I'm not sure how other diplomas in other unis work but I recently graduated in Diploma in Accounting at UiTM.
1st of all let me just say that you should go for diploma at uni that offers good degree course later on. So in my case, UiTM do offer me a good degree course, 2 1/2 years after I have completed my diploma. So recently, I've been offer for a degree for this coming Sept intake at UiTM Shah Alam and USM too.. But I'm going for UiTM I think because USM dont give much for credit transfer.
I don't know much about STPM and I was resisting at 1st when I've been offer for a diploma, matrix isn't my option (because I hate the sylabus) and was rejected by JPA for overseas study. So went for diploma eventually... So what I can say is that diploma is wayyyyyyy better than matrix in terms of the end product. Diploma students are more mature, they have been exposed to uni life, good proficiency in English, you can work after you have graduated and you are practically half way through a degree courses so you are eligible for credit transfer to other unis for degree BUT preferably you should go for the same uni as they usually give you the maximum credit transfer which resulted in time saving. Hmm no offence to the matrix students okay.. This is just only a general view.. But I dont think it applies to fellow recommers because we know that we have A LOT of bright students here so rest assure okay?
In terms of how hard is it, depends on your course really. Let's say a degree in engineering is hard so the same goes for diploma level. Like in my course, some students do struggle and keep on repeating and carrying papers. Yet, I still think diploma is a cozy and carefree ride...
So quick facts about my overall education at diploma level
- completed a Diploma in Accounting at UiTM for less than 3 years actually due to the Sept intake adjustment
- a dean's list student for every semester with final CGPA 3.86
- will be attending my convocation in November, graduating with Vice Chancellor Award, the highest award that is available for grabs
- will be pursuing Bachelor in Accounting at UiTM Shah Alam for 2 1/2 years which means I will go straight to semester 4
- received UK offers from Birmingham, Sheffield, Bangor and Teesside but not going due to financial constraint
So that's about it