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Malaysian ESL Learners in Four Education Institutions Mohd Sahandri Gani Hamzah University Putra Malaysia Saifuddin Kumar Abdullah Jabatan Pengajian Politeknik dan Kolej Komuniti Kementerian Pengajian Tinggi Malaysia Abstract This study deal with analyze of meta cognitive strategies (MS) in reading and writing among 400 Malaysia ESL learners in polytechnic, teacher training institute, form six and matriculation colleges. The sample was selected based on non-random sampling and were categorized in two categories there is more successful learners and less successful learners. The six types of learning strategies are memory, cognitive, compensation, metacognitive, effective, and social strategies. Both of MSL and LSL perform high mean score of metacognitive strategies compare with other strategies. Result of One Way ANOVA among four groups of Malaysian ESL learners ranking of metacognitive strategies shows that teacher training institution and polytechnic students view significant different and better than matriculation and form six students. This result is proven that teachers training institution and polytechnic practice and apply meta cognitive strategies during their six months training. Whereas, matriculation and form six students learn English only for the purpose of examination. Keywords: Metacognitive, Strategies, Reading, Writing, ESL.
Polytechnic or Community College. Matriculation College. The respondents were from four selected Institutions of Higher Learning (IHL). there is a need for the students to effectively learn the English Language and to be proficient in order to pass the MUET and TOFEL with a satisfactory grade. There are numerous options for them at this level.1.0. Background of the Study The title of the study Analysis of Metacognitive Strategies in reading and writing among Malaysian ESL learners in Institutions of Higher Learning. This study is an attempt to address the shortcomings in ESL learning the local context. They can go to university or they can choose to enroll themselves in Form Six class. Although these students came from various institutions. Form Six and Matriculation College. 1.1. the qualified students may move on to study in various IHL. namely Polytechnic. Teacher Training Institute. . For this purpose. All of them have to sit for the Malaysian University English Test (MUET) before applying for admission in university locally and TOFEL for aboard. they had a common goal which were at all pre-university levels of study and preparing to further their studies in University where English is used extensively in learning and teaching. Teacher Training Institute. It hopes to provide some information to the authorities involved at the decision making and implementing levels in Malaysian Ministry of Higher Education. The venue of the study was in the East Coast region of Peninsular Malaysia. There were 400 respondents between 18 and 19 years of age. Malaysian ESL Learners in the Selected Institutions of Higher Learning (IHL) After having received the SPM examination results.
when they enter the high levels of education . They did not know the effective learning strategies exists as they were not taught any strategy training. according to McKeachie (1988). 1. on how to use the learning strategies (O Malley & Chamot. Ministry of Education. Statement of the Problem One of the possible reasons that the majority of the Malaysian ESL learners are incompetent user of English because they do not learn the language effectively. as many references books are written in English (Teacher Education Division. 2006). that is.2. English is taught in the Teacher Training Institutes to enhance students competency in English in a variety of context and to facilitate them in their studies (Teacher Education Division. Through short interviews of local students and instructors. For example. the researcher discovered that neither the students nor the instructors were aware of the use of MS. and understanding the reference materials. The role of English at this level is an important tool for learning especially in dealing with terminologies in various field of studies. Ministry of Education. English is also taught in Matriculation colleges. 1989) in language activities particularly in reading and writing tasks. 2006). English is also needed for obtaining and expanding knowledge through the Internet. 2006).English is also emphasized as this level as a means of preparing students for the MUET which is a requirement for the pre-university students who wish to enroll in the university programmers. (Ministry of Education Malaysia. Another problem is that the majority of Malaysian ESL learners are at risk students because. to help students become effective and efficient English language user in social and academic contexts and to prepare them for the MUET and TOFEL exam.
