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Thursday, September 14, 2017

Basic Presentation Apps’ Tips All Students Must Know

Buy your bus and train tickets online now before they are sold out!

Malaysia Scholarships 2017 for SPM and STPM 2016 Result Holders

and their respective scholarship application closing dates.
  1. 17 September 2017: UEM Group Scholarship Programme For STPM / Matriculation / Foundation Leavers
  2. 22 September 2017: Biasiswa Sony EMCS Scholarship 2017
  3. 30 September 2017: Biasiswa Daikin Malaysia Group Scholarship Program
  4. 31 December 2017: Perbadanan Tabung Pendidikan Tinggi Nasional (PTPTN) Discount on Repayment
  5. Open throughout the year: Maxis What’s Next Scholarship for Postgraduate Degree/Diploma Programme
  6. Open throughout the year: Biasiswa Karangkraf Scholarship Education Fund
  7. Open throughout the year: Amcorp Study Grant for ACCA Qualification in Collaboration with Yayasan Azman Hashim Foundation
  8. 36 Scholarships for IPTA Undergraduate Students
  9. Throughout the year: Intel Malaysia Scholarships

Basic Presentation Apps’ Tips All Students Must Know

Guest post by Garttheni Seagar (Share your tips with 56,000+ Malaysian students)

Presentation is becoming a crucial part of study processes in many fields especially in business and creative industries. A successful presentation happens when it reaches the audience positively through right tools and a suitable narrative. Coupled with good public speaking skills, a presenter can turn anyone into a good listener. There are many presentation applications that are available nowadays to realize ideas, strategies, and plans in the most effective way. So, selecting the right presentation app and using the right tools will help save time in developing the slideshow. It is always a good idea to keep updated with presentation basics and continuously improve on developing the slides.
Presentation Tool Comparison
Comparison of Prezi, PowerPoint & Google Presentation Slides (Click to Enlarge)

Here are some tips on few basic presentation apps,

PowerPoint


PowerPoint is included in Microsoft Office and adaptable for any operating systems including Mac with viewer options. This application is suitable for a dry content presentation such as reporting progress, teaching skills or discussing structural plans that involve detailed information breakdown with more charts and side notes. A presenter can go straight to the point with the least of multimedia tools needed. The application is also super convenient when inserting visual aids and excel data sheets to deliver an insightful message
  • Build your own ultimate quick access toolbar with frequently used functions and ordering to fasten the preparation process.  
  • Always create your graphics in a separate file. Then, insert it as a saved imaged to the main presentation file to avoid app processing a heavier file and trouble converting to flash file format.
  • Create custom slide sizes to create adjusted slide sizes for displays. Go to ‘Page Setup’ and type in the height and width of the background size that you would like. Then, click on ‘OK’ and another ‘OK’ on the dialogue box as well. Now, the background would be resized.

Prezi


The application has zoom functions which can keep the easily distracted audiences focused in its contents, especially the children. Also, this application is a good way to tell compelling creative stories and ideas as its web based features allow multimedia contents from other websites to be embedded easily. This will be an advantage for creative industry presentation in telling a narrative story structure.
  • Check the aspect ratio of your project according to your display screen to ensure a smooth presentation of motion graphic and 3D contents, from small to bigger screens.
  • Scale up the important content main titles, keywords, and sub sections in line with presentation style with scaling and zoom functions to add emphasis on the subject. This function is best used to create a surprising effect by hiding the rest of the contents in the entire frame.  
  • Maximize the use of bubble menu. The ‘Insert Shape’ is a very useful element that can be useful in many ways to work within Prezi. There are also other elements such as ‘line tool’ that can allow you to create a simple drawings as wish at any part of the canvas. These visual aids can be reused for future presentations as well.

Google Slides


This free application is packaged with Google Drive. This hints the convenience for collaboration, access through multiple device, offline functions and easier web publishing. In a way, this is a similar version of PowerPoint with a touch of digital intelligence to go with urban lifestyle.
  • Generate links and embedded code for upload free share online. Get your presentation easily attached on websites without worrying about the file size and the hassle of downloading, converting the file. Simply click on the ‘Publish to the Web’ under the project’s ‘File’ button on the top toolbar. You can now find ‘Embed’ option to generate the codes. Also, choose to get just the link for an easy share or. 
  • Integrate with google office applications to enable teammates easily include additional info from other document formats. Learn other related google slides advices from available articles.
  • Present from any place and digital device wirelessly. Google has the advantage of telecasting your presentation through ‘ChromeCast’ for android users and ‘Airplay’ for Apple users. These telecasting apps helps one to even present without the presence of their working laptop or computers. As long as the television, mobile phone or tablet is connected to your presentation, the slides will always be ready to present.
Identifying the type of messages to be delivered and its audience maturity is always the first step before choosing the right application and tools of every presentation. Also, a good presentation coupled with a polished visual aids is a bonus for the presenter at all times. Students shall always learn ways to improvise on their presentation style, tone and narrative as new versions and updates are always enhanced with technology. There are many free learning options available online such as YouTube tutorials, webinars and e-books provided by experts and app makers. Spend time to master the skills!

Garttheni Seagar is PR & Communications Manager at CupoNation Malaysia, a leading online savings platform present in 18 countries around the world that help online consumers save in their day to day spending to make the most out of their budget. CupoNation was founded on 2012 and is headquartered in Munich, with offices in Paris, Madrid, Sao Paolo, Gurgaon and Moscow.


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Tuesday, September 12, 2017

6 Best Part Time Jobs for Students in Malaysia

Top Part Time Jobs for Malaysian Students

Guest post by Lim Chuwei (Share your tips with 56,000+ Malaysian students)

By doing a part time job, a student can pay off his or her college fee and other living expenses. But it is important to find the right one which can save him time for study and pay him well. Here are some part time jobs for Malysian students which get the best of the both worlds.
Best Part Time Jobs for Students in Malaysia
Working part time while studying is a great way to fund your college fee and other expenses, especially if you want to be self-dependent.

From waiting tables at a local restaurant to working as a retail store’s sale associate, there are plenty of part time job opportunities for a student to choose from.

But wait a minute!

Being a student, you need the part time job which can go well with your study. Right?

Keep in mind—there is no benefit of doing the job that doesn’t save you couple of hours for your study, exam prep and other commitments. You can balance your study and work with a right part time job.

