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1) willing to talk to people and give them information
2)relating to communication

Cultures have been meeting and mixing in Malaysia since the very beginning of its history. More than
fifteen hundred years ago a Malay kingdom in Bujang Valley welcomed traders from China and India.
With the arrival of gold and silks, Buddhism and Hinduism also came to Malaysia. A thousand years
later, Arab traders arrived in Malacca and brought with them the principles and practices of Islam. By
the time the Portuguese arrived in Malaysia, the empire that they encountered was more cosmopolitan
than their own. Malaysia's cultural mosaic is marked by many different cultures, but several in
particular have had especially lasting influence on the country. Chief among these is the ancient Malay
culture, and the cultures of Malaysia's two most prominent trading partners throughout history--the
Chinese, and the Indians. These three groups are joined by a dizzying array of indigenous tribes,
many of which live in the forests and coastal areas of Borneo. Although each of these cultures has
vigorously maintained its traditions and community structures, they have also blended together to
create contemporary Malaysia's uniquely diverse heritage.


Language is our primary source of communication. It's the method through which we share our ideas and
thoughts with others. Some people even say that language is what separates us from animals and makes us

There are thousands of languages in this world. Countries have their own national languages in addition to a
variety of local languages spoken and understood by their people in different regions. Some languages are
spoken by millions of people, others by only a few thousand.

Why Learn English?

English was originally the language of England, but through the historical efforts of the British Empire it has
become the primary or secondary language of many former British colonies such as the United States, Canada,
Australia, and India. Currently, English is the primary language of not only countries actively touched by British
imperialism, but also many business and cultural spheres dominated by those countries. It is the language of
Hollywood and the language of international banking and business. As such, it is a useful and even necessary
language to know.

English is the International Common Tongue

There are several factors that make the English language essential to communication in our current time. First
of all, it is the most common foreign language. This means that two people who come from different countries
(for example, a Mexican and a Swede) usually use English as a common language to communicate. That’s
why everyone needs to learn the language in order to get in touch on an international level. Speaking it will help
you communicate with people from countries all over the world, not just English-speaking ones.

English is also essential to the field of education. In many countries, children are taught and encouraged to
learn English as a second language. Even in countries where it is not an official language, such as the
Netherlands or Sweden, we will find many syllabi in science and engineering are written in English. Because it
is the dominant language in the sciences, most of the research and studies you find in any given scientific field

will be written in it as well. At the university level, students in many countries study almost all their subjects in
English in order to make the material more accessible to international students.

Resources Make Learning English Easy

Although many people think that it is very difficult and confusing, English is actually the easiest language of the
world to learn because there are so many resources available. As soon as you decide you want to learn, there
are thousands of resources on the Internet and in bookstores. I'm not just talking about lessons and grammar
books. You can supplement traditional learning materials with children's TV shows and books. I suggest
watching as much TV as you can, in English with English subtitles, and you will pick up conversational English
in no time

Travel and Business

With good understanding and communication in English, you can travel around the globe. Because it is the
international language for foreigners, it's easy to get assistance and help in every part of world. You can test it
by online travel. Any travel booking site you can find will have English as a booking option.

English skills will also help you in any business venture you choose to follow. If you visit some offices,
companies, governmental organizations, or even math or engineering companies, you will see the importance
of English. Any big company will hire their professional staff after getting to know whether the people they are
hiring are good at English or not. Companies who want to function at an international level only consider their
staff well educated if they are good English speakers, writers, and readers.

Knowledge of English is important as we can get to know how to frame sentences, how to use
words in dialogues while speaking to others. As every word has a particular context where it fits
right, using words in such a manner in English is a art that can only be mastered by practice.
And with such command, we can easily communicate with others on any level. Mostly, listening
and speaking improves our command on English language. Daily listening to English speakers
and trying speaking in English, helps you to know how to use the language, where to use each
word and when to use it in a correct manners。

Concentration on learning English communication skills in this new millennium, is a tremendous

move towards speaking and writing fluently in English. Also our way of pronunciation of different
words will be improved if we learn good communication. We can make conversation, practice
dialogues, give high-quality presentations if we learn English communication language skills.
Communicating with people in English on a daily basis also improves our pitch & voice/tone of
our speech; how to speak in a correct form & for correct usage.
Advantages of learning English language communication is an endless list, creating possibilities
each day to connect with people worldwide. With command over English language you can get
jobs easily and can participate in interviews and discuss with people in a group about any
particular important topic or aspect. English communication gains us wisdom and we can also
gain lots & lots of knowledge by reading online magazines, newspapers, story books, essays,
websites and journals and any of the greatest and famous writing written in English by poets,
authors or leaders.
Apart from being most important, widely used and useful, English is considered to be one of the
easiest languages to learn and speak. With daily practice, you can communicate-well with
others and improve your skills, show-off or expose your skills before others to impress and
motivate them to come up with their English language communications skills. Hence, English
even-though being a foreign language to many is now most commonly used language
worldwide especially in British dominion later became Independent republican countries like
India and Pakistan. Proud to be an Indian, speaking English language.


