Universiti Putra Malaysia
Download Latest Complete Journal - JSSH Vol. 24 (4) Dec. 2016
Foreword by the Chief Executive Editor
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Abstract (Viewed: 27)This paper informs on the double side of earnings management, that is, when earnings management is considered healthy (efficient) or unhealthy (opportunistic). Earnings management is part of the contract cost that either increases or decreases agency cost. Earnings management also provides a positive or negative impact to firm value and shareholders' wealth. Efficient earnings management is said to maximise firm value and shareholders' wealth. Opportunistic earnings management is known to maximise managers' private benefits at the expense of shareholders, and this eventually affects firm value. Firm performance measurement, either accounting or market-based measurement, can be applied to determine the type of earnings management (efficient or opportunistic). This paper provides valuable information for business and academic players on insights into earnings management and the recognition of the double side of earnings management through firm performance that possibly gives impact on agency cost and continuous survival of firms.Earnings management, accrual manipulations, real activity manipulation, share buyback, firm performance
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Abstract (Viewed: 23)The objective of this study was to explore the elements of delivering Islamic education through Islamic morality. Three candidates were chosen based on purposeful sampling. The qualitative case study was used and the methods were observation, semi-structured interview and document analysis. This research, which was based on theoretical study adapted from the writings of Al-Ghazali's Ihya' Ulumuddin (first edition), found that there were six elements of delivering Islamic education through Islamic morality, namely, feeling love and sympathy; being sincere; contributing advice; handling error correction wisely; becoming a great role model (qudwah hasanah); and teaching by steps. The research findings showed that the Islamic education teachers involved in this study had learnt the elements of delivering Islamic education through Islamic morality from various sources. In addition, the research found that every respondent had implemented these six elements in their classrooms during the teaching and learning process. Thus, it is hoped that these findings will contribute towards basic knowledge regarding the teaching and learning process in Islamic education, especially the implementation of the six elements during teaching and learning in Islamic education.Islamic morality, Islamic education, qualitative study case, teaching and learning
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Abstract (Viewed: 5)Scaffolding is help provided by a teacher to a student to achieve a desired goal. It is viewed as an effective technique that enhances both collaborative skills and writing ability among EFL learners. The present study sought to explore the possible effects of two kinds of scaffolding, that is, teacher and student scaffolding, on EFL students' writing ability. To this end, 45 lower-intermediate and 15 upper-intermediate EFL participants from Gonabad, Iran were selected based on a Quick Placement Test (QPT). The participants formed two experimental groups (peer scaffolding, teacher scaffolding) and one control group. Participants in the experimental groups underwent scaffolding techniques, which required lower-intermediate EFL students to be assisted by more proficient EFL students in one experimental group while in the other experimental group, assistance was provided by the teacher. A series of t-tests was run, and the results indicated the effectiveness of the two kinds of treatment implemented in the two experimental groups. Also, no significant difference was found between the two experimental groups in the post-test regarding the effectiveness of teacher scaffolding and peer scaffolding. These findings provide pedagogical implications for employing scaffolding techniques in EFL contexts by both teachers and high-level students.Teacher scaffolding, student scaffolding, writing ability, lower-intermediate EFL learners, upper-intermediate EFL learners
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Abstract (Viewed: 6)The purpose of learning English in India in recent decades has entered a different phase, with a shift in focus from enrichment to survival in the real-world environment. This paper aims at discussing the existing practices of using technology in the curriculum for learners who learn English as a Second Language (ESL) at university level. It also focusses on the future prospects of effective integration of technology into the regular curriculum for learning English, especially in the Indian context. It further strengthens the idea that a comprehensive and structural curriculum using innovative teaching methodologies will certainly cultivate and augment the learners' talents for their future career. Though technology has rich and advanced resources, the paper confines itself to the use of cost-effective and frequently-used Information and Communication Technology (ICT) tools, especially computers, which offer maximum benefits to learners.Technology tools, language lab, learner autonomy, blended learning
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Abstract (Viewed: 7)This paper investigates the effects of computer self-efficacy beliefs of pre-service teachers on their achievement in graphic design theory and practical design. The study adopted a quantitative research approach using non-equivalent groups' pre-test-post-test quasi-experimental research design. A sample of 81 participants was purposively drawn from second-year pre-service art teachers in colleges of education in Nigeria. Three research questions and three hypotheses were formulated to guide the study. The research instruments used were computer self-efficacy scale adopted from the literature, teacher-made graphic design achievement tests and a graphic design assessment rubric developed by the researchers. Data collected from the study were analysed using inferential statistics and Analysis of Covariance (ANCOVA). The findings showed that computer self-efficacy beliefs of the pre-service teachers had a positive effect on their achievements as those with high computer self-efficacy beliefs performed better than those with low computer self-efficacy beliefs in all the groups in overall graphic design and practical graphic design achievement. However, their self-efficacy beliefs were found to have no significant effect on their theory achievements. It was concluded that teacher educators should endeavour to help pre-service teachers develop high computer self-efficacy beliefs to enable them to benefit maximally from ICT-integrated curricula.Computer self-efficacy, pre-service teachers' achievement, graphic design
