Attitude of PISMP Students in IPBA toward English Essay

Attitude of PISMP Students in IPBA Towards English by Aziz’ H]. Basar Mohd. Naqiuddin Sumardi Hazriq Aswad Zain’ The purpose of the study was to determine the attitude of PISMP students in IPBA with respect to English. All 35 students of the PISMP programme were selected to answer the survey questionnaire which was adapted from that of a previous study. The results of the study indicated that the PISMP students generally have moderately positive thoughts and emotions about the English language and the culture of English speaking people. Introduction IPBA is a teacher-training institute.

There are about 500 students undergoing various courses such as the PISMP (Persediaan IJazah SarJana Muda Pendidikan) and Bachelor of Education (TESL) programme. The PISMP programme began in 2004. It was started as part of the Malaysian government’s effort to produce teachers for both the primary and secondary schools. PISMP students in IPBA are pursuing various courses such as Music Education. Though they may not be B. Ed. (TESL) students, they are still expected to be proficient in English as the nation emphasises proficiency of the English language in her attempt to compete globally with education systems of other nations.

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Statement of the Problem Past studies (for example, Gardner and Lambert, 1959, 1972; Jayatilaka, 1982) have shown that some undergraduates lack competency in the English language because of their attitude towards English (as cited in Coulby, 1984). As the PISMP students are to be trained to be teachers in an education system that emphasises on the English language, it is important that they have the right attitude towards English. If not, then perhaps as Coulby suggested, they may continue to lack competency in the English language.

There is thus a need to determine the attitude of PISMP students towards English. Research Questions This study hopes to answer the following questions: Do PISMP students have a favourable attitude towards English in general? 2. 3. Do PISMP students have a favourable attitude towards the culture of English- speaking people? Significance of the Study The results of this study are significant because it will reflect the attitude of PISMP students towards English. By having such information, lecturers can better prepare their lectures.

Steps can also be taken to help the students change their attitude towards English if need be. The finding from this study can also help in planning new English courses and in the improvement of the existing ones. In the final analysis, it is hoped that PISMP students will make for better teachers. Limitation of the Study This study was limited to PISMP students only. As such, the findings may not be generalised as representative of the whole student population in IPBA. 2 Definition of Terms 1 .

Attitude Attitude towards English in general refers to the state of emotion and thought relating to the English language and the culture of the English-speaking people (CharanJit Singh, 1998). “Culture” is operationally defined as English songs, television rogrammes and English movies. Attitude towards the English language is the total sum of the students’ feelings, prejudice or fears about the learning of English as the second language (Spolsky, 1969). Methodology Sample The sample from this study was selected from the PISMP students in IPBA. All 35 PISMP students were selected.

Instrument A survey questionnaire was used to collect the data for this study. The survey questionnaire was taken from Hamida Bee (1996). The questionnaire consisted of 20 items. Respondents indicated their level of agreement to each item in the instrument ased on a 5 point rating scale, ‘1’ indicating very strong disagreement and ‘5’ indicating very strong agreement. To measure the attitude towards English in general, the rating for all the items were summed. To measure the attitude towards the English language, only the rating for item numbers 1, 3, 4, 5, 8, 9, 12, 14, 18, 19 and 20 were summed.

To measure the attitude towards the culture of the English- speaking people, only the rating for item numbers 2, 6, 7, 10, 11, 13, 15, 16 and 17 were summed. Data Collection Procedures were given to the students apart from the written instructions on the forms to ensure hat the survey questionnaire was responded to correctly. Data Analysis Attitude of PISMP Students towards English in General In order to determine the attitude of the PISMP students towards English in general, the rating for all the items were summed.

The attitude was then determined based on the criteria as shown in Table 1 below. As can be seen from the table, a score of between 29 to 47 indicated an unfavourable attitude while a score of between 76 to 100 was considered favourable. 3 Table 1: Criteria in Determining the Attitude of PISMP Students towards English in General Score Range Attitude 20-47 Unfavourable 48 – 75 Moderate 76- 100 Favourable Table 2 and Figure 1 show the attitude of PISMP Students towards English in general. As can be seen from the table and graph, there were 5 (14. 9%) students with a favourable attitude, 30 (85. 71 %) students have a moderate attitude and none of them (0%) have an unfavourable attitude. Their attitude was determined based on the criteria as shown in Table 1 above. Based on the definition of attitude towards English in general as mentioned earlier, the results indicate that PISMP students generally have positive thoughts and motions towards the English language and the culture of English-speaking people. Frequency 30 (85. 71 5 (14. 9%) Figure 1: Attitude of PISMP Students towards English in General 4 Attitude of PISMP Students towards the English Language In order to determine the attitude of PISMP students towards the English language, the rating for item numbers 1, 3, 4, 5, 8, 9, 12, 14, 18, 19 and 20 were summed. The attitude was then determined based on the criteria as shown in Table 3 below. As can be seen from the table, a score of between 11 to 23 indicate an unfavourable attitude while a score between 37 to 55 was considered favourable. Table 3: Criteria in Determining the Attitude of PISMP Students towards English Language 11-23 24-36 37 – 55 language.

