A 4.0 cumulative grade point average (CGPA) in the Sijil Tinggi Persekolahan Malaysia (STPM) examination does not guarantee a place in a public university especially for medical courses because of the limited places and stiff competition, said Higher Education Minister Idris Jusoh.
He said the limited places was why universities like Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia and Universiti Malaya had to conduct interviews for student intakes.
“Universities also look at curricular activities, look at volunteerism, not only academic performance. Which is why we have integrated CGPA (from now on).
“If CGPA is everything, probably they (the universities) will not have interviews,” he said when commenting on students who attained 4.0 in STPM yet failed to be accepted into medical courses but were offered courses in biotechnology.
He was speaking after meeting with 45 volunteers of Yayasan Sukarelawan Siswa (YSS) who had just returned to Malaysia after serving in a month-long volunteer programme in two districts in Vietnam.
Idris said appeals for placed in public universities could only be made through Unit Pusat Universiti (UPU) until Aug 21.
“If they are not successful, they can also appeal to the universities,” he said.
On the YSS mission, Idris said the experience and exposure of the students were priceless and different from the knowledge obtained from lecturers or books.