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Abstract (Viewed: 8)In teaching and learning, the same content can be delivered differently and accepted differently by each student. This also reflects that the same teaching style presented in class is accepted differently by each student. Thus, it is very important for educators to choose the most effective teaching method in order to cater for differences in students' learning styles. Understanding learning styles will help educators maximise teaching materials to suit students' preferred learning styles in order to achieve high quality in the teaching and learning process. The purpose of this study was to identify the preferred learning style among technical students from different faculties in a public university in Malaysia. Neil Fleming's learning style model was the chosen learning style instrument for this study. An online 24-statement questionnaire using 'Yes' or 'No' option was chosen and distributed to 184 respondents. The findings of this study showed that 72.28% of the respondents possessed Visual and Visual-related learning styles. The outcome of the study successfully proved the hypothesis. Learning style, visual, technical students
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Abstract (Viewed: 3)This study aimed to examine psychometric properties of a Malay version of the Children's Depression Inventory (CDI) by using Item Response Theory, particularly the Rasch model, among secondary school adolescents. The Survey method was employed in this quantitative study by distributing the self-report Malay version of the CDI (MCDI) questionnaire to a total of 500 secondary school adolescents in two randomly chosen daily, government (public) schools. The criteria for selecting respondents was that they possessed a minimum competency in the Malay language, were aged 14 or 16 years and were enrolled in secondary schools situated in the selected geographic area. Respondents meeting these criteria were then randomly chosen for this study. This validation study revealed that MCDI items pointing toward one dimension based on item MNSQ, PTMEA values, Rasch residual based on principal component analysis, adhered to Rasch model's expectation, good item separation index (7.30) and very high reliability (0.98). Independent T-test result revealed that females and males differed in terms of the MCDI total score. Female respondents were more susceptible to depression as compared to their male counterparts. School form was not a significant predictor for depression as evidenced by insignificant T- test results. Malay version Children Depression Inventory (MCDI), Rasch model, secondary school students; psychometric properties
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Abstract (Viewed: 4)Various rhythm syllable systems that are based on the concept that prioritises 'sound before symbol' are known to be able to enhance students' ability to read music notations. To date, these systems are yet to be integrated with basic brass instrumental skills such as tonguing. This research examines the effect of the rhythm syllable system when it is applied as an integrated teaching approach for novice brass instrument learners by combining rhythm learning with articulation. A teaching experiment was conducted with 90 elementary trumpet students assigned randomly into three groups. Each group underwent five weeks of intervention with a single content but using different approaches of rhythm learning. Data analysis showed significant differences among the groups, and the group that used the adapted rhythmic syllable approach achieved the highest both in rhythm accuracy and articulation clarity, followed by the group that used Kodaly syllables and the control group that did not apply any particular syllable system. The integrated rhythmic syllable reduces the time of learning the brass instrument while eliminating the redundancies resulting from compartmentalised teaching. This research has extended the scope of application of the rhythmic syllable system beyond musicianship training. It indicates that methods in musicianship training can be localised for specific purposes in instrumental learning. Instrumental teaching, rhythmic syllable, integrated learning, brass instrument, articulation clarity
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Abstract (Viewed: 5)Human resource management (HRM) functions are designed to address and fulfil the needs of employees within the company. The function focuses on retaining, maximising the performance of the employee that leads to obtaining the objectives and goals of the company. The HRM acts as a communication platform which connects employees and their employers in order to meet their defined goals within the company. Due to tremendous change in the work environment, the focus of Human Resource (HR) functions has shifted from administration activities to Strategic HRM functions (SHRM). The SHRM acts as a critical success factor for the HR function that helps to identify the required skills and motives which in turn influence key strategic plans and outcome within the company. The role of middle level HR practitioners is changing due to transformation in business needs in the company that helps in formulating and developing HR strategies, policies and procedures that meet the requirements of the company. Various initiatives and engagement activities are carried out by HR practitioners in efforts to reduce the stress level at workplaces which help in motivating and retaining talents within the company. The HR practitioners are specialised in various HR functions such as Human Resource planning (HRP), recruitment and selection, HR information systems (HRIS), employee engagement, leadership and development engagements, career development process, learning and development initiatives, performance management, retention strategies; these are organised within the company. Among the major challenges faced by middle level HR practitioners are: retaining the services of talented workforce, reducing the stress level at workplace, lack of career development opportunities and developing leadership skills for talented employees. This study identifies and also addresses the emerging issues and challenges faced by middle level HR practitioners in their day to day activities in a selected IT firm in Karnataka. Though the study is limited to a particular IT firm in Karnataka, the findings can be generalised to the IT industry in India, other industries in India and overseas to get a fair understanding of the emerging issues and challenges faced by middle level HR PractitionersStrategic human resource management, employee engagement, performance management, leadership and development, activities, issues, challenges and career development
