Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Squash Your Exam Anxiety with These 6 Memory Exercises

Squash Your Exam Anxiety with These 6 Memory Exercises

Guest post written by Helen Wallis

It’s not uncommon for students to experience some level of anxiety before an exam. In fact, in most circumstances it’s expected; however, when it affects performance and causes stress outside the classroom, it needs addressing.

The truth is, sometimes it doesn’t matter how prepared you are academically. Extreme nervousness can be a major hindrance and cause memory lapses and even physical illness. The trick is to increase your confidence and reinforce the notion of control.

If you’re struggling to cope with exam anxiety, these memory exercises may help.
Too much anxiety can cause memory lapses.
Too much anxiety can cause memory lapses. / PicCredit

1. Create keyword lists

According to revision expert Justin Craig, creating keyword lists is the perfect way to learn a particular topic. Keywords are easy to memorize and will in turn trigger other memories. For example, if you’re revising the origins of the Second World War, compile a list of its causes: Treaty of Versailles, Weimar Republic, etc. Once you have compiled and memorized the list give it to a friend or family member and keep going through it until you can fully explain each word or term in detail.

2. Reward yourself with a treat

This may seem childish, but integrating a reward system into your revision routine can be an excellent way to boost your productivity. Even something insignificant, such as a sweet, can significantly increase your motivation. Set yourself a target to revise for a certain amount of time or memorize a certain amount of words, and then give yourself a reward. Repeat the process over and over.

3. Teach others what you have learned

After each day’s work, teach your parents or siblings what you have learned. Don’t worry if you have to use your revision notes as the point is to repeat what you’ve researched out loud and explain the details. Tell whoever your teaching to ask you questions to ensure you cover the topic as broadly as possible.

4. Create mental associations

One of the best things about making mental associations is that they allow you to both think creatively and boost your memory at the same time. Create easy-to-remember rhymes and stories and relate them to the topic that you’re revising. Children often use this age-old technique to remember certain facts and figures; and there’s a good reason why.

5. Do something physical beforehand

Okay, so you can’t just get up in the middle of an exam and have a leisurely jog, but you can do something beforehand.  According to Harvard Medical School 30-40 minutes of light to moderate physical exercise per day is an excellent stress reliever. Of course, you don’t want to tire yourself out before an exam, but taking a 30 minute stroll or jog can be the perfect way to get into a relaxed mindset.

6. Take a breather

If you ever start to feel overwhelmed and can’t remember something, put down your pen and take a few minutes to breath and relax. If you still can’t remember, move on and go back to the question later.
Fundamentally, the more prepared you are the less anxiety you will feel. Give yourself plenty of time in the build-up to your exams to prepare and use a variety of different revision methods. Perform mock examinations; revise with friends and family; ask your teachers for past papers; and basically do whatever it takes to lock the information inside until the day comes.

Helen Wallis, based in leafy Hertfordshire, UK, is a keen blogger/writer for years and regular reader of Malaysia Students blog.

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Sunday, July 13, 2014

5 (+1) Unorthodox Ways to Thrive in Your Studies (#3 will surprise you)

Other Writing Contest Winning Entries You Might Have Missed:

5 (+1) Unorthodox Ways to Thrive in Your Studies

by Nurul Aqilah Aqiludeen [Writing Contest 2014 ★ Winner ★]

There are many study methods and memorizing skills on the internet that can help you in your studies. Mind maps, finding quiet places to study, eat well and healthy etcera etcera. Having the right attitude and mind set however, can help you achieve your goals faster whilst at the same time, letting you enjoy the process. Here is a list of ways to really thrive in your studies and being the best in your academic life.

1. Find humour in failure

Find humour in failure
Find humour in failure / PicCredit
“The happy people are failures because they are on such good terms with themselves they don’t give a damn” – Agatha Christie
Every senior that I had met in high school said the same things to me: “Add math is the toughest subject ever!” When I heard the statements, I admit, I was scared. Is the subject really is a ‘killer’? Later, when the teacher started to teach the subject, I find the mathematical concepts difficult to compute. I grew frustrated with the homework and ends up copying my friends’ answers. Day by day, the frustration grew and before I knew it, my first test on the subject ended. I remembered feeling devastated when I got the result. It was the worst result of all the subjects that I had took. 16 out of 100 percent. Terrible, absolutely terrible. I remembered feeling like I am a failure. I cried in the toilet and in the bus to get home. I knew my mom would be disappointed with me. I am the eldest of four, how am I going to show great example for my brothers and sister?

When I reached home, with eyes still wet from crying, I told my mom about my result and showed the test paper to her. I felt stupid. Worthless. To my surprise, my mom started laughing. She told me that I did a good job. Bewildered and confused, I looked up to her and told her that I have failed her as her daughter. I had failed the test! Then, she told me that when she is at my age, she only got 8 out of 100 for the same subject. It is good because I have double her marks! The laugh that comes burbling through happened spontaneously and we laughed and laughed and I felt my spirit lifted. Because of that, I no longer feel pressured about the subject. Slowly, but surely I began understanding the subjects without the fear and worry and in the end, I got an A+ for the subject in my SPM! I have double, triple, quadruple my moms’ marks and it felt good.

The moral is that to treat your failure as a stepping stone for you to get motivated, to have the will to push through. Laugh at your own failure, cry if you must. But never, ever, feels like it is the end of the world.

2. Fake it till you make it

Fake it till you make it
Fake it till you make it / PicCredit
“You must be the person you have never had the courage to be. Gradually, you will discover that you are that person, but until you can see this clearly, you must pretend and invent” – Paulo Coelho
Students always claimed that they do not have the ‘mood’ to study, the ‘feeling’ to finish their assignments. I know, I felt like it too. But, I do not roll on the bed or scrolled through my facebook page until the so-called-mood comes. Instead, I switched off my phone, sit on the chair, takes on the notes and study. Even if I do not feel like it. I fake having interest in studying. I read the text books with fake interest. I jot down notes with fake interest. I solved the questions with fake interest. I served the internet for my assignments with fake interest. I asked questions about the subjects to my friends with fake interest. Surprisingly, eventhough you started by faking the feeling eventually, with time you will feel interested with whatever you are doing. Studies had shown that people who faked to have a confidence to speak in front of a large audience eventually have the confidence without faking it. As you faked studying, feigning interest, you began to be aware of what you read, write and see. Eventually, you will remember what you wrote, and have a better idea about your assignments. You do not need to wait for the ‘mood’ or ‘feeling’ to come to you, create it on your own!

3. Find an enemy (or a few)

Find an enemy (or a few)
Find an enemy (or a few) / PicCredit
“The man of knowledge must be able not only to love his enemies but also to hate his friends” – Friedrich Nietzsche
In this dogs-eating-dogs world, one has to be ready to face competition. With the experience, you will grow stronger and stronger and ready to face bigger challenge. The problem is, you need to find someone worthy to be called your competitor, an enemy. You do not need to have the intense hatred to the person (nor harbour any hatred at all!), you just have to find someone better than you. Yes, I said it. Find someone better than you.. academically.

I studied in an all-girls high school, where the competition is strong and catfight is a real deal. People in your class will get very nosy about your marks and moan if you get a mark higher than them, yet smirked if you get lower. Because of the environment and the natural ego to prove that ‘hey, I’m better than you’, I worked hard and pushed myself out of my limit. I studied like I need it as much as I need to breathe. The reason is simple, when the exam result came, I can prove to my friends (and enemies) that I am better than them. Such simple feeling, but I put super extra effort to it. I envy the people who get marks higher than me and I swore to work even harder, to study even smarter. That is why you have to compare yourself to people who are better than you, so you have the will to achieve something greater than what you have now.

When I am in university, people are more private about their marks and CGPA. So I stalked. I jot down the matrix no of students that have the highest marks in class, ask the lecturer who wrote a better essays and create a list of those people. Normally my lecturer would post everyone marks (with omitted names) and their matrix no on the student portal. Because I already have the names and matrix no, I can easily compare their marks with mine. If I get lower, I will have to work better but if I get higher marks than them, I grinned and treat myself to something that I like. It is not necessary for the people to know that you stalked their marks, what is important is that you knew. You knew that you are better than them in certain subjects and you savour the feeling, the joy, the ego-booster.

You will be surprised that the list of people who are better than you do not decline; instead, you will find a lot more people better than you. The fight to make you better will never end so when you graduated, you know that you have pushed everything that you got to get that scroll of excellence. Because in the end, winning is not everything – it is the only thing.

