Universiti Brunei Darussalam (UBD) provides high quality education in sciences, business, economics, policy studies, engineering, medicine and social sciences. In a relatively short period, UBD has advanced and expanded in academics and infrastructure, producing influential leaders, entrepreneurs and professionals.
The university introduced the GenNEXT programme in 2009, allowing students to tailor their studies according to their learning styles. Its pioneering Discovery Year programme allows students to study abroad through its partnership with universities and institutions across six continents. UBD’s research activities are supported by the government in funding and infrastructure.
UBD has seen an increase in graduate students and collaborators coming to UBD to conduct research. With the increased joint academic programmes, research collaborations and networks, UBD’s active partnerships with institutions worldwide have refined UBD’s teaching and research output at the university. UBD continues to be one of the leading higher education institutions in Brunei Darussalam.
Universiti Islam Sultan Sharif Ali (UNISSA) was established in 2007 to sustain and support the country in upholding Islam. The university has five faculties: Faculty of Usuluddin; Faculty of Shariah and Law; Faculty of Arabic Language; Faculty of Islamic Economics and Finance; and Faculty of Islamic Development Management.
Each faculty offers various undergraduate and postgraduate programmes ranging from Usuluddin, Shariah, Islamic Law, Arabic Language, Islamic History, Islamic Finance to Business Management programmes.
In addition to its core programmes, UNISSA offers additional courses to provide students with a competitive edge so they will thrive in any environment while portraying the virtues of a devout Muslim. Some courses include Al- Quran, Malay Islamic Monarchy (MIB), Islamic Virtues and Entrepreneurship.
Students of Bachelor’s Degree programmes who have obtained CGPA 3.50 and above throughout the first two years of study are given an opportunity to study abroad for a year at any of UNISSA’s partner universities in the Middle East, United Kingdom (UK), Morocco or Malaysia.
The study abroad programme aims to provide experience studying overseas under different education systems, ways of life, and cultures. Alternatively, students in their third year undergo industrial training to gain work experience and insights into the day-to-day operations at selected organisations.
With the increase in student enrolment, UNISSA is becoming the choice for local and international students to further their education in Islamic studies.
Meanwhile, also in September 2020, UNISSA’s Strategic Planning and Development Office (PPPS) through the Strategic Planning Unit organised its annual retreat to evaluate and review the key performance indicator (KPI) achieved by UNISSA where a total of 78 KPIs were deliberated during the retreat held at a hotel in the capital. Key officers of UNISSA comprising faculty deans, directors and head of units participated.
The UNISSA Strategic Plan 2019-2023 focussed on the direction of planning, development and implementation strategies to achieve the vision in becoming an Islamic higher education hub in Asia and meet UNISSA’s mission to produce pious and credible leaders who could contribute to the development of Ummah through academic excellence, research and community service.
The five-year strategic plan is also supported by the four main thrusts including Teaching and Learning Excellence, Research and Publishing Excellence, National and International Recognition, and Sustainable Infrastructure and Governance. All 78 KPIs discussed were presented by heads and leaders of the KPIs in three separate sessions.
In October 2020, an impromptu visit from His Majesty Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah Mu’izzaddin Waddaulah ibni Al-Marhum Sultan Haji Omar ‘Ali Saifuddien Sa’adul Khairi Waddien, Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam to the university’s campus saw His Majesty calling for the immediate construction of UNISSA’s new campus in the Temburong District, following to the completion of the Sultan Haji Omar ‘Ali Saifuddien Bridge.
His Majesty said that the project is significant for the Temburong District and for Brunei Darussalam, as a symbol of how Islam is preserved and promulgated in the country, and what is relevant is that UNISSA must prepare for a new era with a new building, in which the preparations should incorporate state-of-theart university management and administration, empowerment of existing faculties, and enhancing overall performance and quality of the academic staff, without neglecting the students’ accomplishments.
His Majesty also called for a new faculty on agriculture at the university once relocated to the Temburong District as the sciences of agriculture, animal husbandry and the like are also part of Islamic teachings.
The establishment of Politeknik Brunei was consented by His Majesty the Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam in a titah delivered during the Teacher’s Day celebration on October 18, 2008 to accelerate the country’s human resources development, emphasised by the National Development Plan (NDP) and Brunei Vision 2035.
With a vision to be a reputable polytechnic producing innovative, skillful and marketable graduates, and a mission to equip students with sustainable skills through holistic and quality education in a supportive teaching and learning environment, Politeknik Brunei began its operation in January 2012, with the enrolment of its first intake.
