The study aimed to investigate family caregivers’ experiences of caring to a schizophrenia patient in the northern part of Malaysia. The family caregiving experiences from different ethnic groups in Malaysia were compared between urban and rural dwellers. Overall, there were 154 family caregivers who completed the questionnaires comprising standardized measures of the Experiences of Caregiving Inventory (ECI) and the Life Skills Profiles (LSP-39). Malay women were found to be the majority of the caregivers in this study who mostly came from the rural area. This study found that the majority of caregivers were Malay women who live in the rural area. Most of the caregivers identified themselves as parents aged 50 years and above. Predictors of negative appraisal for family caregivers were identified: (1) younger patient, (2) unemployed patient, (3) family with low income and (4) patient with low life skills. Meanwhile, predictors of positive appraisal include: (1) married patient, (2) patient with good like skills, (3) monthly income above RM800 and (4) dwelling in urban area. Interestingly, the life skills profile becomes a strong predictor for negative and positive appraisals. These predictors should assist community health workers when working with the family caregivers of schizophrenia patient.
This essay is motivated by the issue of terrorism as mirrored in early twenty-first century Arabic fiction, particularly after the 9/11 attacks and the US occupation of Iraq. We examine the interpretations of terrorism in Hussein al-Saqqaf’s Qissat Irhabi (2007) with the aim of exploring the treatment of recent history and also uncovering the ideologies, viewpoints and cultural nuances that prevail in Arabic fiction. By appropriating the theory of hermeneutics, from which the concept of interpretation is derived, the novel’s utilisation of some historical events and issues can be made clear. This is because “interpretation” refers to a text’s explanations and exploration of other texts. Our analysis shows that al-Saqqaf displays Judeophobic characteristics where he casts aspersions on the Jews, rabbis, Jewish fanaticism and Jewish terrorists whom he names “the Sicarii.” He attributes terrorism to them. Being an Arab and a Muslim, al-Saqqaf exhibits the feelings and opinions of the ordinary Arab and Muslim people who indeed believe that the Arab and Muslim terrorist groups are masterminded by superpower Jews. Although al-Saqqaf’s predisposition in his fictional account is attributed to his roots and faith, it also shows the reality of distrust between the Arabs and Jews.
This study envisaged in determining the relationship between the intensity of Facebook usage and social capital among undergraduates at Universiti Putra Malaysia. A number of factors (respondent’s personal and family background, the intensity of Facebook usage and social capital) have been studied with regards to their relationships with each other. Respondents involved 120 male and female undergraduates studying at Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM), who were selected through a convenience sampling. A self-administered questionnaire was used as a tool for data collection. Majority of the respondents were between 21 and 23 years of age, obtained an average of CGPA of 3.05 and came from educated parents (diploma and above), and moderately high household incomes. Pearson correlation was used to test the correlation between the respondent’s personal and family backgrounds with Facebook intensity. Meanwhile, linear regression was used to analyze the strength of the relationship between Facebook intensity and social capital and revealed that all have significant relationships with the intensity of Facebook usage. The linear regression analysis also affirmed that the intensity of the Facebook use (ß = 0.274**) has a positive but miniscule effect on the increment of social capital. Relevant factors attributed to findings are also discussed.
Social network service, Facebook, social capital, undergraduates, correlational studies
This research was conducted to identify factors which contribute to individual capacity building levels among women entrepreneurs. For this purpose, the study was carried out in the states of Johor and Melaka which involved 200 women entrepreneurs who made up the respondents of this particular research. This study was done through survey method using questionnaires. Simple Random Sampling methodology was used to gather the necessary data. The data were analyzed by means of ‘Statistical Package for Social Science’ (SPSS). Results of the Stepwise Regression test revealed that education level contributed the most towards individual capacity building levels among women entrepreneurs, with a variance of 51.9%. This finding indicates that education level can influence the capability and credibility of an individual towards achieving progress in her business.
Individual capacity building, individual capacity building factors, women entrepreneurs
“What happened to the 11 years of learning English? A distinction in SPM but cannot speak in English?” Poor communication proficiency among Malaysian learners has become a national problem. Speaking proficiency in ESL is important if Malaysia wants to produce a generation of global communicators, which is in line with the country’s mission to become a fully developed nation. However, we often hear of grievances that many Malaysian graduates are not employed due to their poor communication skills in English. This study seeks to investigate challenges faced by ESL teachers in developing students’ speaking skills. The study involved 47 ESL teachers and 100 students who represented different regions in Malaysia. The respondents were chosen using purposive sampling. Meanwhile, semi-structured interviews were used to collect the data, which were then analyzed using content analysis. The results suggest that both teachers and students perceive speaking as an important language skill. However, teachers face numerous challenges in translating this belief into practice. This has led to a mismatch between what teachers and students perceive they need and the actual practice in the classroom.