4. Do the painful things first

Do the painful things first
Do the painful things first / PicCredit
“Pain is temporary. Quitting lasts forever” – Lance Armstrong
Regardless of you finishing your assignments, your thesis or even your exam questions: do the hardest things first. The rationale behind the statement is that when you had finished doing the difficult tasks, you will find yourself feel lighter hence, made you ready to complete other easy tasks. Scientists have discovered that to create an enjoyable experience is to stack the painful parts of the experience early in the process. An example is that when you are at the doctor’s office and it is better to wait 30 minutes at the waiting room than to wait 15 minutes at the waiting room and another 15 minutes at the exam room. The wait feels much longer at the latter situation. In addition, if you realized, doctors often tells the bad news first to their patients and finish with the good news. The reason? So the patients will remember the experience more positively and continue having hope in their predicament.

Hence, when you are working for your assignments or studying, start with the task that you dislike the most. Once that is finished, your experience will improve and by the time you finish with the task that you liked most, you will end up feeling satisfied. You will then remember the tasks as fun and it is likely that you would not hesitate to do again.

5. Be selfish

Be selfish
Be selfish / PicCredit
“ If you don’t design your own life plan, chances are you’ll fall into someone else’s plan. And guess what they have plan for you? Not much” – Jim Rohn
There are times that we bowed to the pressure to please people at least once in our lives. We did something that we do not want for someone we did not want to disappoint. I know a lot of my friends that are studying to be a doctor, do so because it is expected of them. We all have experience the subtle demands, requests and favours from people that we do not want to anger or disappoint. We are worried about their opinion on us, worried that we may hurt the other person’s feelings. But, there are times in life that you must be selfish.

To be able to thrive, you have to say ‘no’. To a lot of things. You need to have your own time. Time is limited and will go on no matter what you did. Time can be stopped out of the blue. Time cannot be replaced with money. If you keep on giving away your time to do the things that others want you to, when will you have the time to develop yourself? To chase after your dream?

By saying ‘no’, you do not cave to the peer pressure or sacrifice your own happiness for the opinions of others. It should also not be the end of a friendship. Good friends will understand why you had said no. Time is too precious to be going out watching bad movies and ‘lepak-ing’ at the mamak’s anyway. Your life is not dictated by someone else, nor that is by anyone’s judgments and demands. You own your life. Choose what you did with your time wisely and spent it with people that deserve it.

(+1). Love what you do, or leave

Love what you do, or leave
Love what you do, or leave / PicCredit
Do what you love to do and give it your very best. Whether it is business or baseball, or the theater, or any field. If you do not love what you are doing and you cannot give it your best, get out of it. Life is too short. You’ll be an old man before you know it” – Al Lopez
No matter what study techniques that you used, if you do not love the subjects, you will not like the outcomes. Love what you do, learn to love what you do or leave. Do not waste your time and money investing in things that you do not like. Remember, you only live once.

Nurul Aqilah Aqiludeen (or more commonly known by her nickname, Que Levine) is a final year undergraduate student in Biotechnology with a dean list on every semester. She likes to play footsie under the table, laugh for no reason and sprawl on any surfaces. Villains that are clever and dressed in sharp suits make her happy. She is also a strong believer that the world would be better if people embrace love as they would embrace money.

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Friday, July 11, 2014

Panduan Tugasan Geografi PT3, Contoh Jawapan & Bahan Rujukan: Pencemaran Alam Sekitar

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Tugasan Geografi PT3 2014 (Pentaksiran Tingkatan 3)

Industrial air pollution pencemaran udara industri Calon dikehendaki menjalankan kajian kes tentang kejadian / isu pencemaran alam sekitar (air, udara, bau, tanih) yang berlaku di sekitar tempat tinggal / kawasan sekolah calon.

Kajian tersebut hendaklah merangkumi perkara berikut:
  1. Konsep dan takrifan pencemaran alam sekitar yang dikaji.
  2. Faktor atau punca kejadian pencemaran alam sekitar tersebut.
  3. Kesan kejadian pencemaran tersebut kepada manusia dan alam sekitar di kawasan kajian.
  4. Mencadangkan langkah-langkah mengurangkan pencemaran alam sekitar tersebut. 
Hasil tugasan calon tidak kurang daripada 300 perkataan.

Arahan Kepada Calon/Murid [pdf]

Arahan kepada Guru [pdf]

Contoh Jawapan PT3 Tugasan Geografi (Koleksi Bahan Rujukan)

Industrial Pollution Pencemaran Alam Sekitar

Panduan Tugasan Geografi PT3

PT3 Geografi 2014: Kerangka Pelaksanaan Tugasan
Masa pelaksanaan PT3 Tugasan Geografi adalah dari 1- 18 Julai 2014. Guru perlu siapkan pemberian markah sebelum 14 Ogos 2014.
  1. Perancangan (10 markah)
  2. Proses Awal (20 markah)
  3. Proses Akhir (70 markah)
PT3 Geografi 2014: Contoh Borang Soal Selidik

PT3 Geografi 2014: Konsep dan Definisi
Konsep yang diterangkan mestilah dihuraikan dengan tepat dan betul beserta contoh yang relevan. Pencemaran udara, pencemaran air, pencemaran tanih.

PT3 Geografi 2014: Faktor/Punca Pencemaran Udara
  1. Pembakaran terbuka
  2. Asap dari kilang
  3. Asap dari kenderaan bermotor
PT3 Geografi 2014: Kesan Pencemaran Udara
  1. Jerebu
  2. Gangguan kesihatan
  3. Hujan asid
PT3 Geografi 2014: Langkah/Cadangan Mengatasi Masalah Pencemaran Udara
  1. Penguatkuasaan undang-undang
  2. Kempen kesedaran
  3. Menggunakan petrol tanpa plumbum
  4. Penggunaan alat catalytic converter pada kenderaan
PT3 Geografi 2014: Bahan Grafik
  1. Peta minda
  2. Jadual
  3. Graf
PT3 Geografi 2014: Susunan Laporan
  1. Borang Pentaksiran Individu
  2. Borang Akuan Pengesahan
  3. Jadual Kerja
  4. Objectif dan Kaedah Kajian
  5. Laporan Akhir
  6. Bahan Lampiran: Borang Soal Selidik
  7. Senarai Rujukan

Contoh Jawapan Tugasan Geografi PT3

Panduan Tugasan Sejarah PT3, Contoh Jawapan & Bahan Rujukan: Perpaduan Kaum

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Thursday, July 10, 2014

Panduan Tugasan Sejarah PT3, Contoh Jawapan & Bahan Rujukan: Perpaduan Kaum

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Tugasan Sejarah PT3 2014 (Pentaksiran Tingkatan 3)

Perpaduan Kaum Malaysia Rusuhan Kaum 13 May 1969 Baca petikan berikut dengan teliti.
Negara Malaysia adalah sebuah negara yang aman dan damai walau pun penduduknya berbilang kaum. Keamanan dan kedamaian ini dapat dikekalkan kerana toleransi antara kaum utama di negara kita iaitu Melayu, Cina dan India. Justeru itu, kita seharusnya bersyukur dengan keamanan dan keharmonian yang membolehkan kita duduk bersama serta berbincang tanpa ada rasa perbezaan antara satu sama lain. Persefahaman yang telah berjaya dicapai ini perlu dikekalkan supaya tiada perasaan curiga antara kaum kerana ia akan menjejaskan serta merosakkan semangat perpaduan yang telah terjalin sejak sekian lama. Dipetik dan diubahsuai daripada:
Berdasarkan petikan tersebut, buat kajian dan hasilkan sebuah rencana berkaitan dengan perpaduan kaum di Malaysia. Panjang rencana anda hendaklah tidak kurang daripada 300 patah perkataan. Tugasan anda hendaklah mengandungi aspek berikut:
  1. Tajuk rencana
  2. Nama penulis
  3. Isi kandungan:
    (a) Pengenalan – menjelaskan tentang isu-isu perpaduan kaum secara umum
    (b) Menghuraikan kepentingan perpaduan kaum
    (c) Menghuraikan faktor yang menyumbang kepada pengukuhan perpaduan kaum
    (d) Menghuraikan cabaran untuk mengekalkan perpaduan kaum
    (e) Mencadangkan langkah-langkah untuk mengekal dan memantapkan perpaduan kaum di Malaysia
    (f) Membuat rumusan
    (g) Menyenaraikan sumber rujukan
Arahan Kepada Calon/Murid [pdf]

Arahan Kepada Guru [pdf]

Koleksi Bahan Rujukan PT3 Tugasan Sejarah

Panduan Tugasan Sejarah PT3

Contoh Lengkap Tugasan Sejarah PT3

Tugasan Sejarah PT3: Contoh Lengkap

Skema Jawapan dan Pemarkahan / Contoh Jawapan

Panduan Tugasan Geografi PT3, Contoh Jawapan & Bahan Rujukan: Pencemaran Alam Sekitar

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Wednesday, July 09, 2014

Kertas Soalan Percubaan UPSR 2014 (Tips & Trial Papers)

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Koleksi Kertas Soalan Peperiksaan Percubaan UPSR 2014 (Tips & Trial Papers)

Actual Primary School Achievement Test or (tarikh) UPSR 2014 date: 9 - 11 September 2014

All UPSR 2014 candidates are sitting for UPSR 2014 trial examinations in July 2014. We are now compiling the UPSR trial exam papers from different states and for different types of schools (SK and SJK) and will update this page regularly.

