what you’ve learned in university.
b) How Does Your Education Pathway Look Like?
Upon completion of SPM, you can opt to pursue a Pre-University course or a relevant Foundation programme. After that, upon meeting the minimum requirements, you can then proceed to a Degree in Electrical & Electronic Engineering.
As an alternative, you can also choose to take up a Diploma in Electrical & Electronic Engineering, where you can have the choice to further your studies to a Degree or join the workplace afterwards.
Upon completion of a recognised Electrical & Electronic Engineering Degree, you will have to register with BEM as a Graduate Engineer in order to seek employment opportunities to offer professional engineering services.
If you wish to be registered as a professional Electrical & Electronic Engineer, you will need to go through 3 years of professional development and work experience, plus attend the required courses set by BEM and pass the Professional Assessment Examination (PAE).
c) What Will You Study in Electrical & Electronic Engineering?
Even though an Electrical & Electronic Engineering course can be theoretical and math-intensive, you can also expect a fair amount of hands-on sessions where you’ll need to get your hands dirty meddling with various electronic tools and appliances.
Certain institutions may also encourage their students to participate in various competitions focusing on robotics, hackathons, circuit and system designs to gain extra exposure and reinforce learning.
With that said, here are some typical subjects that you’ll learn in an Electrical & Electronic Engineering course.
- Engineering Mathematics
- Circuits Theory
- Analogue Electronics
- Instrumentation and Process Control
- Digital Signal Processing
- Power Systems
- Communication Systems
- Microprocessor Systems
#3. Why Should You Study Electrical & Electronic Engineering?
Reasons are aplenty to pursue an Electrical & Electronic Engineering course.
With technology growing at such an unprecedented pace, from slimmer TVs and lighter laptops to electric cars and unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs, or commonly known as drones), there is certainly much to shout about being in an Electrical & Electronic Engineering course.
In case you’re looking, here are some reasons why you can choose to take this course.
(a) You love technology
No, you won’t learn how to build websites and mobile applications (but you certainly can learn how to on your own).
You will, however, learn how to build and create the hardware that websites and mobile applications run on (read: computers, phones, tablets, etc.). Even though you may not be building technologically-advanced products like the latest Samsung Galaxy S8 Edge yet, but you can certainly learn the fundamentals.
From creating complex circuit boards to programming and design logic, Electrical & Electronic Engineering can bring you much closer to the technology you so love.
(b) You have a knack of fixing (electronic) things
Remember the time when you were the only one who can get your home TV working for your family? Or when your younger siblings came to you for help with their faulty remote-controlled toy cars?
It’s very likely that it’s all written in the stars, you see.
Troubleshooting and making sure that your electronic projects work are part and parcel of studying Electrical & Electronic Engineering. But of course, you will learn the proper way of fixing things (not simply by giving them a slight knock and a nudge).
(c) You are constantly looking for ways to improve things
Love looking for ways to make things more efficient and convenient?
You will certainly love what you’ll do in an Electrical & Electronic Engineering course because that’s going to be what you do most of the time. From making faster remote-controlled cars to building automated robots, there are plenty that you can improve and upgrade.
This is precisely why will be having an influx of autonomous driving cars and smart homes in the future.
#4. What Skills Do You Need for an Electrical & Electronic Engineering Course?
Of course, with such great promises that lie in this branch of engineering, comes an even greater need to push the boundaries.
Here are some necessary personal attributes you will need to have to thrive in such a fast-paced and ever-changing field.
(a) Continuous drive to keep learning and improving
The fact is you will face numerous trials and errors in an Electrical & Electronic Engineering course.
This is why constantly keeping yourself motivated is crucial. But more importantly is your passion for learning and kaizen (Japanese for continuous improvement). Always strive to learn from your failures and constantly keep yourself updated with the latest developments (IoT, automation, autonomous vehicles, etc.) in your field.
Many breakthroughs in the electrical and electronics field are done in the spirit of continuous improvement. Otherwise, we’d still be carrying a brick-sized mobile phone.
(b) Ability to collaboratively work in a team
In the electrical and electronic engineering field, no man is an island.
Working with others is inevitable in our fast-paced world. To prep you for this inevitability, you will receive numerous group projects and assignments as part of your course.
As an Electrical & Electronic Engineering graduate, it is important to learn how to build trust among your teammates and to work with each other’s strengths because such traits are very much needed in the workplace.
(c) Possess solid critical thinking and problem-solving skills
Plenty of things that you’ll do in an Electrical & Electronic Engineering course are aimed to solve certain complex problems.
It is a norm for Electrical & Electronic Engineering students to constantly face issues in programming, designs and systems. You will also constantly be posed with challenges to improve certain systems or processes.
So be prepared to beat your brains out.
#5. What Career Options Do You Have with an Electrical & Electronic Engineering Degree?
Electrical & Electronic Engineering courses are essentially broad-based, churning graduates who are versatile and handy.
This enables Electrical & Electronic Engineering graduates to find employment opportunities in a multitude of industries ranging from automotive and biomedical to aerospace and IT.
Not only can you work in an engineering-related field, but you can also build careers in a wide variety of areas including sales and marketing, consulting, product development, and much more.
That being said, here are some of the common employment opportunities that an Electrical & Electronic Engineering graduate can consider:
- Technical Support Engineer
- Test Development Engineer
- Network Engineer
- Electrical Process Control Engineer
- Electronics Engineer
- Research & Development Engineer
- Sensor Design Engineer
- System Design Engineer
#6. Where Can You Study Electrical & Electronic Engineering in Malaysia?
Imagining yourself as the next Nikola Tesla? Here are some of the popular universities to pursue Electrical & Electronic Engineering courses in Malaysia.
Bachelor of Electronic Engineering (Hons)
Campus: Petaling Jaya
Intakes: Jan & Aug
Estimated Fees: RM69,090
Strong list of collaborative foreign partner universities
Opportunities for final year students to showcase projects to prospective employers via Annual Innovation Day
Gain skills in using advanced software such as Mainframe Computing Technology and Mentor Graphics of Electronic Design Automation (EDA)
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BEng (Hons) Electrical & Electronic Engineering
Campus: Subang Jaya
Intakes: Mar & Aug
Estimated Fees: RM156,608
Scholarships: Up to 100% tuition fee waiver
Opportunities for students to participate in various conferences and training workshops as part of the CDIO™ Initiative
Strong research-driven education with focus to finding solutions to Grand Challenges that society is facing in the 21st century
Offers industry relevant curriculum and content with regular review and refinements with Industry Advisory Panel (IAP) made up of leading local and multinational companies
BEng (Hons) Electrical and Electronic Engineering
Campus: Kuala Lumpur
Intakes: Jan, May & Sep
Estimated Fees: RM74,040
Scholarships: Up to 100% tuition fee waiver
Offers various engagement and learning opportunities to students via the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers – Eta Kappa Nu (IEEE-HKN) Student Chapter – the third in Asia Pacific
Top 350 among Asian universities in the QS University Rankings in 2016
Reliable and credible academic staff where over 30% are PhD holders