they can regulate their commitment.and Suhor (1988) point out that neither the lectures nor the students perceive that self-awareness promotes self-regulation. if the students are aware of how committed they are to reaching goals.without proper learning strategies.al. of how strong their disposition is to persist. According to Marzano. Number 4 (2009) 678 1. Thus they have to become users of MS. to determine the similarities and differences MSL against other learning strategies among SML and LSL. Brand. Surprisingly. This shows that the majority of the students are handicapped and need help. European Journal of Social Sciences Volume 11. This appear to be true when Zuridah (2008) conducted a study of the English language proficiency of 405 students at six Malaysian public university in 2006 and found that 54. to compare between MSL and LSL based on learning strategies. they are handicapped in achieving success in mastering English and other disciplines as well. They need to be trained on how to use MS in their ESL learning.4% were good user of English. Rankin. and attention (marzano.3. Next. et. the researcher found that the instructors do not know that the use of MS in reading or writing tasks is linked to motivation and self. (1988). and of how focused their attention is to a thinking. Jones.et. b.6% of students were under limited and very limited users of English. This seems to be true when Marzano. problem is the lack of exposure through a brief discussion with instructors. Hughes. Presseisen. reading or writing tasks. the more they can control and manage their ESL learning. disposition. . and that the more students are aware of their thinking processes as they learn to complete their tasks. only 1.efficacy.1988). Objectives of the Study a.
MS may be summarised as higher order executive skills which enable students to approach learning in a systematic. Figure 1: MS in Reading and Writing Processes Learning Processes Planning for own learning Monitoring of own learning Evaluation of own learning Learning Tasks Reading Writing Lead toMetacognitive strategies According to figure 1 there are 3 component of learning processes in metacognitive strategies such as planning. Number 4 (2009) 679 Figure 2: Conceptual Framework of the Study . Therefore. This concept is graphically represented in Figure 1. and Allami & SalmaniNadoushan (2006).c. monitoring of own progress in reading and writing task or self-evaluating of learning after the language activity (reading or writing task is completed. Oxford (1990). efficient and effective way by using the elements of planning. 1. The Concept of Metacognitive Strategies Research such as O Neil (1978). MS involve for example.4. to distinguish metacognitive strategies performance among Malaysian ESL in 4 institution. This 3 component of learning process lead to learning tasks reading and writing component. However. define MS in different ways. monitoring and evaluation in Learning English as second language. European Journal of Social Sciences Volume 11. planning for learning on reading and writing. monitoring and evaluating .
This is to say that the Malaysian ESL learners may adapt to new learning strategies in order to succeed in their ESL learning. self-reflective processes in human adaptation and change. MUET and Other Forms of Assessment s (MUET) In the above framework Input refer to ability of ESL learners which divided into two groups more successful and less successful learners. The whole process which is mirrored in the study is based on Bandura s (1986) Social Learning Theory which advanced a view of human functioning that records a central role to cognitive. monitoring and evaluation among ESL learners. . various. self-regulatory. Along the metacognitive process the strategies that involve in writing and reading are self planning. At the end of the study both ESL groups performance and assessment be refer to their metacognitive strategies.INPUT PROCESSES PRODUCT ESL ability of the learners Use of MS in Reading and Writing in ESL Learning MUET Proficiency in English More Successful Learners Less Successful Learners Groups Planning Monitoring Evaluating Results From Exams e.g.
Respondents . affect.5. self-reflecting. and alter the school and classroom structures that may work to undermine student success (environmental factors) (Pajares. They should be able to plan.2002) 1. self reflecting and self-regulating. improve their academic skills and self regulatory practices (behavior). European Journal of Social Sciences Volume 11. For example. in turn. Research Methodology 1. inform and alter subsequent behavior. In this context. According to Nussbaum and Kardash (2005). self-regulate. how people interpret the result of their own behavior informs and alters their environments and the personal factors they possess which. and (c) environmental influences which create interactions. Nussbaumn & Kardash (2005) states that Bandura altered the label of his theory from social learning to social cognitive both to distance it from prevalent social learning theories of the day and to emphasizes that cognition plays a critical role in people s capability to construct reality. monitor and evaluate their own learning. Number 4 (2009) pro-active.5.1. that is. pro-active. the Malaysian ESL learners are viewed as self organizing. people are viewed as self-organizing. the instructor can work to improve their student s emotional states and to correct their faulty self-beliefs and habits of thinking (personal factors). encode information. (b) behavior. By using social cognitive theory as a framework. and perform behaviors. and self-regulating individuals. and biological events.Bandura (1986) stresses on this theory. this the foundation of Bandura s (1986) concept which views (a) personal factors in the form of cognition.