Don’t worry.

Here I have listed such student part time jobs in Malaysia that not only save you ample of time, but also pay you well.

Home Tutor

I personally think that home tutoring is the best part time job for any student.

The number one reason is that it is done at the comfort of home, meaning that you don’t need to travel to do work. Secondly, you can earn higher hourly wages than other part time jobs. A primary home tutor can earn RM 40 per hour. The list of benefits with home tutoring job hasn’t over yet!

You can enjoy flexible work hours as you can set the schedule according to your availability. As an added bonus, tutoring enhances your personal development, understanding, communication skills, knowledge and sense of services. There are many online tutoring platforms in Malaysia like Student Malaysia Free Ads where you can list yourself as a tutor to get started.

Event Staff

There is always a need of large number of staff to organize an event.

People are required for logistics, supervision, operating the technical systems, ushering in guests, security, booths and other related functions. Most of these jobs require no skills or experience.

Doing such jobs is exhaustive as they usually involve long working hours throughout the event. Then, why I have listed it here?

This is because it can be done on off days like summer holidays or weekends. And you can make good hourly wages. As an added bonus, you will enjoy the event (if it appeals you).

Freelancer

It is another great part time job that offers you both time flexibility and good income. Plus, you can work at your own place. Work may vary greatly, ranging from content writing, designing, tech support, marketing and many more. The rates may vary based on efforts and the capability of finishing the task on time.

Direct Sales

If you are good at marketing, being a salesperson may be the best part time job for you. However, I won’t recommend you door-to-door marketing.

Many companies look for online salesperson to promote their products on e-commerce platforms like e-bay. You will earn from commission coming from the sales. It is pretty simple—the more you sell, the more you earn.

Photographer

Have you ever been appreciated for capturing nice photographs? It means that your hobby of photography can pay you. Just own a DSLR camera and approach local photographers to see if they need your assistance. This job will save you time as you often have to work at events on nights and weekends. You can also serve as a freelance photographer for many magazines. Besides, you can sell your photos online to many stock sites like Shutterstock, Fotolia, SmugMug Pro and iStockPhoto. Some of these sites can pay up to $100 per image! Make sure to check their terms and conditions.

Campus Worker

What can you ask for more than getting a job in your college campus?

For example, you can assist lecturers who look for research assistance among their students to ease their workload. Or you can apply for a library job where you can have plenty of time for study and meeting your classmates. Besides, you can consider a dorm receptionist job which is usually started in evening. But the benefit is that you are allowed to do homework and assignment during your shift. The other jobs available at the campus are data entry, transcription, data collection, and accounting.

Bottom Line

While it is understandable that you are doing job to fund your study and living expenses, don’t prioritize it over your study.

And one more thing….you need to be disciplined and show professionalism even in these part time jobs to balance your work and study.

Go ahead and choose the one that suits your interest. Best of luck!

Lim Chuwei is tutor & director at ChampionTutor Malaysia. Lim Chuwei has been in this industry for the last 15 years and has a vast knowledge of major learning application.


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Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Valuable Suggestions For Malaysian Students Studying In UK

Valuable Suggestions For Malaysian Students In UK

Guest post by Andrew Davies (Share your insight with 57,000+ Malaysian students)

A foreign student is always facing difficulties this way or the other no matter if we live in a world that is called global village. Theoretically we may be living in such a world where a new country may not be strange or different for someone but being a student my experience was completely different. UK is a country of education, profession and future. This is why hundreds of thousands of students comet to UK from Malaysia and other countries every year. The cultural difference is everywhere and it matters a lot on a great scale. The tough economic environment in UK is also a problem for Malaysian students as most of the students in Malaysia are dependent on their families for economic survival.
Valuable Suggestions For Malaysian Students In UK
In UK this economic survival’s burden shifts on to your shoulders and you have got to work hard to make both the ends meet as in a tough economy you don’t have relatives to rely on. A Malaysian student is normally not very good at speaking English. Listening, comprehending and understanding becomes another difficulty. Doing part time jobs and adjusting with people no matter if you like them or not in a shared accommodation are the very fundamental and common problems that Malaysian students will face in UK. This article will not only mention such fundamental problems but also suggest you the right step to take at times of problems.

1. Accommodation.

When you have an accommodation already booked before flying from Malaysia you should make sure that place is under the use of other students similar to you. Malaysian students in UK are considered to be shy and innocent and that is why they are subjected to a lot of violations and bullying. When the natives in the UK know that you are a new comer and unaware of a lot of things they will do their best to fetch money out of your pockets by hook or crook.

So before you make your move about the accommodation somewhere privately we would suggest you to prefer a university or college hostel to stay. On the contrary you can choose to live in a house and share the rent with other students but this can be done later on when you are aware of the situation yourself in UK.

2. Finding a part time job.

You got to work no matter what and sometimes probably a double part time job. With all this you got to send back some money to home for financial reasons probably. A lot of students from Malaysia are apparently on a student visa but their basic aim to be in UK is nothing but earning money. If that is one of your primary objectives and education is the secondary then remember that you will only be able to coherently stick to your target if you work hard.

Earning money on a student visa more than you are allowed for can cause severe and serious risks to your stay in the UK. This means if you work for hours exceeding your permitted hours limit then you may get caught and consequently be deported for this.

3. Avoid drugs and alcohol.

Malaysian students are not as spoiled as kids in the USA or UK are. That is why we as Malaysians need to be vigilant about indulging in such gatherings or activities. Recently a Malaysian Mathematic genius was jailed in the UK for child pornography. He wasn’t a criminal when he landed in UK but his temptations towards drugs and alcohol took him to where he is today.

4. Get to know the vicinity.

When you reach your residence in the UK first of all get to know the places nearby. Make sure you are able to get to this place from anywhere in the city. Make sure you know the names of the nearest landmarks etc. Today you have google map and many other apps that can help you to trace your location no matter where you are. Specific apps have specially been designed for targeted cities etc. While there was a time when all of this never existed and even today I would suggest you not to use these apps right in the beginning and instead only use your eyes, memory and idea to get to your residence from an unknown location.

5. You academic life.

Never neglect your academic life so much so that your student visa may get rejected or cancelled. From the day one strive hard to be a good students and learner no matter how tough the circumstances are. Don’t excuse your academic progress for the reason of English, new location or new environment. Malaysians are famous for being genius all around the world and every one expect of you to uphold that pride in a foreign country.