ESL, oral communication skills, mismatch between beliefs and practice
Increasing globalisation and international collaboration have led to an increased demand for improved communication within design collaboration processes. To address this issue, IT-supported design collaboration processes have been utilised, enabling professional design team members to work in a distributed design environment. However, IT-supported systems often lack human understanding, making such systems frustrating for professionals to use. The objective of this theoretical paper is to propose Human-Computer Interaction (HCI) integrated approaches that improve the interaction among professional design team members and collaborative technologies in a distributed design environment. This is particularly examined in the context of the building industry. For this purpose, this paper analyses the related literature in design collaboration processes. This analysis is used to assess how earlier systems affect design team members’ capabilities to accept and use collaborative technologies. It is found that in addition to impacting the ergonomic and cognitive capabilities of professionals, a system should also motivate professionals intrinsically and extrinsically. The findings of this study are essential for promoting the utility of IT-supported design collaboration projects. In addition, this study supports further research to increase the level of engagement in collaborative team work and mitigate knowledge loss in a complex project lifecycle.
IT-supported design collaboration processes, Human-Computer Interaction (HCI), human need and dimension, engagement, IT/ICT
This paper provides an analysis of written feedback on ESL student writers’ academic essays to shed light on how feedback acts as a communicative tool between the lecturer and students. The objective of this study is to explore the types and usefulness of written feedback on ESL student writers’ academic writing. First, it discusses the importance of feedback and the theoretical framework of the Speech Act Theory. The data for this study comprises written feedback and students’ interviews. The feedback was coded, and a model for analysis was developed based on two primary roles of speech: directive and expressive. Based on this analysis, the paper discusses the types of feedback from which students benefit the most, namely, directive-instruction feedback and expressive disapproval feedback. The interview conducted as part of this study provided insights on how the students felt about each type of feedback. This study also suggests a possibility of developing a taxonomy of good feedback practices by considering the views of the giver and receiver of written feedback.
In this qualitative paper we discuss our face-to-face experience with 28 foreign (mainly from Iran) postgraduate students who registered with the Department of Community Health, Faculty of Medicine and Health Science and 31 who registered with the Department of Professional Development and Continuing Education, Faculty of Educational Studies, UPM. The paper addresses itself to three principal areas of concern: firstly, the supervisor-student relationship; secondly, the students’ literacy and academic competency; thirdly, academic and social cultural interface. The discussions are predicated on our personal experiences with these students over a three-year period. The influx of postgraduate students, particularly from Iran and Middle Eastern countries made it necessary for us to pay due attention to our encounters with them. The locus of tensions largely dwelt on UPM’s educational system and values. Academic incompetence, language and cultural differences are major issues. Understanding of related issues will benefit both the students and UPM in its efforts to become a global player in higher education. We recommend that both qualitative and quantitative studies be conducted by supervisors to explore and determine the overseas students’ motivation and learning behavior. We postulate development of an intellectual community that can stimulate challenges beyond the academic encounters. For both faculties, various forms of learning media for the promotion of effective communication should be developed and made available for flexible learning to occur. To help students improve their academic literacy, it is important ‘to identify the epistemological and ontological dimension for a flexible approach to learning’ (Tavakol & Dennick 2009). Formal counselling sessions can allow students to know what type of learner they are.
Learning, postgraduate education, cultural adjustment, competency
This study intends to explore the cultural similarities and differences between the lion metaphors in Mandarin Chinese and British English. Most previous studies on animal metaphors focussed on the expressions with human beings as the target domain by collecting data either from questionnaires or dictionaries based on the Conceptual Metaphor Theory. This study, however, focusses on the expressions with non-humans as the target domains and is based on data collected from authoritative corpora. Three hundred and ninety-seven metaphorical expressions in Mandarin Chinese were identified from the Modern Chinese Corpus compiled by the Centre for Chinese Linguistics of Peking University (CCL Corpus) and 241 metaphorical expressions in British English were identified from the British National Corpus (BNC). After analysing the expressions from the perspective of the source domain and the target domain, the results show that first, the metaphorical expressions in Mandarin Chinese are mainly projected from the lion’s appearance to non-humans, but those in British English are mainly projected from the lion’s characteristics to non-humans. Second, the expressions are mainly mapped onto seven target domains in each language; four are the same. In addition, the dominant evaluation of the seven target domains in each language is mostly neutral. Third, ten conceptual metaphors were generalised from Mandarin Chinese and one from British English. All of these indicate the occurrence of cultural similarities as well as differences in the lion metaphors in the two languages.
