Abstract The purpose of this qualitative study is to identify mate selection criteria of Malaysian postgraduate students. 30 participants were selected purposefully for semi-structured interview. The data was analyzed using thematic analysis. The results were classified into three categories of the most important criteria, important criteria and moderately important criteria for mate selection. The findings show that Malaysian postgraduate students valued both internal qualities such as religion and external qualities such as physical attractiveness for mate selection. Implications of this study are also discussed.