Malaysia drops English language teaching

Malaysia has decided to abandon a six-year experiment in using English in state schools to teach
maths and science. The plan was intended to produce a new generation of global communicators,
but government officials say it has stalled attainment and exposed a dearth of teachers able to
deliver classes in English.

Education minister Muhyiddin Yassin announced last Wednesday that the English-medium
education policy introduced across the country in 2003, known as PPSMI, would be phased out
from 2012. He said that evidence gathered during a year-long assessment and public
consultation had convinced the government that PPSMI wasn't working, and that the
dominance of English in the curriculum risked undermining students' grasp of their first

"I wouldn't say it's a complete failure but it has not achieved the desired objectives that it was
supposed to achieve," Muhyiddin told a press conference.

"The government is convinced that science and maths need to be taught in a language that will
be easily understood by students, which is Bahasa Malay in national schools, Mandarin in
Chinese schools and Tamil in Tamil schools."

But supporters of the policy expressed dismay, calling the decision a lost opportunity for
Malaysia to emulate the economic success of English-speaking Singapore, held up as an example
of how language skills can be a key to a connecting local workers and industries to the global

The Parents Action Group for Education (Page), which had campaigned to maintain PPSMI,
said the change would be unfair on many parents.

"There might be some schools which would want to continue teaching in English," Page
chairman Azimah Abdul Rahim told the New Straits Times newspaper. "I think there should be
a choice. There are many Malaysians whose first language is English."

The use of English for teaching in class has been a politically charged issue since it was decreed
by Malaysia's autocratic prime minister, Dr Mahathir Mohamad, months before he stood down
from office in 2003.

Since he was a staunch nationalist during his 22 years in power, Mahatir's move was a surprise
acknowledgement that the post-independence policy he had championed of promoting Malay
identity and downgrading the country's anglophone colonial past had been a mistake.

English-medium teaching was phased out of most schools by the 1970s. As a result the economy
stagnated and Malaysia needed to develop a workforce skilled in the language of commerce and
technology if it was to catch up with its south-east Asian competitors, he argued.

Many schools struggled from the start to deliver maths and science lessons in English, but the
promise of future economic gains, and enthusiasm among parents, particularly in urban areas,

for their children to acquire better English helped to maintain government commitment to the

But in more recent years few have been able to ignore an emerging skills gap between urban and
rural schools as education authorities outside the major cities failed to find enough staff able to
teach in English. Meanwhile, government opponents have fanned nationalist fears by claiming
that Malay culture was being undermined by PPSMI.

In 2008 the government responded to growing pressure by setting up a review of PPSMI, and an
expert panel delivered its report to ministers in January, but a decision was stalled until after
parliamentary elections in April.

In March police in Kuala Lumpur used teargas to disperse up to 5,000 ethnic Malays who took
to the streets to voice their opposition to the policy.

In his statement, Muhyiddin denied that the government had bowed to political pressure,
stressing instead that the decision had been taken on the basis of educational results alone.

He claimed these showed that the students who had been taught maths and science in English
since they started primary school were now performing less well in those subjects in national
exams than previous cohorts.

He said the percentage of students who achieved grade A to C for science had dropped by 2.5%
in urban schools and 3% in rural schools. For maths, the results had fallen by around 4% in both
urban and rural schools.

He added that only 8% of teachers were using English exclusively in classes while the use of
Bahasa Malay was still common, particularly in rural areas, with on average just over half of
PPSMI teaching time being delivered in English.

English-medium instruction will be phased out from schools from 2012 and the focus shifted to
teaching English in separate language classes alongside improved Bahasa Malay teaching,
Muhyiddin said.
He said that up to 14,000 English language teachers would be recruited by 2012, as well as
specialist teaching assistants. English language teaching time will be increased by up to 30% a
week, Muhyiddin added.

However, some critics were sceptical that qualified teaching staff can be found. "What has not
occurred to the authorities is that the education system requires very competent teachers," Khoo
Kay Kim, emeritus professor at the University of Malaya's history department, told the Reuters
news agency.

Meanwhile, the still influential architect of PPSMI was quick to rally support for his policy. The
octogenarian Dr Mahathir is using his popular blog to canvass opinion. "I am not surprised over
the disappointment and even anger towards the government's decision ... Seems to me like the
government is not listening to the voice of the people," he wrote.

Within hours of putting up his online poll, 40,000 people had responded with a resounding 84%
opposed to the changes.