British English, Conceptual Metaphor Theory, cultural similarities and differences, lion metaphors, Mandarin Chinese
This paper investigates the representation of time and space in Isabella Bird’s The Golden Chersonese and the Way Thither (1883), her travel narrative on Malaya, through a Bakhtinian discussion of the chronotope. The study examines the historical poetics of the text and compares the intra-textual relation between time and space, as described by Bird, with an extra-textual account of the historical cultural condition of Malaya in 1883. This paper further seeks to underline the issue of gender and its influence on the narrative. The Golden Chersonese can be seen as a portrayal of an imperial look at the land and people of Malaya; whilst the narrative thus points to the costumes and religion of the Malays, it cannot escape the influence of its narrator’s gender. Bird’s individuality as a female traveller against the background of her native land is discussed with regard to her gender. In addition, chronotopes of 1883-Malaya, with greater focus on social, cultural and religious issues, and 1883-England as an imperial power, besides the perception of gender, are also compared. Finally, by examining various chronotopic units in The Golden Chersonese, the paper concludes that Bird’s narrative is a polychronotopic text. This research fills the gap in literature regarding a Bakhtinian perspective on travel narrative writing, with reference to time and space.
Time, space, chronotope, history, gender, Bakhtin, Malaya, England
The consensus on ‘socially responsible’ practices in today’s literacy pedagogy indicates that the parameters of school literacies have been significantly extended with the rapid cultural and technological changes in literate forms of communication in recent years. Increasingly, educators around the globe experience dilemmas in engaging with the issue of what to do in literacy pedagogy due to varying cultural identities and the proliferation of multi-channelled communication technologies. Such concerns are also important in Malaysian ESL classrooms. This paper presents the findings of a case study of teaching writing by an ESL teacher using the multiliteracy approach. The respondents were 37 Form Four Science students in a Chinese school in Penang. The research instruments used included semi-structured interviews with the ESL teacher and Teacher Rating Sheets which were used to evaluate the students’ progress in continuous writing. The findings show that the students’ continuous writing performance improved as they experienced activities assisted by Information and Communications Technology (ICT) in various stages of writing. Findings also revealed that the students’ engagement in the process of writing was instrumental in developing their ideas for their essays and simultaneously promoted their motivation during the writing lessons. The implication of the results suggests that literacy educators must take into consideration various pedagogical practices which will serve effectively in the teaching and learning of writing through technology as a medium.
English as a Second Language, Information and Communication Technology, learning element, literacy, multiliteracy approach, multimodal, writing
The aims of this research were to investigate whether there is any difference in the physical activity levels between Malay Muslim men (Muslim) and Malay Muslim women (Muslimah) at Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM) before, during, and after the month of Ramadan, and also to determine the factors restricting their involvement in physical activities. Fifty-three UPM Malay Muslim male staff and fifty-four UPM Malay Muslim female staff participated in the research. The Yamex-Digi walker CW700 pedometer was used to measure the physical activity level of the staff for four consecutive days. Results showed that there was no significant difference in the physical activity levels of the Malay Muslim and Muslimah in UPM before, during, and after the month of Ramadan. The reported t-test results comparing the two genders before, during, and after the month of Ramadan were f=0.003, p<0.96, f=1.047, p<0.31, and f=3.106, p<0.08, respectively. It was reported that the lack of self motivation/laziness played the most important role in restricting the involvements of both genders in the physical activities.
Physical activity, gender, Malay, sport involvement, pedometer, Ramadan
This study investigated novice teachers’ sources of efficacy in relation to the application of knowledge in Educational Psychology. The questionnaires were administered to a sample of 160 novice teachers from 102 secondary schools in Selangor, Malaysia. The findings indicated that the novice teachers demonstrated a moderate level of teachers’ sense of efficacy. The three sources of efficacy, namely, mastery experience, vicarious experience, and social persuasion were identified as the predictors of teachers’ sense of efficacy [Adjusted R2 = 0.50, F (3, 155) = 53.16, p<0.01]. The implication of the study on the theory and practice of the teachers’ sense of efficacy was also discussed. Suggestions and recommendations were offered to enhance and foster senses’ of efficacy among the novice teachers.