Politeknik Brunei reached another significant milestone after it was awarded the International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO) 9001:2015 on November 27, 2017 by Bureau Veritas (BV), making it the first higher education institution in Brunei Darussalam to be certified, particularly in providing Level 5 Diploma Education in the field of Business, Information Communication Technology and Science & Engineering.
In support of the institution’s vision on nurturing innovation, Politeknik Brunei is also an Institutional Member of the Oracle Academy. Politeknik Brunei remains keen and unequivocal in developing ICT talents of young Bruneians (particularly those who are passionate about ICT or technology in general), since the Oracle Academy advances computer science education globally to drive and boost knowledge, innovation, skills development, and diversity in technological fields by offering both educators and students computer science education resources.
Politeknik Brunei is divided into the School of Business, School of Health Science, School of Information and Communication Technology, School of Science and Engineering, and Department of General Studies.
Universiti Teknologi Brunei (UTB) specialises in the area of Engineering, Business, Computing, Applied Sciences & Mathematics and Design. UTB was initially established as a higher learning institution in 1986, offering Higher National Diploma (HND) programmes, and was upgraded to a university in 2008.
The university has seen tremendous development since its upgrade. This includes the expansion of its academic programmes portfolio and establishment of partnerships with industries and universities to collaborate in research, education and training programmes.
With its high quality education, hands-on approach and industry-based programmes, UTB has produced graduates who are readily accepted by top universities around the world and are highly valued by employers in the country.
UTB is the only local university rated five stars for overall excellence under the Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) Star Rating System. UTB scored five stars in six out of the seven categories, namely Teaching, Employability, Internationalisation, Facilities, Social Responsibility, and Inclusiveness.
In addition, UTB is the first local university to have successfully acquired the ISO 9001:2015 Quality Management System Certification by Bureau Veritas in July 2019.
UTB made its first appearance in the QS World University Ranking (QSWUR) in 2018 at 442, evaluated against 4,763 institutions from 151 countries. In the latest edition of the QSWUR, UTB was ranked at 350 globally and 40 for Young Global University under 50 years of age and this presents another great achievement since UTB is a very young university.
In the latest QS Asia University Rankings 2021 edition, UTB is ranked at 128 among a total of 634 institutions across the continent. According to the report, UTB ranked first in Asia for International Faculty. The index is based on the proportion of international faculty members, and the report shows that UTB is internationally attractive for academic staff around the world. UTB also improved across various indicators including Academic Reputation, Employer Reputation, Faculty Student, Staff with PhD, Citations per Paper and Papers per Faculty.
With its noteworthy performance, UTB is on track in positioning itself as a university of international calibre, attracting talented students and scholars. These encouraging developments will also provide further impetus for UTB to strive towards accomplishing its vision to become ‘A Global University Impacting Society’.
In terms of research, UTB strives to become a university that contributes to the enrichment of knowledge and solving contemporary issues that focus on energy, sustainable built environment, agri-food, digital and creativity, society and enterprise, and wellness.
The Centre for Research in Agri-food Science & Technology (CrAFT) was established in 2018 to support the nation’s aspiration to diversify its economy by strengthening the agri-food industry using science and technology.
In February 2020, UTB re-launched its Low Energy House and renamed it the UTB eV House. The acronym eV stands for Energy Saving House, while its other meaning is the unit of energy for photons or light particles. Under the management of the Centre for Innovative Engineering (CIE), the house provides space and various features for UTB researchers, academics and students to conduct research.
Some research activities have been initiated, ranging from energy management to optimise energy consumption in houses or other residential buildings, to smart farming which involves research on organic hydroponics using materials available in the country including waste products.
The UTB eV House is expected to support research related to green energy technology, interior design and structure engineering, among others. Students also have the opportunity to become involved in industrysupported research projects and gain access to potential employers.
As for bilateral activities, among others, UTB and Huawei Technologies (B) Sdn Bhd joined forces to establish a Huawei ICT Academy at the university in April 2020. The objective of the collaboration is to develop an ecosystem of talents and enhance the development of the ICT industry in Brunei Darussalam. UTB is the first university in the country to become part of the ICT Academy that has a global presence in 72 countries.
Institute of Brunei Technical Education (IBTE) was set up in 2014 as a post-secondary institution providing technical and vocational education. It was created by merging the Department of Technical Education and seven technical and vocational schools nationwide.
IBTE’s Vision is “A Dynamic Technical Education Institution embracing Lifelong Learning”, while its mission is “Nurturing Learners To Be Highly Competent and Socially Responsible Towards Building A Dynamic Economy”, and consists of three strategic goals – Quality Teaching and Learning, Sustainable Corporate Governance, and Effective Strategic Collaboration with Stakeholders.
