“Education is the movement from darkness to light.
” – (Allan Bloom). Based on this quotes, we know that education has been play a great role in everyone’s life as it brings positive effects on the human life. But, what is an education and why it is very important for everyone? According to Online Oxford dictionaries, education is the process of receiving or giving systematic instruction, especially at a school or university (Oxford Dictionary).
After a decade into the New Millennium, education is the most important factor which can lead to the development of an individual as well as a country as it build someone personality, improving their knowledge and skills and providing feeling of well being of a human. It has become a vital factor for the future brightness of the new generations of any society. Generally, education system in Malaysia has been divided into three categories which started at Primary education, Secondary education and Higher education. Having an excellent result or high CGPA’s are no longer a guarantee for students in this 21st centuries, instead students also need to have a good critical thinking skills and communication skills in order to compete in this challenging era.
The question that arise now is whether the education system in our country able to produce more students with critical thinking skills in future. Graduates emerging from the Malaysian education system fail to meet the expectations of prospective employers due to a lack of critical thinking skills and poor communication (The Star,2012). Based on this article, we know that our education system still unable to produce more critical thinking skills students.
Therefore, I do agree education system needs to be changed in order to produce more critical thinker in future. The main problem that our education system are facing currently is that students are too exam-oriented (yew,2014). Malaysian education system focuses on exams more because it thinks that exams will help a student evolve in his life and excel in the professional field. As in Malaysia education system, public examination result will be the important determinants of student progress to pursue their higher education as well as occupational opportunities. For many students in Malaysia has a mindset that education means they have to score the test papers, acquiring more knowledge for the sake of examination, and of course, aiming for higher number of As. As for them, the higher the number of As indicates that person is smarter and have a bright future. Now, even intelligence are measured through the parameter of grade instead of analytical skills, abilities or knowledge that every student should have. Therefore, they only focusing more on scoring in exam as oppose to actual learning, by memorizing the important point for each chapter they learn without a deep understanding of the materials and they just dealing with those question that can be solve or question that might came up during the examinations paper.
Due to the exam-oriented culture that has been practised for years in Malaysian education system, teachers are shouldered with the responsibility to finish the syllabus and give as much drilling exercises as they can to their students as to keep up with the society’s expectation and over-emphasis on academic results. This in return has caused the teachers paying the least attention to students’ character building and soft skills such as critical thinking skill (Education Reform in Malaysia Report, 2012).Because of this, student are lacking critical thinking skills, as they cannot relate the things that they have learn in school into their daily life. As a result, they are lacking in problem solving skills and unable to dealing with those problem and having some trouble to give an appropriate responses, solution or opinion for a particular topic.
They cannot think of new ideas or solution in order to solve that particular problem. Next, Malaysia education system certainly does not prepared the students to face the real world when they have graduates later on (Davies,2017). As the system are not producing a student with great leadership skills and good communication skills due to too exam-oriented culture. Individual and interpersonal development is also important for advancement in one’s career. Certain skills, like leadership, social skills, critical thinking and such can only be maintain by strong, developed personalities that have been exposed to situations demanding they exercise parts of the brain other than rote memorization (Scott,2014). As for leadership skills, students cannot be acquired through class unless the leadership role is taken by the student itself.
This is why the roles of class monitor, secretary and treasurer exist even in primary school (yew,2014). Beside leadership skills, student should be able to communicate well with others. We cant denied that our education system are focusing on English. However, even more efforts are required to be undertaken to teach and popularize English among the students.
(Adila,2017). being good in English will help student to achieve a good command over the language. When the students work later on especially when their are working in a multinational company or study abroad in the future, their proficiency in English will help them to thrive and succeed. However, our education system are more to teacher-centered learning, where the teachers would talk and the students would listen (yew,2014). This kind of approach has made students could not communicate well with people around them even though they are very good in reading or writing it.
This problem usually happens to the people learning second language for example English or mandarin. One of the ways to improved Malaysia education system is through teaching the practical subject (Malaysian Students,2017). As we already know, our education system is academic-centric. This can cause problems in producing competent graduates to face this gruesome and depressing challenging working world in the future. Other than teaching the students to read, write and socialize with a peer group, schools need to provide few practical skills in order to prepare them for the real world which is more challenging and stressful. Instead of focusing more on the theoretical subjects, students should also give more focus on developing their practical knowledge through practical subject that should be taught in school. Practical subject such as math, science and English should be taught to the students that will enable them to do well in the real world.
Having knowledge about some practical skills can make them ease during their working time as they already have a basic or some knowledge about that. If they know a lot about certain areas or subjects that can be one of their strength to give a good first impression to an employer and can make their work become more easier. Employers also does not have to provide an additional training classes to fit them into their respective jobs scopes. Other than that, they does not have to spend their money to take a special class just to learn or trained them the basic skills respect to their jobs.
For an example, editing photo, if they have been taught on how to edit or create graphics, back then in school or university, they does not have to take another classes to learn it and also save their times to complete their work and submit on time. Learning these skills can enhance the student’s career and help them to sustain in the society independently. As a conclusion, Malaysian education system needs to be changed or improved in order to produce more competent graduates to face this real world which is more challenging as well as to fulfill the expectation of prospect employers.
The learning process in the classroom is never enough for the students anymore (yew,2014). it is a competitive world that we are facing today, as more and more graduates are looking for employment. Having only an excellent grades would not be enough, they should equip themselves with a great thinking skills, leadership skills and vocational knowledge and skills so that they become more versatile and marketable. Therefore, educators must encourage students to develop their skills, by teaching them on it.