Tuesday, February 02, 2016

Applying Skim Biasiswa MyBrainSc Scholarships: Complete Guide & Exclusive Tips

Guest post by Johnivan (Share you tips with 50,000+ Malaysian students)

Skim Biasiswa MyBrainSc Scholarships KPM
Skim Biasiswa MyBrainSc Scholarships

MyBrainSc Scholarship Info Sheet

This post will provide you all the essential information you need to know about the MyBrainSc Scholarship given by the Ministry of Education, Malaysia.

Skim Biasiswa MyBrainSc Scholarship was established by the government in 2012 to encourage Malaysians to become world renown scientists, and hopefully one day producing a few Nobel Laureates too. This scholarship sponsors approximately 200 students every year: 150 students in Malaysia, and 50 students abroad.

Closing Date
29 February 2016

Who can apply?
This scholarship is open to all Malaysian citizens who are prepared to pursue an undergraduate / master's / PhD course in purse sciences only (physics, chemistry, biology and mathematics). Applied science (e.g. statistics) or engineering (chemical engineering) courses will not be considered. There are certain age limits to apply (view website), but you don’t need to worry about it if you are are a fresh graduate from your previous institution (e.g. just graduated from high school, bachelor’s degree etc).

How much does this scholarship cover?
The amount depends on where and which stage of studies you are in, but here are the items covered in this scholarship:
  1. Tuition fees (paid directly by government)
  2. Living allowance
  3. Accommodation fees (undergraduates only, graduates have theirs included in the living allowance. Local students will have it included in the tuition fees I think)
  4. Book allowances (every year)
  5. Stationary allowances (every year)
  6. Computer allowances and paper presentation (one time, for local universities only)
  7. Practical work allowance (90 days max if required)
  8. Thesis allowance (at the end of the course)
  9. International conference allowance (post grad most likely)
If you applied to study overseas, these are a few extra allowances you can get:
  1. Placement allowance (for you to 'settle down')
  2. Ending allowance (for you to pack up and come back I guess)
  3. WInter clothing allowance (don't want you to freeze to death in the middle of winter)
  4. Visa & passport claims
  5. Flight tickets (1 to go and another 1 to get back)
Local scholars get RM900 per month, and UK scholars get about £440-£495 a month. I'm a PhD scholar in London, si I get £1557 per month. I have to say that this scholarship pays us very very well: I get higher allowance than what my fellow British PhD friends get from their government!

When to apply?
The application period is opened every year between December and March. Results will be out usually in June or July, should be just in time for you if you need to apply for a visa if you’re heading to the UK.

Choice of universities
Your choice of university makes a difference in the application outcome. The best way to know whether your university of interest is acceptable or not is to check whether it appears in any of the lists on the website. Anyway to summarize, your application will be considered only if you're applying to any of the following:

(1) One of the 20 local government universities (IPTA) or 24 local private universities (IPTS)
(2) One of the top 85 universities in the US
(3) One of the top 100 universities in the world according to QS Subject Rankings, provided that they are from the following countries: UK, USA, Australia and Canada.

The ministry follows this list quite strictly (i.e. no Singapore or Germany), and the list changes as the world ranking changes (take note)! Please also note that you do not need to have a university offer letter ready at the point of application. Another interesting note is that this scholarship sponsors undergraduate but not postgraduate studies in Canada. Strange.

Bond
All scholars will be required to return to Malaysia to serve a 5-year bond if they complete their courses within the expected number of years stated in the scholarship offer letter (usually 3 for BSc and PhD, 1 for MSc). However, if scholars complete their courses more than 6 months beyond the expected time, the bond will be lengthened to 7 years.

I may be wrong, but from what I understand, scholars may apply for the job of their choice themselves to work in any local education institution permitted by the government. Therefore, if you intend to work overseas / in private sectors, then this is not the scholarship for you. You could break the bond if you want to, but you have to pay back whatever the government has paid you for.

How to apply?
All applications are done through the online portal, first time users need to register for an account. Just like any other application forms, you need to provide details of you, your family and etc. But here are two extra things to note:
  1. If you are applying for a master’s / PhD course, you need to list down a project title. If you’re applying to the UK, this information can usually be found from the website of the university that you’re applying to.
  2. You need to submit soft copies (PDF format) of your passport photo, IC, SPM certificate, university transcript & research proposal (for postgraduate applicants) and your university offer letter (if present). Usually at this point of time you might not have obtained an offer letter yet, but do not worry, as the presence of an offer letter does not affect your chance of getting the scholarship.
Once your application is done and submitted, you should print a copy of the form and keep it, as this document will be requested during the interview (if selected). The form is made in such a way that you can edit it multiple times even after the deadline, so do not worry about it.

Next Step: UKM2 Test
[edit: I was told that this test had been replaced by a JPA psychology test from 2015 onwards. This section may not be very helpful anymore, but I'll just leave it here for your reference.]
If you passed the first round of selections, you will be e-mailed and invited to take the UKM2 test, probably in April. This is a computerized test which tests your speed in answering many IQ questions within 2.5 hours. A test venue will be arranged (usually in a secondary school computer lab near your place of residence), and you can only have the chance to take it once.

If want to know what kind of questions come out in the test, you can check out Farhan Layali II's blog, I guess he literally remembered everything... Anyway, sample test questions that I can remember are:
  1. Arranging numbers. Numbers will flash one by one, then disappear, and you’re supposed to type them out in ascending / descending order.
  2. Jigsaw puzzle. There will be puzzle pieces where you should arrange as the picture shown on the screen.
  3. Match pictures. They will ask you to select two out of four pictures that are related to one another.
  4. Written test. They will ask questions like “what’s the distance from the earth to the moon”, “why shouldn’t we kill people” or etc.
The test can be taken in English or in Malay. The test is not hard, but don’t make unnecessary mistakes! It is usually not hard to pass, but still, you don’t want to lose a chance, do you? Just remember to do as fast as you can, as time can run out very quickly.

The results should be out in May, and you will be notified in e-mail if you passed the test.

Final Selection: Interview
The interview will be held roughly at the end of May. Selected students will be interviewed in a venue based on the state they live in, with the exception of interviewees staying in KL, Putrajaya, Negeri Sembilan and Selangor, where they will be interviewed in Putrajaya collectively.

Some statistics from 2014: I’m not sure about other states, but there were approximately 52 students selected for the interview in Johor, and the venue was at UTM. When I was there, there were only 1 PhD and 1 master’s student being interviewed, the rest of them were interviewed for undergraduate courses. Students at the Putrajaya venue are interviewed in the Ministry of Education building itself.