FACEBOOK DIALOGUE JOURNAL Wendy Hiew, Centre for the Promotion of Knowledge and Language
Learning, Universiti Malaysia Sabah, Malaysia ABSTRACT The purpose of this research was to gather
English as a second language (ESL) learners perceptions pertaining to their experience in learning English
language in secondary schools, colleges and local universities. The research methodology incorporated
dialogue journal using Facebook. Dialogue journal is a written communication between a teacher and
students or other writing partners, which provides a natural context for language development and a
new channel of communication outside the classroom. The research incorporated Facebook as it is
currently one of the most prominent online social networking sites among Malaysians. 46 respondents
from public and private colleges and universities discussed various learning issues including
impediments that they encountered during English lessons in secondary school, college and university;
learners’ views and comments on the issues pertaining to local English language teaching and learning;
and suggestions to improve the teaching and learning of English. The discussion revealed varying
viewpoints such as difficulties and reasons that students faced in learning the four language skills i.e.
speaking, listening, reading and writing; and the lack of confidence which hampered their language
improvement. This research hopes to enlighten educators of arduous challenges that students faced in
learning the English language so that they may strive to improve and consolidate their teaching skills,
thus, making language teaching and learning more effective and meaningful for both teachers and
students. Keywords: dialogue response journal, language proficiency, language skills.

PROBLEM STATEMENT: Students spend between 11-13 years (6 years in primary school and between 5 –
7 years in secondary school) learning English, but a portion of students are still not able to master the
language upon completing secondary school. There are various factors that could have contributed to
this failure –learners’ learning methods, motivation, perceptions, teachers’ teaching methods and/or
approach, syllabus and lesson plan, among others. Therefore, it is imperative to understand learners’
views and experiences in learning a second language in order to identify the difficulties and
impediments that they encounter in the classrooms. OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY: The objectives of this
research are: 1. To gather learners’ experience and views pertaining to issues on English language
learning problems in secondary school, college or university; 2. To gather learners’ views on English
language teaching and learning in secondary school, college and university; 3. To gather learners’
suggestions on ways to enhance English language learning and teaching. SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY:
Teachers need to know and understand the impediments that learners experience in learning the four
skills viz. listening, speaking, reading and writing in order to prepare effective lessons and to guide
learners in developing their language proficiency. Therefore, it is pertinent that learners need to be
given the opportunity to express their views pertaining to their learning experience to ensure teaching
and learning are effectively carried out in the classrooms. RESEARCH QUESTIONS: The research
questions in this study are as follow: 1. What are the language learning problems did ESL learners
encounter in secondary school, college or university namely speaking, listening, reading and writing? 2.
What are ESL learners’ views on the issues of English language teaching and learning? 3. What are ESL
learners’ suggestions to enhance the teaching and learning of English? METHODOLOGY: RESEARCH
APPROACH: A qualitative method was used to conduct the research by utilizing the content analysis of
journal entries written by 46 private and public college and university students. -Journal of Arts, Science
By utilising Facebook, a closed-group was created to gather the 46 samples. Other Facebook users who
were not registered in the group were not able to read the respondents’ comments nor post their views.
The Note feature on the Facebook account was used as an alternative form of a journal. It was a mean
to ensure that all respondents contributed their opinions and suggestions pertaining to a question
posted by the researcher. The respondents must write in proper English i.e. complete and grammatically
correct sentences and they were not allowed to use abbreviations such as LOL (Laugh Out loud), BTW

(By The Way), IMHO (In My Humble Opinion), among others. In the dialogue journals, the researcher
posted three questions on the group’s wall message and the respondents wrote their views and
suggestions on their personal Note. The researcher responded and prompted questions when there
were ambiguous responses. Other respondents were also allowed to contribute their views and
suggestions on their group members’ journal entries. This eventually evolved into a dialogue. DATA
ANALYSIS: The journal entries were analysed using content analysis and categorised according to the
learners’ problems in learning the four language skills viz. speaking, listening, reading and writing;
learners’ classroom observations; and learner’s suggestions to teachers and other learners on the
teaching and learning of English. Frequency count was used to score the responses. FINDINGS AND
DISCUSSION: This section discusses the findings of the research namely i) the respondents’ views
pertaining to the problems they experienced in learning the four language skills; ii) respondents’ general
views, comments and observations on classroom teaching and learning experience; and iii) respondents’
suggestions for teachers to enhance their teaching effectiveness and for other learners to improve their
language skills based on the respondents’ personal approaches. LEARNERS’ LANGUAGE LEARNING
IMPEDIMENTS: This section provides the finding on the respondents’ views pertaining to language
learning impediments that they experienced in learning the four skills namely speaking, listening,
reading and writing.

