Responsible development of a nation calls for knowledgeable and skilled human capital. Indeed, human capital plays a big role in the planning process and implementation of national development. To achieve this, one strategy is to enhance the skills of individuals, thereby also enhancing their marketability to ensure the availability of a flexible, technically skilled and efficient workforce. To produce and fulfil the requirement for a skilled workforce, the education delivery system and practical training of future graduates should become more responsive to the needs of the job market, which is dynamic and productive and geared towards global competition. This study aims to identify the elements of technical skills needed by electrical engineering students that would make them marketable today. A total of 21 experts were selected to analyse the fuzziness consensus of experts. All collected data were analysed using the Fuzzy Delphi Method. The results show 16 of the 23 elements meet the conditions, the threshold value (dkonstruk) is less than 0.2 and the percentage of the expert group is more than 75%. This shows that, based on the consensus of the experts, the elements of technical skills are needed by electrical engineering students for mastering technical skills.
This study appraises the intention of educators to use computer technology for teaching and learning in Northeastern Nigeria, a region comprising Adamawa, Bauchi, Borno, Gombe, Taraba and the Yobe States. Although the Nigerian government has provided computers for teaching and learning, they are underutilised. A survey was conducted to validate items recorded in past studies. The Technology Acceptance Model (TAM) was employed as a theoretical framework. The Bootstrapping Algorithm with SmartPLS was applied for modelling interaction with 269 subjects from the targeted populations of 715 science lecturers from Northeast Nigeria. Several studies affirmed a significant influence of perception of usefulness and perception on ease-of-use on attitude towards technology acceptance and were validated in different behavioural intention to use. Perceived usefulness and ease-of-use explain individual attitude and directly influence intention. This study investigates influence attributes of the Technology Acceptance Model (TAM) towards use of the computer as a teaching aid among lecturers in Nigeria. Constructs based on TAM (perceived usefulness, ease-of-use and attitude on behavioural intention to use a computer) also supported the impact of perceived ease-of-use on perceived usefulness and towards the lecturers' attitude. Overall, variance explained indicated 40%. The result verifies TAM as robust and can be applied within different cultures. This implies that teaching in polytechnics and other institutions of higher learning can be improved if computers and training to facilitate ease-of-use are provided for lecturers.
As information and communication technology becomes a regular feature of the educational environment, it may be difficult for teaching and learning activities especially in TVET institutions to remain unchallenged. However, ICT application as a pedagogical tool in Nigerian TVET institutions is not a common practice, and it also remains unclear how utilisation of ICT enhances pedagogy. This study is interested in the availability of electronic courses using ICT infrastructure in teaching and learning. Using activity theory as a guide, multiple case studies are conducted. The Qualitative Case Study Methodology is used in this research. Five TVET institutions and 20 participants are selected using maximum variation and homogeneous purposive sampling strategies, respectively. During the visits to the institutions, classroom observation is carried out, documents such as the curriculum and teacher's lecture materials are reviewed for triangulation. Semi-structured interviews are conducted with 20 selected participants as the primary data collection method. At the data analysis stage, the inductive and deductive methods are used to analyse the data, and two strategies of grounded theory as open and axial coding are employed. The coding process is achieved through the use of an inherent feature of NViVO10. The findings show that four themes: availability of infrastructure, computer specifications, educational software and connectivity.
The purpose of this study is to investigate the long-term stability of the positive effects obtained through career guidance. This study focussed on the longitudinal effects of career guidance on students' major satisfaction. Data from the Korea Education and Employment Panel (KEEP) were analysed by applying SPSS 18.0 and AMOS 18.0 to investigate the mediation effect of students' self-efficacy between career guidance and students' major satisfaction. Results indicated a continual increase of self-efficacy in long-term stabilisation with regard to students' satisfaction with their academic majors. This study quantitatively investigated the long-term stability of the positive effects obtained through career guidance. Although the findings were somewhat tentative, there was preliminary support for the influence of three critical ingredients: counselling, career information and professor guidance in all types of career guidance. However, additional research is needed to identify which students benefit from which career guidance and under what circumstances.