Teacher self-efficacy, sources of efficacy, novice teacher, Malaysia, educational psychology
The purpose of the study was to identify the learning styles among entrepreneurship course students in higher education. The sample comprised of 270 students who had enrolled in Entrepreneurship Course as a compulsory course in their respective programme of studies at Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM). Concrete Processing learning style was found to be the most preferred learning style. In particular, technical programme students, science programme students and literature programme students rated Concrete Processing as their most preferred learning styles. The findings of this study are encouraging and have shown a favourable development of entrepreneurship education in universities. The learning styles need to be identified clearly because there is a need to access and apply knowledge for problem solving purposes. They enable policy makers to know how the students learn, how they transform information to knowledge, and how they transfer new knowledge into applications. Students’ learning styles can help lecturers to fully understand the learning process and also how a student acquires knowledge. As it can be recommended from the findings of this study, entrepreneurship education should focus on the learning of entrepreneurial competencies needed by the students who must be equipped to reproduce or acquire existing business. Learning entrepreneurial competencies can increase the interest and entrepreneurial intention of the students to choose entrepreneurship as a career. This can offer a solution for the current graduate unemployment problem in Malaysia.
Learning styles, entrepreneurship course, literature, technical and science programme
Sukuk securities have similar features with conventional bonds. The financial press has, however, inappropriately referred to sukuk as Islamic bonds. This paper investigates sukuk securities empirically by first examining the yields to maturities of sukuk securities and conventional bonds of various issuers and maturities. Tests of differences in performance of the two classes of securities and Granger causality tests substantiate that these securities are different. This paper identifies some significant differences between the yield curves of sukuk securities and those of conventional bonds of the same issuers for the same term and rating. Results show significant differences between the average yields of sukuk and those of conventional bonds with the same quality and term issued by the same issuers from 2005 to 2012. Granger causality tests confirm that the yields of bonds do not Granger-cause the yields of sukuk, verifying no causality between the two. There is strong empirical evidence that the two types of debt instruments are not the same. This prompts re-examination of investment advisory and valuation methodology currently applied in the sukuk industry of 11 capital markets.
This essay examines the non-violent rhetorical situation of the Chipko movement in India. According to Kirkscey (2007), Lucas (2006) and Gorsevski (2004), efforts to understand non-Western movements and non-violent rhetoric have long been sidelined in comparison to understanding movements in the West and those that are more aggressive in manner. This study hopes to fill in the gap in scholarship by highlighting the non-violent approach employed by the Chipko movement using Bitzer’s (1968) rhetorical situation as a theoretical framework. The essay looks into the rhetorical situation of the movement, focussing on its exigency, audience and constraints. Later, an assessment of the Chipko movement’s response as rhetor is offered. How Satyagraha (Gandhi’s non-violent form of protest) influenced the movement’s method will also be considered. The analysis suggests that the Chipko movement’s non-violent tactics of saving the trees proves to be fitting and effective.
Non-violent rhetoric, rhetorical criticism, social change, social movements
This paper aims to establish the fact that simply scoring good marks and completing a degree is not enough to succeed in this swiftly changing world. Soft skills are an indispensable part of the present system of education. This paper documents a brief survey of soft skills with a focus on etiquette and manners and how, with them, students can have a more complete personality. The paper aims at revealing the need and role of good communication skills for professional students and how they can help in building a successful career. Soft skills, along with good manners and conduct can complement the personality of any individual. Etiquette and manners form an integral part of soft skills, as each aspect of communication i.e. listening, speaking, body language, writing etc. is interrelated with courtesy. There is ample evidence that technical students lack the required standard of communication skills, particularly when measured against the needs of the industry. The teaching of soft skills and communication must not be undertaken merely to complete the syllabus; it should also be seen as a means to instil good manners and offer tips on appropriate behaviour. Impeccable soft skills and etiquette go hand-in-glove with every level of good and effective communication, good behaviour, age-appropriate conduct and, above all, becoming a better co-worker and human being.