The things you need to bring:
  1. Original copies of documents that you submitted in PDF
  2. Two certified copies of the documents above
  3. The online form that you printed
  4. Award certificates that you think might impress the interviewers. It’s best if they were presented in a clear file folder, makes it look more professional.
Generally those who applied for undergraduate studies will be interviewed in pairs, while the postgrads interviewed alone. I had two interviewers, a Malay lady and a Malay man, both are lecturers from local universities. The interview is conducted in English, but there will be sections where they want to test your Malay language as well. A few questions they asked me were:
  1. Do you know why you are here today?
  2. Tell me why are you interested in this field / the significance of this research project?
  3. Why would you take this scholarship and come back to Malaysia to work when you could earn more money overseas?
  4. What will you do when you return from your course?
  5. Tell me something about your school environment in your previous institution?
  6. List down a few recent events that happened in Malaysia, and what are your opinions on [a particular recent event in Malaysia]?
You can scroll all the way to the end of this post to see stories of what other people say about the interview. Tips from me: you have to know why did you apply for this scholarship, what is this scholarship for, and what are your future plans with this. You must remember that this is a scholarship from the government, so you should put in mind that everything you do with this scholarships should have some sense of ‘gratefulness’ towards the government. Be motivated, and be strong willed. Be careful not to make racist remarks.

Results
The results will be out in end of July, you should be notified by an SMS / e-mail asking you to log in to the portal to check your results. If you have succeeded, congratulations! You’ll see a conditional offer on the portal, but there are still a few steps left. At this point you should send a softcopy of your university’s unconditional offer letter to the officer in charge (probably still En Mohd Afizal bin Mehat) in order for him to send you / update in the portal your unconditional scholarship offer. Your scholarship offer letter should contain your name, your IC number, the course you’re taking, the university you’re admitted to and how long your course will be.

I hope you know the difference between conditional and unconditional university offer letters. The conditional one usually says that you’re offered a place “in condition” of stuff like grades greater than a certain value, English test taken and etc. You need an unconditional offer letter to prove to the government that you are indeed accepted as a student in that particular university.

If at this point you still do not have a valid unconditional offer letter from your university, do not panic. The scholarship offer lasts for almost a year, which means, that you could still submit your unconditional offer letter to the Ministry even in January next year. But the rule of thumb is: submit your documents as soon as you can! Remember that there’s still a bunch of documentations that you need to submit.

Random statistics: in year 2014, 112 students selected have their offer letters ready by August. There was meant to be a Majlis Penyerahan Surat Tawaran Biasiswa MyBrainSc KPM 2014, but it was delayed and cancelled and no reason was given.



This section onwards are information for successful applicants.

Documents to be Sent
Once you've gotten the official offer letter from the Ministry of Education, it's time to send them tonnes of documents. You need to go to this website, download the relevant documents (depending on whether you're studying locally or abroad), fill them up and send them to the address given in the instruction sheet. Here's a rough guideline of what you need to provide to the ministry:
  • Acceptance Form (Borang A). This is just a written confirmation that you decided to accept the scholarship. Usually expected to be sent in within 14 days of your offer letter, but no worries, you can always let them know that you need some extra time to get them done.
  • Guarantor forms. You need two persons to fill this up to guarantee that you won't run away with the government's money. One should be your parent, the other has to be some family friend who is less than 45 years old. You need their details, a copy of their ICs, then they need to sign this form and the agreement form with you in front of a commissioner of oaths (or some government ranked servants listed in the manual). This can be a little tricky due to the age requirement. Usually a pastor from church can help, provided he's not too old...
  • Health declaration form. This can take up quite some time, as you need to go to government hospitals to register and get yourself checked. You might want to tell them that you're not a JPA scholar though, and that you DO NOT need a teeth checkup. You need to follow the schedules of the hospital to do your urine test, hepatitis test, eye checkup and pregnancy test. If you're going to the UK, you need to take the TB test too. Get it done as soon as possible! Sometimes your booking may need to be delayed etc, you don't want to miss your flight / orientation times...
  • The agreement. This is probably the most important document, don't screw this up. You need to print out 4 copies of this form, buy 4 setem hasil (1 for each form) from Lembaga Hasil Dalam Negeri counters, stick them on the form, read the terms carefully (please do read them!), and get this form signed in front of and by a commissioner of oaths. Be careful of what kind of stamp you get though, ask for advice, cause I heard there are different colours and you don't want to get the wrong one.
  • Bank details. For a start, you need a Bank Islam account, so that they can send the first round of cash to you. Usually it would be your first 3 month's allowance, placement, clothes / computer / visa / passport allowances. If you're going abroad, you need to send in your bank details form of the bank account that you had opened in that country. The sad thing about most countries unlike Malaysia, they don't have bank books, so you need to print an e-statement to replace the copy of first page of bank book requested. Send in bank details as soon as possible, so that you'll get your money soon too. By the way, knowing that you're sponsored by the government, don't expect the money to come in on time, and neither expect to get a proper notification / breakdown of how much money was sent into your bank account either.
  • A copy of your IC, and passport photo. The two most wanted things by the government from you, although they have it somewhere in their database... stuck_out_tongue
These additional forms are for those going abroad:
  1. Flight date confirmation. You have a choice of dates you want to arrive at the country of interest, but you have no choice of airline and route. The ministry will take note of the date and time you would like to arrive, and they will plan and pay for your flight. They will then send you the booked e-ticket for you, and you're all ready to go!
  2. Winter clothing allowance. Just fill it up to get the allowance. No one buys winter clothing in Malaysia though, they are overpriced, and they are outdated in terms of design (the bubble thing). But get a good jacket before you get to the cold country, it's autumn and it is relatively cold compared to what you have experienced in the past 20 years of your life...
  3. Visa and Passport claims. Man these visa processing fees are expensive, you definitely need these! If you already have a passport at present, oh wells, you can't claim for your passport then. Remember that visa takes a few months to process, so it should be done as early as possible! Take UK for example, you may need to sign an ATAS form (to certify that you're not coming to UK to create nuclear bombs) which takes a month to process, take a TB test, and the visa application itself takes a week or so. There's no proper receipt for the UK visa though, so do keep a copy of the load screen / e-mail which confirms your payment.
There is a checklist provided in the downloaded files, you should take a good look at it before sending anything. smile There's probably one more thing in the checklist that I did not mention, and that would be, the Biro Tata Negara (BTN) Certificate.

