IGCSE in Malaysia: Everything you need to know

IGCSE Malaysia

What is IGCSE?

The International General Certificate of Secondary Education (IGCSE) is a globally recognized qualification for secondary school students. The IGCSE curriculum is specifically designed to be taught in English and offers a wide variety of subjects catering to diverse cultural backgrounds. The Cambridge International Examination offers over 70 subjects, encompassing 30 different languages.

The wide range of subjects available means that students can choose a curriculum that suits their individual needs and interests, and the international recognition of the IGCSE opens doors for students around the world. It sets in motion a strong foundation giving a higher prospect of enrolment in universities, national and foreign.

Recognition of IGCSE in Malaysia


In Malaysia, the IGCSE is offered by the University of Cambridge International Examinations (CIE) and is recognized by the Malaysian Ministry of Education as an equivalent to the Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia (SPM), the national secondary school examination. This is a green light for students to be able to apply and enroll themselves in Malaysian Universities with the IGCSE qualification.


The IGCSE qualification is not only recognized among universities, it further extends to a higher prospect in employment as well. These benefits and advantages are solely available due to the recognition of the University of Cambridge International Examinations (CIE) and the tough academic standards set globally. 


In recent years, the subject ‘Malay’ has been added to the IGCSE curriculum, making it a more convenient choice given its first language status. It is important to however take note that IGCSE First Language Malay is not equivalent to Bahasa Melayu at the SPM level.


The IGCSE is a valuable addition to the country’s education system and provides students with the skills and knowledge they need to succeed in a rapidly changing world.


Where to find the best resources for IGCSE in Malaysia?


  • Textbooks – They are easily available for purchase in stores or online. They also have credible resources curated specifically for the IGCSE syllabus.


  • Online resources – Multiple platforms offer free online resources for students preparing for IGCSE. Past Papers, revision notes, and sample questions are some helpful resources that you can use in preparation for the IGCSE Examination.


  • Tuition centers – Many tuition centers in Malaysia offer IGCSE preparation courses that provide students with structured lessons and personalized attention from experienced teachers. Additional hands-on learning can further aid the student in having a thorough knowledge of the subject and building confidence.


  • Online Tutors – If you prefer learning from the comfort of your home without the hassle of having to travel, online tuition is the way to go. You can find online tutors who specialize in the required subject and the IGCSE curriculum giving you one-to-one attention via virtual platforms. Some recognized online tutoring platforms offering IGCSE over a broad array of subjects include;
    • Tutopiya
    • Tutor Breeze
    • TutorVista
    • The Tutor Pages
    • Tutor Me

These platforms offer flexible scheduling, one-on-one sessions, and personalized attention to help students achieve their academic goals. However, it’s important to carefully research and compare the features, cost, and qualifications of each platform to find the one that best suits your needs.


  • British Council Malaysia – IGCSE is based on and taught in English, so it is imperative that you learn or perfect your English while preparing for your examination. British Council is a highly reputable institution in Malaysia offering flexible courses and lets you keep tabs on deadlines for payments and examination schedules for IGCSE in Malaysia. 

Schedule for IGCSE in Malaysia 2023


Cambridge IGCSE Examination takes place globally in over 160 countries. Encompassing so many countries they are categorized under ‘Administrative Zones’. Malaysia falls under Zone 5. 

IGCSE Examination takes place twice in a year; precisely May/June and October/November. The May/June schedules for the year 2023 have been released starting from the 24th of April. The results will take roughly 2 months to be processed and will be released in mid-August. Accordingly, October/November schedules have also been released.


How to register for the IGCSE Examination in Malaysia?


Exam registration can be processed either by your school or as a private candidate. Either way, registering for the exam can be a hassle if you’re unaware of the procedures.

Registering for an exam is pretty straightforward and can be done in easy steps within a couple of minutes. Here are two platforms that provide a guide on how to register and access the registration form for the IGCSE.


How to decide on which subjects to choose?


When deciding the selection of subjects for the IGCSE, it is important to bear in mind that this decision can have a significant impact on your future education and career prospects. Here are some important steps that you can follow in your decision-making.


  • Contemplate your interests and strengths – It is crucial that you enjoy and have an overview of the subject. Prior research on the subject can give clarity if it is meant for you.


  • Future Career Pathway – Considering it’s too premature to decide and confirm on a career, a rough idea of what you imagine becoming in the future can help narrow your choices. If unsure, IGCSE allows flexibility among a choice of subjects and you can use it to your advantage branching it out to multiple career opportunities.


  • Guidance via teachers and advisors – Assistance and guidance from people of knowledge and experience can give you a better insight into how to make the choice and what its effects would be. Who better than a teacher to guide you through to make an informed decision?


  • A number of subjects – On average, a minimum of 5 to a maximum of 14 subjects can be selected. However, you have to consider the workload you will be able to take up. Extracurriculars and academics have to be balanced in a manner that doesn’t affect the other. Choose wisely!


If you are considering IGCSE for your child or yourself, it is important to research the options available in Malaysia and understand the requirements for admission. With hard work and dedication, the IGCSE can be a valuable stepping stone to a successful future.



  1. How do the fees for IGCSE compare to SPM?

SPM Examination fee is quite reasonable compared to IGCSE which can roughly cost from about RM20,000 to RM100,000 a year. The greater difference in cost is due to its international recognition and rigorous assessments. 

Cost for textbooks, revision books and other resources can vary for each curriculum.

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