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Foundation or "asasi" is what I prefer. Why? It's more focused towards the field we wish to take. For example, if we want to take Information Technology, we should apply for a Foundation in IT. Whereas in matrics, we take a science course and end up studying a lot of stuff not very much connected to what we want (unless we actually don't know what we want). Diploma on the other hand is much different. It's mostly for students with ordinary results (that's what most say). It takes up to 3 years and is very suitable for those who wish to study for a while and move on to the working world. Here's what a man (nafizz) in a forum has to say:
"You cannot compare matrics/asasi with diploma cos these 2 are in a different league altogether.. If you take diploma you have to study for 3 years and then apply for degree to further your education ( have to do well in your diploma courses) Whereas matrics /asasi is more like a foundation course where you are required to study for 1-2 years and after that you apply for a degree course in your choice of field. For matric, there is a one year and 2 year course ( one-year course for students with good results whereas 2-year course is for those with ordinary results but then this is not always the case. ). For asasi, there is a 2 semester course for asasi undang-undang KPM and 3 semester course asasi undang-undang UiTM ( Shah Alam Campus ) Both the UiTM and KPM courses are given pocket money of about RM 1250-RM1500 per semester. As for other asasi, it;s either one or 2 years course before applying for a degree.. ( correct me if I'm wrong )
So, if you got an offer for a diploma and matric/asasi , better reject the diploma and accept the matric or asasi. And if you get the asasi and matric, better take asasi if you are offered your choice of field, say pharmacy/medic because in a way you are already majoring in what you want to do. In matric, you are studying many subjects and if you get good results, say cgpa 4.00 then only you are offered medic, pharmacy etc. If you get ordinary results in matric, you might be offered teaching in UPSI etc.. Oh, one more thing, you are given allowance of about RM1250 per semester.
These are just my opinions..
Anyway, here are some info of my daughter's friends and also my students.
1. my daughter got an offer for a one-year course in Perlis ( Place is of no relevence. any matric ok) and also asasi law KPM ( Kementerian Pelajaran Malaysia) She like arts subjects instead of science so she might read law.. she is still deciding, tho.. lol ). then she got an interview for TESL twinning programme to go overseas under KPM)but she didn't want to become a teacher.. LOL..So pening!!!
2. her friend got matric and medic in UIA so, he is going for asasi medic UIA
3. Another friend got matric and pharmacy UIA and she is going for asasi pharmacy.
4. one got diploma statistik and matric.. she is going to matric..
5. many got diploma courses but my advice to them is to go to either asasi/matric..
So basically if you get your choice of course in asasi, go for asasi... if not, then opt for matric because if you do well, you can still take up medicine/pharmacy/engineering. Also I don't think it's that difficult to get at least cgpa 3.5 and above if you really study hard. If you can score at least 5 As in SPM. I'm sure all of you can do well in your matric... don't bother so much about race, whether there are lots of malays in this college and that college... cos all this has not reference to what you want to become and achieve in future... Go with an open mind and heart and I'm sure you will achieve what you want in the end."
That's the end of his enlightenment. One more thing I'd like to add about Diploma. Do you know that if you score very well in a 3-year Diploma, you'll get a very high chance of just taking a 2-year course to get a degree (of the same field I believe). If you're not so keen on conitnuing your studies, you can just work after finishing diploma (take note that creativity, enthusiasm and talent really helps a lot if you really do want to work fast).
In a nutshell, I'd suggest this. If you have very good grades, take Foundation. If you don't, you can either go to Foundation (if offered) or Matrics (and you can also choose this if you're still not so sure about what you want to be). Worried about scholarships? Just go ahead to foundation or matrics and do your best there. You can still get one for your degree. Make sure you focus. And besides that, you still get allowance during Foundation (must be a public university) and Matrics.
Wish you luck! =D