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Abstract (Viewed: 7)Conducted in the framework of two key cultural strategies of foreignisation and domestication postulated by Venuti (1995), this research made an attempt to investigate the strategies used in translation of 40 restaurant menus. It tried to perform a comprehensive analysis of the foreignisation and domestication procedures applied in the translation of food names from Persian into English. After collecting the applied strategies and analysing them, the researcher concluded that foreignisation was the most pervasive strategy in the translation of food names in restaurant menus. At the same time, more inadequate translations were found when the translator resorted to foreignisation translation strategies in comparison with domestication strategies. Moreover, the number of adequate translations in general was significantly more than inadequate ones, which implies the translator's skill in translation. The findings of this present study have implications for translation teachers and students of tourism education. Translation strategy, domestication, foreignisation, restaurant menus, Persian-English translation
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Abstract (Viewed: 9)The Pontianak is widely recognised as the most dreaded supernatural being in Malay folklore and mythology. Often described as a fearsome mythical creature with vampire-like qualities, she is said to have fangs, possesses ghost-like traits and can only be subdued using a sharp object which is usually a nail struck to the back of her neck. She is also recognised through her high-pitched shrieks, long flowing hair and a fondness for the blood of children. Despite possessing such fearsome and horrifying characteristics, the Pontianak peculiarly remains popular among Malaysians as the horror film genre has always been popular among Malaysian and Asian audiences due to its deep roots in religious and superstitious beliefs. Many Asian nations have shared cultural, historical and social characteristics. Cross cultural influences across borders are common in shaping each other's culture and a number of Malaysian horror films have been influenced by the Noh and Kabuki-influenced 'shunen' (revenge) and 'kaidan' (ghost mystery) stories. While the horror film is in fact a commercial venture, the genre is also filled with socio-cultural and political contestations. As such, these narratives reflect certain socio-cultural and political anxieties of given moments within the location of the film's production. This paper therefore examines the pan-Asian cultural influences in the current wave of Malaysian horror. As the Pontianak is also always female, this paper then examines how the employment of female monstrosity articulate male fears around female empowerment and suggests a broader challenge to a sense of normality, cultural and religious beliefs. Malaysian cinema, Pontianak, horror, female monstrosity, power, cinematic villains
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Abstract (Viewed: 10)Scholars have debated, asserted and posited that the source of homosexuality in both gay men and lesbian women is found either in nature or nurture. Of specific interest to this research was the self-identified source of homosexuality in gay men through their lived experience. A Malaysian-based context was taken due to the growing interest, both politically and socially, of the social phenomenon of homosexuality in Malaysia. As personal experience was the data source selected for this research and social construction of identity was the perspective taken, phenomenology acted as the theoretical underpinning through which the shared experience of the respondents was analysed. The geographic setting of the research was Penang, Malaysia as it was an urban area that had been identified as having a population of self-identified gay men. A qualitative perspective was taken due to the sensitive nature of the research. The sample population was gathered via purposive sampling and the snowball technique and a total of 33 respondents were recruited. All respondents were interviewed in-depth where a semi-structured interview questionnaire was utilised. All data were transcribed and analysed via a content analysis matrix. The findings suggest that the source of homosexuality for the respondents was nature and not nurture. Respondents attribute their homosexuality to genetics, inborn hormonal influence and biology. However, the findings do point out that nurture has a part to play in the development of self-identified gay men as individuals. Nurturing via friendships, role-modelling and environments that are affirming and positive portrayals of homosexuality in the media allow the respondents to internalise positive attitudes towards their homosexuality. Research into the source of homosexuality from the viewpoint of complementarity as opposed to opposition is a direction that would benefit studies of homosexuality. Longitudinal research would deepen understanding of the source of homosexuality.Homosexuality, Malaysia, nature, nurture, sexuality