As can be seen from the table and fgure, there were 28 (80%) students with a favourable attitude, 7 (20%) students with a moderate attitude and none of them (0%) with an unfavourable attitude. Their attitude was determined based on the criteria as shown in Table 3 above. Based on the definition of attitude towards the English language given earlier, the results indicate that on the whole PISMP students have good feelings about English, were non-preJudiced and were not fearful in learning the English language as a econd language.

The results above are consistent with that in Table 2 and Figure 1 where the PISMP students were found to have positive thoughts and emotion towards the English language. Table 4: Attitude of PISMP Students towards the English Language Unfavourable 7 (20%) 28 (80%) 5 Figure 2: Attitude of PISMP Students towards the English Language Attitude of PISMP Students towards the Culture of English-speaking People In order to determine the attitude of PISMP students towards the English language the rating for items numbers 2, 6, 7, 10, 11, 13, 15, 16 and 17 were summed.

The attitude was hen determined based on the criteria as shown in Table 5 below. As can be seen from the table, a score of between 9 to 21 indicate an unfavourable attitude while a score between 33 to 45 was considered favourable. Table 5: Criteria in Determining the Attitude of PISMP Students towards the Culture of English-speaking People 9-21 22-34 33 – 45 Table 6 and Figure 3 show the attitude of PISMP students towards the culture of Englishspeaking people. As can be seen from the table and fgure, there were 5 (14. 9%) students with a favourable attitude, 29 (82. 86%) students with a moderate ttitude and only one (2. 86%) student with an unfavourable attitude. Their attitude was determined based on the criteria as shown in Table 5 above. Based on the operational definition of culture as mentioned earlier, the results above indicate that generally, PISMP students have positive feelings, were non-preJudiced and were not fearful of English songs, English television programmes and English movies.

The results above are consistent with the results in Table 2 and Figure 1 towards the culture of English-speaking people. 6 Table 6: Attitude of PISMP Students towards the Culture 1 (2. 6%) 29 (82. 86%) Figure 3: Attitude of PISMP Students towards the Culture Attitude of the Sample as a Whole towards English in General, the English Language and the Culture of English-speaking People general, English language and the culture of English-speaking people, a composite mean for the sample was obtained based on the related items.

For attitude towards English in general, a composite mean was obtained for all the items; for attitude towards English language a composite mean was obtained on items number 1, 3, 4, 5, 8, 9, 12, 14, 18, 19 and 20; for attitude towards the culture of Englishspeaking people, a composite mean was obtained on item numbers 2, 6, 7, 10, 11, 13, 15, 16 and 17. The attitude of the sample as a whole was then determined based on the criteria as shown in table 7. A composite mean between 1. 0 to 2. indicate an unfavourable attitude while a composite mean of between 4. 0 to 5. 0 indicated a favourable attitude. 7 Table 7: Criteria in Determining the Attitude of PISMP Students Composite Mean Range I. o- 2. 9 3. 0- 3. 9 4. 0- 5. 0 Table 8 and Figure 4 show the attitude of the PISMP students on the whole towards English. As can be seen from the table and fgure, the PISMP students’ attitude owards the English language has the highest mean of 3. 61, followed by the PISMP students’ attitude towards English in general (mean=3. 2) and the students’ attitude towards the culture of English-speaking people, which has the lowest mean of 3. 21 . As can be seen in the table and graph, the means of all items are above 3. 0. The results indicate that as a whole, the PISMP students have fairly positive feeling and emotion towards English in general, the English language and the culture of the English-speaking people. The results above are consistent with the earlier results. Table 8: Attitude of PISMP Students towards English Mean Culture 3. 42 3. 61 3. 1 Figure 4: Attitude of PISMP Students towards English 8 Conclusion The findings from this study show that the attitude of PISMP students towards English in general, the English language and the culture of English speaking people are at moderate levels. This indicates that the PISMP students on the whole, have fairly positive feelings and thoughts about English language and culture of the English speaking people. They are also generally non-preJudiced and non-fearful towards the learning of English as a second language.

Implications/Recommendations The moderate attitude of PISMP students towards English implies that the lecturers can better prepare their lectures. It is recommended that steps should be taken to help the students improve further their attitude toward English by planning new courses and the improvement of the existing ones. One of the things that can be applied during the learning sessions is the use of teaching methods such as listening to English songs or watching English movies. It will help the students a lot by improving their listening skill.

What is vital here is that the materials must be related o the course and at the same time, they must be fun. Besides, the lectures can be held in different places like Self Access Centre and library. By doing this, the students will not get bored easily with the surroundings. 9 References CharanJit Singh slo Darbara. (1998). Attitudes of undergraduates towards English in Two Faculties at the University of Malaya. Unpublished master’s thesis, University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Gardner R. C. (1960). Motivational variables in 2nd-language acquisition. (Abstract of doctoral dissertation,Mc Gill University). In R.

C. Gardner and W. E Lambert Attitude and motivation in second language learning. Rowly. Massachusetts : Newbury House Hamida Bee. (1996). Factors Influencing the performance of I-JUM matriculation students in learning English. Unpublished master’s thesis, University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Jayatilaka, T. D. (1982) Motivational and attitudinal variables in the learning of English as a second language : A case study of Malaysian University students. Unpublished doctoral dissertation, Georgetown University. Spolsky, B. (1969). Attitudinal aspects of second language learning. Language Learning, 19, 271-283. 10

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