Andrew Davies is an experienced educationist and a responsible students’ counselor. He has assisted many students in their journey from academic to professional life and that why is known as a mentor by students in the category of dissertation help.


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Thursday, August 24, 2017

A Comprehensive Guide To Improving Your Programming Skills In Schools Or Colleges

A Comprehensive Guide To Improving Your Programming Skills In Schools Or Colleges

Guest post by Justin Goh (Share your insight with 56,000+ Malaysian students)

Learning the different ways of programming a computer is one of the most versatile skills available in the market today. This skill is more than capable of making you a standout among the crowd with attractive rewards that come in the form of a bright career and a hefty paycheck.

In this article, we will delve deep into the different techniques that you should implement to hone your programming skills for good. So pay attention as closely as possible.

Step 1: Analyze the given problem as closely as possible

The first step is the simplest of the lot. Just read the problem as closely as possible. Ensure that you know and understand the underlying meaning of the problem well.

Remember, the final result of your program will be based entirely on this. So never ignore this step in any way whatsoever.

Step 2: Think of the different ways through which you might be able to solve the problem

The key is to find the best solution to solve the problem in the best possible manner. Can you?

Step 3: Begin an organized approach

An organized approach can definitely benefit you a lot in structuring the format of your program. Here’s how you can do it:
  • Note down the goals separately on a piece of paper.
  • Note down the user base that it’s possible going to target. 
  • Write down the “givens” on the very same paper for an easy reference.
A simple, methodical approach like that can go a long way indeed.

Step 4: Write a detailed implementation plan

If the problem isn’t too complex, a short and simple flowchart should be enough for this purpose of yours. The below flowchart is a simple example for your reference:
Simple Flow Chart Example

If it seems too complex to you, you need to break the job into modules for more effective completion. Soon afterward, you need to think of three things in particular, and these are:
  • The task that each module MUST perform.
  • The ways through which data gets transferred between modules.
  • The ways through which data will be used inside each module, in particular.
Planning and gathering data may seem pretty tedious at the start of your project but do realize that debugging a program after completion is more tedious than all of these activities. So make your decision wisely.

Step 5: Use comment lines for explanations

If you want to explain your program to a non-technical person who seemingly has no prior idea of the subject matter, comment lines can come in handy for that purpose of yours. Here’s an example (you will see the comment lines written in faded italics):
Programming Comment Code Example

You, yourself, will also be benefited as a result of this.

That’s because comments are capable of answering the questions of “why” more often than “what.” So in case you have to get back to the code again in the nearly foreseeable future, the presence of comments in the code would help you understand the entire program in a jiffy. If this is not a benefit, what is?

Step 6: Use a consistent naming protocol for naming variables

Adopting a consistent naming protocol in your program will help you keep track of each and every variable that you have used in the program and will also tell you the purpose of each of them in precise detail.

Say, for example; the program is based on simple addition.

Instead of just writing x = a + b, write sum = a + b.

The sum variable can easily point out the fact that this is where the summation of the numbers are stored as the final result.

Note: Although I have used a simple program for your reference, do realize that this practice will come in as a blessing as soon as the programs get more complex over time.

Step 7: Indent your code properly for a visually elegant look

I am asking you to do this not because it looks visually appealing from the point of the reader who’s going through your code at a particular moment in time.

I am asking you to do this because it makes it easier to read and understand. For more information of code indentation, refer to this article, in particular.

Lastly, I would like to tell you to keep on practicing coding to improve your skill in the long run. Remember, programming’s NOT a stagnant discipline in any way whatsoever. There is always something new to learn and something old to re-learn. The internet can help you a lot for this purpose of yours.

So this is where I will sign off for the time being. Hope the tips mentioned above come in handy for your programming endeavors. Good luck!

Justin Goh Profile Picture
Justin Goh is a former teacher and prolific writer, penning blogs to help the parents, students and the educators alike. Regularly contributing articles for MyPrivateTutor Malaysia, he prefers to write on varying aspects of education ranging from learning strategies and preparation tips to the ways to reach out to the students better.


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Monday, August 07, 2017

I chose to work in a startup company after graduating and you should too

For many fresh graduates, making the transition from being a full-time student to a full-time employee can be extremely daunting. Some might even end up in the abyss of unemployment for quite some time, going to interview after interview without finally scoring the job. I can be considered one of the lucky ones, scoring a full-time junior executive position 2 months before my last semester even ended. Maybe this is due to the fact that I exclusively filtered out all big corporations in my job-hunting process.

The reason why I hunted startup companies instead of big corporations is because of one main factor: I need to find a place where I am needed and where I have the chance to stand out among my competitors. Sure, bigger companies might need someone with my skill sets as well but chances are, the coveted position will go to someone with a longer résumé and a higher GPA. Since startup companies are growing in a very fast pace, they need someone who can go with the flow and keep up with the growth in every quarter. There is always a new project and a challenging obstacle that can’t be solved simply by a high GPA or a long résumé.
Startup Co Working Space
Applying for a job at corporations is stressful enough as it is but when you actually do get the position. That feeling of fulfillment and happiness because you’re now finally employed is still not guaranteed. I know many fresh grads working with multinational companies still stuck in their training stages while I’m already contributing so much in my six months of working in an e-commerce startup. With startups, I feel like I have the chance to thrive and improve my skills at a faster rate.

Now that I’ve settled down in my job as a content writer in an established startup in Kuala Lumpur, I’ve found that my previous assumption about working in a smaller scale companies are true. Here are just some of the things I’ve discovered after jumpstarting my career at a startup.

More creative opportunities


As a content writer, I do more than just publishing product descriptions and on-site texts. I also write feature articles like this one and whenever they get published, I add it to my writing portfolio. It may not seem like a big deal now but when you want to climb up that career ladder in the future, you can showcase your impressive list of published writing.

For non-writers, you would also more likely to contribute to a project in a startup than in giant conglomerates. The scale may differ in every startup companies but the idea is more attractive than doing mundane, menial desk jobs every day without the chance to contribute anything.