In Table 1, 18 respondents stated that they hesitated to speak English with their teachers and friends in
or outside the classroom because they worried about making grammatical mistakes and felt
embarrassed of their low language proficiency. This is due to the negative physical response, such as a
smirk, that they received from other more proficient speakers when learners spoke incorrectly.
Meanwhile, 16 respondents stated they felt self-conscious about their speaking proficiency because
they have negative preliminary presumptions about proficient speakers’ views towards them as being
slow learners, incompetent and dull, among others. As a result, they were not fully involved in
classroom activities even though they were constantly encouraged to speak freely by their teachers
without being judgemental. Therefore, these negative experiences and fear of negative judgement from
others hindered effective language learning and development among the ESL learners. Learners need to
be aware that making mistakes are parts and parcel of language learning and teachers need to
constantly reassure and encourage them to continue learning. Krashen, in his interview by Young (1992),
stated that one of the causes of speaking anxiety among students is due to teachers who expect them,
usually beginners, to perform beyond their acquired competence. This can cause detrimental effects on
learners’ motivation and confidence. The majority of Malaysian students are bilingual who speak Bahasa
Malaysia, the national language, and English, the second language. Both languages are compulsory
subjects in the Malaysian education syllabus. The uniqueness of the Malaysian multicultural society and
mixed-marriages create multilingual individuals who either speak Tamil, Mandarin, various Chinese
dialects such as Hakka, Cantonese, Hokkian, or other native languages such as Iban, Kadazan and Murut,
among others, depending on their family and social backgrounds. Due to these circumstances, 31
respondents experienced difficulty speaking fluently due to unfamiliarity with some English vocabulary.
This caused the respondents to incorporate other local languages and dialects with English to ensure
their meanings, intentions or thoughts are unambiguous. Unfortunately, the attempt hindered the
respondents’ speaking fluency. An example given by a respondent is as follow: “I think you should try
‘menyakinkan’ (to convince) your parents to ‘beri kebenaran’ (give permission) for you to join us on the
trip”. As a result, the respondents usually experience moderate anxiety and are reluctant to speak in
English for fear of being judged negatively. However, moderate feelings of anxiety in second language
learning could help students to build the desire to learn, to motivate or to get them to realise that they
have to put more effort to acquire the target language (Hadley, 1992).

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia, a former British colony, is considered to be one of Southeast Asia's more English-
proficient nations. But there are still challenges to getting students to converse confidently in the language.

It is a problem the government is taking very seriously.

Two years ago, Malaysia announced plans making it a must for all students to pass English as a subject in a major
high school examination by 2016.

But these plans were postponed after the country's Education Ministry tested out what would happen if they did.

"If English was a compulsory subject this year, 2015, we would have had about 25 per cent of the students failing
SPM,” said Deputy Education Minister P Kamalanathan.

“We have about 400,000 students sitting for the examination. 25 per cent rate failure would give us about 100,000 of
students not being able to get certificates. That's a concern."

Malaysia is home to a multi-ethnic population, most of whom are bilingual.

Many speak their mother tongue at home and go to government schools where the primary medium of instruction is
Bahasa Malaysia. English, on the other hand, is often taught at as standalone subject.

Many Malaysians have some sort of grasp of the language but communicating confidently can still be a problem.

"You go to a remote area or a rural area, the only English they get is probably only 30 minutes they get in the
classroom. That's the only English the child gets,” P Kamalanathan said.

“The moment the child leaves the classroom, there's no English, so we need to strengthen and increase the number
of hours and minutes into English language in classrooms and that's what we're doing right now."

Malaysia's Prime Minister is testing the waters, allocating funds for a Dual Language Programme in the 2016 budget.
It is a pilot project giving 300 primary schools the option to teach subjects such as Science and Mathematics in

In the past, efforts to teach these subjects in English were met with a backlash from Malay nationalists, worried it
would undermine the position of the national language.

But the Malaysian government sees English proficiency as essential to communicate with its neighbours in an
increasingly globalised world. This takes on even more importance as the ten member states of ASEAN plan for
economic integration through the ASEAN Community, set to be launched by the end of the year.

"Today we want individuals who have high self-confidence, who can communicate, especially in English. Like it or not,
English is a prerequisite in this world. So we cannot be emotional anymore, we cannot feel that we don't need to learn
English,” said Prime Minister Najib Razak.

Malaysia's Education Ministry is upping efforts to train teachers and increase students' exposure to the English
language but admitted it will need help.

Some Malaysian graduates agreed that their English would not have improved without their parents' support and
after-school practice.

"A lot of training actually, watching movies, speaking into the mirror by yourself, it's an initiative for yourself,” said Moh
Izzat Mohd Anuar, a trainee engineer.

Malaysia said it would also be seeking public feedback for ideas on how to increase English standards in the nation.
In the meantime, the plan to have students achieve a passing mark in the subject remains on hold.