BTN Camp (5D4N)
Who would have expected that the prerequisite of getting a scholarship to study abroad requires an attendance to a camp? And also, why wasn't it mentioned on the website at all? So apparently every scholar sent abroad are required to attend a patriotism camp to ensure that you'll come back to serve the country (for obvious reasons). They'll feed you with Malaysian food, 1Malaysia mineral water (I'm not joking), and knowledge on the Malaysian Constitution and 1Malaysia. From what I understand, every state has its own campsite, and undergraduate scholars will be sent to their respective campsites. As I am a graduate scholar, we attend one organized at the Akademi Negara (Jalan Bellamy in KL, trust me not many taxi drivers know of the existence of this place), an event held monthly. It is only after going to this camp that you'll realize the number of scholars our country is sending overseas every year... I'm not sure how different are the camps for undergrad scholars, so my experience below belongs a postgrad scholars.

So basically this is a patriotism camp. You'll be singing some patriotic songs (1Malaysia and what's the other one called, oh no...) about 3 times a day, eat some nice Malay food, exercise in the evening, and you have classes in between. The first 2 days are lectures, where a guest speaker will speak on different topic (1Malaysia concept, meaning of patriotism, the Malaysian Constitution etc). The next few days will be discussions: we were split into groups, we discussed everything about the Malaysian Constitution, and we were supposed to understand the various important points in it, more often touching some really sensitive issues (racial harmony, position of Malays and the sultans, national religion, national language etc). We had an MCQ exam on the last day before we leave, testing us what we know about the constitution and the 1Malaysia concept. It is actually not very hard (advantages of taking STPM), it is just a revision of what you learned in Pengajian Am, but then again, if you put your heart into understanding it, you'll be surprised by the extra things you learn. You'll realize that a lot of effort had been placed into making this 1Malaysia thingy, I had a newfound respect towards Dato Seri Najib after the camp. You'll also realized that there's only so much the government can do, and whether the nation will improve for the better, it really depends on the rakyat.

There would also be some fun time, don't worry... Each group will need to make a performance on the last night. The physical sessions were fun, we get to make new friends, and work with one another. Overall I think this camp is so much more fun than I expected. Learned a lot, made some valuable friends, and realized the importance and conflicts faced to make Malaysia a better country. Oh wells. confused

When do we get paid?
I was told that the money is paid in blocks of 4 months. I may be wrong, but I think scholars are paid in September and March, or maybe in June too? I'll update this when I know more.

Conclusion
Overall I think this is a good scholarship to apply to, provided that you love science, you see yourself serving in Malaysia in the next 10 years, and that you love Malaysia. Well paid, but maybe they can work on the career route in the future. If you have any other questions, do register a ReCom.org account, and comment below! smile

Websites
Here are a few links that you might want to check out to see if they help you in any way: Stories
Here are some blogs / testimonials / sharings / tips by some of our scholars. They gave some really useful tips on applications, personal experiences of the interviews and etc. I felt like I'm actually doing a job to help them promote their blogs... But anyway, do read their experiences if you have time, especially before the interview though:
  1. Cheng Shyong (Chemistry at ANU)
  2. Chong Hui Wen (Biology at Manchester University). She mentioned something about Matrik students applying overseas, do check it out.
  3. Farhan Layali II His post is more relevant to those applying for local universities.
  4. Tey Wei Hao (Math at Manchester University)
  5. Ideen Rahmad
  6. Wan Faiz
  7. Nazrah Athirah
  8. Nur Aqilah Zahirah (Chemistry at University of Glasgow)
  9. K E K W A bongsu
  10. Wan Syafiqa (Biomedical Science at University of Adelaide)
  11. Zhang
  12. Noor Farzana
Ask your question at Student Malaysia forum: Skim Biasiswa MyBrainSc Scholarships 2016


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Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Shell Malaysia Scholarships 2016 - Local & Overseas Undergraduate Scholarships

Editor's Note: Are you a Shell scholarship holder? Please share your Shell Malaysia scholarship application tips and Shell Scholarship Assessment experience at Student Malaysia forum to help fellow students in Malaysia. Thanks!

Shell Malaysia Scholarship 2016
Shell Malaysia Scholarships
Closing Date: The Shell Malaysia Scholarship 2016 opens for application from Monday, 11th January 2016 to Wednesday, February 10th 2016.

Shell Malaysia Scholarship 2016

At Shell, we are always on the lookout for remarkable graduates that help us to pioneer new ways to meet the world’s demand for energy, to build and develop the capabilities of today’s talent that will ultimately contribute towards the development of this nation.

Since its inception, Shell Malaysia has sponsored more than 1500 deserving graduates to pursue their higher education in various fields of studies relevant to the Oil and Gas industry. It is a platform for students who are intending or currently pursuing their full-time undergraduate and postgraduate studies in universities recognised by the Ministry of Higher Education Malaysia (MOHE), both locally and abroad.

Fields of Studies
We are looking to sponsor students intending or currently pursuing their higher education in the following fields of studies:

Engineering: Mechanical, Civil, Chemical, Petroleum, Electrical & Electronics

Sciences: Geology, Geosciences, Geomatics, Geoinformatics, Biostratigraphy

Commercial: Human Resources, Finance & Accounting, Business & Management

We also encourage students with disability to submit in your application.

Shell Malaysia Overseas Undergraduate Scholarships

This is open to students who will be undertaking and or currently in a full time 1st Degree courses in the following fields, in any university in the United Kingdom, United States or Australia.

Eligibility
  • Strong leadership skills and active participation in extracurricular activities such as societies and clubs, sports, etc.
  • Not presently holding other scholarship/loans.
  • Disabled Identification Card certified by Jabatan Kebajikan Masyarakat (where applicable)
  • Consistently strong academic achievements as follows:
    • Minimum 3.0 CGPA or it’s equivalent at 1st Degree studies level.
    • Minimum 3.0 CGPA or it’s equivalent at Pre University Level  i.e. Diploma/STPM/IB, or 2As & 1B for A-Levels /Foundation.
Applications
Applications may be submitted based on the latest semester results (for Matriculation, Diploma, ‘A’ Levels, Foundation or semester 1 for 1st Degree students) or trial examination results (for STPM students).

Shell Malaysia reserves the right to verify the information provided. Shell Malaysia aims to reflect the diversity of the communities it works in and will award the scholarships on this basis.

Shell Malaysia Local Undergraduate Scholarships

This is open to students who will be undertaking and currently in a full time first degree courses at any Public Universities and JPA approved international universities based in Malaysia.

*Students with physical disabilities (Orang Kurang Upaya) are not restricted in their choice and may apply to do a degree in any discipline.