Better working culture


Another main reason why I chose startup companies over conglomerates when hunting for my first job is because of the lack of bureaucracy. Working in a smaller office means you have the chance to meet everybody, from the juniors all the way up to the big bosses. It’ll give you a sense of solidarity with everyone in your office and while office politics might still exist, it won’t be on the same scale as it most likely would be in bigger corporations.

Less bureaucracy also means you can enhance the necessary skills you need to get promoted or to move on to a better job position in another company. Prior to joining my current company, I had no idea how to utilize SEO and how I can combine it with writing to increase the traffic of the site. The SEO skills that I honed from this first job will be extremely useful whenever I decide to move on to a better, higher position at another company.

International environment


You will find a more diverse environment when working at a startup company compared to working in a drab office for a mega conglomerate. In the current startup company that I’m working with, I’ve met people from Vietnam, the Philippines, Thailand, Taiwan, China, Czech Republic, the Netherlands, Germany, and more. And chances are, you will find a lot of other fresh grads in a startup to help you go through that first few-month jitters.

The more successful and established the startup company is, the more diverse your office environment will be. Perhaps this is because startups aren’t afraid outsource their talents to every corner of the world to find the best people to complete their team. So, try to seek for jobs outside of your home country; it’s a great chance for those trying to step out of their comfort zones and start an adventure in an unknown territory.

SEA is the best startup hub


If all the reasons above still can’t convince you to join a startup company straight after graduation, then consider this: the region is one of the best places to join the startup sector. The region has been dubbed as the leading tech startup hub and one of the fastest growing regions in the world due to the success of these startup companies.

Southeast Asia is thriving with hundreds of startup companies and many of them successfully passed and stayed in the growth and establishment phase. This means more employment opportunities, more benefits, more paths to be explored, and more chances to rise in your career ladder.

There are of course downsides to working in a startup. Unless the company’s profit and revenues keep on growing, one day the company can just decide to pack up and halt all operations. You can never know what’s instore for the future when you’re working in a startup but considering the freedom and the different skills that you can amass, it’s a great starting point in your journey of employment.

Spam Writer


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Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Malaysia Public Holidays 2018 Calendar (Kalendar Cuti Umum Hari Kelepasan Am)

Malaysia Public Holidays 2018 (Tarikh Hari Cuti Umum Malaysia 2018)

The Malaysia Public Holidays 2018 Calendar (Jadual Hari Kelepasan Am Persekutuan & Negeri 2018) below is useful for your next holiday trip planning and you have no more excuse not to buy overseas flight tickets during next AirAsia free seats / zero fares promotion.
Malaysia Public Holidays Calendar 2017 Kalendar Cuti Umum Malaysia

Malaysia Public / National / Federal Holidays 2018 Calendar (Kalendar Jadual Hari Cuti Kelepasan Am Persekutuan Malaysia)

  1. February 16 (Friday): Chinese New Year (Tahun Baru Cina)
  2. February 17 (Saturday): Chinese New Year Second Day (Tahun Baru Cina Hari Kedua)
  3. May 1 (Tuesday): Labour Day (Hari Pekerja)
  4. May 29 (Tuesday): Vesak Day (Hari Wesak)
  5. * June 15 (Friday): Hari Raya Puasa
  6. * June 16 (Saturday) Hari Raya Puasa (Hari Kedua)
  7. July 28 (Saturday): Agong's Birthday (Hari Keputeraan Seri Paduka Baginda Yang di-Pertuan Agong)
  8. * August 22 (Wednesday): Cuti Hari Raya Haji / Qurban
  9. August 31 (Thursday): National Day (Hari Kebangsaan / Merdeka)
  10. September 11 (Tuesday): Awal Muharam (Maal Hijrah)
  11. September 16 (Sunday): Malaysia Day (Hari Malaysia)
  12. * November 6 (Tuesday): Deepavali (Hari Deepavali)
  13.  November 20 (Tuesday): Prophet Muhammad's Birthday (Hari Keputeraan Nabi Muhammad S.A.W. / Maulidur Rasul)
  14. December 25 (Tuesday): Christmas (Hari Krismas)

State Holidays 2018 (Jadual Hari Cuti Kelepasan Am Negeri)

  1. January 1 (Monday): New Year 2018 (Tahun Baru 2018)
  2. January 14 (Sunday): Yang di-Pertuan Besar Negeri Sembilan's Birthday (Hari Keputeraan Yang di-Pertuan Besar Negeri Sembilan)
  3. January 21 (Sunday): Sultan of Kedah's Birthday (Hari Keputeraan Sultan Kedah)
  4. * January 31 (Wednesday): Hari Thaipusam
  5. February 1 (Thursday): Federal Territory Day (Hari Wilayah Persekutuan)
  6. February 18 (Sunday): Chinese New Year Replacement Holiday
  7. March 4 (Sunday): Anniversary of Installation of Sultan of Terengganu (Hari Ulang Tahun Pertabalan Sultan Terengganu)
  8. March 23 (Friday): Sultan of Johor's Birthday (Hari Keputeraan Sultan Johor)
  9. March 30 (Friday): Good Friday
  10. April 14 (Saturday): Israk dan Mikraj
  11. April 15 (Sunday): Declaration of Malacca as a Historical City (Hari Perisytiharan Melaka Sebagai Bandaraya Bersejarah)
  12. April 26 (Thursday): Sultan of Terengganu's Birthday (Hari Keputeraan Sultan Terengganu)
  13. May 7 (Monday): Hari Hol Pahang
  14. * May 17 (Thursday): Awal Ramadan
  15. May 17 (Thursday): Raja Perlis' Birthday (Hari Ulang Tahun Keputeraan Raja Perlis)
  16. May 30 (Wednesday): Harvest Festival (Pesta Kaamatan / Pesta Menuai)
  17. May 31 (Thursday): Harvest Festival (Pesta Kaamatan / Pesta Menuai)
  18. June 1 (Friday): Perayaan Hari Gawai Dayak
  19. June 2 (Saturday): Perayaan Hari Gawai Dayak Holiday
  20. June 2 (Saturday): Hari Nuzul Al-Quran
  21. June 17 (Sunday): Hari Raya Aidilfitri Replacement Holiday
  22. July 7 (Saturday): Georgetown World Heritage City Day (Hari Ulang Tahun Perisytiharan Tapak Warisan Dunia)
  23. July 7 (Saturday): Penang Governor's Birthday (Hari Jadi Yang di-Pertua Negeri Pulau Pinang)
  24. July 22 (Sunday): Sarawak Day
  25. * August 23 (Thursday): Hari Raya Qurban / Haji Hari Kedua
  26. September 8 (Saturday): Sarawak Governor's Birthday (Hari Jadi Yang di-Pertua Negeri Sarawak)
  27. September 17 (Monday): Malaysia Day Replacement Holiday
  28. October 6 (Saturday): Sabah Governor's Birthday (Hari Jadi Yang di-Pertua Negeri Sabah)
  29. October 12 (Friday): Malacca Governor's Birthday (Hari Jadi Yang di-Pertua Negeri Melaka)
  30. October 15 (Monday): Hari Hol Almarhum Sultan Iskandar Johor
  31. October 24 (Wednesday): Sultan of Pahang's Birthday (Hari Keputeraan Sultan Pahang)
  32. November 2 (Friday): Sultan of Perak's Birthday (Hari Keputeraan Sultan Perak)
  33. November 11 (Sunday): Sultan of Kelantan's Birthday (Hari Keputeraan Sultan Kelantan)
  34. November 12 (Sunday): Sultan of Kelantan's Birthday (Hari Keputeraan Sultan Kelantan)
  35. December 11 (Tuesday): Sultan of Selangor's Birthday (Hari Keputeraan Sultan Selangor)
Note: * Subject to change (tertakluk kepada perubahan).