Please bookmark this page and come back later for an updated list of trial papers with answer schema (skema jawapan). Please forward this post to your siblings, relatives or friends who are sitting for UPSR 2014. Share this post on Facebook and tweet this post on Twitter. Help us help others!

You definitely do not want to see someone you care ends up like the photo below when sitting for the real UPSR exam. Practice makes perfect, especially doing practice or exercise using high quality UPSR 2014 trial papers (kertas soalan peperiksaan percubaan UPSR 2014).

Murid Sekolah Soalan Percubaan UPSR Ujian Pencapaian Sekolah Rendah
Murid Sekolah Duduki Percubaan UPSR (Ujian Pencapaian Sekolah Rendah) / PicCredit: Facebook

Ujian Pencapaian Sekolah Rendah (UPSR) 2014 Tips & Trial Exam Papers

  • Perlis
  • Kedah
  • Pulau Pinang
  • Perak
  • Kelantan
  • Terengganu
  • Pahang
  • Selangor
  • W.P Kuala Lumpur & Labuan
  • Negeri Sembilan
  • Melaka
  • Johor
  • Sabah
  • Sarawak

Kertas Soalan Percubaan UPSR 2014

  • Bahasa Malaysia Pemahaman
  • Bahasa Malaysia Penulisan
  • Mathematics
  • Science
  • English
  • Chinese Comprehension
  • Chinese Writing
  • Tamil Comprehension
  • Tamil Writing
  • Apitude Test

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Sunday, July 06, 2014

Ambitions and How to Choose What to Study After SPM?

Ambitions and How to Choose What to Study After SPM?

by Sharifah Najihah

Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia or more known in the short-term as SPM, is the so-called life deciding test that will mirror your future and remaining of your life in this world. Is it true? Well for me, it’s not. Education is good, great actually. However, since SPM is over-rated and people start to think student’s future depends on it, education becomes a pain in everyone’s life (mine included). However, what I’m trying to say is not that SPM is not important, let’s just not care about it. No, nope, and just NO. What I’m trying to say is that SPM is just a bridge (a fast lane bridge, kind of like a shortcut- for those who actually try really hard). Why do I say this? Well, the whole article is here to tell you and also guide you on how to know what your real ambition is.

Okay, let me just explain for everyone dying out there to know why I said that SPM is a shortcut. Here’s some points for you:-
  1. Anyone who scores greatly in SPM gets to go straight to pre-u without going through diploma or certificates in specific courses. [please refer Editor's Notes 1 below]
  2. Well, pre-u takes up only 6 months to 2 years of one’s time while on the other hand diploma takes up 2 years and certificate takes up 2 years. If you start from the bottom, you’ll have to go through 4 years of studying basics before going to a real university- you know what I mean. [please refer Editor's Notes 2 below]
So, by saying going through the 4 years study, I didn’t underestimate the ones who went through it, but what I’m trying to say is that if you do well in SPM, you’ll get to your dream faster and of course, you’ll be happier to grasp your dreams in a shorter time. However, for the ones who have gone through the 4 years study, I absolutely and honestly salute them for their patience in achieving their dreams and how they are strong for not giving up in getting to their dream.

So now, why, oh why, are we putting at stake all of our favourite television-series, all the great movies, all those best of all time tracks of songs, our phone and our computer, just to ace SPM? There’s one single and simple answer to it. It’s because we have a dream. My dream is to go to US. What’s yours? It doesn’t matter, how impossible your dream might sound like, “I want to travel the world” or “I want to be the first woman prime minister in Malaysia”, these dreams, it is the main reason you want to ace the test, well, it’s actually the main reason why you start school at the first place. You have dreams, and you want it to come true.

Therefore, there SPM is, lending it’s hand to help us get closer to our dreams, and here we are, thinking as if it’s a curse we were born with.

So, some of my friends always said to me, it’s easy to talk, when the one who’s talking have a dream, but they cannot even figure out what they want to be in the future. Some even knows what to be, but still pursue in what they hate, all because of parent’s requests and other reasons. For me, it’s getting cliché in Malaysia, for a parent to decide their child’s future. But what we, as kids, can do is not just sit there, trying to be rebellious by failing every subject there is in school. When you hate it, you just hate it. Try to find what you’re most passionate about. It doesn’t matter if you love to draw, or you love to edit pictures, or you love to clean a house, or you love to cook, or decorate, anything that ranges from A to Z, if you’re passionate about it, don’t’ ignore it!

Learn about it more and more, show to your parent’s that you’re really passionate about it rather than just saving thousands of files of poems and novels in your laptop and saying that you don’t want to be an engineer to your parents every single day (that’s what I did). Show them some of the things you’re passionate about, if you’re shy(well I am), spend more time on it, let them know you’re spending most of your time with it than anything, then they’ll get the clue you’re really on to it. Show seriousness, do research, talk about it a lot with them. Usually parents decide because either they dreamt of it, or because they see you tangled in a mess and confused and just blank of what you want to do for your future. Believe me, that’s the only main reasons why they set goals for YOU.

So, if you’re the other case, which says that you don’t know what to be, and you’re now 17, start searching, RIGHT NOW. I’m serious about this. I’ve done research on it. In the earlier months of 2014, I was on the verge of choosing 6 different ambitions, all from 6 different types or streams, they’re just totally different. I was lost, and eventually, I lose reasons to study to. I find myself asking, Why am I studying? The same answer came, and it’s of course the so-famous “I don’t know”. So, after that, I got a bad result for my test, which includes one D in it. By that time, I cried then ask myself, what am I doing? Why am I sitting here and not search for the one thing I want to do in life instead? Then, I finally started to move. I read a LOT and ask people on the net what is this, and what is that.

What I learned from all of that researches are the ones that have no capabilities or not great in anything finds searching for an ambition is hard, and the ones who are great in everything, finds it hard too. They know too much and love too many things that they don’t know which to choose. The one easy question that can help you through is “Do you like to imagine you living and working with only that in future?” If the answer is no, no matter if you ace the subject like crazy, you have to let it go. If the answer is yes, then, there, you find your true love. In my case, I’ve always get A and A+ for add math, but, I don’t like the picture of me and add math only in the future. Instead, what I can imagine is me, writing and writing, and finally, I got the answer of what my ambition is all about.

I hope you found this article helpful in order to decide what your dream is. And, don’t be too harsh on SPM, give it some appreciation sometime.

Sharifah Najihah
Sharifah Najihah binti Syed Zainol Abidin (@najihah1997) is currently in the big 'SPM year' in the Science stream with an additonal subject of Tasawwur Islam. Writes about passion and love to pursue in dreams and future. Inspired by most of Nadilla Jamil works. Living in Petaling Jaya, currently in the High Performance School, SMK (P) Sri Aman.

Editor's Notes:
  1. After SPM/form five, one finishes secondary school and needs to complete a pre-university programme before one can enrol into a degree course. STPM/form six, A-levels, matriculation, diploma, foundation, IB, SAM, ICPU etc are all pre-university programmes, each with their own syllabus, unique programme structure, varying duration of study and different cost.

    Diploma is actually one of the many pre-university (pre-u) options available before someone enters a degree programme. Some diploma programmes are actually being offered by full-fledged universities and diploma students are studying at the same universities like degree students (undergraduates).
  2. Taking diploma programme is not necessary a bad choice and might not result in wasting time as the author implied. Case in point: an engineering diploma at UTM will take 3 years time to complete, which is longer than STPM which take 2 years to complete. However, when an engineering diploma graduate enrols into an engineering degree programme at UTM, he/she can skip a few modules and will be able to complete the degree programme in 3 years instead of 4 years for a STPM graduate who enrols the same degree course.