Career guidance, longitudinal effect, major satisfaction, mediation, self-efficacy
Cooperative learning (CL) as a 21st-century classroom teaching method has begun to be viewed as a form of active learning in Malaysia. Although CL has been applied and successfully implemented abroad, it is still considered difficult to put into practice among primary school teachers in Malaysia for improving English among primary school students. Primary school teachers are more comfortable with conventional teaching methods including using the national language, Bahasa Malaysia. In order to implement CL successfully, teachers require knowledge of CL, its features and terms and how it functions in classrooms. This qualitative study examined 10 primary school teachers' from the southern zone of Peninsular Malaysia on their understanding of CL and factors perceived to affect its implementation. Using Johnson and Johnson's (1994) features of CL and Bain, Lancaster and Zundans' (2009) list of CL terms as a framework for analysis, we found that the teachers' level of CL knowledge shaped their perception of the factors affecting its implementation in the classroom. However, more research is needed to explain how teachers' knowledge of CL can shape what teachers perceive as barriers to effective implementation that affect the success of CL in practice.
Cooperative learning (CL), English proficiency, teachers' perception
Shy behaviour during the teaching and learning of basic psychomotor skills could affect the development of children's skills. This study was undertaken to examine the relationship between shyness and children's participation during the teaching and learning of basic psychomotor skills in early education. The samples for this study were n=118 (55 boys, 63 girls) shy preschool children who enrolled in the Segamat Preschool, Ministry of Education (MOE) Malaysia who were nominated by their teachers during the primary stage of data collection. The children were then rated by their teachers in terms of their shyness level and participation during the teaching and learning of basic psychomotor skills. The analysis showed that the children's level of shyness was high (M=3.73, SD=0.642) whereas the children's participation was low (M=2.40, SD=0.731). There was no significant difference in the level of shyness between boys and girls. However, there was a strong negative correlation between the level of shyness and the student's participation in the teaching and learning of basic psychomotor skills.
Basic psychomotor skills, classroom, participation, shyness, teaching and learning
Creativity is rated among the most important human mental attributes or human capital that is considered by researchers as the driving force behind economic development, technical advances, work-place leadership and life success. As such, creativity is certainly an important aspect of technical and vocational education and training, in which design and innovation are among the core subjects. As the perspective that enhancement of creativity can be carried out through learning and training is accepted, the design and development of instructional modules plays a significant role in enhancing the creativity levels of both trainers and trainees, especially in the field of education. Teaching and learning resources in varying degrees of depth and difficulty that cater for the individual, groups and organisations can be prepared. This article sets forth a conceptual framework for a structure for a creativity enhancement module that includes its design, development and evaluation. Keys areas in the framework include theories of creativity and domains that are involved, theories of teaching and learning creativity, indigenous perspectives and theories of module design, development and evaluation of the module in the intervention process
Creativity, enhancement of creativity, indigenous perspectives module, theories of creativity and domains
The appropriateness of learning methods used contributes to performance improvement and interest in the topic, Electromagnetism, among technical students with different cognitive styles. Learning is a process in which students obtain new information and knowledge. For effective learning and to achieve academic excellence, students need to know the proper learning methods. This study identifies appropriate learning methods for technical students in order to improve the achievement of technical students of different of cognitive and to enhance their interest as presented in Witkin's Theory. This research studies a couple of learning groups engaged in product-orientation learning and conventional learning. The sample comprises 70 students from Malaysian polytechnics to determine their cognitive styles through the Group Embedded Figures Test. A pre-test, post-test and a questionnaire were used in quasi-experimental research to obtain data concerning the students' performance and their interest in learning. The results show that product-orientated learning yields the best scoring of students' performance and interest increment compared to other methods. We conclude that learning methods should ensure students' needs positively correlate with their achievements and interest. Based on the advantages of the product and its effectiveness in aiding student comprehension, this product is seen to be an appropriate learning method for technical students in Malaysian polytechnics
This study aimed to investigate construction management graduates' generic skills competency required by Malaysian contractors for entry-level construction managers. This study employed a questionnaire survey, and data were collected using a 5-point Likert scale questionnaire. The instrument adopted 75 items from the Association of Project Management and the Project Management Institute generic skills competency to measure industry requirements. A total of 94 construction practitioners representing contractors (grade 5 to 7) in the Klang Valley participated in this study. The Rasch Measurement Model was used to analyse the items and respondents' reliability, the items and respondents' separation index, the items' fit, the levels of items' agreement and the respondents' ability. The findings showed that the items' reliability index was 0.83 and the respondents' reliability index was 0.96. The items' strata index was 2.18, which means that there are two different levels of item agreement in this study. Meanwhile, the respondents' strata index was 5.24, which means that there are five levels of respondents' requirement in this study. The results also found that 21 items were misfits based on the Rasch Measurement Model's values of outfit/infit MNSQ and the z-standardised index. The Rasch Measurement Model identified that most of the construction practitioners required construction management graduates to practise generic skill competency in performing the roles and tasks of entry-level construction managers.
