International Islamic University Malaysia

International Islamic University Malaysia
Universiti Islam Antarabangsa Malaysia

Logo of the International Islamic University Malaysia
Motto Taman Ilmu dan Budi (Malay)
Motto in English
The Garden of Knowledge and Virtue
Type Public university
Established 23 May 1983[1]
Chancellor Sultan Ahmad Shah of Pahang, the Constitutional Head
President Dr. Rais Yatim
Rector Professor Dr. Zaleha Kamaruddin
Undergraduates 25,612 (including 6,538 foundation students) (2014)
Postgraduates 3,578 (2014)
1,479 (2014)
Location Gombak, Selangor, Malaysia
Campus Gombak
Petaling Jaya
Kuala Lumpur
Affiliations ASAIHL,[2] ACU,[3] AUAP,[4] FUIW[5]

The International Islamic University Malaysia (Arabic: الجامعة الإسلامية العالمية بماليزيا; Malay: Universiti Islam Antarabangsa Malaysia), also known as IIUM or UIAM, is a Public Institution of Higher Education (PIHE) in Malaysia. Its main campus is located in Gombak, Selangor with its Centre for Foundation Studies situated in Petaling Jaya and Gambang, Pahang and its medical-centric branch in Kuantan, Pahang. IIUM also has two city campuses in Kuala Lumpur and will be opening a new campus in Bandar Universiti Pagoh. The university is sponsored by eight governments from the Organisation of the Islamic Conference (OIC). It is distinct from the International Islamic University Islamabad, Pakistan and International Islamic University Chittagong in Chittagong, Bangladesh.

The university was established on the 23rd of May 1983 and founded upon Islamic principles.[1] Islamic values are inculcated into all disciplines. IIUM offers bachelor, master's degree and PhD courses at its 14 faculties, also known as kulliyyah.

Since 1987, there have been 60,785 graduates and postgraduates who have completed their studies at the IIUM. Out of this, 53,241 were from Malaysia whereas 7,530 were international students.[6]


Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad[7][8] conceived of the idea for an international institution of Islamic education in 1982 during a meeting between OIC leaders about the Islamization of knowledge. The idea was then shared with the then Minister of Education, Dr. Sulaiman Daud; the Director-General of Education, Murad Mohamed Nor and two other persons. Dr. Mohamed Kamal Hassan, then of the National University of Malaysia along with a senior academic official who attended the meeting, produced the first working paper on the concept of the university.[7]

IIUM was officially established on 23 May 1983, by virtue of Section 5A (2) of the Universities and University Colleges Act 1971, when the University received its Establishment Order from His Majesty the King, Sultan Ahmad Shah of Pahang, who was then appointed as its first Constitutional Head on 1 July 1983, after an exchange of Diplomatic Notes of co-sponsorship between the Government of Malaysia and a number of Muslim Governments and the OIC.[7]

The university's language of instruction was to be English and Arabic, and many of its students were to come from overseas. As Malaysian law did not allow for this, IIUM was incorporated under the Companies Act of 1965. Thus it became the first international university and the first university in Malaysia to use English as the medium of instruction and administration.

The university operates under the supervision of the Board of Governors, which is composed of representatives of the OIC as well as the eight sponsoring governments, namely; Malaysia, Bangladesh, Egypt, Libya, Maldives, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and Turkey.[7] The Constitutional Head, President and Rector of this university are all Malaysians.

A batch of 153 students from Malaysia and abroad were enrolled for the first academic session, which started on 8 July 1983. Courses were conducted under the Faculty of Economics, the Faculty of Laws, the Center for Fundamental Knowledge (CFK) and the Center for Languages (CFL). The members of this first batch received their degrees and diplomas during the First Convocation held on the 10th of October 1987. 68 graduates were conferred Bachelor of Economics (B.Econ/BECS) degrees, 56 Bachelor of Laws (LLB) degrees, and 29 Qadhis were conferred Diploma in Law and Administration of Islamic Judiciary.