    In fact, taking diploma programme can be a smart choice for those who have already decided what to study for their degrees. Some people prefer to take diploma programme because they get to learn about the specific subjects that they are passionate about, instead of STPM which is quite general in terms of subjects. For example, a engineering diploma will offer specific engineering subjects like Engineering Theories and Principles, and Engineering Mathematics whereas for STPM you only get to study the general Physics and Mathematics.
  3. Our thoughts on how to choose what to study after SPM? Follow these practical advices by KC here and start visiting our website to use our Global Course Search widget to search more information on the courses you are interested, FREE for a limited time!
    Hotcourses Global Course Search Widget
  4. We thank Sharifah Najihah for sharing her personal tips on how to choose what to study with us. You too, can share your stories with us: email your articles to us, get published here and be read by 100,000 monthly readers and 22,000+ email subscribers.

► Read more on Ambitions and How to Choose What to Study After SPM?

Friday, July 04, 2014

Semakan Calon PLKN 2015 / Semakan Penempatan Pelatih Terpilih PKLN Siri 12/2015 (Online, SMS)

Want to be the first to get notification of the official announcement of the exact date Semakan Calon / Pelatih Terpilih PLKN Siri 12/2015 is available for checking? Enter your email address into the form below to join 25,000+ students who get all the latest SPM 2014 tips and trial papers via email. You cannot afford to miss them! Join our email subscription list now!
Students born in 1997 can do the checking for Malaysia National Service (NS) Series 12 / 2015 shortlist later this month (July 2014), the exact date has not been confirmed officially. While waiting for the official Malaysia National Service 2014 name list to be available for checking, please read our previous articles on National Service.

Semakan PLKN 2015 (Program Latihan Khidmat Negara) untuk nama-nama calon / pelatih terpilih bagi siri 12/2015 akan bermula pada tarikh bulan Julai 2014. Tarikh rasmi untuk semakan belum diumumkan lagi. Sementara menunggu, sila baca artikel-artikel kami tentang Khidmat Negara.

PLKN / Program Latiohan Khidmat Negara (National Service / NS)

Semakan Pelatih Terpilih PLKN Siri 12/2015

Semakan Calon / Pelatih Terpilih PLKN Siri 12/2015 How to Check National Service (NS) Selected Trainees Shortlist

Semakan senarai nama pelatih terpilih untuk Program Latihan Khidmat Negara (PLKN) akan bermula pada bulan Julai 2014 untuk remaja kelahiran 1997.

Semakan PLKN Siri 12/2015 Online Checking National Service (NS) Selected Trainees Shortlist

Sila masukkan no kad pengenalan anda di

Semakan PLKN Siri 12/2015 Melalui SMS

Taip: PLKN SEMAK <No KP anda>  Hantar ke 15888

* Setiap mesej yang dihantar akan dicaj RM0.15. Setiap mesej yang diterima akan dicaj RM0.20

Semakan PLKN Siri 12/2015 Melalui Panggilan

Hubungi JLKN (Jabatan Latihan Khidmat Negara) No. Tel. Call Centre 03-40274747 (Waktu pejabat 8.00 pagi hingga 5.00 petang)

Semakan Penempatan Calon / Pelatih Terpilih PLKN Siri 12/2015 Online Checking National Service (NS) Selected Trainees Placement

Semakan senarai nama pelatih terpilih untuk Program Latihan Khidmat Negara (PLKN) akan bermula pada tarikh bulan Julai 2014 untuk remaja kelahiran 1997.

Semakan PLKN Siri 12/2015 Online Checking National Service (NS) Selected Trainees Placement

Sila masukkan no kad pengenalan anda di

Semakan PLKN Siri 12/2015 Melalui SMS

Taip: PLKN KEM <No KP anda>  Hantar ke 15888

* Setiap mesej yang dihantar akan dicaj RM0.15. Setiap mesej yang diterima akan dicaj RM0.20

Semakan PLKN Siri 12/2015 Melalui Panggilan

Hubungi JLKN (Jabatan Latihan Khidmat Negara) No. Tel. Call Centre 03-40274747 (Waktu pejabat 8.00 pagi hingga 5.00 petang)

► Read more on Semakan Calon PLKN 2015 / Semakan Penempatan Pelatih Terpilih PKLN Siri 12/2015 (Online, SMS)

Tuesday, July 01, 2014

What's WRONG with the Education System in Malaysia? - From a Student's Perspective

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What is WRONG with the education system in Malaysia?

by Yew [Writing Contest 2014 ★ Winner ★]

What is an education? According to Oxford dictionary, an education is the process of receiving or giving systematic instruction. Based on this statement, it sounds like the engagement is either by learning and teaching an instruction given by teachers. Would it be good enough for the students? How can this approach help the students to handle difficult situation in the future? The learning process in the classroom is never enough for the students anymore. It takes more than academia to survive in such a stressful working environment. In Malaysia, the education system is indeed facing problems in producing competent graduates to face this gruesome and depressing challenging working world. What are the possible problems that caused such a bad system? What can be done to create a better education system?

Education System in Malaysia
What's WRONG with the Education System in Malaysia? / PicCredit

Students Are Too Exam-oriented

The problem of education system in Malaysia is that the students are too exam-oriented. Due to societal pressure, the result is the sole indicator of determining your performance in the school. For many innocent students in Malaysia, education means scoring the test papers, acquiring more knowledge for the exam, and of course, aiming for higher number of As! There is a misconception that higher number of As indicates the person is smarter. For example, parents and relatives like to compare their own children with the number of As in result slip or how much salary they can make per month. Why are they making us so stressful? I had heard numerous comparisons throughout my schooling year (even now). My aunt did that by comparing my cousin and me in SPM. With an extra A in my cousin’s result slip, she is assumed to be better. It is not because I am jealous or what (maybe I am?), this should not be the way to gauge the students’ ability. This is because the quality of As would be affected. I still remembered that she is still struggling with Chemistry questions during her foundation year. So, is this the right way to compare? Would you compare a student with a very strong foundation in Physics gets mediocre result in other subjects, while another student who is just barely good at every subject gets straight As? Would you expect Albert Einstein to be good in every subject while his expertise is Physics? I believe his research ability would have suffered if he did that. This is the problem with the parents. They do not utilize the talents of the children. The children might be good in drawing, handcrafting, or sports. Instead, they put too much emphasis to create Jack-of-all-trades students in term of academic examination. When students are too exam-oriented, they are unable to utilize their talents by being productive in their fields. Because after all, they just want more As in exam slips.

Students Lack Leadership Skills

Another problem I see within most students in Malaysia is they lack of leadership element. It may sound cliché, but it is crucial to possess this ‘a must’ element in every student. This element cannot be acquired through class unless the leadership role is taken by the student. This is why the roles of class monitor, secretary and treasurer exist even in primary school. However, how many students are able to take these roles? Not so many. Based on my experience, most of the student leaders you see in your school or networking events are comprised a very small number. Perhaps, they may be 1 out of 100 students? What I find it funny is that the student leaders in the various events are actually the same group of people! These high motivated enthusiastic groups go for every kind of event to get exposure. This is why the representatives from Ministry of Education always think that most students are like the leaders, engaging most of the time. In fact, they are engaging the same students most of the time. Take for another example, today you might see a student ambassador from AIESEC in a GRADUAN career fair. After that, I can bet my 1 cent that you would most probably see him in other career fair/networking event/startup event/random event etc…. This is a good sign, but what about the rest? We are now talking out of the average students, not the top 5 %. Most of them would shun away from this kind of event, stay at home/hostel most of the time. The lazy type (eg. my friends) would most probably demotivate you by giving excuses like ‘Why do you go for so many kind of events?’, ‘Stay at home chillax first! Not easy to get holiday on weekends-leh!’, ’I didn’t meet my family for nearly whole semester…. I miss them so I have to go back!’, ‘After graduated you still can go-mah!’ and the list goes on. What happened after that? They feel scared when lecturers point them to answer question. Especially those forum and networking events where there will be a Q & A at the end of the session, not only the students, even the working adults would tilt their heads down. This shows they are shy and not taking initiative to take up a leadership role in asking questions. Who knows the answers from the questions would be an inspiring quote in the future? That is how the legacy was born by the leaders.