Construction management, entry-level construction managers and generic competency
In Malaysian building construction projects, quality assessment is important to ensure the success of a project. The Quality Assessment System for Building Construction Work (QLASSIC) introduced by the Construction Industry Development Board (CIDB) covers four main components, which are structural works, architectural works mechanical and electrical works and external works. This paper examines problems in assessing the quality of building construction work in electrical work. This research used the concurrent triangulation design, which implemented the quantitative and qualitative methods. Three instruments were used in this preliminary research, which were the focus group, interview and QLASSIC assessment questionnaire. A total of 69 respondents comprising clients, contractors and QLASSIC assessors took part in the questionnaire survey. Focus group discussions and semi-structured interviews were held with 20 site supervisors and five site supervisors from the Selangor State Development Corporation, respectively. The data analysis shows two main problems faced by construction site supervisors, which are lack of quality assessment training held by the company and incompetence of site supervisors in assessing electrical work quality. Thus, the quality of building construction projects can be influenced by on-site competency and training.
Public projects have been found to be short on quality, incurring endless cost overruns and guilty of extensive time delays, as highlighted in the annual Auditors' General Reports. One critical aspect that has been emphasised is the conduct of the public officers managing the projects, and it has been concluded that the effectiveness of the training provided to them is questionable. A Project Management Reference Framework was developed to assess the training provided to project managers and the framework was validated by construction professionals. This paper continues a study on the assessment of the training modules provided for public project management officers. The aim of this study is to give an overview of what is being offered compared to what is required in real practice. The mixed method was used for this study, which employed the concurrent exploratory technique. The training modules that were assessed were obtained from the National Institute of Public Administration (INTAN), the Construction Industry Development Board (CIDB) and also the Public Works Department (PWD). The findings of this study show that the focus of the training that was assessed was not aligned with what is required by the industry. This study suggests that training providers need to have a plan and a common recognised term of reference for developing training and the training should emphasise on industry needs so that the industry benefits from effective training to produce a reliable and competent workforce.
Project management training, public projects, reference framework, training adequacy
Teachers who did not major in English in Batam face several obstacles to speaking English. The researcher observed less participation from these teachers in daily communication using English in school. This influences the competency in English of students. The purpose of this research was to explore the obstacles to speaking English among these teachers in Sekolah Putera Batam, Kepri. This naturalistic-qualitative method research uses the one-on-one interview as the technique of collecting data. In analysing the data, this research uses the descriptive qualitative method to capture the obstacles. Analysis of the descriptive data analysis show 27 categories of external and internal obstacles to speaking English that the teachers faced. The internal obstacles, which arise from the cognitive, affective and psychomotor domains, are poor English grammar mastery, fear and limited English-speaking skills, while the external are former English teachers, materials, time and facilities.
Affective, cognitive, competency, English speaking, learners' obstacles, non-English major teacher, psychomotor
This paper discusses the major hazardous activities during the casing and cementing operation with potential associated hazards in the on and offshore oil and gas industries of Malaysia, Pakistan and Saudi Arabia. The researcher adopted the explanatory research approach for the quantitative (survey questionnaire) and qualitative research methods (semi-structured interview) in the data collection process. Eighty drilling crew were randomly selected for quantitative research, while three safety officers were purposively selected for qualitative research from each targeted industry. According to the findings of this study, running casing to wells and circulation cementing activity is considered highly hazardous at the offshore site. At the Saudi Arabian onshore domain, running casing to holes is more hazardous, while at offshore domains, installation of casing and casing accessories is more hazardous than in Malaysia and Pakistan. The participants from the Pakistani offshore industry reported that installation of casing and circulation of cementing activity were highly hazardous. In the context of overall casing and cementing operation among the focus industries, the Malaysian on and offshore oil and gas industry considers the casing and cementing operation as more hazardous compared to that of other industries, with a total mean range of 3.37 for onshore and 3.45 for offshore sites that lie under a moderate level of the mean range. The dangers are associated with potential ergonomic, chemical and safety hazards during on and offshore operation.