Under IBTE, the seven schools are categorised into two: IBTE Central and IBTE Satellite. IBTE Central has four campuses under its wings, namely IBTE Sultan Saiful Rijal Campus, IBTE Nakhoda Ragam Campus, IBTE Mechanical Campus and IBTE Business Campus.
Meanwhile, IBTE Satellite has three campuses, namely IBTE Jefri Bolkiah Campus, IBTE Sultan Bolkiah Campus and IBTE Agro-Technology Campus. These campuses conduct various programmes from energy and engineering to agriculture and business.
International Graduate Studies College (IGS College) was established in 2002 and started operations in 2004, offering vocational education and training related to business and information technology. The college provides an alternative pre-university education for ‘O’ Level leavers through certificate, diploma and HND programmes.
IGS College is the first college to offer diplomas from the Brunei Darussalam Technical and Vocational Education Council (BDTVEC) by developing their own courses. Undergraduate programmes are also available.
The college caters to mature students, providing part-time options for professional development among working adults to advance their careers. Since its establishment, IGS College has yielded more than 200 graduates from different programmes, now working in various public and private sectors.
Cosmopolitan College of Commerce and Technology (CCCT) is another private higher education institution in the country and offers business and technology courses across different levels as well as pre-national diploma courses of BDTVEC.
The college takes pride in its approach to education. With a strong line-up of industryoriented lecturers who can adapt to a modern and structured method, the college provides a well-rounded learning experience through consultative coaching and workshops providing students an opportunity to explore new skills and boosting their employability.
In November 2019, a total of 374 students of CCCT graduated in HNDs, diplomas and certificates in IT, business and creative media. The college has produced 2,937 graduates since its establishment in 2004.
Laksamana College of Business (LCB) was established in 2003 in partnership with Kensington College of Business (KCB) in London, UK and Abdul Razak Holdings, Brunei Darussalam. LCB is the first institution in Brunei to be honoured with the prestigious ASIC global accreditation.
LCB is a premier UK education provider in Brunei in IT and computing related courses, with its Pearson BTEC (UK) Diploma, HNC and HND computing programmes. LCB also offers the Pearson BTEC in Hospitality Management for students looking to enter the growing hospitality industry.
In 2015, LCB introduced full-fledged degree courses in the country, awarded by the University of Chester (UoC), UK. The degree courses at LCB include Computer Science, Accounting and Finance, Business Management and Marketing.
On top of being awarded with UK degrees, students also have the opportunity to visit UoC and KCB first-hand. Introduced in 2018, the LCB-UoC-KCB Synergy Alliance provides the optimum environment for students to acquire international education and experience to succeed in a global environment.
LCB continues to provide initiatives to future leaders with its Incuvation Centre established in January 2019. The centre primarily focusses on mentoring and providing advisory support to aspiring entrepreneurs and early stage startups across four verticals: ICT, Eco-tourism, Business and Social impact.
A number of startups have signed up for the Incuvation Programme, one of which was able to open a stationery shop at the LCB library with the help of a local investor.
In March 2019, LCB introduced its Culinary School, offering the City & Guilds, London Programme in Food Preparation and Cooking. Recognised by employers all around the world, the programme is ideal for candidates ranging from those new to the kitchen to experienced professionals. This programme covers the main elements of food preparation and specialist patisserie knowledge and skills. The courses are available full-time for both day and evening class study mode.
In February 2020, LCB added four more undergraduate degree courses by UoC. Noting the gap in progression for its students pursuing hospitality, LCB now provides degree courses in events and festival management, as well as international tourism management.
LCB also expanded the range of computing degree options by introducing Applied Computing and Software Engineering. All of LCB’s Chester degree courses are available in full-time for both day and evening class study mode.
In January 2020, LCB launched its LCB Sports Centre, making LCB the first ever private college to have its own sports centre. LCB has given the Student Council Sports Department the opportunity to manage the sports centre and is located at the college carpark opposite First Emporium, Batu Satu. It is free for all students and staff and also available for the public to rent.
LCB constantly work closely with many leading industries in Brunei to provide students with opportunities to learn and observe real industry experiences. Within the same year, the college tied close relations with several wellestablished companies to be corporate partners with Progresif, BMW Brunei, MINI Brunei and The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf Brunei. LCB has now produced 42 First-class honour achievers since 2017 with 5,023 graduates since it was established in 2003.
The college recently hit another milestone as the first private institution in the country to provide postgraduate programmes with its MSc International Finance, MSc Management and MSc Advanced Computer Science. LCB’s new master’s degree courses were launched in February 2021 and classes are in the evening to accommodate working students.
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