ranging in age from 18 to 19 years. The analyses employed descriptive statistics and inferential statistics for qualitative data as described below: The six types of learning strategies on Strategy Inventory For Language Learning (SILL) are memory strategies. They were from Institution of Higher Learning (IHL) located in East Coast region of West Malaysia. The Think aloud Protocols were conducted one month after Stage 2.A total of 400 students. Table 1: Compares the number of the MSL and LSL who rated the various learning strategies in terms of frequency of use. instructor or lecture recoded it using a tape recorder. The respondents were briefed on how the Think-aloud session would be conducted. Each respondent verbalized the process and the English language teacher. Analyses and Interpretation of Data The data analyses were accordingly performed to yield answers to the various research question using the Statistical Package of Social Science (SPSS) programmers.3. affective strategies and social strategies (Oxford. The teacher or lecture prompted the respondent if it was necessary. cognitive strategies. The ranking of Metacogntive Strategies against Other Learning Strategies on SILL Based on Frequency of Use among MSL and LSL. metacognitive strategies. The respondents were categorized into two categories: More Successful Learners (MSL) and Less Successful Learners (LSL). The whole procedure took a total of two weeks to complete. 1.2. The method of selection was based on no-random sampling or purposive sampling.5. participated in this study.5. 1990). compensation strategies. . 1.
96 Medium 2.35 Medium 3. the MSL utilized more of the MS such as planning.69) was the highest ranked type of strategy for MSL.69) more than other learning strategies on SILL. The result from table 1 also show that memory strategies (mean = 2. MSL in general. On the other hand. while social strategies (Mean = 3.90 Medium Memory strategies 2. asking question such as asking for clarification or verification and asking for correction. Thus. the LSL ranked social strategies highest (mean = 3.31) was highest for the LSL. mean = 2. This data indicate that among the Malaysian ESL learners. First.96 Medium 2.84 Medium European Journal of Social Sciences Volume 11.84) ranked lowest for both groups of Malaysian ESL learners. it can be seen that MS (Mean = 3. monitoring and evaluating in their own ESL learning and performance. Number 4 (2009) 681 Statistical analysis in Table 1 shows that the three highest-ranked learning strategies used in ESL learning are not similar for MSL and LSL.31 Medium Cognitive strategies 3.07 Medium Affective strategies 2. 1990) to help them . The result indicate that the LSL placed more importance on Social Strategies.47 Medium 3. for example.63 High 3. This suggest that the Malaysian ESL learners in general do not rely much on memorization in their ESL learning. The differences in the ranking can also observed among the two groups of learners.09 Medium Compensation strategies 3.96.18 Medium Social strategies 3.31). used MS (mean = 3.69 High 3.Types of Learning Mean score MSL Category of use Mean score LSL Category of Use Metacognitive strategies 3. cooperating with others such as cooperating with peers and cooperating with the proficient users of the new language or empathizing with others such as becoming aware of others thoughts and feelings (Oxford.
the MSL indicated a high use rate of metacognitive and social strategies while the other four learning strategies on SILL. including the highest ranked social strategies.67 0. on the whole. cognitive (t = 6.05. The result are presented in Table 2.58). the MSL seem to utilize strategies more.005* Affective Strategies 0. The t.to cope with their learning.test were used to find significant differences between the MSL and the LSL in their use of the various learning strategies in their ESL learning.89 0. In addition. cognitive. In contrast.091 *Sig p<0.05 The result in Table 2 show that out of six different types of learning strategies on SILL. social (t = 4.p (2 tailed) MS 7. there are significant differences between the learner groups in the rating for four of the strategies: metacognitive (t = 7. This difference suggest that. particularly metacognitive and social strategies. affective and memory strategies were rated medium use . Table 2: Result of t. that is.003* Social Strategies 4.67).58 0.test analysis for differences in strategies use between MSL and LSL on SILL Type of Learning Strategies t value Sig.78 0120 Memory Strategies 1. These result reflect that the Malaysian ESL learners benefit from instruction or guidance in the use of at least these four learning . compensation.92) and compensation (t = 4.92 0.023* Compensation Strategies 4. the LSL indicated a medium use rating for all six types of learning strategies.012* Cognitive Strategies 6.52 0.52) at p<0.