This study examined the correlations between rehabilitation and reformation programmes such as moral instruction and counselling and medical services in Nigerian correctional institutions. A survey design was adopted. The participants were 224 offenders selected from seven correctional institutions in Nigeria. Questionnaire items were administered. Pearson correlation was used to examine the relationships between the variables. The findings reveal a moderate positive significant relationship between moral instruction and rehabilitation; there is a strong positive significant relationship between counselling services and rehabilitation and there is a strong positive relationship between medical care and rehabilitation. It is therefore recommended that Nigerian correctional institutions be in compliance with international best practice. More effort should also be given towards the teaching of moral instruction that has been identified as moderate because the higher the moral instruction given to offenders the higher the offender rehabilitation.
Correctional institutions, offenders, reformation, rehabilitation, moral instruction
Societal stigma attached to Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) is difficult to erase. Many around the world have labelled vocationaleducation as an unpromising field and a place to pool non-performers. Although much has been done to promote TVET as legitimate education,the negative perception lingers in the mind of many. Gradually, that negative perception is being discarded as many becomeaware ofthe benefitsof TVET. This paper explores the leadership approach of champions of TVET based on their true experience of championing TVET in Malaysia. Malaysian TVET leaders have demonstrated transformational leadership and have won awards locally and globally.
Championing TVET (Technical and Vocational Education and Training),leadership,transformational approach
Teacher's organisational commitment is important for school effectiveness and, indirectly, is able to affect student outcomes. Thus, this study intended to identify the emotional intelligence of teachers and organisational commitment among vocational college teachers. Also, this work tested the relationship between emotional intelligence and teachers' organisational commitment. This study used the survey method of the quantitative approach using a questionnaire as instrument and surveyed 170 teachers as respondents. The outcomes of the survey show that there is a positive, significant relationship between teachers' emotional intelligence and organisational commitment. The outcomes can assist teachers and organisations in enhancing the teachers' job satisfaction and the organisational commitment of teachers.
The homestay, as community tourism, can become a catalyst for economic development of rural communities. However, the issue of sustainability of the homestay programme in the context of community development remains debatable. Previous studies revealed that the actual impact of homestay on the local community, especially in terms of the economy, remains at a minimum, and most of the homestay programme is not competitive or it is short-lived, especially when there is less or no help from external parties such as the government, NGOs etc. This study was conducted to explore the secret to successful homestay programmes using Miso Walai Homestay (MWH) in Kinabatangan, Sabah as a case study. A total of 15 key informants from the local community and external bodies who had been involved in the MWH starting from its early development were selected as research respondents. The data were collected using the semi-structured interview and analysed based on theme. The analysis revealed that the involvement of the local community in the initial development process utilising the bottom-up approach was the key to the successful operation of Miso Walai Homestay, which has received domestic and international recognition. The sense of ownership among the local community stimulated the whole community to participate in and to sustain the homestay.
Vocational education and extra-curricular activities such as sport are important in life. The transformation of vocational education has been attracting more students into this stream. Sport activities in vocational and technical colleges are co-curricular activities and require coaches to be skilled in sound risk management to ensure that they are safe and free of risk for participants. Professional sport is authorised by the public to make judgements in preparing and ensuring safe sport environments due to the nature of their specialised knowledge and training. The development of students' knowledge of risk management practices will help students to identify potential risk factors in sport, and to prevent, control and minimise the risk of accident and injury. This research aims to develop college students' knowledge of the practice of risk management in sport (DCSK-PRMS). This study is a survey, and involved a total of 120 respondents who were students of the College of Teacher Education (CTE) trained as sport coaches in vocational and technical colleges. The instrument used was a questionnaire and data were analysed using the Rasch Measurement Model to measure the implementation of four analyses for the purpose of examining the functionality of the items. The findings of the pilot study showed the reliability of the individual, while the Cronbach's Alpha reliability was 0.92 (very good) and the reliability was 0.72, indicating a good level. The findings show that the DCSK-PRMS is at a high level and is the dominant element in the supervision and training of sport activities.