Education, EQ, hard skills, IQ, life skills, soft skills, training
The purpose of this paper is to investigate the motivation factors, challenges and success factors of entrepreneurs in India. Primary data have been collected from entrepreneurs and analysed to approach the objectives. The results indicate that the main motivation factors are intrinsic factors like following one’s dreams, being one’s own boss and earning lots of money. Self-confidence and a high degree of commitment are the most important success factors, and the biggest challenges are the raising of funds and hiring and retaining of the workforce. The study might help young technocrats in understanding entrepreneurship in the Indian context. It may also aid policymakers in taking steps for promotion of entrepreneurship in India. However, more evidence-based information is needed on the entrepreneurs in India before any generalisation of results can be made. Additionally, the empirical tests were conducted only on the entrepreneurs in the National Capital Region in the period from 2009 to2010 and, hence, the results of the study cannot be assumed to extend beyond this group of entrepreneurs or to different study periods.
Soft skills play a vital role in professional success as they help the individual to excel in the workplace, and therefore, their importance cannot be ignored in the present era. Hard skills are defined as the technical or administrative procedures that are related to an organisation’s core business. These types of skill still have significant value in the business world but soft skills, which are increasingly gaining in significance the world over, refer to the ability to convey an idea to the masses in the simplest possible manner through communication, problem solving, conflict resolution, teambuilding, motivating and other similar skills. These soft skills are typically interpersonal skills and are often difficult to measure. Yet, a lack of these skills will be reflected in poor organizational performance. Presently, business organisations have also started recognising the importance of soft skills as they help in maintaining relationships with customers and in developing a successful business. In this study, an effort has been made to bring to light the wedded relationship between soft skills and the competitive edge of the present times. It focusses, therefore, on the latest mantra to be heard in the competitive world, which is ‘soft skills’.It acts as a stimulus for a harmonious life that synthesises both personal and professional lives. Soft skills are elaborated on here as the protective gear needed by the individual in order to face this competitive world with confidence. The soft skills demonstrated by the individual are part of his individual contribution towards the success of the organization with which he is aligned. This is especially true for business organisations dealing face-to-face with customers; the effective use and display of soft skills are generally the reason for a higher level of success. One such business organisation is the bank. The banking industry requires employee to interact with a wide range of customers from all walks of life. This study was conducted using the Workforce Profile Study in the banking industry; about 60 soft skills which employers seek in their employees were studied. These soft skills are the personal traits and skills that an employer considers as being the most important while selecting employees for jobs of any nature. Banking provides employees with the opportunity to interact with a wide range of people from all walks of life; indeed, the business of banking is driven by relationships, which are believed to be most soundly and firmly built only through personal contact. The upshot of growing competition is that banks have recognized that they must be responsive to customer demands for services; otherwise, they risk losing those customers. It is observed that if one is to work well with others, then he must communicate with them at some point. Strong oral and written communication skills are becoming increasingly crucial and most sought after by business organisations. One needs to be able to understand another person’s language, be it technical or artistic. The aim of this research is to analyse the role of soft skills in converting a business into a successful business. The findings ofthe BEI survey collected from my research indicate that soft skills play a crucial role in differentiating a superior performer from an average performer in the banking industry.
The formation of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) in the year 1995 with around 127 signatories and subsequent developments have intensified competition among countries and the business organisations all over the world. This development is accompanied by increased financial flow and opportunities for all. Survival of the fittest has, therefore, become the mantra in the new global world trade scenario. These developments have received a further boost from the use of information technologies (ICTs) in business operations. With growing competition, the concern for employee involvement has also been growing in business organisations. It is being realised that in a fiercely competitive world market, human resources play a very crucial role in giving an organistion an edge over its competitors. Efforts are therefore being made by organisations to increase communication with employees in the hope that this will increase their involvement in the organisation, thus helping the organisation to have a competitive advantage over its rivals. Communication matters because failures on this front can prove costly. They can lead to misinformation, which can then lead to disruption or stoppage of work. They can also upset the whole rhythm of production, lessening cooperation between employees and their supervisors and creating ill-feeling that causes a disruption in productivity. No organisation can afford this.