Eligibility
  • Strong leadership skills and active participation in extracurricular activities such as societies and clubs, sports, etc.
  • Not presently holding other scholarship/loans.
  • Disabled Identification Card certified by Jabatan Kebajikan Masyarakat (where applicable)
  • Consistently strong academic achievements as follows:
    • Minimum 3.0 CGPA or it’s equivalent at 1st Degree studies level
    • Minimum 3.0 CGPA or it’s equivalent at Pre University Level i.e. Diploma/STPM/IB, or 2As & 1B for A-Levels /Foundation.
Applications
Applications may be submitted based on the latest semester results (for Matriculation, Diploma, ‘A’ Levels, Foundation or semester 1 for 1st Degree students) or trial examination results (for STPM students).

Shell Malaysia reserves the right to verify the information provided. Shell Malaysia aims to reflect the diversity of the communities it works in and will award the scholarships on this basis.

How to Apply Shell Malaysia Scholarships?

Please read the Shell Malaysia Scholarship Candidate Guide to ensure a successful application.

SUBMIT YOUR APPLICATION TO SHELL MALAYSIA SCHOLARSHIP HERE

Step 1 - Online application

- Create an account, or login via an existing account
- Apply and upload the latest version of your CV/résumé
- Before submitting your application you will be asked to complete an online questionnaire

Step 2 - Online assessment

If successful during the application stage, you will receive an e-mail notification with instructions on how to complete the online assessment. There are two parts to the online assessment.

* NOTE: Each part must be completed and submitted within 7 working days before the links within the e-mails you receive expire.

Part 1: A series of competency-based questions

These will take approximately 20 minutes to complete and will not be timed. Once completed, you’ll receive an email notification and this includes a link to begin Part 2 of the online assessment.

Part 2: Consists of two tasks: a decision-making and a problem-solving task: You will need to complete both tasks.

* NOTE: The decision-making task is not timed, but the problem-solving task does have a time limit. This assessment should take around 45 minutes to complete in total.

The decision-making task assesses how you respond to common situations that Shell graduates may face, and the problem-solving task assesses your capacity for solving numerical reasoning problems.

Step 3 - An interview

Once you have submitted Part 2 of the online assessment we will review the results before contacting you to discuss a potential interview.

The interview will be conducted via telephone. This is an opportunity for you to tell us more about your motivations for applying, your achievements, the challenges you've faced and how you've demonstrated the qualities we're looking for- What We Are Looking For.

Successfully passing your interview we will review for possible face-2-face Shell Scholarship Assessment.

Step 4 – Shell Scholarship Assessment

Following your success in the first-stage interview, you will be invited to attend a half day assessment  where you will complete a range of assessed exercises covering group discussion, written task, self-reflection interview, case study presentation and final interview.

More info about Biasiswa Shell Malaysia 2016: www.shell.com.my


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Sunday, January 24, 2016

What the South Australian Matriculation (SAM/SACE International) is all about

Guest post by Wong Xiu Wei (Share you opinions with 50,000+ Malaysian students)

SACE International South Australian Certificate of Education
SACE International | South Australian Certificate of Education International
As a student myself who has experienced the difficulty of choosing a good Pre-University course after SPM, I would like to share with you my two cents on this particular course that I have undertaken and completed just recently in 2014 at Taylor’s College, Subang Jaya.

If I were to put it into a more succinct sentence, I would describe South Australian Matriculation (SAM)/South Australian Certificate of Education International (SACEI) as a course that is more ‘all-rounded’. In SAM, education consists of many forms besides conventional exams and classroom lessons. Needless to say, that is one of the main reasons why I chose SAM and it is also why I rather enjoyed myself throughout the course.

As a breakdown of the course component weightage, SAM/SACEI comprises of 70% coursework and 30% final exam. Note that here ‘coursework’ is a broad term that includes laboratory practical tests, report write-ups, research/investigative projects and class tests. SAM/SACEI is administered by the South Australian Board of Education, and is taken by students from South Australia, Malaysia and China. After completing this course, you would obtain an ATAR score – which is a percentile rank and is not to be interpreted the same as a CGPA. For instance, an ATAR of 80 would mean that you performed better than 80% of your peers, putting you in the top 20% of your cohort.

SAM/SACEI is accepted in most tertiary institutions worldwide in countries such as the UK, US, Hong Kong, Singapore, Australia, New Zealand, Canada and etc. However, I do recommend checking out the requirements for SAM/SACEI in your prospective university before commencing the course as some universities would require a higher ATAR score for admission. This is due to the fact that SAM/SACEI (as well as AUSMAT, for that matter) are one year courses and hence do not cover as much syllabus compared to A-levels. If you look at it from another perspective, SAM/SACEI would enable you to enter university one year earlier than if you took a longer Pre-University course. So in the end, the choice is up to you as to whether you think you could achieve the required ATAR and if it is really suitable for you as a student. As a rule of thumb, if you are keen to pursue very competitive courses such as Dentistry and Medicine particularly in the UK, you would make a wiser choice by choosing A-levels instead as it would be more favorable for the consideration of your application by the university.

As a SAM/SACEI student, I realized that a lot of people harbor misconceptions regarding the course as follows:

  1. Is SAM/SACEI only accepted in SOUTH Australia?
  2. SAM/SACEI is such a short course. Is it easier compared to other courses?

The answer to both of these questions is “No”. SAM/SACEI is accepted in the WHOLE of Australia. (Note: I have already written the list of countries that accept SAM/SACEI in bold above for your easy reference) And as for the latter, I would say that SAM/SACEI is not an easy-breezy course! A 70% in coursework indicates that you will have to be punctual in all your work/assignments and have good time management skills. In SAM/SACEI, you are graded in factors such as your ability to hold discussions with your peers, your oral abilities, investigative abilities, motor skills, learning skills and so on instead of just letting a grade on a paper denote your standing as a student. If you want to do well in SAM/SACEI, you would have to put in hard work and effort, especially if you took a pure-science combination (I took Physics, Biology, Chemistry, English as Second Language and Mathematical Studies). However, I hope what I have just said in front does not intimidate you as hard work is required for all courses apart from SAM/SACEI if you want to excel. Nothing ever comes easy in this world, no?