Development of knowledge of sport risk management practices, Rasch Measurement Model, vocational and technical colleges
The objective of Technical and Vocational Education (TVET) is to form individuals who have good technical skills. Various efforts have been made in TVET to prepare individuals who are skilled, knowledgeable and capable and who can apply what they have learnt in outdoor education. Risk management is important in outdoor education to ensure a safe environment for every programme that is run outdoors. Risk management seeks to control, prevent and reduce the occurrences of accidents and injuries. This study was conducted to explore Risk Management Elements in Outdoor Education (RiMOE). The study employed the qualitative method to obtain data by using semi-structured interviews to explore the risk management elements that could further function as expert evidence and be aligned with the thoughts, ideas and opinions generated from experts in the field of outdoor education. The analysis showed that this study had successfully determined four dominant elements associated with risk management in outdoor education. Therefore, this study showed the RiMOE elements required by the lecturer, with the dominant elements being identification, selection of operations, implementation and evaluation.
Lecturer, outdoor education, risk management, Technical and Vocational Education (TVET)
The Accreditation of Prior Experiential Learning (APEL) acknowledges and affirms an individual's past experiences and learning as well as their value through equivalence checking. This research was conducted to determine and develop preliminary descriptions for Levels 1 to 3 of qualification in the Malaysian Qualifications Framework (MQF), which will be proposed for use for equivalence checking between skills and academic and also to design a research framework of equivalence between academic and skills through APEL. Equivalence checking can facilitate the entry of an individual into institutions of higher learning by affirming the individual's pre-existing abilities relevant to the intended course of study. A qualitative approach was adopted for this research, and data were collected through three channels: document analysis, interviews and a questionnaire. The questionnaire was administered to 54 respondents from various institutions (UTHM, ADTEC, KKTM and IKBN), while the interview involved three respondents. The data collected was analysed using the software, Statistical Package for Social Sciences 20.0 (SPSS 20.0). This study found that the descriptions proposed in this study are suitable for describing the learning outcomes for Levels 1 to 3 in the aspects of knowledge, skills and competencies. Finally, an equivalence checking framework was developed based on feedback from the respondents and also synthesised from the collected data.
Self-Regulated Learning (SRL) is one of the learning strategies in Student-Centred Learning (SCL). Although the theoretical success stories of SRL have been well documented, there are few stories from actual practice and implementation of SRL, especially in technical and vocational education. Hence, this paper investigates postgraduate students' readiness for the implementation of SRL. The results of the investigation are encouraging; students appear ready for the implementation of SRL for specific subjects and levels. This is a good indicator for educators to improve teaching and learning, steering it away from a teacher-centred to a student-centered orientation. Hence, in the future, students will become student-centred learners and apply SRL in the learning process to increase the quality of their academic achievement and vocational qualification.
Readiness, Self-Regulated Learning (SRL), Student-Centred Learning (SCL), teaching and learning
The implementation of inclusive education is a challenging task because the teachers involved in inclusive education must equip themselves with field knowledge and pedagogical skills and, more importantly, they must have great passion for inclusive education. This research attempts to investigate the readiness of mainstream teachers who engaged in an inclusive education programme. Readiness was measured in three different aspects: (i) field knowledge, (ii) pedagogical skill, and (iii) attitude. A total of 128 mainstream teachers who were actively involved in inclusive education programmes in primary schools were invited to participate in this research. A questionnaire was constructed to measure the level of readiness among the participating teachers. The results revealed that although the readiness level in terms of pedagogical skill was high, the readiness for field knowledge and attitude were at medium level. Our findings suggest that more effort and pragmatic actions are required to facilitate mainstream teachers who teach in inclusive classes to enhance their field knowledge and strengthen their positive attitude towards inclusive education.
