So far I know only five institutions locally which offer foundation studies, or in Malay we rather called it Asasi. They are the famous Universiti Malaya, Universiti Islam Antarabangsa, Universiti Teknologi Mara and Universiti Malaysia Sarawak and also before I forgot, Universiti Sains Islam Malaysia.
Question 1: What is asasi/foundation
My answer: Asasi or foundation is a program for those who completes SPM and at least scored a minimum of C for Biology and at least B for Mathematics. Okay, that is UiTM's requirement, and I am not sure about other universities and won't be posting them down here, as you savvy tech kids can easily browse through any of the institutions' websites to know more, deal?
Question 2: Duration?
My answer: One year but not one year exact. UiTM's foundation programs are the only foundations that starts early or almost like any other foundations in other universities and we finished the earliest too. Isn't that fun? Well, yes, if you like to have a long easy breezy break like me. But, I have to admit, it would be tough because we learn fast and super duper fast like a rocket. Syllabus are being taught like as if they were just merely 10 pages book. Don't opt asasi if you are the kind that need a lot of time to understand things especially concepts. In other universities, the duration varies. Like UIA, the period can last up to 2 years and you are in need to learn Arabic. So, that's basically the pros, if you get UIA, since you can learn lugathul jannah.
Question 3: Subjects?
There are many forms of asasi really. If you sought to be part of science choose asasi sains like me. There are also, asasi engineering, asasi undang-undang (law) and asasi TESOL, plus if I wasn't mistaken there's also asasi actuarial science, but I am quite unsure. Since I studied science, so yeah, basically in asasi science you only have 4 subjects and they alone. No need to take extra classes like English, Computer and whatsoever. I guess it is the most relaxing foundation studies ever that Malaysian had. So, the subjects are, Physics, Biology, Chemistry and Mathematics of course.
Question 4: Mode of subjects?
For first semester, I found out Chemistry is the easiest, similar to what we learnt back in Form 4. Biology like always tiresome and lots to memorize, Physics was okay if you really understand the concept of Newtons' Law and also free body diagrams. The worst was Mathematics . I blamed my lecturer because she didn't make me awake during most of her classes and I failed to jot down all the notes' solutions which in turn making me like zombies to do revision a week before Math's exam.
During semester 2, Mathematics was the easiest if you stay awake all along your lectures and it will be a benefit if your lecturers are good too. Physics was the toughest! You have to deal with almost 20 ++ chapters of surfaces of high physics. Biology is amazing during this term, where you would learn the systems and mechanisms. You would have lots of fun studying Reproduction. Lastly, Chemistry for semester 2 is yes tough. Organic Chemistry was not my friend at that time, and you have to deal with tonnes of memorization.
Question 5: Outdoor activities, sub-activities
For foundation in UiTM, students aren't compulsory to join clubs and associations and there is no need to do CAS or whatever to secure you a good sit. You just need to get at least 8 coupons which are serve as proves that you attend activities like lectures, talks that the campus conducted. For year 2010/2011 batches, we were lucky to have UNIC to come by. Certainly, that night was fun, entertaining, and fulfilled with lessons. That can be considered as an activity you join at the campus.
UiTM Puncak Alam is considered as a campus with good outdoor sceneries. Students can jog around the greenery campus and have fun riding bicycles. Cycling can be really tiring for those of low staminas, especially when it's time to return to hostels. This is because Puncak Alam is considered as hills. So, be prepared if you choose this place to study.
Other activities: Basketball, Futsal, Tennis, Gymnasium Work outs, soccer, rugby, senamrobik and on weekends, catch buses to head towards towns for leisure. Buses are problems, because they are not punctual and always compact like sardines' cans.
Question 6: Upon completion
For science students, they can opt for all courses they want. YES ALL! Haha. They can jump to any other fields, unlike engineering and others. So take science if you really do not know what field you are interested in. UiTM foundations lets students to go to other universities upon completion, which means, there are no tight up to stay in UiTM till you graduate. But, this served only for science and engineering, plus TESOL. For laws, they are stick to stay at UiTM.
to be continued...