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Abstract (Viewed: 78)The main purpose of this research is to determine the role of parenting style and educational level of parents in Positive Youth Development (PYD). Data were obtained using a questionnaire method involving 496 adolescent students of national secondary schools in Selangor. The findings indicate that there is a significant difference between the means for different races in PYD. This study also revealed that authoritative parenting styles, uninvolved parenting styles, and fathers' level of education are significantly correlated to PYD. The authoritative parenting style was found to be the most significant predictor of higher PYD. These findings suggest that adolescents with authoritative parents in Malaysia show higher PYD and accordingly, they contribute to self, others and community. Positive Youth Development (PYD), educational level of parents, parenting style, adolescents, Malaysia
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Abstract (Viewed: 5)Customer perception is a very important factor concerning green marketing management and is viewed as a motivational construct influencing subsequent consumer behaviour. This research uses four constructs i.e. perceived quality, perceived value, perceived risk and customer loyalty in the context of environmentally-friendly electronic products in Thailand. It employs an empirical study using the questionnaire survey method to verify the hypotheses. Data were obtained from 420 consumers who bought and used environmentally-friendly electronic products, particularly mobile phones, computers and laptops, in Thailand. The data were analysed using confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) and structural equation modelling (SEM). The results showed that perceived value and perceived risk had direct effect on customer loyalty while perceived quality had no direct effect on customer loyalty. Furthermore, perceived quality had direct effects on perceived value and perceived risk. The results from the final SEM model are used to confirm the proposed relationships among the variables.Customer perception, perceived quality, perceived value, perceived risk, customer loyalty, environmentally-friendly electronic products
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Abstract (Viewed: 7)This study aimed to investigate the effect of explicit teaching of language chunks on the writing performance of Iranian English as a foreign language (EFL) learners. A total of 42 low-intermediate homogeneous female learners aged between 13 and 14 years from a junior high school, provided the study with randomly assigned control group (N=22) and an experimental group (N=20). During 20 sessions of instruction, language chunks in short paragraphs, dialogues, and reading texts were focused on only on the experimental group. The language chunks and their first language (L1) equivalents were specified in order to determine the boundaries of chunks to convey an intended message. Development of learners' writings was examined through writing tasks that were administered twice - before and after the treatment. Statistical analyses of independent samples t-test revealed significant improvement of the experimental group in their production and overall general writing, whereas moderate improvement was observed in the control group. Hence, the role of chunking strategy in language instruction domain has the potential to improve the writing quality of learners. The findings of this study can be beneficial for learners, teachers, teacher educators, and syllabus designers in foreign language (FL) contexts so as to improve the learners' language production.Language production, lexical chunks, lexis, meaningful language units
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Abstract (Viewed: 3)This research employed an experimental design to study the issue of gambling to determine the main and interaction effects of Rotter's personal locus of control and situational locus of control on the amount of betting in a simulated blackjack card game. A total number of 53 undergraduates from a private university in Kuala Lumpur participated in this research. A two-way factorial ANOVA was employed and showed no significant main effects of personal and situational locus of control on the amount of betting. The findings also suggested no significant interaction effect between both measures. With current statistics showing an increase in the number of gamblers, especially among youths in Malaysia, the findings of this research could provide insights into the possible factors contributing to gambling behaviour despite the non-significant effects of personal and situational locus of control.Betting, blackjack card, gambling, locus of control, personal locus of control, situational locus of control
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Abstract (Viewed: 5)The discovery of oil and the economic development and growth that followed has placed Gulf Countries on the fast path to urbanisation and modernisation, bringing an impact on traditional family relations and functions. In particular, Qatar has experienced rapid and radical changes that are clearly shaping the family structure because of modernisation. Hence, one could argue traditional ways of life are under assault from modernisation and Westernisation. In order to examine the changes and the impact of modernisation on Qatari families, it is vital to examine the perspectives of Qatari citizens and their thoughts about particular elements of their lives that are affected by modernisation. There are a few studies that examine Qataris' perspectives. This descriptive study analyses 997 completed questionnaires from Qatari families as they present their perceptions of the influence of modernisation on themselves and their families. The findings present perceived changes occurring regarding the many areas of family life in Qatar.Globalisation, Qatar, Gulf Cooperation Council, family, culture