Kalendar Jadual Hari Kelepasan Am Malaysia 2018 Persekutuan & Negeri

Malaysia Public Holidays 2018 Calendar (Kalendar Cuti Umum Hari Kelepasan Am)
Malaysia Public Holidays 2018 Calendar (Kalendar Cuti Umum Hari Kelepasan Am)


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Friday, July 07, 2017

3 Types of 'Chinese Schools' in Malaysia: Facts & Comparison of SJKC, SMJK & Chinese Independent High School

What you should know about Chinese schools in Malaysia

by Ida Lim

Not all Chinese schools in Malaysia use Mandarin as the medium of instruction. Surprised? Why are they called Chinese schools then?

That is because the term “Chinese schools” has been used indiscriminately to group together disparate types of schools with a common historical background under a very wide umbrella.
Characteristics of Chinese Schools in Malaysia
Characteristics of Chinese Schools in Malaysia
In reality, there are two broad categories for Chinese schools here: those that are private and those that are government-aided. Some of their key distinctions revolve around funding, medium of instruction and syllabus used.

According to the Education Ministry, the self-funded Chinese independent high schools are private schools while those called national-type Chinese primary schools (SJKC) or national-type secondary schools (SMJK) are public schools that receive either full or partial financial assistance from the government.

Chinese independent high schools


Chinese independent high schools may sound like an odd moniker but it can be traced back to the history of local Chinese-medium schools, which United Chinese School Committees’ Association of Malaysia (Dong Zong) chairman Datuk Vincent Lau told Malay Mail Online were first established by the migrants originating from China to provide education for their children.

Surviving a push for English-medium schools during British colonial rule as they insisted on using their mother tongue for lessons, the Chinese-medium secondary schools that refused to switch to using Bahasa Malaysia in exchange for government funding became known as Chinese independent high schools.

These schools do not receive funding from the federal government, except for one-off contributions.

However, Dong Zong confirmed that state governments such as Penang, Sabah, Sarawak and Selangor do provide financial assistance. The respective school boards otherwise continue to rely on school fees and donations from the community for all expenses including teachers’ salaries and infrastructure.
Dong Zong Chairman Datuk Vincent Lau
Dong Zong chairman Datuk Vincent Lau said the shrinking fresh intake of students is also tied to lack of space and the non-approval for new Chinese independent schools to cope with demand.

SJKC and SMJK: Government-aided schools


There are also primary schools where Mandarin is used to teach all subjects. These existed before Malaysia was formed in 1963 and are now known as SJKC, where the vernacular language is allowed to continue to be used as the medium of instruction as an alternative to the Bahasa Malaysia-medium national primary schools (SK).

SK schools are located on public land and accorded the status of “government schools” which the ministry fully maintains and funds.

SJKC schools adopt the same national syllabus used by SK schools and offer the same school-leaving UPSR examination. But because they are built on private donated land, they are given the status of “government-aided schools” and receive less government funding compared to SK schools.

While the Malaysia Education Blueprint 2013-2025 states that the ministry allocates teachers for both government and government-aided schools and fully pays for their salaries, funding in other aspects for these two subsets of public schools differ slightly.

Both receive government support for operational expenditure in the form of grants-in-aid based on the same criteria of individual school’s needs, but there is a limit on funding for government-aided schools’ utilities bill.

And while the government fully funds the development costs for SK schools, SJKC schools may get 80 per cent funding, sometimes more, for their renovation and construction.

Similarly for SMJK schools which were once Chinese-medium schools that opted to conform by using BM and the national syllabus in return for government aid, the amount of government funding received also depends on ownership of school land.

While SMJK schools have told Putrajaya that they should be granted full financial assistance regardless of their land status, they are currently only considered fully-aided schools if the school boards surrendered the land titles to the government. Otherwise they only receive partial financial assistance with teachers’ salaries and per capita grants paid by the government.

Syllabus and examinations


SMJK students follow the same syllabus and sit for the same examinations as their counterparts in national secondary schools (SMK) during Form Three (PT3), Form Five (SPM) and Form Six (STPM).

But SJMK schools also allocate more time for Mandarin classes with five periods per week to instil deeper awareness of the language and its roots among their majority ethnic Chinese students. In comparison, SMK schools offer only three periods of Mandarin classes a week.

At Chinese independent schools, the syllabus and textbooks are prepared by Dong Zong, which also prepares and conducts the Unified Examination Certificate (UEC) for their students.

While students typically sit for the UEC examination during their Junior Three and Senior Three years — or the equivalent of Form Three and Form Six in national schools — there are also some Chinese independent schools which offer the SPM to their students too though Lau said it is not compulsory for Chinese independent schools.

Dong Zong’s records showed that 8,574 students at the Chinese independent schools registered as SPM candidates last year.

Lau said some Chinese independent school students may not take the UEC Senior Three exam after sitting for their SPM as a Senior Two student, opting instead for other pre-university courses.