Uninspiring Teachers

Anyway, I have found a random quote from the internet.
“The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains. The superior teacher demonstrates. The great teacher inspires.” ― William Arthur Ward
Speaking about teachers, teachers are noble and respectable. However, back to the quote, did teachers ever inspire most of the students nowadays? Yeah, maybe a handful. Most of them, are like the result of education system in Malaysia, teach according to the syllabus. They lack of empathy to care more about the students. The good ones would be focused, while the bad ones would be sidelined. Some would say ‘Why getting yourself into troubles when your pay is the same before and after?’ After all, teachers are now only known for rushing the exam syllabus. Where is the personal connection between the students and the teachers? Why can it never be like the relationship between the mentors and disciples? Let me ask you some questions:

  1. When was the last time you had given a wishing card to them on Teachers’ Day?
  2. Or for worse case, when was the last time you had visited your teachers after your graduation?

Those days where teachers inspire were gone. Students are never appreciative with what the inspiring teachers have done for them. They take everything for granted. Most would complain about the teachers on they did not come to the class and finish the syllabus. Again, syllabus!? I believe that every student should have an equal opportunity. It is the dedication of the teachers who can make a difference. Frankly speaking, I had a hard time tutoring a student with bad results. It really tested my patience to really get him understood. He did well after that (Thank God!) Besides, teachers are also responsible for some kind of programs in school, for example development programs (such as extra-curricular activities). These programs are usually deemed as wasting time by the students. Same goes to my second point, unless they are forced, only the 1 % highly motivated student leaders would volunteer to join these programs. Because students are only taught that results are everything. The result slip is the only pathway to go through your next level of education. Truth to be told, they would only realize the result slip is just an entrance to any level of education, in secondary and tertiary education. After that, everything would start from 0. Why don’t I tell you everything would start from 0 after you land your first employment? Imagine your 15 – 16 years of education becomes negligible after your first job. Reality is hitting us hard, isn’t it? Therefore, inspiring teachers can really mold the leaders that we can see at the top of corporate leaders.

Students Not Good in English

Have you ever heard of teacher-centered learning? It is where the teachers would talk and the students would listen. This kind of approach has made students who can read and write well, but could not communicate with people around them. This problem usually happens to the people learning second language (eg. English). The education system usually taught students to read and write first before they start to talk. This approach is actually very bad. Have you ever wondered why you can speak your native language (Malay, Tamil, or Mandarin) so well? This is because you use the language in most conversation. In my experience, I could not read or write most Chinese words, but I could converse well with my Chinese friends. Many people find it weird because I can listen/speak but I couldn’t read/write. Yes, these components are actually different from each other. It must be improved part by part in order to improve your overall proficiency. However, the approach of teaching students to read and write English before they get to speak is way wrong. Before you get to speak, you must listen to how others speak. Before you write a passage, you must read how others write. Perhaps, I would suggest the government to start listening and oral tests in primary school as part of the curriculum. Anyway, English is a lingua franca, but many students are still reluctant to learn it. ‘I am not good in English’ is a merely excuse. I find it funny because it has become an opening for many conversations. For me, there is no good English, there is only understandable English. Even if you throw bombastic words to me in a conversation, while I don’t understand it, I would not think your English is good. So this is how KISS rule applies (Google it!). Take your time by using common phrases in English. Master them and I am sure you would be talking like a native speaker in the future. For your information, I am taking German now. If I were to compare English and German, I would say that German is much harder than English.

  • Their verbs are weird (the word haben ‘have’ in German is different conjugation for every pronoun such as habe, hast, hat, haben)
  • The articles of ‘the’ have different forms (das, die, der)
  • Even plurals are not as straightforward (can you imagine the plural of Buch ‘book’ is Bücher ‘books’).

Although it seems hard for me, Germans are so used these. It is the same as our native languages. We are so used to it, yet the foreigners are having tough time learning it. Do not wait for education system to teach you how to speak English. It would never work! Take the initiative and learn English on your own! Do not forget that ‘where there’s a will, there’s WILL ALWAYS BE a way.’

Education Reform

In a crunchy nutshell, education system in Malaysia certainly doesn’t prepare the students to face the corporate life. The budget allocated for education sector is increasing annually, with the highest last year at RM 54.6 billion (Woah, how many Ferraris can I buy?). Somehow, was it utilized effectively? It is not a matter of allocation anymore, the biggest role here is the execution. Teachers must be able to inspire the students to think out of the box. The students must not be left out for leadership role. They must be given the freedom to utilize their real talents to contribute to the society. Number of As shall not be the sole comparison to the quality of the students. Scoring 2928 of As throughout your life is equivalent to an IQ of 200! By changing the mindset of the young in the early stage, they would know their purpose to work on what they want to contribute in the future. If the country is to take about education excellence, it has to start with reformation in education first.

Yew, 22, a third year engineering student in a local public university. He is a clumsy and funny person. His friends always call him a joker. He always thinks his English is so-so because he doesn’t understand why ang-moh says it is good. Therefore, he realizes simple and understandable English are the key points! No bombastic or deep element is used in his writing. Nevertheless, he has an entrepreneurial mindset; hopes someday he can create something that can benefit the mankind. You can find him at, but he seldom updates his blog. Maybe next time… maybe…

► Read more on What's WRONG with the Education System in Malaysia? - From a Student's Perspective

Thursday, June 26, 2014

46 Good SPM English Model Essays / Free Essay Samples for O-level, IELTS, TOEFL & MUET Writing

44 Model Essay Samples for SPM English, O-level, IELTS, TOEFL & MUET Writing

Preparing for the upcoming MUET writing test and want to read some good essay examples? Read Free MUET Tips & Essential MUET Guide. Want to read some samples of good essays for IELTS writing? Or simply looking some ideas and inspiration for your SPM English writing homework? Below is the list of 44 free model essays for SPM English, O-level, IELTS, TOEFL & MUET Writing.

        Descriptive Essays

  1. Friend
  2. Friends
  3. My Best Friend
  4. Describe an afternoon at the bus station
  5. A Horrifying Swim
  6. A Prominent Malaysian Leader
  7. A Demonic Gold
  8. My Mother
  9. My Favourite TV Programme
  10. The Night Market
  11. Malaysia, a Unique Country

    Narrative Essays

  12. A Horror / Tragic Story
  13. Finally, A Voice Message
  14. Forgiven
  15. Home
  16. Race
  17. That is the reward for my patience and hardwork
  18. A Holiday I Would Never Forget
  19. Couple Foils Robbery Attempt
  20. Write a story starting with: “The widow had to work hard to bring up her little son alone...”
  21. My Most Embarrassing Situation
  22. A Road Accident
  23. Autumn on Sugarbush Street
  24. Of Bombs and Ice-Cream
  25. After All, It Isn’t That Bad

    Argumentative / Persuasive Essays

  26. Haze: A Danger to Health
  27. Money
  28. Cell phones - One of Our Greatest Technologies Misused
  29. Importance of Studying English
  30. Faith
  31. Thoughts On Sharing

    Reflective Essays

  32. Are undergraduates ready for the real world?
  33. Does School Prepare Us for Life
  34. What would you do if you had a lot of money
  35. Which do you prefer, living in the countryside or living in the city?

    Factual Essays

  36. Pollution
  37. Social Networking Website
  38. The Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA)

    Directed Writing

  39. Anti-Smoking Campaign Speech
  40. Informal Letter
  41. Informal Letter Sample
  42. Formal Letter: Letter of Application
  43. Formal Letter: Letter of Complain
  44. Complain Report About School Canteen
  45. Book Report
  46. Police Report on Accident

► Read more on 46 Good SPM English Model Essays / Free Essay Samples for O-level, IELTS, TOEFL & MUET Writing

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Malaysia Education Blueprint Annual Report 2013 (Laporan Tahunan 2013 Pelan Pembangunan Pendidikan Malaysia 2013-2025)

National Education Blueprint Initiatives Show Encouraging Achievement

PUTRAJAYA (The Star Online): Four initiatives under the Malaysia Education Blueprint (MEB) 2013-2025, including pre-school enrolment and vocational education transformation, have shown encouraging achievement.

Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin said the pre-school enrolment achievement was at 81.7% (793,269 pupils) among children aged four and five compared to 80.05% in 2012.

“This is encouraging as a result of the various efforts taken by the Government, including providing incentives like the opening of 8,883 preschool classes to accommodate 192,173 pupils.

“If enough attention is given to the preschool enrolment rate, the ministry is confident of achieving 100% enrolment across all levels by 2020,” he said.

On the Vocational Education Transformation initiatives, Muhyi­ddin said the number of students was raised to 20% through the cooperation and involvement of the private sector in providing the facilities.