Another popular question would be: Is it very hard to achieve a high ATAR? My answer to that would be no IF you are a good student in the sense that you try your best for your assignments, hand up work on time and do some studying for your exams. As a very rough gauge, if you get a mixture of As and Bs in your coursework and do not do badly for your final exam, you will have no problem getting an ATAR above 90. The average grade in my class for an assignment/test is usually about an A grade to a B grade. Moderation is done in SAM/SACEI by the South Australian Board of Education, whereby each lecturer would have to submit a few of their students’ paper from every grade (A+/A/A-/B+/B and so on) in order to be reviewed to avoid cases such as favoritism and different standards. In that sense, you should have no worries regarding the marking system as it is done fairly.

Prior to commencing the course, I have come across an article titled “An Insight into the South Australian Matriculation” which is also featured on this website. The author has contributed a lengthy article that is well-written. This author has written a less favorable review regarding this course. Since my article is to the more favorable side, I thought I would share this here in order for you to get a more two-sided view for your own judgment as every person is entitled to their own opinion. However, there are some points stated by the author that I wish to clarify:
“Moderation is done in SAM. It works like to keep a consistency in the program. Let’s say you did badly for most of your tests but suddenly started to get better scores in the tests which cannot happen for SAM as consistency is maintained, so they will downgrade your mark.”
The above text is quoted from the aforementioned article. The ATAR for SAM/SACEI are calculated using 4 of your best subjects and ½ of your worst subject (a total of five subjects are taken). As every assignment/test/project counts towards your final grade, a bad grade for one assignment would naturally make the average lower. For instance, if you get mostly A’s for all assignments in a particular subject but have a few C’s it would automatically downgrade your average mark. This is a very common aspect of grade-calculation and does not represent the purpose of moderation.

In short, I have learned a lot through SAM/SACEI as a student. Not only did I learn about the importance of discipline and time-management, I have also learnt the value of learning together with friends, having the bravery to ask questions and discover new frontiers and going out of my comfort zone. In all honesty, I think that SAM/SACEI is a good course and would benefit students everywhere as it helps you grow as a person apart from knowledge from books. My teachers are also very passionate about their subject and they are always very helpful. One could always arrange consultation with teachers to ask any questions or to do any further revision. As I quote from my Physics teacher: “Teachers in SAM/SACEI choose to teach the course because they believe in the program”.

I hope this article has helped you consider your next step in life, and if you have any questions, please feel free to contact me! I’m friendly!

Xiu Wei is a girl who likes jokes, travelling, food and alpacas. She is currently selling secondhand SAM books and looking forward to her next phase in life. And yes, she still believes in being a dreamer. Comment below or contact her at xiuweiwong@gmail.com if you have any questions!


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Thursday, January 07, 2016

ABRSM, DELF, UoL, ABE, ICSA, AIA, ACCA 2016 Exam Dates

External and Professional Exams Dates (Takwim Peperiksaan Luar Negeri, Professional zdan Bahasa Antarabangsa 2016)

The Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music (ABRSM)
14 March 2016 : Teori (A)
March - April 2016 : Amali (1) dan Diploma (1)
13 August 2016 : Teori (B)
June - August 2016 : Amali (2) dan Diploma (2)

The Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA)
7 - 11 March 2016
6 - 10 June 2016
5 - 9 September 2016
5 - 9 December 2016

University of London (UoL)
2 May - 10 June 2016
25 September - 19 October 2016
17 - 21 October 2016 (Ulangan)

Note: Dates are subjected to changes (Tarikh-tarikh yang dinyatakan adalah tertakluk kepada pindaan)

The Institute of Chartered Secretaries and Administrators (ICSA)
7 - 10 June 2016
6 - 9 December 2016

The Association of Business Executives (ABE)
6 - 10 June 2016
5 - 9 December 2016

Note: Dates are subjected to changes (Tarikh-tarikh yang dinyatakan adalah tertakluk kepada pindaan)

The Association of International Accountants (AIA)
23 - 26 May 2016
21 - 24 November 2016

Peperiksaan Bahasa Jepun dan Bahasa Jerman
26 July 2016

Peperiksaan Bahasa Perancis – Diplôme d’Études en Langue Française (DELF)
Peperiksaan Bertulis: 16 August 2016
Peperiksaan Lisan: 17 - 30 August 2016

Peperiksaan Sijil Vokasional Malaysia (SVM)
Peperiksaan Bahasa Melayu KV Sesi 1 Sem 4
Ujian Lisan Kolej Vokasional (ULKV) (BMA01403): 18 - 22 April 2016
Ujian Bertulis (BMA01401 dan A01402): 25 April 2016

Peperiksaan Bahasa Melayu KV Sesi 2 Sem 4
Ujian Lisan Kolej Vokasional (ULKV) (A01401): 31 October - 4 November 2016
Ujian Bertulis (BMA01401 dan A01402): 7 November 2016

Pentaksiran Sesi 1
Semester 1 Ujian Amali: 9 - 20 May 2016
Semester 1 Ujian Bertulis: 23 - 27 May 2016
Semester 3 Ujian Amali: 25 April - 6 May 2016
Semester 3 Ujian Bertulis: 9 - 13 May 2016
Semester 4 Ujian Amali: 25 - 29 April 2016
Semester 4 Ujian Bertulis: 2 - 13 May 2016

Pentaksiran Sesi2
Semester 2 Ujian Amali: 17 - 21 October 2016
Semester 2 Ujian Bertulis: 24 October - 4 November 2016
Semester 4 Ujian Amali: 7 - 11 November 2016
Semester 4 Ujian Bertulis: 14 - 25 November 2016


Source: Takwim Peperiksaan, Lembaga Peperiksaan, Kementerian Pendidikan Malaysia (Examinations Syndicate, Ministry of Education Malaysia)
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Monday, January 04, 2016

Malaysia School Holiday 2016 Calendar (Kalendar Cuti Sekolah 2016)

Malaysia School Holidays 2016 Dates (Tarikh Hari Cuti Sekolah Malaysia 2016)

Related 2016 Calendars:

Schools in Perlis, Pulau Pinang, Perak, Selangor, Negeri Sembilan, Melaka, Pahang, Sabah, Sarawak, Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur, Labuan and Putrajaya

Term 1 School Holidays 2016 (Cuti Pertengahan Penggal 1):
12 March - 20 March

Midyear School Holidays 2016 (Cuti Pertengahan Tahun):
28 May - 12 June

Term 2 School Holidays 2016 (Cuti Pertengahan Penggal 2):
10 September - 18 September

Year End School Holidays 2016 (Cuti Akhir Tahun):
26 November - 1 January 2017

Kalendar Cuti Sekolah 2016 School Holidays Calendar
Cuti Penggal Persekolahan Tahun 2016 (Sekolah Kumpulan B)