As a public university, IIUM is ruled ceremonially by the Constitutional Head who presides over convocations and serves as the point of reference for all constitutional issues. Equivalent to the Chancellor in other public universities, he is appointed by the King on the recommendation of the Federal Government for a term of 7-years. Sultan Ahmad Shah of Pahang is the current and founding Constitutional Head, a position that he has held for 5 terms.

The Board of Governors shall be the governing, policy-making and monitoring body of the University. While Senate is the highest academic authority responsible for the management of the academic and student affairs of the University. The Board of Governors presides]. He is assisted by the Rector who chairs the Senate and the Management Committee. Both the President (as the Chairman) and the Rector (as the Chief Executive Officer) are appointed by the Constitutional Head for a term of 5-years and 3-years respectively.


International Islamic University Malaysia

The university has moved to a 700-acre (2.8 km²) campus at Gombak, Selangor. The original campus in Petaling Jaya has been converted to Matriculation Centre and currently known as Centre For Foundation Studies (CFS). All foundation students are placed at the Petaling Jaya Campus, except for Foundation in Economics students at Gombak Campus and Foundation in Medicine, Pharmacy and Dentistry at Gambang Campus, Pahang. Apart from these two campuses, IIUM has another three campuses—the Kuala Lumpur Campus at Persiaran Duta,[9] Kuala Lumpur Campus at Jalan Damansara, and Kuantan Campus about 250 km to the east in the state of Pahang. In September 2010, IIUM reported to open new campus in Pagoh, Johor[10] for Kulliyyah of Languages & Management and another one in Gambang, Pahang as a new Centre For Foundation Studies replacing Petaling Jaya Campus.


IIUM has 14 faculties, called "Kulliyyah" which means college or faculty in Arabic. Two of the faculties are the Ahmad Ibrahim Kulliyyah of Laws (AIKOL) and the Kulliyyah of Islamic Revealed Knowledge and Human Sciences (KIRKHS). Other programs offered include Engineering, Dentistry, Nursing, Allied Health Sciences, Architecture, Information Technology, Biomedical Science, Biotechnology, Economics and Management Sciences.

The faculties (kulliyyah) of IIUM are:



Currently, there are three institutes that act as centre of excellence for the university.


ICT Facilities IIUM is committed to providing continuous internet services to all its campuses and facilities by providing broadband and wifi access to all its students and staff members. IIUM is also continuously expanding its internet services and facilities to meet connectivity demands through its various upgrading projects. IIUM also has various online services, such as the myIIUM Student Portal, in which IIUM students can check and organize their personal schedules and information in a centralized online database. IIUM also has an e-learning and online community portal, whereby students can organize and coordinate their schedules, announcements and activities.

IIUM library

IIUM Library IIUM has an extensive law library and research centre. It produces top-class university debaters; the university was placed seventh in the world varsity rankings in 2003. The University library system consists of five libraries at each of the University's five campuses: the Main Library at the Gombak campus, two Medical libraries in the Kuantan campus (Indera Mahkota and Jalan Hospital branches), the ISTAC Library at Damansara, the IIBF Library at Jalan Duta and the Centre for Foundation Studies (CENFOS) Library at Petaling Jaya.

Cultural Activity Centre (CAC) The Cultural Activity Centre (CAC) is the university's biggest centre, used as a venue for the annual convocation ceremony. CAC can be converted to an examination venue. Cultural performances, talks and seminars have been held at the centre; a notable use was for the 2003 Asia Pacific Indigenous Plays Festival which featured cultural performances from Malaysia, Thailand, the Philippines, Cambodia, Japan, and the United States of America.

Azman Hashim Complex The Azman Hashim Complex is a RM7 million multipurpose hall set up to serve the needs of IIUM students, and to be a revenue source for the IIUM Endowment Fund. Within the Complex, students can find all the modern conveniences for living their daily lives, such as three banks (Bank Islam, Bank Muamalat and AmIslamic Bank), a bookstore, an exclusive café and a multipurpose hall house. The income from these facilities will fund the scholarships for 15 deserving IIUM students, covering registration, tuition, hostel fees as well as a monthly stipend allowance.