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Abstract (Viewed: 3)This study aims to examine the intervening construct of role ambiguity on the causal association between leadership and organisational citizenship behaviour (OCB) in various industrial settings. The sample of this study involved 280 respondents from major industries i.e. services, manufacturing, mining and construction. The results of the Pearson correlation analysis indicate that a transformational leader has a positive relationship with OCB and that a transactional leader has a negative relationship with OCB. Role ambiguity was found to mediate the causal relationship between a transformational leader and OCB. Role ambiguity is not directly linked to OCB but rather serves as a mediating variable between transformational leadership style and OCB. From a managerial standpoint, this study recommends that transformational leadership style should be emphasised to encourage greater OCB. Cultivating transformationally-orientated organisation at all levels can be done through training and development, organisational design, job design and human capital decisions. The mediating effect of subordinates' role ambiguity has a direct and indirect effect on OCB. Role ambiguity functions to increase the strength of transformational leadership on OCB. These findings show that the effectiveness of leadership styles is mediated by subordinates' perception of their role ambiguity. This paper adds value to existing study in this field by testing the mediating effects of role ambiguity that directly or indirectly affect leadership styles related to OCB.Transformational leadership, role ambiguity, citizenship behaviour, organisational behaviour, transactional leadership
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Abstract (Viewed: 6)Academic listening practices in English language are challenging for international students in Malaysia. This is because English is not their first and second language. The influx of international students, especially at graduate level in Malaysian tertiary institutions, has encouraged researchers to look for ways to ensure a smooth academic journey for them. Therefore, this research focuses on the difficulties faced by international graduate students in their academic listening practices and the measures utilised to overcome their difficulties. The qualitative findings are based on focus group interviews among 70 international graduate students in taught Master's programmes in a public university. The findings revealed that the difficulties faced are mainly attributed to the fact that English is not their native language and also that English is not the lecturers' socio-linguistic background. These findings would be an academic platform to ensure that the difficulties faced by the students can be gradually reduced by the students themselves, academicians and the university's administrators through the application of stringent measures.Academic Listening Practices, Difficulties, International Graduate Students, Master's Programme, Overcoming Measures
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Abstract (Viewed: 2)Ramadhan is the fasting month in the Islamic calendar when consumption of water and food is abstained from. Previous studies of exercising during Ramadhan have shown mixed findings. The aim of this study was to determine the effects of a single bout of moderate cycling exercise during the ritual fasting of Ramadhan on mood states, rating of perceived exertion and short-term memory among physically inactive university students. Participants were 13 healthy male university students, with a mean age of 23.54±3.41 years, height of 170 ±7.02 cm, weight of 66.95±7.40 kg and body mass index (BMI) of 23.33±1.74 kg.m¯². Data on mood states, rating of perceived exertion and short-term memory were collected before and after cycling exercise. All of the participants performed cycling exercise at progressively increasing intensities of 45%, 60%, 75% of VO2max for 30 minutes (10 minutes for each intensity) a week before Ramadhan and in the first and fourth week of Ramadhan and 2 weeks after Ramadhan. The results of the mixed factorial ANOVA revealed no significant interactions between sessions across trials. In conclusion, exercise during Ramadhan fasting exhibited no significant effects on mood states, perceived exertion and cognitive performance.Mood states, oxygen consumption, perceived exertion, sustained attention
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Abstract (Viewed: 6)The difference in the morphological and semantic properties of cross-linguistic wh-expressions is due to the difference in wh-question formation strategies. It is the contention of this paper that wh-expressions are universally consistent, in the sense that their semantic force is undetermined in the lexicon. However, once they are chosen for the computation, the wh-expression becomes merged syntactically with another element and this gives rise to relative or interrogative semantic interpretation. The syntax of wh-expression generally falls in two categories: argument wh-expression and non-argument wh-expression. In conclusion, this paper maintains that the wh-movement's driving force is underspecified by the [+Q] feature of the head C operator wherein the interpretation that wh-expression gets is at the level of the interface.Wh-expression, wh-movement, Sudanese Arabic, minimalist approach
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Abstract (Viewed: 3)The portrayal of women in contemporary advertisements is varied. All advertisements seem to prescribe assumptions of what it means to be a woman. In isolation, each group of ads depicts a very narrow aspect of gender definition. Together, however, they reflect the complexity of contemporary womanhood. Along product and service weight-loss ads, slimming becomes a means of defining femininity, reconstituting it and disseminating it as direct knowledge of the social world as representations of reality. The images of femininity, as they appear in slimming advertisements, have the power to narrowly define and construct the 'feminine.' Advertisements, therefore, can be understood as carriers of a dominant ideology of femininity. Advertisements define what forms of femininity are acceptable and desirable. Experiences that contradict prevailing values of those given are either excluded or denied, reinforcing existing limited meanings of femininity. This paper examines the ideological construction of femininity through a close analysis of slimming advertisements found in Malaysia's leading English daily, The Star. Using the framework of Fairclough's (1995) critical discourse analysis and Jewitt's (1999) visual social semiotics, the paper aims at discovering how language and visual means are exploited to define what forms of femininity are acceptable and desirable. Through this, the paper seeks to clarify some of the discursive mechanisms used in disseminating an ideological construct of femininity that spurs women's relentless pursuit of slimming.Advertisements, body, critical discourse analysis, femininity, ideology, slimming, visual social semiotics