The STPM exam is not offered however, as the UEC Senior Three exam is its equivalent and is widely-accepted abroad and in local private institutions as a pre-university qualifier.

The UEC examination for Junior Three is in Chinese for most schools, but some schools are also given examination papers in both Mandarin and English. UEC Senior Three candidates are given examination papers set in both Mandarin and English.

While not part of Dong Zong’s tally of Chinese independent schools, Kuantan’s SM Chong Hwa has the unique arrangement of being a private secondary school where students can sit for both the UEC examination and examinations under the national syllabus.

Chinese education in numbers


There are currently 81 SMJK, including three branch schools. The branch campus of Kajang’s SMJK Yu Hua, which received government approval last December after the 3,500-capacity main campus had to turn down students, will be the latest addition when completed.

Based on Dong Zong’s data sourced from the Education Ministry, the number of SJKC schools has been shrinking while BM-medium national primary schools have been growing.

As at last December, the number of SJKC schools numbered 1,298 compared to 1,346 in 1970. In contrast, SK schools boasted 5,877 in 2016 compared to 4,277 in 1970.

The dwindling trend for vernacular schools is also reflected in the decreasing number of Tamil-language primary schools (SJKT) that recorded just 524 last year compared to 657 in 1970.

As for secondary schools, there are currently 61 Chinese independent schools, inclusive of Johor’s Foon Yew High School and its branch which both collectively have over 10,000 students. Foon Yew is set to open yet another branch in 2021.

But Lau of Dong Zong said demand remains high for enrolment in Chinese independent schools, especially in cities, where some of these schools have around 3,000 students and cannot take in more due to limited land, facilities and classrooms.

“The other thing is we cannot get the permission to build more Chinese independent schools, the government does not allow, they limit you to 60. We applied but they don’t give permission,” he said, comparing this with the boom in the number of international schools approved by the government.

As such, some Chinese independent schools have resorted to demolishing some of their buildings to rebuild additional storeys to cater to demand.

How big a pie?


While the overall number of students at Chinese independent schools continued its uninterrupted upward trend of 15 years and hit a historic peak this year with 85,304 students, it accounts for only four per cent of the total recorded number of secondary school students, which is 2,099,603 as of January 2017.

SMJK schools account for over 108,000 students, and even when combined with Chinese independent schools amount to less than 10 per cent.

The number of new intakes at Chinese independent schools has however been going down in the past four years.

After a record high at 17,620 in 2013, this year saw only 14,481 enrolments, which Lau attributed to a cocktail of factors: the rural to urban migration, the subsequent imbalance between overcrowded urban schools and under-enrolled rural schools, and lower birth rates especially among the ethnic Chinese community.
Malaysia SJKC Chinese Independent High School Total Student Number
According to an Education Ministry parliamentary reply in the March-April session, the number of primary school students as of January 2017 is 2,674,327. A separate reply in the same session shows that the bulk of the student are enrolled in SK schools at 2,065,279, while almost one-fifth are in SJKC schools at 527,453 and SJKT schools account for 81,483.

Based on the Department of Statistics Malaysia’s data of live births in the 2000-2015 period, the annual number of babies born in some of the preceding seven years before primary school enrolment from 2000 to 2017 are also among the lowest of the entire 15-year period.

The SK, SJKC and SJKT overall student numbers have generally been on a downward trend during the 2010-2017 period (except for a rebound for SK schools in the past two years).

Beyond the flocking of locals to international schools since the federal government removed limits in 2012 on intake of Malaysians, the Department Statistics Malaysia’s 2000-2015 data of live births may also give a hint on the explanation for the student numbers in national and national-type primary schools.

Malaysians typically enter primary schools at age seven, so students freshly enrolled in the 2010-2017 batch would generally be those born during the 2003-2010 period. The annual number of babies born during the latter period are among the lowest in the 2000-2015 period — 481,800 in 2004, 474,473 in 2005, 472,698 in 2006, 479,647 in 2007.
Live Births Number in Malaysia
Live Births Number in Malaysia

Future goals


Dong Zong has long been pushing Putrajaya to recognise the UEC for entry into the civil service and local public universities, with Lau saying that further discussions are required to pursue this recognition.

The government had in parliamentary replies said it is maintaining the status quo by letting the 60 Chinese independent schools here continue their operations as provided for under the Education Act 1996.

The replies indicate that the government’s steadfast refusal to recognise the UEC is because of the differing national syllabus standards and alleged contradiction with the National Education Policy which envisions a uniform syllabus and examinations delivered in BM.

The Higher Education Ministry had in a March 2016 parliamentary reply highlighted that it will deny public university entry to UEC graduates owing to several reasons including entry requirements of an SPM pass with credits in the BM subject; UEC’s BM levels not being on par with SPM standards; as well as alleged inadequate coverage of national history in the UEC syllabus.

Lau said the BM levels may differ in the two examinations, adding that Dong Zong is agreeable to having UEC students sit for the Bahasa Malaysia subject under SPM as a single subject and would want to be able to waive sitting for the entire examination.

“Maybe they have misconception about what we study, they are thinking we are studying Chinese history textbook from China or Taiwan, which is not true,” he said.

He claimed that Chinese independent schools cover a wider scope in history lessons on Europe, China and South-east Asia compared to the syllabus taught in national schools, but that they also cover Malaysian history.

The UEC is currently recognised by the Sarawak state government for entry into the state’s civil service and is recognised by local private universities such as the Selangor-owned Unisel, but is not accepted by the public universities such as Universiti Malaysia Sarawak which is under the federal government, Lau said. The Penang state government also accepts UEC graduates at its subsidiary companies.

As for Chinese primary schools, Lau said the federal government should adopt a systematic policy by either relocating under-enrolled schools or build new schools in high-demand areas such as urban areas and new townships that have predominantly ethnic Chinese population.

“Sometimes this becomes political, when it’s closer to election, the place there requests a school, the government [says] OK and they will build the school,” he said of the current ad-hoc approach.

Chinese education groups had in two memoranda in 2011 and 2012 to the prime minister said an additional 45 SJKC schools in six states needs to be built. The government has yet to approve the construction of these schools as of a December 2016 statement by Dong Zong.