Sports Complex IIUM provides a wide variety of sports and recreational facilities and services across its campuses, in order to encourage productive and constructive leisure activities amongst its students. This is to realize the vision to produce students with holistic personalities, as well as promote an active and healthy lifestyle amongst the IIUM community.

Hostel Facilities The students’ residential colleges in IIUM are also known as Mahallah, which is Arabic for ‘neighbourhood’. IIUM’s mahallahs are self-contained not only with services but also activities, and are named after the leading companions of the Prophet and the female Mujahidah and Syuhada. Since the early years of its establishment, IIUM has practiced 100% accommodation for its full time undergraduate students. For postgraduate students, accommodation is provided based on availability of rooms. Priority is given to the non-Malaysian students, especially students from the newest intake.

Sultan Haji Ahmad Shah Mosque

The Sultan Haji Ahmad Shah Mosque is situated at the centre of Gombak Campus.

The Mosque's main prayer hall has a maximum capacity of 9000 people, with female prayer halls on the 2nd and 3rd levels of the Mosque. The Mosque also organizes lectures, seminars and classes on concepts such as marriage and janazah, Tilawah and Tahfiz Al-Qur'an, as well as activities such as Qiyamullail and Tarbiyyah and training for students.



IIUM started with 153 students in 1983. Today approximately 3,000 students enroll each year. As of 2005, there were approximately 20,000 students from over 40 Muslim majority countries studying in IIUM, as well as students from non-Muslim majority countries (such as Germany, Finland, China, South Korea, Japan, India, United States of America, Kashmir,Russia, Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, Burma, Vietnam, Sri Lanka and the Philippines).

The ratio of female-to-male students is 3:1.

Since 1987, there have been 60,785 graduates and postgraduates who have completed their studies at the IIUM. Out of this, 53,241 were from Malaysia while 7,530 were International students.[6]

Having graduates all over the world, IIUM has established alumni chapters in Thailand, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Indonesia, Maldives, Australia, Saudi Arabia, Oman and Singapore. Branches of alumni chapters have also been opened in Turkey, China, Nigeria, the Philippines, Yemen, Brunei, Senegal, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Gambia, Republic of Guinea and the United Arab Emirates.

Medium of Instruction

The medium of instruction is English, with Arabic used in courses related to the study of Islamic sciences like theology, jurisprudence and ethics. Basic Arabic is a compulsory course. In addition, basic Bahasa Melayu is compulsory for international under-graduate students.

Awards and Recognition

IIUM has participated in international competitions in the field of debate, public speaking and mooting. In 2004 Irma Nur Zahrah Bt. Junian from IIUM won the Public Speaking Competition of World University Debating Championship (WUDC).[14] In 2007, IIUM won the WUDC title for English as a second language.[15] In 2008 world ranking of World Debate website, IIUM had the 14th place among the top universities of the world.[16] IIUM again shines in international debating competition when Ameera Natasha Moore, a third year Ahmad Ibrahim Kulliyyah of Laws student was named as the best speaker in The Norton Rose Fulbright Cambridge University Women's Debate Open competition. She and her team mate, Sara Rahim outranked debaters from prominent universities such as Oxford University, Berlin University and Tel Aviv University among others.[17]

The IIUM Debating Team does the University and the nation proud again when the team is ranked at number 10 out of 440 teams in the 35th World Universities Debating Championship (WUDC) hosted by University Teknologi Mara (UiTM) from 27 December 2014 until 4 January 2015. The team consisted of final year law-student Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman and third-year economics student Mubarrat Wassey.[18] The team once again does the university proud by becoming champion for the United Asian Debating Championship (UADC) held in Bali, Indonesia. Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman, final year law student was named as the best overall speaker for the championship.[19]

IIUM debate team composed of Mubarrat Wassey, Ameera Natasha Moore and Sara Abdul Rahim became champions of Asia at UADC Thailand 2016, with Mubarrat Wassey becoming Asia's best debater.