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Abstract (Viewed: 6)In the KBSM English syllabus, vocabulary learning is only incorporated in the teaching of the four main skills of reading, writing, listening and speaking as target words are usually taught implicitly. Often, learners are unaware of the different meanings of a word and its spelling due to the common method of teaching the target words. This study investigates the effectiveness of the use of vocabulary exercises for vocabulary teaching involving 60 selected students from Form Two classes of a sub-urban school in Ipoh. The mean scores of the pre-test and post-test are analysed by using descriptive statistics. The questionnaire in the student's feedback form was analysed descriptively in terms of frequency counts and percentage of responses. The open-ended written responses in the student's evaluation form are categorised and analysed using content analysis. The results suggest that the incorporation of vocabulary exercises is effective in learning the target words among Form Two learners.ESL/EFL learners, target words, vocabulary exercises, vocabulary teaching
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Abstract (Viewed: 2)Paradigm is important to determine people's ideas, beliefs, values, and life-style of the people and understanding their problems. The first paradigm that had influence over the ideas, beliefs, values and practices of most people in earlier times was called Normal Science until the scientific revolution era. Where prior knowledge cannot explain a phenomenon or a new discovery occurs, for people in the community to agree with a new practice for changing behaviour and making life better, it's called a paradigm shift. This research aims to study and offer a new paradigm for community health development that the medical profession currently practices as Thailand's community health development paradigms are both biological models and centralisation, these present limitations on promoting people's health achievement and well-being. This research is "ethnography" based. Participants were selected from the health promoting hospitals in two areas in Thailand. The interviewees consisted of 11 participants. This research indicated that community health development comprised the community-based, holistic health, and decentralisation methodologies. The medical profession has many paradigms for integrating knowledge, skills and ability; the research limitation being longer time-scale and higher budgets. Paradigm shifts for community health development by the medical profession found benefits in decentralisation, community based solutions and holistic health. This study suggested that these issues should be studied, in addition to the impacted paradigms on community health status, within the next devade. The value of this study was to highlight the importance of initiating, implementing, and maintaining community health and to provide insights into the conditions that should be considered when planning and developing community health.Paradigm, decentralisation, medical profession, holistic health
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Abstract (Viewed: 7)This article examines Richard Wright's (1940) Native Son, as one of the most effective works in modern African American literary history, in the light of Jean Paul Sartre's conception of transcendence. This article draws upon Sartre's existential views on the concept of transcendence in The Transcendence of the Ego (1936/1960) and The Emotions: Outline of a Theory (1939/1948). The concept means that, through the power of imagination, one can envisage some projects for oneself so as to leave one's present state behind or to transcend it. In Being and Nothingness (1943/1950), Sartre clarified that consciousness was transcendence. This study focuses on two groups of critics opposing on the possibility of transcendence in Bigger Thomas, the protagonist of the novel, asserting that the first group ceased to acknowledge Bigger's transcendence, whereas the second group highlighted his transcendence, yet, ceased to delve into Bigger's psychological plight and the function of emotions, either enabling or paralysing Bigger before his execution. In our view, Bigger does have the capability to transcend as a distinguished human being. However, we argue that Bigger's emotions, inauthentic and fake, hinder his path to transcendence. Therefore, this study restricts itself to the selected pieces from the novel before Mary's accidental murder and her subsequent decapitation by Bigger, to stress the role of the protagonist's emotions and their consequential effects on his transcendence as an existentially distinguished individual. Our findings suggest that it is Bigger's resort to fake emotions that bereaves him of transcendence as an existentially autonomous being.Jean-Paul Sartre, Transcendence, Richard Wright, Fake Emotions, Bigger Thomas, Native Son
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Abstract (Viewed: 7)This article explores the interdisciplinary ecocriticism in John Burnside's novel The Locust Room (2001). The article's main focus will be on ecocriticism and psychoanalysis as a conceptual framework. Using ecocriticism, the concepts of dwelling and ecoconsciousness will be applied as ecocritical concepts to analyse the environmental nature depicted in the novel. On the other hand, the concept of anxiety will be utilized to explore the psychological anxious feelings of the novel's protagonist, Paul. The protagonist's psychological anxiety develops throughout the plot. The cause of his anxious sufferings is the male-rape phenomenon which is common at his university campus. To get rid of his anxiety, the protagonist tends to live in alienation to escape rape, and he decides to live in natural settings alone with animals and insects. Accordingly, the study follows a textual analysis of the environmental settings to argue nature as an exit for the protagonist's anxiety. The interdisciplinary interconnection between ecocriticism and psychoanalysis will be elaborated by citing Cheryll Glotfelty's concept of ecoconsciousness, Greg Garrard's concept of dwelling, and Sigmund Freud's concept of anxiety. Alienation, anxiety, dwelling, ecoconsciousness, ecocriticism