Schools in Kedah, Johor, Kelantan and Terengganu

Term 1 School Holidays 2016 (Cuti Pertengahan Penggal 1):
11 March - 19 March

Midyear School Holidays 2016 (Cuti Pertengahan Tahun):
27 May - 11 June

Term 2 School Holidays 2016 (Cuti Pertengahan Penggal 2):
9 September - 17 September

Year End School Holidays 2016 (Cuti Akhir Tahun):
25 November - 31 December

School Holidays Calendar 2016 Kalendar Cuti Sekolah
Cuti Penggal Persekolahan Tahun 2016 (Sekolah Kumpulan A)

Source: Ministry of Education Malaysia


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Saturday, January 02, 2016

Malaysia Public Holidays 2016 Calendar (Kalendar Cuti Umum Hari Kelepasan Am Malaysia 2016)

Source: Jadual Hari Kelepasan Am Persekutuan & Negeri 2016, Bahagian Kabinet, Perlembagaan Dan Perhubungan Antara Kerajaan, Jabatan Perdana Menteri

Malaysia Public Holidays 2016 (Tarikh Hari Cuti Umum Malaysia 2016)

Related 2016 Calendars: Malaysia Public Holidays Calendar 2016 Kalendar Cuti Umum Malaysia

Malaysia Public / National / Federal Holidays 2016 Calendar (Kalendar Jadual Hari Cuti Kelepasan Am Persekutuan Malaysia)

  1.         February 8 (Monday): Chinese New Year (Tahun Baru Cina)
  2.         February 9 (Tuesday): Chinese New Year Second Day (Tahun Baru Cina Hari Kedua)
  3.         May 1 (Sunday): Labour Day (Hari Pekerja)
  4.         May 21 (Saturday): Vesak Day (Hari Wesak)
  5.         June 4 (Saturday): Agong's Birthday (Hari Keputeraan Seri Paduka Baginda Yang di-Pertuan Agong)
  6.         * July 6 (Wednesday): Hari Raya Puasa
  7.         * July 7 (Thursday) Hari Raya Puasa (Hari Kedua)
  8.         August 31 (Wednesday): National Day (Hari Kebangsaan)
  9.         * September 12 (Monday): Cuti Hari Raya Haji / Qurban
  10.         * September 13 (Tuesday): Cuti Hari Raya Haji / Qurban Hari Kedua
  11.         September 16 (Friday): Malaysia Day (Hari Malaysia)
  12.         October 2 (Sunday): Awal Muharam (Maal Hijrah)
  13.         * October 29 (Saturday): Deepavali (Hari Deepavali)
  14.         December 12 (Monday): Prophet Muhammad's Birthday (Hari Keputeraan Nabi Muhammad S.A.W. / Maulidur Rasul)
  15.         December 25 (Sunday): Christmas (Hari Krismas)

State Holidays 2016 (Jadual Hari Cuti Kelepasan Am Negeri)

  1.         January 1 (Friday): New Year 2016 (Tahun Baru 2016)
  2.         January 14 (Thursday): Yang di-Pertuan Besar Negeri Sembilan's Birthday (Hari Keputeraan Yang di-Pertuan Besar Negeri Sembilan)
  3.         January 17 (Sunday): Sultan of Kedah's Birthday (Hari Keputeraan Sultan Kedah)
  4.         January 24 (Sunday): Hari Thaipusam
  5.         February 1 (Monday): Federal Territory Day (Hari Wilayah Persekutuan)
  6.         February 9 (Tuesday): Chinese New Year Second Day (Tahun Baru Cina Hari Kedua)
  7.         March 4 (Friday): Anniversary of Installation of Sultan of Terengganu (Hari Ulang Tahun Pertabalan Sultan Terengganu)
  8.         March 23 (Wednesday): Sultan of Johor's Birthday (Hari Keputeraan Sultan Johor)
  9.         March 25 (Friday): Good Friday
  10.         April 15 (Friday): Declaration of Malacca as a Historical City (Hari Perisytiharan Melaka Sebagai Bandaraya Bersejarah)
  11.         April 26 (Tuesday): Sultan of Terengganu's Birthday (Hari Keputeraan Sultan Terengganu)
  12.         May 5 (Thursday): Israk dan Mikraj
  13.         May 7 (Saturday): Hari Hol Pahang
  14.         May 17 (Tuesday): Raja Perlis' Birthday (Hari Ulang Tahun Keputeraan Raja Perlis)
  15.         May 30 (Monday): Harvest Festival (Pesta Kaamatan / Pesta Menuai)
  16.         May 31 (Tuesday): Harvest Festival (Pesta Kaamatan / Pesta Menuai)
  17.         June 1 (Wednesday): Perayaan Hari Gawai Dayak
  18.         June 2 (Thursday): Perayaan Hari Gawai Dayak
  19.         * June 6 (Monday): Awal Ramadan
  20.         June 22 (Wednesday): Hari Nuzul Al-Quran
  21.         July 7 (Thursday): Georgetown World Heritage City Day (Hari Ulang Tahun Perisytiharan Tapak Warisan Dunia)
  22.         July 9 (Saturday): Penang Governor's Birthday (Hari Jadi Yang di-Pertua Negeri Pulau Pinang)
  23.         September 10 (Saturday): Sarawak Governor's Birthday (Hari Jadi Yang di-Pertua Negeri Sarawak)
  24.         * September 23 (Tuesday): Hari Raya Qurban / Haji Hari Kedua
  25.         October 1 (Saturday): Sabah Governor's Birthday (Hari Jadi Yang di-Pertua Negeri Sabah)
  26.         October 14 (Friday): Malacca Governor's Birthday (Hari Jadi Yang di-Pertua Negeri Melaka)
  27.         October 24 (Monday): Sultan of Pahang's Birthday (Hari Keputeraan Sultan Pahang)
  28.         November 6 (Sunday): Hari Hol Almarhum Sultan Iskandar
  29.         November 11 (Friday): Sultan of Kelantan's Birthday (Hari Keputeraan Sultan Kelantan)
  30.         November 12 (Saturday): Sultan of Kelantan's Birthday (Hari Keputeraan Sultan Kelantan)
  31.         November 27 (Sunday): Sultan of Perak's Birthday (Hari Keputeraan Sultan Perak)
  32.         December 11 (Sunday): Sultan of Selangor's Birthday (Hari Keputeraan Sultan Selangor)
Note: * Subject to change (tertakluk kepada perubahan).