Attitude, field knowledge, inclusive education, pedagogical skill, readiness
Research into the adjustment experiences of international students in higher education institutions has been undertaken over the past 50 years. In the related literature, much of the discussion has focussed on academic challenges that international students have encountered during their transition. Debate has also centred on the methods of support that academic staff could provide to assist the transition of international students. This paper highlights the findings of a case study on pedagogical approaches of academic staff in a Malaysian Technical University in narrowing communication gaps when teaching international students. Nine academic staff were interviewed to explore their experiences on communication challenges in the classroom and methods they implemented in encountering those issues. Findings illustrated that low English proficiency was the most significant challenge these staff encountered in teaching international students, and two specific pedagogical approaches were implemented in assisting this issue, namely, (i) using simple English with teaching aids, and (ii) teaching in two languages were. These methods were perceived to have assisted not just the learning of international students, but also to have narrowed communication gaps between the students and academic staff.
Academic staff, adjustment, international students, pedagogical approaches
Assessment of learning efforts is important in providing a better understanding of learners of different disciplines. Lack of a valid and reliable instrument is making the assessment of learning efforts difficult. This paper describes the design and development process of a learning efforts instrument to be used among engineering students. The learning efforts items were generated based on Carbonaro's learning efforts model. He proposed that learning efforts constitute three components, namely, intellectual effort, rule-orientated effort and procedural effort. The draft instrument was judged by experts on its face validity and was subsequently distributed to 360 engineering students, who were instructed to rate their agreement to given statements. The subsequent reliability analysis and exploratory factor analysis supported the existence of two components. In conclusion, the data provided evidence that the efforts construct may be different from the learning efforts model proposed by Carbonaro in 2005. However, further analysis showed the existence of two components instead of three for the learning efforts construct that would fit the Malaysian education context. Thus, this paper provides evidence that replication research using the same instruments in cultural differences can provide differences in answers and outcomes.
In order to help students learn thinking skills more effectively and improve their academic performance, learning styles preferred by students must be identified. The research purpose of this work was to analyse the difference between polytechnic students' learning styles and the level of their higher order thinking skills (HOTS). A descriptive quantitative methodology study was conducted among 368 diploma students studying in three polytechnics in Malaysia. The students' learning styles were identified through the Kolb Learning Styles Inventory while their HOTS level was identified through a set of questionnaires adapted from the Marzano Rubrics for Specific Tasks or Situations. The results indicated that 'Doer' is the most dominant learning style among polytechnic students. The results also showed that polytechnic students perceived their HOTS level to be moderate. The Cramer V analysis showed that there was no relationship between students' learning styles and eight Marzano HOTS levels. There was also no significant difference between the Kolb Learning Styles and the Marzano HOTS levels. This indicated that regardless of the learning style possessed by the technical students i.e. Doer, Watcher, Thinker or Feeler, the level of HOTS of all the students was the same. This suggests that each student has a different learning style but that all of them possess equal opportunity and capability to learn and master HOTS.
This study focusses on generic competencies that have been considered to be lacking in graduates of Malaysian polytechnics, a crucial type of institution in High Technical and Vocational Education (TVE). Four competencies are highlighted in this study that are considered important in the workplace. They are problem solving, critical thinking, communication skills and team building. This study is aimed at establishing an alternative pedagogical strategy in teaching engineering subjects in polytechnics. As such, metacognitive strategies are proposed in order to consider whether this would enhance students' generic competencies. The study sample consisted of 92 first semester students studying Civil Engineering courses in three polytechnics. The study was constructed utilising both qualitative and quantitative approaches in order to obtain a comprehensive data set. The methods included a survey with two sets of questionnaire and student diaries. Findings from this study showed that after introducing metacognitive strategies, students' ability to master relevant competencies appeared to improve, seen in their active involvement in the learning process. The best contribution of the metacognitive strategies used was in terms of the development of communication and team-building skills. In contrast, problem-solving and critical-thinking skills showed a lower ranking than communication and team-building skills. This could indicate that the application of metacognitive strategies in engineering subjects needs further development. Above all, the study showed that metacognitive strategies helped students to think critically, solve complex problems, write and speak effectively, have respect for others, be able to adapt to change and be ready to engage in life-long learning.