Information Technologies (ICTs), World Trade Organisation (WTO)
Communication begins at birth with touch, then with vision, and finally with speech and hearing or audition. Each child needs to learn the “codes of his/her culture” because the language of each culture is different. Yet, if a child is to learn about his/her world, the ability to communicate must exist. Even after a baby learns the rudiments of communication through touch, vision and hearing, those skills need to continue to be refined until about age seven, when the brain is ready to deal with the abstracts/concepts involved in reading, writing, comprehension, maths “language” or concepts and body language. This short article is a dissemination of concepts with concern to the evolution of communication or language as expressed in the famous dubiety, “First came the egg or the hen?” Today when research into languages, culture and language acquisition is at a peak, we should not shy away from the question of the origin of ‘communication’ and ‘language’ in order to consider which may have come first. The second part of this article is a brief discussion on the global language and its significance and incorporation in language classrooms in India. The last section of this article focusses on the types of change occurring in the use of the English Language as used by young people nowadays.
In today’s competitive environment there is a pervasive need to develop a financial foundation as an essential life skill for students to ease their entry into professional life from their present comfort zone. Financial literacy will help improve their critical personal choices of lifestyle, cash flow and investment portfolios. The purpose of this study is to explore the perception of new job entrants on the importance of financial awareness and their present knowledge of financial investments and various instruments in the market. Further, it conducts an empirical investigation into the differences on the above on the basis of key variables such as gender, educational background and geographical regions. It is expected that the findings would provide a reflection of the gaps between the present financial knowledge of students and the practical wisdom they will need to make sound judgements. The results will throw light on the areas that demand attention to achieve the required financial base in graduating students.
Street vending is the most visible aspect of the informal sector, where thousands of people earn their living by selling goods on streets, sidewalks and other open public places. The number of street vendors is increasing day by day. Migrants from rural areas who do not possess the skill, knowledge and education to gain a better-paying job in the formal sector were found to settle for street vending. In most of cases, income generation is the secondary role for women whereas earning a living is the primary role for men. So access to income, savings, access and control over resources and freedom to use saved income for women were less significant than for men. The main expenditure of the vendors is on the basic needs of the family. Income earned through street vending has increased the financial independence and decision making power of women within the household. However, the majority of the women engaged in this sector were found to be overburdened with multiple responsibilities. Nevertheless, this study has shown that traditional attitudes about sex, class and caste based segregation of occupation and work role distribution seem to be changing. This is evident from the fact that the number of Brahmin and Chhetri women and men engaged in street vending is found to be increasing compared to the number of Newar men and women who are engaged in street vending. Traditionally, the main occupation of the Newar is business. The main reasons for the men to be engaged in street vending are to provide for the family and unemployment, whereas the main reason the women are engaged in street vending is that their spouse’s income is insufficient to provide for the basic needs of the family. The source of inspiration to pursue business for most of the women and men street vendors is themselves. Street vendors seem to be suffering from different health problems. Among them the most common are gastritis, headache, backbone pain, cold and fever. Street vendors also face expulsion from vending locations since there is no proper and systematic vending venue for their business. Sexual harassment is also a concern for female street vendors in some cases; the Metropolitan City Police are the major threat they face. But one of the key informants from among the customers highlighted that street vendors always caused obstruction for pedestrians and vehicles. It is evident then that street vendors need to be properly managed.The study showed that 90 per cent of the male street vendors and only 55 per cent of the female street vendors are literate. Thus, there is a great difference in the literacy rate between male and female street vendors. Women street vendors have not yet been able to grasp the opportunity for education due to different social circumstances and lack of awareness. Both women and men street vendors are not aware of computers and other business and marketing-related technologies. They possess little information about new trends of marketing and selling and also possess little information about the quality or the uses of the goods they sell. They also do not have sufficient time and money to find out about the technology. In this area, women street vendors are far behind the men. As businesses in the informal sector and especially street vending are becoming competitive day by day, there is need for street vendors to be aware of user-friendly technology and product knowledge. Technocrats, especially women technocrats, should be engaged to train women street vendors in terms of product knowledge and technology in order to sharpen the competitive edge of street vendors, especially women street vendors.
Street vendors, privatisation, localization, informal sector, migrants, basic needs, lacking resources, leading factors, inspiration
The Genre-Based Approach (GBA) is a teaching writing method that has been discussed recently. Researchers and scholars have successfully employed GBA to help students practice writing in various contexts. The present study aims at investigating the use of the genre-based approach (GBA) and its effects on the writing achievement and attitudes of Thai engineering students. The sample consisted of 40 fourth-year engineering students who were enrolled in an English for engineering course. The study subjects were divided into three groups (high, medium, and low) based on their pre-test scores. Three lessons, which were directly related to writing content concerning engineering work (request e-mails, enquiry e-mails, and reports), were provided in 12 sessions. The post-test, attitude questionnaire, and interview were administered at the end of the experiment. The results of a one-way ANOVA analysis revealed that the writing ability of students in all three groups improved after the experiment with statistical significance. As for their attitudes, the findings showed that the students were satisfied with the teaching method, activities, and exercises. More importantly, they felt more confident in writing.