Kalendar Jadual Hari Kelepasan Am Malaysia 2016 Persekutuan & Negeri



► Read more on Malaysia Public Holidays 2016 Calendar (Kalendar Cuti Umum Hari Kelepasan Am Malaysia 2016)

Friday, January 01, 2016

Tarikh Peperiksaan UPSR, PT3, STAM, SPM 2016 Exam Date

Malaysia Major Public Exam Dates (Tarikh Peperiksaan Awam Malaysia 2016)

Related 2016 Calendars:

Tarikh Peperiksaan Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia (Ulangan) SPMU 2016 Date

Bertulis: 13 - 16 June 2016
Tarikh Pengumuman Keputusan SPMU 2016 Result Release Date: 18 August 2016

Tarikh Ujian Pencapaian Sekolah Rendah UPSR 2016 Date

Bertulis: 05 - 08 September 2016
Tarikh Pengumuman Keputusan UPSR 2016 Result Release Date: 17 November 2016

Tarikh Pentaksiran Tingkatan 3 PT3 2016 Date

Ujian Bertulis: 11 - 13 October 2016
Ujian Lisan Bertutur: 01 - 30 August 2016
Ujian Lisan Mendengar: 09 August 2016 (BM), 10 August 2016 (BI)
Ujian Lisan Tilawah & Hafazan: 21 - 26 August 2016
Tarikh Pengumuman Keputusan Result Release Date: 19 December 2016

Tarikh Peperiksaan Sijil Tinggi Agama Malaysia STAM 2016 Date

Lisan: 25 - 28 July 2016, 01 - 04 August 2016
Bertulis: 17 - 19 October 2016, 25 - 26 October 2016
Tarikh Pengumuman Keputusan STAM 2015 Result Release Date: 21 January 2016

Tarikh Peperiksaan Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia SPM 2016 Date

Bertulis: 07 November - 06 December 2016
Tarikh Pengumuman Keputusan SPM 2015 Result Release Date: 3 March 2016

Source: Takwim Peperiksaan, Lembaga Peperiksaan, Kementerian Pendidikan Malaysia (Examinations Syndicate, Ministry of Education Malaysia)
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Tuesday, November 10, 2015

This is how you start taking charge of your finances early in your life

11 Practical Tips to Save Money (Tip-Tip Berjimat Cermat)

Guest post by Michael Vincent (Share you tips with 49,000+ Malaysian students)

Saving money isn’t exactly easy to do, especially when there are so many things you want to see and do. But for students, it’s very important to do so early because you never know what can happen to throw you off financially. Check out these easy ways for you to save money.

11 Practical Tips to Save Money (Tip-Tip Berjimat Cermat)

1. Work Part-time For Cash and Experience
Taking up a part-time job is a great way to earn some extra money and get started on your savings. You’ll also get valuable working experience and skills which will make you even more employable in the future. Working will also teach you the value of money, so have a look at Student Part Time Jobs Malaysia where part time job advertisements are posted regularly.

2. Apply For A Scholarship
Whether you’re at a public or private higher education institution, you’ll have access to scholarships and grants. Most scholarships require you to have excellent grades for your SPM or your pre-university programs. Keep an eye out for the call for scholarship applications advertised in Malaysia Scholarships 2016, the newspapers, as well as the organisation or government agency’s website.

3. Get The Awesome KADS1M
Sign up for the Kad Diskaun Siswa 1 Pelajar (KADS1M). It’s free for students pursuing higher education at private and public education institutions. You get up to 60% discounts at various retail outlets and shops in Malaysia. Amongst them are Rapid KL (50% discount for bus, 33% discount for traveling between bus, LRT and Monorail), KFC, MPH, Focus Point and even airline tickets.

4. Challenge Your Friends And Family
Think you’re more budget savvy than your friends and loved ones? Why not make a game out of saving money and challenge them to see who has the most savings at the end of every month? Of course, if it’s a contest, it goes without saying that there has to be a prize waiting for the winner at the end of it all…

5. Vouchers Are Your New Best Friend
University and college students will receive the Baucer Buku 1Malaysia (BB1M) in 2016, so it’s time to use the RM250 worth of vouchers to purchase the books you’ve been looking for! And if you’re a huge foodie, why don’t you check out Worthy Book? You can get up to RM3,000 worth of F&B vouchers and save more money when dining out at over 100 shopping malls nationwide.

11 Practical Tips to Save Money (Tip-Tip Berjimat Cermat)

6. Shop Smarter And Pay Less
Malaysia is known for having plenty of sales all year round, so before making any purchases always wait it out for the big sales. For avid readers, visit book fairs like the Big Bad Wolf which is coming soon in December! And if you enjoy traveling or you’re crazy about gadgets, wait for the MATTA Fair or PIKOM PC Fair.

7. Watch Movies For Cheap
Instead of paying for full price movie tickets, catch a movie on a Wednesday (TGV and GSC cinemas) and watch movies before 6pm as its way cheaper! Students pay only RM10 tickets on weekdays and Early Bird Deals at GSC gets you tickets from only RM8, before 12pm. Not a fan of the cinema?  Stay home and watch your favourite movies and TV series on iflix from only RM8 per month.

8. Keep Track Of Expenses
The first step is to track your spending, so you can recognise where you might be overspending. Once you know where most of your money is going to, you can try to adjust and cut down on your spending. Try this free app, Mint. You can create and set a budget limit, see your spending pattern and it’s all tracked with cool graphs and interface.

9. Swap Your Old Stuff For Cash
Got any unused books, electronic or gadgets that are still in good condition? Instead of leaving it lying around your house collecting dust, sell it and get some extra cash. Check out the Malaysia Car Boot sale for locations and updates or head over to Cash Converters where you can get exchange unwanted items for cash.

10. Freebies Are A Must
Taking advantage of your university or college’s free services (that you’ve technically already paid for) doesn’t mean you’re cheap. So make full use of the facilities and do research and assignments, surf the Internet or take up free online courses. There may be free activities or events available on campus, so check out the noticeboards to see what’s happening!

11. Time Is Money, Spend It Wisely
There’s always the fear of missing out, but if your friends are always hanging out at expensive cafés or restaurants, learn to say no. Hanging out with friends is cool, but if you do it too often it will quickly burn a hole in your wallet.

Got any more cool money saving tips? Share it with us at the comment section below!

Michael Vincent, is an internet marketing specialist and also a finance writer on CompareHero.my. He does enjoy writing about finance and the technical jargons associated with it, but he deems it more helpful to people to write about saving money and managing finances. When he’s not writing, he’s self-studying Japanese.


