Why? Simple... It's the global language. Be it business, education, entertainment, science... What else?
Of course, your mother tongue language is important. It's your means of communication at home. If you are a Malay, you speak Malay. If you're Chinese, you speak Chinese. If you're Indian, you speak Tamil. Since we are in Malaysia, we speak Bahasa Malaysia to communicate with each other. We all understand that move to stay united as Malaysians... We speak Bahasa Malaysia in coffee shops, supermarkets, bus stations, at 7-11's, KFC's.. oops!! They speak English at KFCs !!!! "Good morning, sir. Makan sini or take away?" That's their first words when you place your order...
Almost every country in the world have the English language as an important subject in schools. It's being taught in Primary and Secondary level (1st grade until 10th grade). Even China does this in their education system...
English today is probably the third largest language by number of native speakers, after Mandarin Chinese and Spanish. However, when combining native and non-native speakers it is probably the most commonly spoken language in the world, though possibly second to a combination of the Chinese languages (depending on whether or not distinctions in the latter are classified as “languages” or “dialects”). Of course, Mandarin is the most widely spoken language because the population of China alone is over 1.36 billion..
Talking about China, the established universities in Beijing are conducting their classes in Mandarin and English for both local and foreign students. My son is in one of the universities there, and I got this information from him.
Look guys, even China is acknowledging the importance of the English language, why can't we, Malaysians??
Why are the students of the Faculty of Bahasa Melayu in University Malaya protesting against the university's Vice-Chancellor's advice on the importance of the English language today??
Why are parents (including teachers) protesting the usage of English in learning Maths and Science (PPSMI) in schools??
Why are Malaysian politicians against the PPSMI??
Why are we moving backwards??
A look at complains and suggestions in the national newspapers have fallen into deaf ears.. WAKE UP guys !!!!!!
Monday March 28, 2011
Master English or lose out in job hunt
STUDENTS at the tertiary level who neglect English are doing so at their peril.
Instead, they should not make every effort to master the language.
Though no one can force our undergraduates to study English, they must understand that mastering it would be an asset to them.
They should not blame employers for not accepting them as most companies require graduates who are competent in English, especially at the supervisory and executive levels.
In my research on the kind of skills 73 companies in the country look for, the 12 top needs related to English are to be abe to:
> Communicate justly when there’s a difference of opinion;
> Communicate efficiently to convince clients;
> Communicate effectively to win business opportunities;
> Communicate convincingly over the phone;
> Communicate with proper etiquette or manners;
> Adapt to formal and informal situations when communicating;
> Draft and write proper letters to clients;
> Write short reports on business dealings and events;
> Understand and report what others have discussed;
> Understand and clarify information, letters and reports received;
> Present facts plainly to an audience; and
> Conduct meetings in a brief and effectual manner.
Are our graduates prepared for this?
Students must remember that English is not only for them to seek better jobs after graduating. It has become an indispensable tool for them in their everyday life.
From the tiny electronic gadgets to the Internet and books, English is the main language used. Most newsprints and journals are written in English.
Most popular international news channels on television are in English. In fact, the more languages one acquires the better standing he has in the business and across the globe.
Students who ignore English are by design “localising” the value of their degrees. Many IT graduates from India, for instance, can find jobs in the developed world aided by their good grasp of English.
If our graduates think that they can secure a job as a civil servant where the language may not be a prerequisite, the bloated civil service would not be able to accommodate that many employees.
Even then there are sectors within the civil service that require graduates to be competent in English.
In the case of China, English is taught to all schoolchildren and some universities are now giving emphasis to English. There are now Chinese universities offering graduate courses in English with well-defined programmes. In the main, some universities are offering the sciences in English.
China is now able to draw many international students to study at these universities and the quality of education has improved tremendously as there is a high level of competition among university students.
The focus now is for local and foreign students in China to be able to speak Mandarin and English.
Graduates from these institutions are able to find jobs with local and foreign companies thus making their degrees naturally “internationalised”.
Malaysia cannot talk about globalisation and at the same time ignore the English language.
We cannot dictate to the world to accept what we want. It’s the world out there that will dictate what we should do with our graduates to make them more competitive.
DR M.A. NAIR,
Kuala Lumpur.The Star.
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