“The changes in the national education landscape will make vocational education the main choice of students and their parents like what is happening in developed countries,” he said when unveiling the MEB Annual Report 2013 here yesterday.

Two initiatives that had also shown encouraging achievements were the District Transformation Programme and Inclusive Education Programme.

The District Transformation Pro-gramme pioneered in Sabah and Kedah showed positive outcomes for the national examinations – the UPSR, PMR and SPM, said Muhyiddin, who is also Education Minister.

“Both states produced improved results, in fact their best since 10 years ago. The gap between rural and urban schools in Sabah and Kedah has become narrower and their achievement is much better than the national average,” he said.

Six other initiatives that met the KPIs included the Higher-order Thinking Skill (HOTS), Literacy and Numeracy (Linus), Professional Up-skilling of English Language Teachers (ProELT) and the Transformation of Teacher Education Institute, Principal’s Charter and Parents’ Engagement Toolkit.

Those initiatives were from a total of 25 implemented last year under the blueprint that was officially launched on Sept 6.

“The annual report is an important document which should be referred to for improved action. Whatever the achievements, they should serve as a guide for the ministry in drawing up better strategies and approaches,” said Muhyiddin.
Laporan Tahunan 2013 Pelan Pembangunan Pendidikan Malaysia 2013-2025

Malaysia Education Blueprint Anual Report 2013 (Laporan Tahunan 2013 Pelan Pembangunan Pendidikan Malaysia 2013-2025)

Download pdf files:
  1. Laporan Tahunan 2013 PPPM (Bahasa Malaysia)
  2. Malaysia Education Blueprint Anual Report 2013 (Bahasa Inggeris)
The full speech by Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin, the Deputy Prime Minister and the Minister of Education, launching Malaysia Education Blueprint Annual Report 2013 below:

17 JUN 2014

Assalamu’alaikum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh, Salam Sejahtera dan Salam 1Malaysia,

1. Pertama, marilah kita memanjatkan rasa syukur ke hadrat Allah S.W.T kerana dengan limpah dan kurnia-Nya, dapat kita bersama-sama dalam Majlis Pelancaran Laporan Tahunan 2013, Pelan Pembangunan Pendidikan Malaysia (PPPM) 2013-2025. Majlis ini memberi kesempatan kepada saya untuk menzahirkan penghargaan di atas kerja keras warga Kementerian Pendidikan Malaysia dan warga pendidik dalam memulakan langkah pelaksanaan PPPM. Dan pada hari ini saya berasa bangga dapat menyampaikan laporan tahunan yang pertama bagi pelaksanaan PPPM.

2. Terlebih dahulu saya merakamkan ucapan terima kasih kepada Pengetua SMK Putrajaya Persint 11 (1) yang telah memberi ruang dan kesempatan untuk sama-sama kita berhimpun di sini bagi menyorot catatan pencapaian beberapa inisiatif PPPM yang telah kita usahakan bersama. Terima kasih jua saya ucapkan kepada YB Menteri Pendidikan II, Dato’ Sri Idris Jusoh, YB Timbalan-Timbalan Menteri, Ahli Panel Dialog Nasional Pendidikan Negara, dan Panel Bebas PPPM yang turut hadir dalam majlis ringkas tetapi amat bermakna dan penting bagi kita meneruskan agenda transformasi pendidikan.

Para hadirin yang saya hormati.

3. Sebagaimana yang telah kita sedia maklum, Pelan Pembangunan Pendidikan Malaysia 2013-2025 telah dilancarkan secara rasmi pada 6 September 2013. Walaupun PPPM ini dilancarkan hampir di penghujung tahun 2013 tetapi pelaksanaan beberapa inisiatif telah dimulakan pada awal tahun 2013. Alhamdulillah, kita semua telah dapat melihat kejayaan awal bagi enam inisiatif dalam tempoh 100 hari pelaksanaan dan pada hari ini pula, saya amat berbesar hati dapat menyampaikan Laporan Tahunan 2013 PPPM untuk pertama kalinya kepada semua pihak sejajar dengan Anjakan ke-11 PPPM iaitu, meningkatkan ketelusan untuk kebertanggungjawaban awam secara langsung.

4. Syabas dan terima kasih, saya ucapkan kepada semua pihak yang telah menghasilkan laporan ini tetapi yang lebih penting dari itu ialah usaha keras dan komitmen tulus ikhlas daripada pihak pengurusan Kementerian hinggalah kepada kumpulan pelaksana iaitu para guru yang telah memberi sumbangan yang bukan sedikit, untuk memastikan PPPM ini dilaksanakan dengan jayanya.

5. Seperti yang telah dimaklumkan oleh YBhg Dato’ KPPM sebentar tadi, sepanjang 2013, Kementerian telah memberi fokus kepada 25 inisiatif utama dengan tumpuan untuk memberi sokongan kepada guru serta meningkatkan kemahiran teras yang memberi impak terhadap keberhasilan murid.

6. Saya percaya sepanjang tahun 2013, Unit Pelaksanaan dan Prestasi Pendidikan (PADU) yang dipimpin oleh YBhg Dato’ Prof. Dr Rujhan Mustafar telah memainkan peranan yang sewajarnya bagi memastikan inisiatif-inisiatif mencapai KPI yang ditetapkan. Saya ingin mengucapkan terima kasih kepada YBhg Dato’ Prof. Dr Rujhan Mustafar atas sumbangan yang diberikan dan beliau kini tidak lagi bersama-sama PADU. Dan dalam kesempatan ini, saya ingin mengalu-alukan kehadiran CEO, PADU yang baru iaitu Pn Khadijah Abdullah (memperkenalkan CEO). Beliau bukanlah orang baru dalam dunia pendidikan. Pernah menjadi guru, pensyarah di maktab perguruan, dan pensyarah di university sebelum menceburi diri dalam bidang korporat. Saya berkeyakinan dengan kelayakan dan reputasi cemerlang yang dimiliki, beliau mampu memimpin PADU bagi merealisasikan PPPM ini.

Para hadirin yang saya hormati,

7. Saya berpendapat bahawa Laporan Tahunan PPPM ini merupakan satu dokumen penting yang perlu dirujuk untuk kita menambahbaik tindakan. Saya telah dimaklumkan bahawa, daripada 25 inisiatif yang dilaksanakan pada tahun 2013, ada inisiatif yang telah menunjukkan pencapaian menggalakkan. Tetapi ada juga inisiatif yang mencapai sebahagian daripada KPI dan sebilangan inisiatif lagi memerlukan tumpuan serta perhatian yang lebih khusus. Apa pun pencapaiannya, ia harus dijadikan panduan untuk Kementerian merangka strategi dan pendekatan yang lebih baik.

8. Di sini saya ingin menyatakan beberapa inisiatif yang berjaya menunjukkan pencapaian memberangsangkan. Dua inisiatif yang berkait dengan akses ialah,

a. Enrolmen prasekolah, dan
b. Transformasi Pendidikan Vokasional

Dua inisiatif berkaitan ekuiti iaitu,
a. Program Transformasi Daerah, dan
b. Program Pendidikan Inklusif

Dari aspek kualiti yang diberi penekanan dalam gelombang 1 ini, terdapat enam inisiatif yang mencapai KPI, iaitu,
a) Kemahiran berfikir aras tinggi (KBAT)
b) Literasi dan Numerasi (LINUS)
c) Profisiensi Guru Bahasa Inggeris (ProELT)
d) Transformasi Institut Pendidikan Guru,
e) Piagam Pemimpin Sekolah, dan
f) Sarana Ibu Bapa

Dua inisiatif yang berkait dengan kecekapan iaitu,
a) Transformasi Kementerian, dan
b) Pembaikan infrastruktur asas

Manakala satu inisiatif menyentuh tentang perpaduan yang berjaya dilaksanakan pada 2013 ialah Rancangan Integrasi Murid Untuk Perpaduan (RIMUP).

9. Program Transformasi Daerah (DTP) sebagai contoh, adalah inisiatif yang menunjukkan pencapaian paling ketara. Program ini yang dirintis di Sabah dan Kedah, bertujuan untuk meningkatkan prestasi sekolah di samping merapatkan jurang pencapaian antara sekolah bandar dan luar bandar. Sekolah yang berprestasi rendah telah dibantu oleh SIPartner+ dan SISC+, manakala sekolah-sekolah dalam Band 3 hingga 5 diusahakan untuk mencapai prestasi yang lebih baik.