cognitive and compensation strategies. Table 3: The Ranking of MS among Four Groups of the Malaysian ESL Learners in Four IHL Table 3 shows that results of One-Way ANOVA among four groups of the Malaysian ESL learners in Four IHL based on the way these learners ranked MS Source Sum of Square df Mean Square F Sig.609.30 .205 396 .41 3.000* Within Groups 99.159 12.strategies. The result shows that there is little variation between individual learners within specific groups. df = 3.682 399 *Sig p<0.04 3. social. 396. the result in Table 3 show the different groups of Malaysian ESL learners in IHL. The results of the Tukey test in table 4 also show that there are significant differences between specific groups. Consequently. metacognitive.251 Total 108.609 . that is.p Between Groups 9. p<0.08 3. but there is greater variation between the groups.05. Number 4 (2009) One way ANOVA in table 3 shows that there are significant differences in the mean scores of the four groups of the Malaysian ESL learners IHL ranking MS F=12. Table 4: Tukey test of metacognitive strategies ranking among four groups of Malaysian ESL learners in four IHL Source Matriculation College Form Six Teacher Training Institute Polytechnic N 100 100 100 100 Mean 3.05 European Journal of Social Sciences Volume 11.477 3 3.
the learners from the teacher training Teacher Training Institute and Polytechnic ranked MS highest. The result suggest that out of four groups of learners in four IHL. this reflects that the students from Teacher Training Institute and the Polytechnic differ from the other two groups in the way they perceived the importance of MS and ranked them highest.458 . The students in the Teacher Training Institute and Polytechnic again appear to most perceive MS as important and thus ranked them highest. Teacher Training Institution.551 . Summary In this research every Malaysian student has given an equal opportunity to learn English Language in school and at Higher Learning Institution such as Polytechnics. the theoretical aspect and also the practical aspect of the course.SD . 1. some students seem to learn rather easily. Another possible reason could again be the nature of their programmed in these two institutions in which the focus is on both components. Form Six and Matriculation Colleges.6.509 Matriculation College * * Form Six * * Teacher Training Institute * * Polytechnic * * The result from Table 4 were ranked from the highest to the lowest in terms of the four groups of the Malaysian ESL learners ranking MS.478 . However. that is. while some other . Thus. It could be due to the different approach in their syllabus specification which are not emphasized explicitly in the other two groups of learners. This consistency is reflected in the previous sections.
the result shows that significant between four groups of ESL learners. identifying the purpose of the language task. and evaluating the successes of learning activities. setting goals and objectives.18) compare with other strategies. planning and seeking the opportunity as well as self monitoring and self evaluating which the students make use of in learning during their teaching practice and industrial training. Whereas. we can conclude that teachers trainee institution and polytechnic shows that highest performance in meta cognitive strategies in English. In general.69) and LSL (mean 3. polytechnic and matriculation and form six with matriculation. The differences in meta cognitive among teacher trainee institution and matriculation. paying attention. delivering speech production. organizing. The reason these two institutions have higher percentage is because the students have to apply their meta cognitive strategies in teaching practice for six months at the school. Strategy Inventory for Language Learning (SILL) for metacognitive is important in ESL learning because they are the higher order executive skills that may entail planning. In addition to that. In this study analysis of metacognitive strategy in reading were more focused on categories that mention above.students apparently find learning English fraught with difficulty and are not competent in the language even after many years of learning. In higher learning institution as shown in the conceptual framework. In the other word. find out about language learning. monitoring. different types of metacognitive strategies as been implemented by students in both institutions such as over viewing. References . the use of metacognitive among MSL (mean 3. teachers trainee institution and form six students. Furthermore. polytechnic ESL students go for industrial training six months and apply the metacognitive strategies in the working environment.
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