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Abstract (Viewed: 6)This study examines the predictor of parental attachment towards emerging adulthood (EA) experiences among 548 undergraduate students (202 males, 346 females, and mean age of 20.8 years) aged between 18 and 25 in East Malaysia. The Inventory of Parent and Peer Attachment (IPPA) was used to measure the components of parental attachment (Trust, Communication, and Alienation), and the Inventory of Dimensions of Emerging Adulthood (IDEA) was used to measure five experiences of EA (identity exploration, self-focus, feeling "in-between", possibilities, and instability). This study used variance-based structural equation modelling via partial least squares (PLS) to test the hypotheses. The results revealed that parental trust is the most significant predictor of EA experiences of identity exploration, self-focus and possibilities, whereas parental communication is the most significant predictor of EA experience feeling "in-between", and parental alienation is the most significant predictor of EA experience of instability. Emerging adulthood, parental attachment, college students, identity exploration, reflective measurement model
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Abstract (Viewed: 12)This study investigates the potential threats or conflicts shadowing social harmony in Johor Malaysia. The State of Johor is inhabited by plural, yet, segregated ethnic groups, thus making them prone to communal conflicts. The process of data collection was conducted between 2010 and 2012 through interviews with 1,000 respondents from 10 regions as well as extensive field observations. The study shows that notwithstanding the conflict potential is confined to low-intensity and sporadic quarrel, the impact of tension which has frequently occurred within families and relatives can lead to clashes in a larger community. In turn, this incites various kinds of prejudice among the fragmented communities. Worse still, the individual perception about tolerance in respect to religious aspects is quite concerning, albeit not demonstrable in the context of inter-ethnic relations. Nonetheless, two most sensitive issues perpetrating social incompatibilities are detected as to the construction of worship places and defamation against different religious identities. Conflict, tolerance, social harmony, ethnic, prejudice
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Abstract (Viewed: 4)Information technologies (ITs) have been employed in various fields of human endeavour especially to engender socio-economic development. One key sub-sector in which the adoption of ITs is increasingly becoming critical in Malaysia is the farm-based (agri-based) enterprises. However, previous studies have suggested that a number of factors influences the adoption of ICT by enterprises, especially small and medium firms. This study was prompted by the need to determine the factors that influence the adoption of IT among farm-based enterprises. A pre-test study was conducted with 50 IT-using entrepreneurs selected from five farm-based firms that were selected using systematic random sampling from a population of 500 farm-based entrepreneurs (selected from 50 farm-based firms) in Selangor, Malaysia. The study applied modified Entrepreneurial Event Model (EEM) theory with System Support and Readiness and Perceived Benefits as independent variables, while IT Adoption was the dependent variable. The data was collected using a structured questionnaire and analysed using descriptive statistics and factor analyses. The findings revealed that System support and readiness and Perceived benefits are the critical factors that determine IT adoption and that most of the enterprises (M = 3.81, SD = 1.00) adopted basic entrepreneurial ITs while a number of them (M = 3.68, SD = 1.23) adopted advanced entrepreneurial ITs. The limitations of the study include the size of the sample. Recommendations for effective application of IT into practical usage for farm-based enterprises development were included. Determinants of IT adoption, farm-based enterprises, information technologies (IT), IT and farm-based enterprises development
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Abstract (Viewed: 1)This paper looks deeper into the resource curse hypothesis and focuses on the types of natural resources such as minerals, oil, natural gas, forestry and coal. This study argues that natural resources are not a curse to real income but that the type of natural resources and human capital that a country is endowed with are the reason why some resource-rich countries are successful while others are not. Unlike most of the previous studies which emphasize growth, this study emphasizes real income. This study also aimed to determine the type of natural resource that may act as a driving force or as an obstacle to a country. Additionally, human capital and institutions are examined as key factors in determining whether a country's rich natural resources are a "blessing" or a "curse".This study provided an empirical analysis of the period between 1981 and 2010 by using panel data which was analyzed using GMM (Generalized Method of Moments), a technique that has not been widely used in research related to natural resources. In order to measure the wealth of natural resources, this study employed the data of natural resource rents in relation to the type of natural resources. The data were collected from the World Bank. The study also used a number of control variables to measure human capital. The findings showed that natural resource wealth in OIC and non-OIC countries can be a curse or a blessing depending on the type of natural resource assets. This is evident from the findings that showed that the correlation between the type of natural resources and incomes is mixed; i.e. there are some positive and some negative correlations. Interestingly, the findings consistently demonstrated that human capital and quality of institution both encourages the increase in real income. The abundance of natural resource is indeed a blessing for high quality human capital.Natural Resource, human capital, economic growth