10. Pada 2013, program rintis ini memperlihatkan keberhasilan yang signifikan apabila kadar peningkatan keputusan peperiksaan kebangsaan (UPSR, PMR, SPM) di kedua-dua negeri tersebut adalah yang tertinggi berbanding semua negeri lain di Malaysia. Malah, pencapaian peperiksaan kebangsaan yang diraih ini adalah yang terbaik bagi kedua-dua negeri tersebut semenjak 10 tahun yang lalu. Jurang pencapaian antara sekolah bandar-luar bandar di Sabah dan Kedah nampaknya semakin mengecil dan jauh lebih baik daripada purata bagi seluruh negara. Sesungguhnya kejayaan ini amat membanggakan dan memberi kekuatan kepada Kementerian untuk memperluaskan lagi Program Transformasi Daerah ini ke seluruh negara mulai 2014.

11. Pencapaian pendidikan dari segi akses sejak negara merdeka pada 1957 amat menggalakkan. Ketika itu, tidak banyak kanak-kanak mendapat akses. Lebih separuh daripada populasi tidak pernah mendapat persekolahan formal, hanya 6 peratus mendapat pendidikan menengah dan 1 peratus memperoleh pendidikan lepas menengah. Kini kita telah mencapai enrolmen hampir sejagat di peringkat rendah iaitu sekitar 96 peratus.

12. Atas dasar bahawa setiap kanak-kanak warganegara Malaysia berhak mendapat kesamarataan peluang pendidikan bagi membolehkan mereka mencapai potensi masing-masing, PPPM telah melaksanakan beberapa usaha ke arah peluasan akses seperti;
a. Peningkatan enrolmen prasekolah;
b. Transformasi pendidikan vokasional (TPV);
c. Penawaran pelbagai aliran pendidikan;
d. Penerusan akses kepada pendidikan bagi kumpulan khusus; dan
e. Transformasi Tingkatan Enam;.

13. Kementerian yakin sekiranya kadar enrolmen murid di peringkat prasekolah diberi perhatian, kita mampu mencapai 100 peratus enrolmen merentas semua peringkat sekolah menjelang 2020. Oleh itu, bagi tahun 2013 tumpuan inisiatif bagi mencapai akses ialah meningkatkan enrolmen prasekolah. Pada tahun 2013, enrolmen prasekolah yang dicapai berada pada 81.7 peratus (793 269 murid) daripada kanak-kanak berumur 4+ dan 5+ berbandingan 80.5 peratus pada tahun 2012. Ini merupakan pencapaian yang menggalakkan dengan beberapa usaha Kerajaan memberi pelbagai insentif seperti membuka sebanyak 8,883 kelas prasekolah pada 2013 bagi menampung seramai 192 173 (24.2%) murid.

14. Inisiatif Transformasi Pendidikan Vokasional merupakan satu lagi usaha ke arah meningkatkan pencapaian akses seiring dengan aspirasi sistem di dalam PPPM. Pendidikan vokasional suatu ketika dulu dianggap sebagai pendidikan kelas dua dan hanya diceburi oleh murid yang tidak berminat untuk belajar dalam aliran akademik. Kini, melalui Transformasi Pendidikan Vokasional, murid yang menyertai aliran vokasional dipersiapkan dengan kelayakan dan kemahiran yang diiktiraf oleh industri supaya diterima dalam pasaran kerja serta mampu menjadi usahawan yang berdaya saing pada masa hadapan. Mereka juga dapat melanjutkan pengajian hingga ke peringkat diploma melalui pewujudan Kolej Vokasional. Perubahan dalam lanskap struktur pendidikan negara dan bidang ini menjadi pilihan utama murid serta ibu bapa sebagaimana amalan negara maju. Pada tahun 2013, peratus murid ditingkatkan kepada 20 peratus melalui kerjasama serta pelibatan pihak swasta dalam menyediakan kemudahan pendidikan tersebut.

15. Sistem pendidikan negara juga tidak mengenepikan peningkatan kualiti pendidikan untuk murid Orang Asli. Sehingga kini, sebanyak 39,149 (0.74%) daripada murid sekolah rendah dan sekolah menengah seluruh negara merupakan murid Orang Asli. Bagi membaiki pencapaian murid Orang Asli, inisiatif PPPM 2013 menjurus ke arah meningkatkan penguasaan literasi dan numerasi; meningkatkan taraf kemudahan infrastruktur di sekolah dan asrama; meningkatkan hubungan sekolah dengan komuniti melalui Kelas Dewasa Ibu Bapa Murid Orang Asli dan Peribumi (KEDAP); dan meningkatkan kualiti serta kebajikan guru.

Para hadirin yang dihormati,

16. Gelombang 1 PPPM memberi tumpuan kepada menyokong guru dan memberi tumpuan kepada kemahiran utama kerana Kementerian memahami bahawa guru memainkan peranan yang amat penting dalam menjayakan transformasi pendidikan. Guru adalah individu yang mencorakkan murid. Jika pengajaran dan pembelajaran guru menarik dan hebat, sudah tentu murid yang dilahirkan juga hebat lagi bijaksana.

17. Bagi mencapai hasrat ini, keutamaan Kementerian adalah meningkatkan kualiti guru bermula dengan Transformasi IPG. Pada tahun lalu, syarat pengambilan guru telah diperketatkan. Sebanyak 42 peratus pengambilan merupakan pelajar dengan sekurang-kurangnya 7A dan 70 peratus dengan sekurang-kurangnya 5A. Langkah ini merupakan petanda baik ke arah amalan sistem berprestasi tinggi seperti Finland, Singapura dan Korea Selatan yang membenarkan hanya pelajar dalam kelompok 10 peratus hingga 30 peratus teratas menyertai profesion perguruan.

18. Profesion perguruan terus diperkasakan melalui inisiatif Piagam Guru dan Pemimpin Sekolah. Pada tahun lalu inisiatif ini telah berjaya menghasilkan Instrumen Penilaian Bersepadu (Unified Instrument, UI); menghasilkan Pelan Induk Pembangunan Profesional Berterusan (PIPPB); dan memperkemaskan laluan kerjaya guru. Bagi Piagam Pemimpin Sekolah, syarat pemilihan pengetua dan guru besar berasaskan prestasi telah diluluskan dan dilaksanakan, untuk memastikan calon yang terbaik memimpin sekolah.

19. Satu lagi kejayaan cemerlang yang dapat dicapai dalam aspek kualiti guru ialah peningkatan penguasaan guru Bahasa Inggeris. Kejayaan ini penting dalam usaha Kementerian untuk melahirkan murid yang berkemahiran dalam sekurang-kurangnya dua bahasa. Kementerian telah menetapkan standard penguasaan bagi guru sekolah rendah dan menengah berdasarkan Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR).Buat pertama kalinya, Kementerian menjalankan ujian penguasaan Bahasa Inggeris secara besar-besaran melibatkan 61,000 guru, guru pelatih dan pensyarah. Keputusan penilaian tersebut membolehkan seramai 14,000 guru dikenal pasti untuk menjalani program peningkatan bahasa atau Professional Upskilling for English Language Teachers (Pro-ELT)dan menduduki Ujian Aptis.

20. Dalam ujian ini bagi guru-guru Kohot 1 seramai 5010 telah menunjukkan keputusan yang menggalakkan dengan pencapaian 76.4 peratus guru meningkat sekurang-kurangnya satu tahap profisiensi. Peratus guru pada tahap BI yang telah meningkat sekurang-kurangnya satu band ialah 90.8 peratus manakala guru B2 yang meningkat sekurang-kurangnya satu band ialah 42.1 peratus. Sebanyak 10.8 peratus guru telah menunjukkan peningkatan dua tahap penguasaan.

21. Turut dipaparkan di dalam Laporan Tahunan 2013 PPPM ini ialah kejayaan inisiatif LINUS (Literasi dan Numerasi). Peningkatan penguasaan Bahasa Malaysia dan Bahasa Inggeris dalam kalangan murid menjadi keutamaan segera PPPM 2013-2025. Inisiatif LINUS telah mensasarkan 100 peratus murid menguasi literasi Bahasa Malaysia dan numerasi. Pada tahun 2013, LINUS 2.0 telah menunjukkan pencapaian yang memberangsangkan bagi murid Tahun 3, iaitu 99.1 peratus murid menguasai literasi Bahasa Malaysia dan 99.3 peratus menguasai numerasi. Literasi Bahasa Inggeris Tahun 1 yang baharu dilaksanakan pada tahun lalu telah menunjukkan peningkatan yang ketara daripada saringan garis asas 50.1 peratus kepada 63.3 peratus dalam saringan 2.