This artile was first posted at The Malay Mail Online)


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Thursday, July 06, 2017

How technology is changing classroom education

How technology is changing classroom education

Guest post by Justin Goh (Share your insight with 56,000+ Malaysian students)

Education technology has improved a lot in modern times. With inculcation of avant-garde techs such as augmented and virtual reality, the learning experience has just gone off the roofs.

There’s absolutely no doubt of the fact that it has played a big role in transforming classroom education for good. In this article, we’ll see to the different ways through which it has changed classroom education.
Young man in high school computer lab

1. Education technology has played a great role in extending education beyond the classrooms


The advent of the mobile internet has played a great role in extending education beyond the walls of the classroom.

With devices like iPhones and iPads (for example), it has become immensely easy for students to do their practical programming classes even from the comfort of their drawing rooms or even when they have gone mobile. They don’t have to gain access to a computer lab anymore to do their practical classes as per schedule.

So we can see that the mobile technology has more or less acted as a bridge between the classroom and home learning to great effects.
E-learning concept Ebook

2. The rise of ebooks


Ebooks are gaining more prominence in schools and colleges because of the host of benefits that come with them. Some of them are:
  • Ebooks have the benefits of instant availability over conventional textbooks. The school libraries don’t have to wait for their stock to arrive anymore. Just a click of the mouse is enough to get the book to their collection. Amazon, eBay, Barnes and Noble, etc. can aid a lot.
  • Ebooks are environment-friendly.
  • Ebooks also provide a text-to-audio option for visually-challenged pupils.
  • They are cost-effective and also require a significant low storage space (a simple mobile device is capable of storing thousands of ebooks depending on its storage space) in comparison to the conventional text books.
The immense popularity of ebooks in classrooms has created a number of changes like low baggage and less storage space, and so on. All such changes are considered desirable from the point of view of education.

3. The teacher-student role reversal


With the inculcation of education technology in classrooms, the teacher-student roles have gone through a complete transformation.

The student has become a whole lot more active and engaged in comparison to the way it was before.

The teacher, on the other hand, has stopped being just a dispenser of information. S/He has now become more or less a facilitator of information by guiding their students on the right track.
Silhouette of a boy with e learning concept

4. Significant increase in classroom engagements


One of the main benefits of educational technology lies in collaboration. And technology plays an important role to empower the same in the best possible manner.

With the aid of classroom technology, students collaborate well with one another, both inside and outside the classrooms. Here’s a simple example:
The power of social media.

Teachers can now use the power of social media to great effects to increase collaboration between students and their parents on the same platform itself. They will be able to create their unique groups, post assignments and share a number of useful educational resources on the same platform itself.

Parents will be able to keep track of their child’s progress on social media and will also be able to interact with the teacher in case there’s any requirement.

5. Educational technology has made it possible for teachers to deliver a more personalized learning experience to students


Educational technology has made it possible for teachers to customize their lessons according to the needs of individual students.

Personalized learning such as e-learning has made it possible for students to learn at their own pace; a trait that has benefited many average students to do well in the long run.

Some of the best uses of educational technology in classrooms

  • Blogging
    • Blogging is one of the best ways for teachers to take their lessons beyond the boundaries of the classrooms. Blogging gives teachers a platform to share their thoughts, ideas, and experience with the world as a whole; something that’s considered to be pretty “constructive” from the general point of view.
    • Through the help of blogging, teachers might be able to build themselves a small online learning community which, in a sense can benefit both the teachers and the students in general.
    • Note: Getting a blog site on the World Wide Web has become as easy as a piece of cake now; thanks to the user-friendly content management systems such as Wordpress, Joomla!, and others.
  • Usage of apps and games in classes
    • Nowadays, we have several educational apps and games available on the app stores for a broad range of mobile devices. A fair chunk of them doesn’t even cost a dime.
    • Teachers can use them effectively in their classrooms for different teaching purposes of their own.
  • Usage of augmented and virtual reality in classrooms
    • The augmented and virtual reality technologies have gained a lot of prominence in modern days. The educational sectors have benefitted a lot as a result of these avant-garde mean of technologies.
    • It has helped to create the maximum possible impression on students through its immersive learning experience which has significantly and positively affected their studies on the whole.
    • Case in point -
Educational technology has really changed the meaning of classroom education. But the question is: “Are you on the bandwagon yet?” If you are not, you better get on it ASAP. You will definitely get benefited in the long run as a student.

Justin Goh Profile Picture
Justin Goh is a former teacher and prolific writer, penning blogs to help the parents, students and the educators alike. Regularly contributing articles for MyPrivateTutor Malaysia, he prefers to write on varying aspects of education ranging from learning strategies and preparation tips to the ways to reach out to the students better.


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Tuesday, July 04, 2017

How Malaysian Students Can Befriend English To Get Better At Writing Essays

How Malaysian Students Can Befriend English To Get Better At Writing Essays

Guest post by Mallory Zoe (Share your insight with 56,000+ Malaysian students)

Writing to express yourself clearly could be a challenge if you are not a writer. This could make the situation worse if you have trouble connecting your thoughts. And if you are required to write in a language that is not your mother tongue, you can only imagine your condition. Add the pressure of time to it and it makes you want to quit instantly.
English Word Title Image

Writing in English is no different. English is a beautiful language with appropriate words for almost all situations. Writing in proper, coherent English is always a challenge for ESL students. Students from Malaysia are ambitious and go abroad for higher studies; but without a proper command over the English language, most students find themselves struggling. Whether it is the UK, US or Australia, students are required to submit essays as part of their curriculum. This is where many students approach model essay writing services to help them learn the art of writing essays.

A part of the problem lies in the way students are taught a foreign language like English. Malaysia has seen a drastic change with regards to English as a medium of teaching. The education system which primarily used English until 1980’s, saw a change only to adapt Malay as a medium of teaching. This was briefly changed to English medium only for Maths and Science, which was rolled back in 2012 to Malay medium. Besides, while the US, UK, Australia, and Canada allocate undergraduate degrees to students based on their research skills demonstrated through many small essays and research papers, this is not the case with Malaysia.

How Can Students Overcome Limitations To Get Comfortable With English?