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Abstract (Viewed: 4)This paper discusses threshold concepts in Military Officers Education (MOE) at military institutions that also provide tertiary level education. In this study, threshold concept theory provides a helpful analytical tool to examine the process deemed necessary for transformation from civilian status to thinking and practising as a soldier and consequently a military officer. Combined with phenomenography as the research methodology, the research involved seven higher ranking officers, 24 military trainers, and 29 officer cadets from two reputable military education institutions in Europe. The findings show that there are two ontological shifts that transform a civilian to become an officer. During Phase I, the first ontological shift in becoming a soldier involves the acceptance of discipline and obedience, recognition of a framework of related ethics and values, loyalty to the unit (collective above individual needs) and a sense of obligation. Meanwhile, Phase II will require a soldier to understand the concept of personal responsibility for the execution of mission, putting others before self, and the 'power to command' to complete the transformation in becoming a military officer.Military officer's education, ontological shifts, phenomenography, threshold concepts
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Abstract (Viewed: 8)Universities are increasingly examining alternative means of teaching and learning, and supplemental instruction in the form of peer tutoring is progressively used to support learning in selected courses. This small scale ethnographic study investigates the roles and relationships between the peer tutors and tutees to uncover their perceptions of peer tutoring and their perceived effects. Semi-structured focus group discussions of ten tutors and ten tutees and two participant group observations were employed. The findings suggest that perceptions of the success of this programme were attributed to low power distance of the tutors and tutees, the development of friendships and the metacognitive learning strategies that were explicitly taught. Implications arising from this study suggest a greater focus on roles and expectations in the design of peer tutoring programmes.Peer-assisted learning, peer tutoring, efficacy, roles, perceptions, power distance, friendships
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Abstract (Viewed: 2)This study was conducted to explore parents' beliefs towards the teaching profession. The sample consists of 51 parents of teacher candidates in a teacher training institute. A research instrument, using questionnaires, adapted from FIT-Choice scale, was used to collect data from the population. Although the results of this study must be interpreted with caution, the findings indicated that parents, in general, have positive attitudes towards the teaching profession. They perceived teaching as a career highly valued by society. Though the teaching job was viewed as difficult and requiring high expertise, the salary received was commensurate with their hard work and heavy workload. In terms of gender, male and female parents did not differ in their beliefs about the teaching profession. However, results indicated that educational attainment and income level had significant effect on parents' beliefs on teaching as a profession. The findings of the study implied that teaching is still perceived as a well respected profession.Beliefs, teaching profession, parents, teacher candidates
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Abstract (Viewed: 5)Approximately one-third of the students of the English Language and Communication (ELC) Department at UCSI University come from mainland China. As English is the medium of instruction in almost all courses in the university, these students are exposed to various situations where the English language is used. They do not encounter major difficulties with the spoken language, but problems emerge when they write paragraphs, reports, or term papers. This study aims to investigate the common errors in the paragraphs written by ELC Chinese students and suggest ways to address this problem. Paragraphs written by the 30 Chinese students who registered between January and May semesters 2015 were analyzed and categorized into types of errors. Moreover, 10 students (from the May semester) were interviewed to solicit their ideas on what aspects of writing in English they found difficult, and how these problems could be solved. The results showed that the most common errors were on word choice and word form, spelling, tenses, use of articles and determiners, number, and agreement of subject and verb. The interview further revealed that students were aware of the interference of their first language (L1) on their writing in English, and of their tendency to translate from their L1 to English when writing in English. Writing errors, LI interference, mother tongue, L2, Chinese students
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Abstract (Viewed: 11)There have been many efforts in Malaysian institutions of higher education to move from curriculum-based education to outcome-based education. However, the readiness and acceptance level of teaching with ICT in Malaysian education is also still a challenge, and the confidence in developing effective learning materials and implementing more learner-centred teaching environments is still lacking. Due to this, there is an urge to investigate and propose guidelines for educators teaching in Malaysian institutions of higher education in order to have an easier transition from conventional teaching to a more learner-centred teaching environment. Weimer (2002) proposed five key strategies of learner-centred teaching to be incorporated into the instructional process, four of which were investigated. This research investigates the influence of implementing Weimer's key changes in three learning environments (face-to-face teaching with PowerPoint, learning with multimedia application and online learning with multimedia application) on students' learning outcomes. Data from pre- and post-tests, survey questionnaires and students' comments were triangulated and ANOVA analyses were performed. The results indicate that students showed better appreciation of the balance of power given in the class and they accepted the change of the role of lecturer to a facilitator. The changes have resulted in better learner understanding and learner motivation. The positive results contributed in the form of a framework for tertiary education to implement Learner-Centred Teaching. Future research could be conducted involving different programmes of study.Balance of power, learner-centered teaching, learner motivation, learner understanding, role of teacher, transformation in education, multimedia learning

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