The same IIUM team became the first Asian University to win the Australasian Intervarsity Debate Championship in its 41 year history by winning its 2016 edition held in Perth, Australia.

IIUM (composed of Ameera Natasha Moore and Mubarrat Wassey) also won the Asian British Parliamentary championship in Jakarta, 2016 with Mubarrat Wassey emerging as Asia's best speaker again. This meant that IIUM became the first university to win all the regional tournaments in a given year.

In the field of research, students of IIUM have received recognition at regional and international level by winning gold, silver and bronze medals at exhibitions and expos, including PENCIPTA, INPEX, ITEX, Geneva and KIPA.[20] IIUM entered the inaugural Proton Green Mobility Challenge 2012 (PGMC)when the University's entry, an electric powered Proton Saga BLM named "Smart Mobility" became the overall champion and also took "Farthest Distance" and "Fastest Two Laps Challenge" award.[21][22]

IIUM also involved in the creation of the Malaysian Shariah Index with collaboration from JAKIM and YADIM which Malaysia will be the first country in the world to adopt it.[23] The index will measure the compliance of eight fields — judiciary, politics, economics, health, education, culture, infrastructure and environment, and social — with “maqasid syariah”, or the intentions of Shariah. The Malaysian Shariah Index was officially launched by the Prime Minister of Malaysia on 10 February 2015.[24]


QS World University Rankings
IIUM World Asia Malaysia Ref

Notable alumni

It is also noted that then Prime Ministers of Malaysia, Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad and Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah of Brunei, Abdullah bin Abdul Aziz, king of Saudi Arabia, Prince Al-Waleed bin Talal bin Abdulaziz al Saud and Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, President of Turkey were conferred honorary doctorates by IIUM.

Notable current and former faculty members


  1. 1 2 "Aiming to be premier Islamic university". 30 November 2007. Retrieved 7 December 2009.
  2. "The Association of Southeast Asian Institutions of Higher Learning". Retrieved 3 August 2012.
  4. "Association of Universities of Asia and the Pacific - List of the Members Universities". 13 October 2008. Retrieved 3 August 2012.
  5. Archived 26 January 2005 at the Wayback Machine.
  6. 1 2 "28th IIUM Convocation Ceremony". International Islamic University Malaysia. Retrieved 19 October 2012.
  7. 1 2 3 4 "History of International Islamic University Malaysia". Retrieved 3 August 2014.
  8. Ibrahim, Ismail (12 April 2001). "UIAM lambang kecemerlangan Malaysia". Utusan Malaysia. Retrieved 3 August 2014.
  9. "Tapak ISTAC jadi kampus UIAM Kuala Lumpur". 25 May 2010. Retrieved 19 January 2011.
  10. "Kampus baru UIAM di Pagoh dijangka ambil pelajar 2012". 30 November 2010. Retrieved 19 January 2011.
  11. KLM will be moved to Pagoh Campus soon.
  12. Kuantan Campus consists of two sub-campuses: Indera Mahkota Campus (IMC) and Jalan Hospital Campus (JHC). All respective Kulliyyat were located in IMC. However, Kulliyyah of Medicine has another building in JHC beside Tunku Ampuan Afzan Hospital.
  13. CFS is placed in three campuses: Petaling Jaya Campus (the headquarters), Gombak Campus (Economics Department) and Gambang Campus (Gambang) (Science Departments).
  14. "World Debate Website". Retrieved 3 August 2012.
  15. World Universities Debating Championship
  16. Archived 7 March 2009 at the Wayback Machine.
  20. "Indah Water Konsortium ~ IWK". Retrieved 3 August 2012.
  30. Khazanah National Berhad
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