International Students’ Choice Behavior for Higher Education at Malaysian Private Universities

Siti Falindah Padlee, Abdul Razak Kamaruddin, Rohaizat Baharun


The paper is to examine the selection criteria by international students of their higher education at private higher
learning institutions in Malaysia. It focuses on factors which private international students considered important
in their decision of choosing Malaysia as their educational destination. A questionnaire was designed to include
48 factors for selection of learning destination. Through judgmental sampling the data were solicited from 565
international students using survey instrument. These were analyzed on principal components factor analysis to
ascertain factors related to their criteria to study in Malaysia. The results shown that six factors have a strong
influence on international students’ decision-making process, namely, quality of learning environment,
influencers, customer focus, cost, facilities, socialization and location. Further, through MANOVA, it was found
that customer focus and facilities are the main factors used by respondents in their choice decisions. These
factors should be considered by colleges’ managers to develop their marketing strategies in attracting foreign
students to enroll at their institutions. It is also important for positioning strategy and strengthening higher
learning institution offerings to the foreign market.

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International Journal of Marketing Studies  ISSN 1918-719X(Print) ISSN 1918-7203(Online)

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