English should be used for Science & Math - Page 4
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Thread: English should be used for Science & Math

  1. #46
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    IT is mostly in ENGLISH!.. I wonder what happened to that Microsoft O/S in Bahasa Malaysia?.. fizzle and fizzled out..DEAD.

  2. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by bslee
    IT is mostly in ENGLISH!.. I wonder what happened to that Microsoft O/S in Bahasa Malaysia?.. fizzle and fizzled out..DEAD.
    I wonder if its called Mikrolembut?
    That's OK Chang, I am quiet aware of your biased moderation too... And I dont need to slip in any last few words

  3. #48
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    Wink

    Mikrokentut perhaps?
    That's OK Chang, I am quiet aware of your biased moderation too... And I dont need to slip in any last few words

  4. #49
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    Maybe a bit off.. It doesn't take a pass in Maths to become a cashier anywhere. The cash register does all the addition and subtraction, shows the exact change (so big even a -1000 eye defect can see on the screen) to be returned to customer. This is whats happening now.. so WHATS THE PROBLEM?.

  5. #50
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    Should Maths and Science continue to be taught in English, thats the topic guys.

  6. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sentinel
    Cypag, the reason for teaching the science and mathematics subjects in English is NOT to force students to learn English but to ensure that they have access to good books and references for these 2 subjects which are, let us admit it, mostly in English....
    Sentinel, you keep bringing up the issue of books and references in English. If your issue is about having good English so that they can read these books in English, so help these students to improve their English!! There are many ways to improve their English. Using Maths and Science is NOT one of the ways. There are better ways. Once they master English, and even if these 2 subjects are taught in their respective language, they can still use these reference books because they understand English enough to use them. It is the mastery of the language that allows one to access these books.

  7. #52
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    Malaysia Insider has a piece titled "Improve English with vocabulary and grammar, not maths and science"
    http://www.themalaysianinsider.com/i...hs-and-science

  8. #53
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    I did Math & Science in Chinese when I was in SRJK (China). I struggled to understand Math & Science in BM when I was in Sekolah Menengah (SMK).I suffered when I did Engineering in Australia. Now, I have forgotten all these math & science terminologies that learnt in SRJK (China) & SMK because I never use them ever since I left SMK many …many...many years ago.

    There are arguments saying China, Japan, France, Germany and etc can excel despite they use national language in math & science. I have no dispute. But when come to international trading, try to insist on your national language...or use terminologies in your national language…hmmmm…I am not too sure is that going to work?

    Taking Thailand for instance, I visited one of the Japanese companies in Thailand last year. The management told me they engaged university lecturers to conduct English night classes for the Thai engineers because the engineers have problem to express in writing when correspond with their overseas counterparts. Also, I was told, the Japanese executives who can speak and write better English have better chance to promote…hmmmm…an unwritten rule in this Japanese conglomerate.

    Well...it is one to decide how EMPLOYABLE he or she wants to be in the market. However, it is government’s duty to implement right policy for the benefit of MAJORITY and country in view of globalization.

  9. #54
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    Quote Originally Posted by bslee
    IT is mostly in ENGLISH!.. I wonder what happened to that Microsoft O/S in Bahasa Malaysia?.. fizzle and fizzled out..DEAD.
    just wonder windows xp change to tingkap xp can ah?

  10. #55
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    Actually it is Tetingkap

    But seriously .. is the issue the language or the pedagogical methods? I have to wonder that if I am trained to be sufficiently competent in a language, and also taught to be sufficiently resourceful in conducting research, would it really matter if the subject matter was taught in any language?

    And to read the claim that the sciences and mathematics have been "founded, researched, taught and communicated for thousands of years in English" really made my eyes grow wide. English as we know it today probably has a pedigree of less than a thousand years, and the instruction of the technical subjects in the English language less than 150 years. The dominance of the English language internationally was very much a post-World War 2 phenomenon.

    Anyway, I digress again. We seem to be caught up with the polemic of language (and I include PKR and PAS in this allegation) and tend to miss the main point .. how and what are we putting in our education system in the first place!
    Bob Kee
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  11. #56
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    Quote Originally Posted by CS Chua
    Sentinel, you keep bringing up the issue of books and references in English. If your issue is about having good English so that they can read these books in English, so help these students to improve their English!! There are many ways to improve their English. Using Maths and Science is NOT one of the ways. There are better ways. Once they master English, and even if these 2 subjects are taught in their respective language, they can still use these reference books because they understand English enough to use them. It is the mastery of the language that allows one to access these books.
    You obviously missed the point...

    If the students are studying their mathematics and science in Malay, how can they refer to the reference books which are mostly written in English. C'monlah, if I am a student and I am doing my science and mathematic subjects in Malay, how do I read more when the references are all in English.

    Both science and mathematics are technical subjects. English is a language and learning the language doesn't mean you will understand the reference books in English. What is logarithm in Malay, Mr. Chua? What pythogoras theorem in Malay? What is cosine in Malay, Mr. Chua?