The obvious question that comes to mind is, how can you overcome these shortfalls and still get comfortable with English and essay writing without using essay writing services if you are a Malaysian student looking to study abroad? The simple answer to this is to plan your way ahead. If you know your aim is to study abroad or if you are a parent who is interested in sending their children abroad, you must plan ahead.
Woman sitting at her desk thinking of things to write

Steps You Can Take to Make Your Children Comfortable With English and Essay Writing

  1. Send your children to English coaching centers - Yes, sending your children to a good coaching center for English can help you advance their skills. Not only would they get to learn the language, they would also make a bunch of friends with common goals. 
  2. Ask them to converse in English - If you are not very comfortable with English, ask your children to practice the language with someone who can speak good English. There is nothing like practicing a language. 
  3. Practice by writing sentences - Once your child has reached a stage where they are comfortable with spoken English, ask them to start writing in English. For most students, the only writing practice they get in English is when they mug up for exams and write word by word what they had memorized. While they can still get good grades by doing so, but their actual language skills would remain hidden from you. 
  4. Practice essay writing - If you child has successfully achieved the above stages, which may take several months, it is time to expose them to essays. Give them a simple topic (preferably something of interest) and ask them to research the topic using Google books and other scholarly sources. Check their essay for language, sources, and the depth of research. You can also take the help of an online examiner from the UK who would mark the essay and send it back to you.
  5. Learn academic formats - Lastly, make your child learn academic formatting. Essays in the UK and the US are written in academic formats like APA, MLA, and Harvard. There are many online sources for this. Most universities have their own formatting guidelines shared through their official websites.
The above steps are not easy, especially if you are a Malay medium student, but they are possible if you approach them step by step. Don’t lose sight of your aim to study abroad and put all these steps into practice. If you do your homework right, life aboard would become much easier as you become more confident of handling tons of assignments, which are going to be thrown your way.

Remember, the true reason behind getting education abroad is because the education system is more robust and prepares you for the biggest challenges of life. It develops your character in ways you can hardly imagine. Only those who can overcome hurdles of expressing themselves clearly would get a shot at getting a UK/US degree that will stay with them for life and open doors to most wonderful opportunities around the globe.

Mallory Zoe is an independent blogger and an avid reader. She writes on education, college life and career choices for students. She is presently associated with a cheap essay writing service where she helps international students improve their language and get better at writing essays.


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Tuesday, June 27, 2017

5 Best Hacks to Improve Your Working Memory

5 of the best hacks that you can implement to improve your working memory

Guest post by Justin Goh (Share your insight with 56,000+ Malaysian students)

You might find a strange similarity between your brain and your computer hard-disk but in reality, it doesn’t exactly work that way. Some will say that it works like RAM (RAM is a form of volatile memory where data is stored temporarily over time. You switch it off and it loses all its data) which might seem true to a certain extent.

But how do you explain all that feeling of nostalgia you get in specific circumstances if your brain does indeed work like RAM? You see a child going on a merry-go-round and you immediately start reminiscing certain pleasant scenes of your childhood as a result of that. Now how do you explain that?

You honestly can’t. Your brain’s not RAM or ROM; it’s something more. The more you use it, the sharper it’s going to be over time. Here are 10 of the best hacks that you, as a student can use to improve your working memory. Let’s go through them without further ado.

1. Crosswords can be an ace in the hole for you

Young man sitting on sofa doing crossword puzzle in newspaper back view
Crossword puzzles can be an excellent cognitive exercise for you if you do them periodically in a relaxed state of mind.

The practice of solving crosswords can greatly improve your working memory. You will be able to retain information for a longer period of time and can also recall them whenever you want depending on your requirements.

So practice them periodically and religiously to improve your cognitive skills and working memory. If it gets too easy for you, switch over to a different one. Yep, sudokus can do the trick as well.

2. Jigsaw puzzles aren’t that simple if you can use the right way

Jigsaw puzzle game background
You might think that jigsaw puzzles are meant only for the kids or toddlers but no, they definitely aren’t. You just have to find the ones that are meant specifically for you (to be more specific, I should say the “older kids”).

Jigsaw puzzles are a great way to improve your short-term memory and your critical problem-solving skills. The more the pieces, the greater is the benefit. So are you for it? You definitely should be.

3. Video games help you to multi-task

Boys playing video game console
Video games aren’t always that bad that you might think they are. Yes, too much video gaming can definitely hurt your studies but that shouldn’t portray “total” negativity, especially when video games are concerned.

Video games can improve your multi-tasking abilities. Now that is something that can make you a standout among the crowd, especially in your professional life.

Always remember that your multi-tasking skills are directly linked to that of your working memory. So you see you’ll always be at a benefit if you are able to “play” it the right way.

P.S. Too many hours of video gaming is STILL not recommended. An hour here and there is what’s recommended unless you’re on a vacation.

4. Learn a shopping game

Shopping bag with many items on sale
“Peg words”- Do you know what these are?

This is a remembrance technique where words are linked rhythmically with numbers to work in the form of a memory-aid. You can inculcate this tactic to improve your working memory. You can use the aid of peg words to memorize things better.

So how can use this tactic to great effects? You can use this tactic in the form of a “shopping game.” Try to remember small shopping lists through the use of peg words. Here’s an example,

If you are going out to buy yourself a pair of shoe, you can make a poem like “one two buckle my shoe” to remember the same.

These practices may look too petty on the hindsight but it can go a long way indeed if you keep on practicing them religiously every day.


5. Play a memory game with your friends or colleagues

Doodling infographic
If you are present in a group, you can play some sort of a memory game with your friends to improve your working memory over time.

A memory game is fun to play and it doesn’t even cost you a dime. Here’s how you do it.

You start with the name of any object say, “birds.” The person next to you will have to repeat the same and add another one of his/her own (like tiger). The next person will have to repeat from the start i.e. birds, tiger and then add one of his/own (say cheetah).

This will continue. The person who fails to recall the series perfectly at a stage is disqualified at that stage itself. This is a beautiful game indeed and can actually improve your working memory over time. Moreover, it’s fun; so is there anything not to like? Guess not!

So that’s it then. Hope the hacks or the games mentioned above come in handy for you. With that, I’ll sign off for the time being. Hope you had a great read.

Justin Goh
Justin Goh is a former teacher and prolific writer, penning blogs to help the parents, students and the educators alike. Regularly contributing articles for MyPrivateTutor Malaysia, he prefers to write on varying aspects of education ranging from learning strategies and preparation tips to the ways to reach out to the students better.


► Read more on 5 Best Hacks to Improve Your Working Memory

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