22. Walaupun terdapat peningkatan pencapaian yang ketara bagi literasi Bahasa Inggeris, sasaran 100 peratus yang ditetapkan pada akhir Tahun 3 masih jauh untuk dicapai. Sasaran ini memerlukan kadar peningkatan lebih 18 peratus setahun dalam tempoh dua tahun akan datang. Kadar peningkatan ini jauh mengatasi kemajuan yang pernah diperoleh bagi literasi Bahasa Malaysia dan numerasi. Sasaran yang ditetapkan amat mencabar kerana terdapat sebilangan besar sekolah yang mempunyai ramai murid Tahun 1 yang tidak menguasai literasi Bahasa Inggeris

23. Di samping inisiatif, Kementerian akan terus melipatgandakan usaha meningkatkan kemahiran berfikir aras tinggi (KBAT) dalam proses pengajaran dan pembelajaran. KBAT merupakan elemen penting bagi melahirkan modal insan yang mampu bersaing pada abad ke 21. Bagi tahun 2013, beberapa inisiatif telah dilakukan untuk meningkatkan KBAT seperti Program i-Think di 500 buah sekolah. Sepuluh buah sekolah juga telah memasuki fasa pencalonan untuk program International Baccalaurate Middle Years.
Para hadirin sekalian,

24. Sokongan kepada guru dan meningkatkan kemahiran teras perlu diiringi dengan kecekapan kita mengurus pendidikan dan kemudahan infrastruktur yang kondusif. Pada tahun lalu, Kementerian telah memulakan usaha untuk mentransformasi Kementerian. Sebagai langkah permulaan, perwakilan kuasa ke JPN bagi kontrak perolehan, perkhidmatan dan bekalan sehingga RM 5 juta telah dilaksanakan. Profil kompetensi kepimpinan 251 jawatan utama JPN dan PPD juga telah selesai dilaksanakan. Pada tahun ini, penyusunan fungsi Bahagian-Bahagian di Kementerian sedang diusahakan dan jika mengikut perancangan keberkesanan transformasi ini akan dapat dilihat pada 2016 nanti.

25. Begitu juga dengan usaha untuk meningkatkan kualiti infrastruktur di sekolah. Kementerian telah berjaya membaiki 1,693 buah sekolah yang daif pada tahun 2013. Namun begitu, Kementerian sedar bahawa masih banyak lagi sekolah yang berkeadaan daif untuk ditingkatkan kualiti infrastruktur khususnya di negeri Sabah dan Sarawak. Kesemua perkara ini memerlukan kita melipatgandakan usaha agar suatu hari nanti sistem pendidikan negara kita adalah sebaris dengan negara-negara yang terbaik di dunia. Insyallah.

26. Dalam usaha menyediakan sistem pendidikan yang berkualiti, Kementerian terus dengan agenda memupuk perpaduan melalui interaksi murid dalam pelbagai program yang di sediakan di sekolah. Satu daripadanya ialah pelaksanaan Rancangan Intergrasi Murid Untuk Perpaduan (RIMUP) dengan tumpuan kepada tiga aspek, iaitu kebudayaan dan kesenian, sukan dan permainan serta patriotism dan jati diri. Pada tahun lalu sebanyak 20 peratus sekolah rendah terlibat dengan pelaksanaan RIMUP. Inisiatif ini mensasarkan sebanyak 60 peratus sekolah akan melaksanakan RIMUP pada 2014.

Para Hadirin Sekalian

27. Saya ingin mengucapkan syabas kepada semua pihak yang bertungkus lumus dalam melaksanakan inisiatif PPPM. Meskipun telah terpancar beberapa kejayaan awal PPPM dalam tempoh setahun yang lalu, kita tidak seharusnya leka atau terlalu awal untuk berpuas hati dengan kejayaan yang telah dicapai. Beberapa isu dan cabaran masih dihadapi khususnya dalam usaha merapatkan jurang pencapaian murid dan prestasi sekolah Bandar dan luar bandar.

28. Selain daripada jurang pencapaian, masih wujud jurang digital, status sosial ekonomi antara kaum dan jurang lokasi yang perlu diatasi supaya hasrat PPPM untuk memperluaskan akses, memperkukuhkan perpaduan, meningkatkan ekuiti, kualiti dan keberkesanan sistem pendidikan negara dapat dicapai.

29. Kementerian Pendidikan telah mengiktiraf pelan transformasi pendidikan negara melalui penyediaan Laporan Pelan Pembangunan Pendidikan Malaysia 2013-2025. Untuk melangkah ke tahun 2014, Kementerian akan meneruskan usaha bagi mencapai aspirasi sistem seperti yang telah ditetapkan dan dihasratkan dalam PPPM seperti peningkatan penguasaan Bahasa Inggeris dalam kalangan guru dan murid, sebanyak 100 peratus Pengetua dan Guru Besar yang berpotensi tinggi untuk mengisi kekosongan jawatan dengan menggunakan syarat baharu, dan 31 peratus sekolah berada dalam Band 1 dan 2.

30. Transformasi menjanjikan perubahan. Dan perubahan yang akan dilaksanakan pada 2014 adalah merentasi sistem pendidikan negara. Guru masih menjadi tumpuan utama dan peranan yang perlu dimainkan adalah menjadi pemimpin dalam bilik darjah. Pelbagai bentuk sokongan, bimbingan dan latihan disediakan bagi meningkatkan pengetahuan dan kemahiran pengajaran.

31. Bagi pemimpin sekolah, mereka perlu berperanan sebagai pemimpin pengajaran yang cemerlang dan meluangkan lebih banyak masa untuk melatih guru, menjadi agen perubahan di sekolah dan dalam komuniti. Manakala pegawai di JPN/PPD, mereka perlu menjadi pembimbing dan menyokong pihak sekolah. Perlu mengadakan lawatan kerja ke sekolah dengan lebih kerap dan membantu sekolah menyelesaikan masalah.
Tuan-tuan dan puan-puan,

32. Saya percaya sepanjang pelaksanaan inisiatif PPPM 2013, banyak pengajaran dan pengalaman telah diperoleh dan dipelajari bagi Kementerian meningkatkan lagi usaha. Antaranya adalah :

a. Kejayaan cemerlang beberapa sekolah dalam PISA 2012 yang setanding dengan pendidikan terbaik di dunia boleh dijadikan contoh bagi sekolah-sekolah lain untuk meningkatkan prestasi;

b. Pencapaian cemerlang beberapa inisiatif membuktikan bahawa kejelasan matlamat yang hendak dicapai dan perancangan yang teliti merupakan faktor kritikal kejayaan; dan yang tidak kurang penting ialah,

c. Pelibatan pihak berkepentingan. Sokongan dan kerjasama daripada pihak berkepentingan khususnya para ibu bapa amat-amat ditagih. Saya rasa amat bangga apabila dimaklumkan telah ada sekumpulan jurulatih dari kalangan ibu bapa yang secara ikhlas membantu Kementerian menarik sokongan ibu bapa untuk sama-sama memastikan kejayaan PPPM. Sebahagian daripada mereka turut hadir hari ini - ucapan setinggi-tinggi terima kasih kepada mereka.

33. Kajian telah menunjukkan kira-kira 80 peratus transformasi yang dilakukan oleh mana-mana organisasi yang berskala besar gagal mencapai hasil yang diharapkan. Kajian juga menunjukkan bahawa organisasi yang menggunakan agenda perubahan adalah empat (4) kali kemungkinan untuk berjaya dalam proses transformasi. Ini bermakna transformasi pendidikan yang sedang diusahakan perlu melibatkan perubahan amalan dan keupayaan mengurus perubahan. Matlamat PPPM seharusnya disampai dan dipahat sedalamnya dalam setiap sanubari warga pendidik agar kita semua senada dalam melaksanakan transformasi pendidikan. Oleh itu, saya menyeru kepada semua barisan pemimpin baik di peringkat Kementerian, JPN, PPD dan sekolah serta semua pihak berkepentingan agar menjadikan PPPM sebagai keutamaan, satu agenda dan satu impian. Insyallah suatu hari nanti kita mencapai kejayaan yang kita impikan.

Sekian, Assalamualaikum w.b.t.

Source: Ministry of Education, Malaysia

► Read more on Malaysia Education Blueprint Annual Report 2013 (Laporan Tahunan 2013 Pelan Pembangunan Pendidikan Malaysia 2013-2025)

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