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Sunday, November 08, 2015

Global Citizen Programme by AIESEC in Malaysia

Have you ever wondered what is happening halfway across the globe while you’re here reading this article on your screen? People are dying, children are starving and sadly, they were not as lucky as us to be born in such a safe and peaceful country. In AIESEC, we enable you to feel a shared responsibility for the world and provide you with the necessary tools to change it. Here is a great experience shared by one of our exchange participants, [update: who requested the name to be removed only after this article was published]:
“The mystical islands of the Philippines- Manila, was my home for 6 weeks. Signing up for the Lifeboat Project by UPD had exposed me to one of the most unique situations I’ve had so far in 2015. This project aims to raise awareness and preparedness of the local population regarding disaster relief. As exchange participants, we were required to help these three organizations with their daily work, namely the Philippine Red Cross, Buk Lud Tao and the Department of Interior and Local Government. We spent most of our time with the Philippine Red Cross by helping them carry out their daily blood donation programs around the district.

Global Citizen Programme by AIESEC in Malaysia

Meeting and interacting with the locals was certainly the best part of our work. It was absolutely priceless to see the smile on their faces with pure gratitude and appreciation. Minimal time was spent at the other two organizations because most of the jobs have been completed and there was nothing much we could do to help out.

Global Citizen Programme by AIESEC in Malaysia

On top of everything, we travelled around the country with the other exchange participants and had a great time. The awe-inspiring views of historical and natural wonders of the Philippines was extraordinarily breathtaking. Not to mention jumping off moving vehicles or sitting on top of a jeep travelling at 70km/hour while hanging onto the railings, we had a lot of fun. The low cost of living allowed us to travel light and visit many destinations with a tight budget. From volcanos to jungles and beaches, this beautiful country definitely has a lot to offer for the adventurous.

From this experience, I learnt to be flexible while adapting to different circumstances as things do not always turn out as planned. From a more technical point of view, I also picked up some basic first aid skills and also event management skills. Frankly, it was undeniably tough to be in a totally different surrounding with limited level of knowledge and experience. However, to be courageous by taking the first step out of your comfort zone - that brings everything in your life to a whole new level. To sum it all up, I’d say this 6-week-experience was the best decision I have ever made.”
So people, are you ready to change the world by changing yourself?


Visit AIESEC in Malaysia (Facebook). Universities that have AIESEC: Sunway, Taylor's, Monash Malaysia Campus, Curtin, UNIMAS, UMP, UPM, UKM, UTM, USM, UM, UTP, UUM and Nottingham Malaysia Campus.

► Read more on Global Citizen Programme by AIESEC in Malaysia

Sunday, November 01, 2015

Last Minute SPM 2015 Tips: Bahasa Inggeris (BI)

Good Luck in Your SPM 2015!


46 Good SPM English Model Essays / Free Essay Samples for SPM English


Planning for a year-end holiday trip? Click here to buy cheap bus ticket online Malaysia / Singapore


Click here for Complete SPM Tips 2015 & SPM Trial Papers (Kertas Soalan Percubaan SPM 2015)


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Exclusive SPM 2015 Tips: How to Score Straight A+'s

SPM 2015 Tips: Bahasa Inggeris (BI)

English Language General guidelines

  • To prepare for this subject, you will have to continuously improve your language skills in every day life. Try to speak and write more in English language, and read more English books, magazines and newspaper.
  • Before the exam, you mainly need to concentrate on Literature and Writing.
  • To prepare for paper 2, all you need to do is to do exercises regularly.

A. Writing
i. Directed Writing

  • Materials will be given for this section. You are advised to read the question carefully before answering the question
  • You have to count the number of points given. If the number of points given are insufficient, you will need to provide your own ideas in order to score full marks for your content
  • If the essay is formatted writing, make sure that the format is correct.

ii. Continuous Writing

  • You are advised to read all the questions carefully and choose the question that you are most confident in.
  • Include some idioms and quotes by famous personalities in your essay to make it more interesting.
  • The sentence structure should be varied. Use simple, compound and complex sentences in your writing.
  • Your essay have to be interesting if you attempt narrative/descriptive essay. Avoid making grammatical errors in your essay. Refer to the question often when writing your essay to avoid writing out of topic.

B. Paper 2 Section A
i. Stimuli and Graphic Material

  • Read the materials given and question carefully, cancel off the options that you consider as definitely wrong. Choose the most suitable answer among the options you are left with, based on the materials given.

ii. Rational Cloze

  • This section tests you on grammar. You are advised to read the passage given carefully.
  • Cancel off the options that you consider as definitely wrong. Choose the most suitable word to fill in the blanks in the passage among the 4 options, based on your understanding in grammar.

C. Paper 2 Section B (Information Transfer)

  • Read the materials given carefully. When answering, copy directly from the materials given and avoid using your own words. However, in some cases, you may have to make some changes to suit your answer.
  • Ensure that the spelling in your answer is exactly the same as the spelling in the materials given, otherwise your answer will be considered wrong and no mark will be given.
  • Answers should be short and precise.

D. Paper 2 Section C
i. Reading Comprehension

  • Read the questions and passage given carefully. Answer all questions based on the passage given. When answering, look for answers from the particular paragraph of the passage as stated in the question.
  • If the question asked you for your opinion, you should provide your own answer and do not look for answers from the passage given. Your ideas must be logical and relevant.
  • For this section, you do not need to answer in complete sentence. Do not add in any unnecessary details in your answer or write extra answers. Marks will be deducted.

ii. Summary

  • The question will usually ask you to summarize on 2 topics. Read the question and passage given carefully. Underline the relevant points in the passage that are related to any of the 2 topics.
  • When answering, use relevant points from the passage. Do not take the elaborations or examples. You must begin your answer using the 10 words given in the question.
  • You do not need to write any Introduction or Closing. Try to use your own words by replacing the words in the passage with other words which have the same meaning,
  • You should write a total of 10 points. You are advised to write more points if you summary has no reach the word limit (130 words)
  • You should write in continuous form and not in point form. State the exact number of words below your summary. DO NOT CHEAT. The examiners will count the total number of words in your summary.

E. Poem

  • Read the poem and questions carefully. Answer all questions based on your understanding of the poem.
  • If the question asks for your own opinion, you should answer the question using your own opinion and do not look for answers in the poem. Answers given must be logical and relevant.
  • You do not need to answer in complete sentences. Make sure there in no spelling and grammatical errors.

F. Novel

  • For this section, you will have to elaborate clearly on every point you write. Give suitable examples from the novel. You must answer in complete sentences and not point form, otherwise marks can be deducted. Make sure that the grammar is correct.
  • You can also quote what the characters said in the novel as textual evidence.


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