    On the other hand I did my mathematics and science subjects in English and I scored a distinction for my Malay too. Honestly, I won't know what stratosphere is in Malay or what a cumulus cloud is called in Malay, eventhough I scored a distinction for my Bahasa Malaysia!

    One is a language subject, the other two are TECHNICAL SUBJECTS.

    Get the drift now, Mr Chua?

  12. #57
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    A lot of the anecdotal arguments presented in this thread in support of the use of English in Science and Mathematics are well engaged in the following article:

    Math and Science: The Case for BM (2)

    .. The question, thus, is one of the greater good. With PPSMI, children whose parents are vocally pro-English will naturally do better. But PPSMI is at the expense of the majority losing out in Math and Science, in addition to their English not getting any better. Local studies have shown that PPSMI is damaging. (See box below).

    If the worry is about English, then the upper middle-class and professional strata should improve their children’s English after school hours rather than inadvertently punish the majority of Malay and vernacular speakers. If the concern is about Math and Science, then privileged kids will just have to make an extra effort at matriculation and tertiary level.

    .. more
    I reckon we can continue to be emotional about this and insist that our way is correct (whether one is for or against the teaching of Science and Math in English), or we can look at the empirical evidence and make an informed decision as to which approach would contribute more to the collective good of the nation and the individual advancement of our children.
    Bob Kee
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  13. #58
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    Seems like this PPSMI will remain an issue for a long time even after a decision is made by our Education Minister... Everyone has his/her reason...

    Why not, just allow the freedom of choice for the student to select. National schools should just continue to do them in the main medium of instruction in the National schools, which is in BM. But, allow them to be taught in English, as an option, and do not force it to be taught only in one language.

    Let teaching of Maths and Science be in English a matter of personal choice for the individual schools. If the school wish to teach it in English because of more student opting for it, then the school should put in additional efforts, like having classes for Maths and Science in English, and have the students study them in English, have exams conducted in English. Otherwise, the student can just opt to go with the standard medium of instruction in the vernacular school. Teaching Maths and Science in English can also be done as additional classes.

    Exams should continue to be in the the standard language of delivery, and with option for English. This should be done over a period of time to enable a proper interim. Deciding any otherway may end up disastrous one way or another. In the world of commerce, and international business, there will always be a demand for different languages, not just english, or BM, and Mandarin. Although BM is not a very widely used language on the Internet, it cannot be said that it will not be. Neither is Mandarin or any other language.

    This is to prevent a stereotyped production of monolithic-thinking individuals lacking in diversity and originality. If the graduate cannot understand Maths in BM then he or she will need to brush it up if he or she thinks that it is critical to his or her working life. On the same note, if the graduate cannot understand Maths in English, then he or she will need to brush it up if he or she thinks that it is critical for his or her working life. It's a process of adaptation, and natural elimination. If there is a demand for communication in English in the working/internet world, then let the individual find a his/her way not spoon fed.

    This may sound a bit like wierd or as if it is at all not concerned with all the hoo-haa going on. But, this forcing of students to do this, and that, without a choice is not good either. Let the student and the parents decide for their own future rather than a 'choc-a-block' knee-jerk reaction, and having the rest follow an unwise decision few years down the road. It will always not be good if somethings are forced down the throat of others.

    Teaching of Maths & Science was never an issue during the early years, when English was the main medium of instruction. It only became a problem when BM was used as the main medium of instruction for all national-type schools over the years.
    If Maths and Science were to be taught in English, then the main medium of instruction must be change to English to facilitate the understanding during the formative school years, and not by switching at the later (secondary) years. It takes a generation to change from one language to another. Whether it's good or bad, it's already done...Our leaders had taken a decision... so we got to live with it though it might not be good. But, the choice should be given back to the ppl going into the future. If it turn out to be bad, let the parent/student blame no one.
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  14. #59
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    Teaching of Maths & Science was never an issue during the early years, when English was the main medium of instruction. It only became a problem when BM was used as the main medium of instruction for all national-type schools over the years.
    Was it ever a problem until the former Prime Minister made an arbitrary decision to implement a half past six policy to mix the medium of instruction in schools that:

    a. did not get any public feedback
    b. did not provide any professional feedback available to the public
    c. did not provide for enough time to transition

    If I recall correctly, the original proposal was to re-introduce English medium schools. It got reduced to the current mess that it is today due to political expediency.
    Bob Kee
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    "The hottest place in hell is reserved for those who remain neutral in moral crisis" - Dante


  15. #60
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sentinel

    Both science and mathematics are technical subjects. English is a language and learning the language doesn't mean you will understand the reference books in English. What is logarithm in Malay, Mr. Chua? What pythogoras theorem in Malay? What is cosine in Malay, Mr. Chua?
    Please let me answer: logarima, teorem pythogoras and kosain. My spelling could be wrong. Haven't thought of it in 20-odd donkey years.

    BTW, what language are the local universities exams currently? I actually don't know.

    What do we want? Our university students passing exams because they can now refer to English reference books or do we want them to have the ability to communicate in English after they graduate?

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