In a country like Taiwan, where Chinese is the official language, many students struggle to improve their English writing skills. The system of students’ ratings of teachers at the end of each semester can provide valuable information concerning students’ opinions. This paper selects 50 classes of freshmen following writing courses in a university of Taiwan from 2004 to 2006. We adopted the data envelopment analysis to identify the relative performance efficiencies of each class. This research proposed a management matrix of the selected classes’ performance with 4 quadrants which could help them to know in what quadrant they are located. The results of this paper, which were expected to reveal that only a few classes are efficient, could help to provide some concrete and practical learning and teaching strategies for the classes with lower average scores.
Data envelopment analysis (DEA), English writing, teaching and learning performance, proposed management matrix
This paper reports the process and results of an experimental study that involves the use of theatrical performance as a constructive means of enhancing the communicative skills and confidence of a classroom of English language learners doing a course in Functional English. These learners come from a background where English is taught as a second language, and where language teaching is generally text based rather than focusing on the oral communicative skills. A whole class of under graduates (as the Target Group) were initiated by a core theatre team and dramatist into producing and presenting plays in English to an audience of their peers as well as to a general audience for over a period of two years. At the end of the project, their communicative competence was evaluated against a comparable peer group unexposed to the project. The results showed that the target group demonstrated much improved communicative abilities than the control peer group, thus strongly recommending a need to seriously (re)consider the use of theatre as an important technique of second language instruction.
Studying linguistic landscape (LL) is a relatively new area of sociolinguistics that encompasses written language on public road signs, billboard advertisements and shop fronts. The term, LL, can be traced to the seminal work of Landry and Bourhis (1997). It is through the lens of LL that this study aims to examine the linguistic practices and code choices in billboard advertisements in the ‘cityscape’ of a capital city. Spolsky (2004) states the real language policy of a community is likely to be found in its practices than in management of the policy. With this in mind, this study examines official documents that articulate and prescribe linguistic and code choice policies for billboard advertisements and apply the policies to analyse selected billboards along a stretch of highway in a cityscape. Thus, the reality of the practice is what matters most. The prescribed language policies provide a sense of the ideal that a society could strive for in nationhood practices; but the reality of practice reveals the choice and use. The results of these practices point to language accommodations made within a linguistically heterogeneous society. The LL is evidently a negotiation site of the reality and the ideal in language contact management affected by different forces that are politically and socially motivated.
Billboard advertisements, linguistic landscape, language policy, linguistic practices, language contact
Textbook evaluation checklists are instruments that help teachers or programme developers evaluate teaching materials before or after using them. This paper presents one of the phases of a project that involved the survey of a group of evaluators’ (n=82) views on the usefulness of a newly developed checklist. The questionnaire used was a modified version of an instrument developed to evaluate the usefulness of a writing scale (Nimehchisalem, 2010). Based on the results, the checklist indicates high to very high levels of usefulness. The findings are expected to be very helpful for researchers who may intend to test similar instruments.
Writing an effective literature review is not an easy task for novice writers of research articles, who are oftentimes unaware of the exact functions and purpose of this section; they are often unsuccessful in establishing the necessary connection between what has already been reviewed and the proposed research. This paper discusses the rhetorical patterns of the literature review (LR) section of Hospitality and Management (HM) research articles (RAs) from the perspective of genre analysis using the move structures as posited by Swales (2004). Twenty literature reviews from research articles in the Hospitality and Management discipline were analyzed to determine the move structure of the LR section. A moves analysis was carried out to identify the main moves and steps in the LR section. The analysis indicates that the LR sections display cyclical move patterns that show the presence of the 3 moves and their respective steps as postulated in Swales (2004) revised CARS model, but with some variations. The findings show that the LR section has Move 1 as an obligatory step and that HM RA writers favour making general statements about current situations as a beginning strategy. The findings further show that Move 2 Step 1B, ‘Adding to what is known’, is prevalent in the LR section because the writers will go onto contribute to the existing field of research by adding other research findings that are deemed necessary. Another outcome is that only Move 3-Step 1 is prevalent while the other 6 steps are either not found at all or are present in only a few of the samples.
Writing, literature review, research articles, genre analysis