The days leading up to the SPM results and even after getting your results will be filled with a lot of advice from many people on what you should study next or do for a brighter future.
Such advice may be useful and should be taken into consideration especially when it comes from experienced individuals within the industry and the employment market.
Always seek as much information as possible, reflect and analyse each piece of information before making the best decision for your future.
Let’s find out together the important things to do once SPM results are out.
After collecting your results, you may fall within one of the following categories:
- You passed with flying colours or better than you expected.
- You received the results that you expected.
- You didn’t do well as you hoped.
Even if you didn’t do as well as you hoped, don’t stress yourself or let it stop you from pursuing your long-term goals. There are many education options out there for a bright future.
If you prefer not to further studies immediately receiving your results, consider taking a gap year (yes, you heard that right! A gap year doesn’t only happen after graduation, you have the freedom to take a gap year even before joining college or university).
1. Understand yourself better
A psychometric assessment helps to determine your strengths and weaknesses in order to find a career path which suits your personality.
To read more about psychometric assessments, click here.
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2. Decide what you would like to study
There is no doubt that your SPM results play a significant role in the courses to which you can gain admission, but even if they aren’t that stellar, fret not! There are many pre-university programmes offered by myriad educational institutions, and the most important thing to do is to select one that interests you.
Focus on the subjects in which you excelled at school, be clear on what interests you, and look for related courses. Read the overview of each course, find out what sort of careers are related to those courses and figure out whether you would be keen to pursue those careers. Some soul-searching is in order!
Explore your course and career options at careeradvisor.asia.
3. Determine the educational institution/pathway
Basically, there are various pre-university and other options to pursue after SPM. Here is a brief description of some of the popular options available.
- STPM – If you can’t get enough of high school life and have limited finances, then going to FORM 6/STPM is advisable. This Malaysian-based examination is equivalent to A-Levels and recognised worldwide.
- A- Levels – A UK-based pre-university programme which enables candidates to sit for a minimum of 3 papers. This option is suitable for those who intend to pursue challenging courses such as medicine or law.
- Foundation – This course which runs for a 1-year duration prepares SPM students for a degree programme. Each course consists of core and elective subjects to enable students to discover their area of interest.
- International Baccalaureate (IB) – This course is a 2-year pre-university programme from Switzerland. Known to be academically challenging, students are required to take 6 subjects across various disciplines including language, mathematics, sciences and the arts. This programme is often compared to other academically demanding courses such as A-Levels.
- AUSMAT – For those who intend to further studies in Australia, this matriculation programme helps you do just that! The programme which is 50% coursework and 50% exams allows you to earn an Australian Tertiary Admission (ATAR) rank, which in turn enables students to pursue a university education in Australia and other parts of the world.
- American Degree Programme (ADP) – If you have set your sights on studying in the United States, pursuing this course helps you to start your studies in Malaysia and complete the last two years in the US. During the course of studies, you will be able to explore subjects like Psychology and Philosophy, before you decide on your chosen field of study.
- Diploma – If you are interested in gaining hands-on experience and relevant skills to start working, then this might be a suitable option. After finishing a 2-year diploma, you can either start working or further your studies to obtain a degree in the same field.
- Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) – Contrary to popular belief, TVET courses are not designed for academically weak students. If you are interested in gaining technical or specific hands-on skills such as culinary skills, aesthetics/beauty services or even front desk operations, this may be the right pathway to get into the job market. Another advantage of pursuing TVET courses is the fact that most community colleges/polytechnics offer courses at subsidised rates.
Do your due diligence: Keep in mind the course you wish to take, list down the places that offer the course. Visit their websites to learn more about the courses and facilities offered, fees, location, and the availability of accommodation, public transportation, food and entertainment options. Be sure to also read reviews on the institutions that you’re keen on to get an unbiased and objective view of their reliability and reputation.
4. Hunt for scholarships
Many government institutions and established private organisations give out scholarships and financial aid to needy and deserving students. You just have to suss them out!
There are various types of scholarships for pre-university and undergraduate courses: Be sure to read their terms and conditions to see if you meet their requirements.
Remember to also find out about the repayment options (if you are opting for financial aid) and whether there is a bond period upon the completion of your course. Some companies – especially government institutions – require their scholars to serve a stipulated number of years at the company, so make sure you are aware of this and are willing to do so.
5. Develop your life skills
There will come a time when you will have to depend on yourself entirely to get through the day, and that time is usually when you enter college. So, between now and when you finally begin your tertiary studies is a great time to firm up those life skills!
Tag along when your mum goes grocery shopping, pester her for recipes to simple dishes, pitch in when it comes to household chores, learn to sew and start getting serious about your finances. Learning to manage life on your own is a big part of college life and puts you on the path towards real independence.
6. Brush up on your English
When you enter college, you will be studying among students of different races who come from different cultures. While this makes for a fun and exciting study environment, it can be difficult to navigate if nobody understands what you’re saying! Part of the college experience is in expanding your network of contacts and social circle, so to ensure that this process is smooth sailing, make sure to brush up on your English language skills. Also, English is generally the medium of instruction at tertiary education institutions so it would be detrimental to your grades if you aren’t proficient in the language!