Established as the second university in the
country in 1969, Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM) was first known as
Universiti Pulau Pinang. In 1971, USM moved from its temporary
premises at the Malayan Teachers’ Training College, Bukit Gelugor to
the present 416.6 hectare site at Minden, approximately 9.7 km from
USM offers courses ranging from Natural Sciences, Applied Sciences,
Medical and Health Sciences, Pharmaceutical Sciences to Building
Science and Technology, Social Sciences, Humanities, and Education.
These are available at undergraduate and postgraduate levels to
approximately 30,000 students at its 17 Academic Schools on the main
campus in the island of Penang; 6 Schools at the Engineering Campus
in Nibong Tebal (approximately 50km from the main campus); and 3 at
the Health Campus in Kubang Kerian, Kelantan (approximately 300km
from the main campus).
USM also has 17 dedicated research centres for a wide range of
specialisations which include archaeology, medicine and dentistry,
molecular medicine, science and technology, Islamic development and
management studies, and policy research and international studies.
It also provides consultancy, testing, and advisory services to the
industry under the ambit of USAINS Holdings Sdn Bhd, the
University’s commercial arm.
Since the beginning, USM has adopted the School system rather than
the traditional Faculty system to ensure that its students are
multi-disciplined from their exposure to other areas of study by
other Schools. It also encourages students to be active in
extra-curricular activities given the myriad of clubs and societies
As a Research Intensive University recognised by the Ministry of
Higher Education Malaysia (MOHE) in 2007, USM offers educational and
research opportunities to students and staff. In 2008, USM also
became the first university in the country to be selected by the
Malaysian government to participate in the Accelerated Programme for
Excellence (APEX), a fast-track programme that helps tertiary
institutions achieve world-class status.