JSSH Vol. 21 (2) Jun. 2013

Family Experiences of Caring among Caregivers of Schizophrenia Patients

Mohamad, M. S., Hoesni, S. M., Subhi, N., Sheau Tsuey Chong, Sarnon, N. and Nen, S.


Keywords: Caregivers, caring, multi-dimensional, schizophrenia


The study aimed to investigate family caregivers’ experiences of caring to a schizophreniapatient in the northern part of Malaysia. The family caregiving experiences from differentethnic groups in Malaysia were compared between urban and rural dwellers. Overall, therewere 154 family caregivers who completed the questionnaires comprising standardized measures of the Experiences of Caregiving Inventory (ECI) and the Life Skills Profiles(LSP-39). Malay women were found to be the majority of the caregivers in this study whomostly came from the rural area. This study found that the majority of caregivers wereMalay women who live in the rural area. Most of the caregivers identified themselves asparents aged 50 years and above. Predictors of negative appraisal for family caregiverswere identified: (1) younger patient, (2) unemployed patient, (3) family with low incomeand (4) patient with low life skills. Meanwhile, predictors of positive appraisal include: (1)married patient, (2) patient with good like skills, (3) monthly income above RM800 and (4)dwelling in urban area. Interestingly, the life skills profile becomes a strong predictor fornegative and positive appraisals. These predictors should assist community health workerswhen working with the family caregivers of schizophrenia patient.

Interpretations of History in Early Twenty-First Century Arabic Fiction: A Critical Analysis of Al-Saqqaf’s Qissat Irhabi

Riyad Manqoush, Noraini Md. Yusof and Ruzy Suliza Hashim


Keywords: Judeophobia, terrorism, 9/11, Jews, Sicarii, Iraq


This essay is motivated by the issue of terrorism as mirrored in early twenty-first centuryArabic fiction, particularly after the 9/11 attacks and the US occupation of Iraq. Weexamine the interpretations of terrorism in Hussein al-Saqqaf’s Qissat Irhabi (2007) withthe aim of exploring the treatment of recent history and also uncovering the ideologies,viewpoints and cultural nuances that prevail in Arabic fiction. By appropriating the theory ofhermeneutics, from which the concept of interpretation is derived, the novel’s utilisation ofsome historical events and issues can be made clear. This is because “interpretation” refersto a text’s explanations and exploration of other texts. Our analysis shows that al-Saqqafdisplays Judeophobic characteristics where he casts aspersions on the Jews, rabbis, Jewishfanaticism and Jewish terrorists whom he names “the Sicarii.” He attributes terrorism tothem. Being an Arab and a Muslim, al-Saqqaf exhibits the feelings and opinions of theordinary Arab and Muslim people who indeed believe that the Arab and Muslim terroristgroups are masterminded by superpower Jews. Although al-Saqqaf’s predisposition inhis fictional account is attributed to his roots and faith, it also shows the reality of distrustbetween the Arabs and Jews.

Social Capital and Its Relationship with Universiti Putra Malaysia Undergraduates’ Facebook Usages

Hanina H. Hamsan, Matthew Naveen Kumar and Mohamad Ibrani Shahrimin


Keywords: Social network service, Facebook, social capital, undergraduates, correlational studies


This study envisaged in determining the relationship between the intensity of Facebookusage and social capital among undergraduates at Universiti Putra Malaysia. A numberof factors (respondent’s personal and family background, the intensity of Facebook usageand social capital) have been studied with regards to their relationships with each other.Respondents involved 120 male and female undergraduates studying at Universiti PutraMalaysia (UPM), who were selected through a convenience sampling. A self-administeredquestionnaire was used as a tool for data collection. Majority of the respondents werebetween 21 and 23 years of age, obtained an average of CGPA of 3.05 and came fromeducated parents (diploma and above), and moderately high household incomes. Pearsoncorrelation was used to test the correlation between the respondent’s personal and familybackgrounds with Facebook intensity. Meanwhile, linear regression was used to analyzethe strength of the relationship between Facebook intensity and social capital and revealedthat all have significant relationships with the intensity of Facebook usage. The linearregression analysis also affirmed that the intensity of the Facebook use (β = 0.274**) has apositive but miniscule effect on the increment of social capital. Relevant factors attributedto findings are also discussed.

Factors Contributing to Individual Capacity Building Levels among Women Entrepreneurs

Nurfazreen Aina Muhamad Nasharudin, Ma’rof Redzuan and Abd Razak Abd Rahman


Keywords: Individual capacity building, individual capacity building factors, women entrepreneurs


This research was conducted to identify factors which contribute to individual capacitybuilding levels among women entrepreneurs. For this purpose, the study was carried out inthe states of Johor and Melaka which involved 200 women entrepreneurs who made up therespondents of this particular research. This study was done through survey method usingquestionnaires. Simple Random Sampling methodology was used to gather the necessarydata. The data were analyzed by means of ‘Statistical Package for Social Science’ (SPSS).Results of the Stepwise Regression test revealed that education level contributed the mosttowards individual capacity building levels among women entrepreneurs, with a varianceof 51.9%. This finding indicates that education level can influence the capability andcredibility of an individual towards achieving progress in her business.

“I doesn’t know English”: Beliefs and Practices in the Teaching of Speaking in ESL Classroom

Clarvie M. Charles Spawa and Fauziah Hassan


Keywords: ESL, oral communication skills, mismatch between beliefs and practice


“What happened to the 11 years of learning English? A distinction in SPM but cannot speakin English?” Poor communication proficiency among Malaysian learners has become anational problem. Speaking proficiency in ESL is important if Malaysia wants to produce ageneration of global communicators, which is in line with the country’s mission to becomea fully developed nation. However, we often hear of grievances that many Malaysiangraduates are not employed due to their poor communication skills in English. This studyseeks to investigate challenges faced by ESL teachers in developing students’ speakingskills. The study involved 47 ESL teachers and 100 students who represented differentregions in Malaysia. The respondents were chosen using purposive sampling. Meanwhile,semi-structured interviews were used to collect the data, which were then analyzed usingcontent analysis. The results suggest that both teachers and students perceive speaking asan important language skill. However, teachers face numerous challenges in translatingthis belief into practice. This has led to a mismatch between what teachers and studentsperceive they need and the actual practice in the classroom.

Application of Human Computer Interaction in Developing an IT-Supported Design Collaboration Process

Naeimeh Delavari, Muhamad Taufik Abdullah, Rahinah Ibrahim and Normahdiah S. Said


Keywords: IT-supported design collaborationprocesses, Human-Computer Interaction (HCI),human need and dimension, engagement, IT/ICT


Increasing globalisation and international collaboration have led to an increaseddemandfor improvedcommunication within design collaboration processes. To address this issue,IT-supported design collaboration processes have been utilised, enablingprofessionaldesign team members to work in a distributed design environment. However, IT-supportedsystems often lack human understanding, making such systems frustrating for professionalsto use.The objective of this theoretical paper is to propose Human-Computer Interaction(HCI) integrated approaches that improve the interaction among professional designteam members and collaborative technologies in a distributed design environment. Thisis particularly examined in the context of the building industry. For this purpose,thispaper analysesthe related literature in design collaboration processes. This analysis isused toassess how earlier systems affect design team members’ capabilitiesto accept anduse collaborative technologies.It is found that in addition to impacting the ergonomicand cognitive capabilities of professionals, a system should also motivate professionalsintrinsically and extrinsically. The findings of this study are essential forpromoting theutility of IT-supported design collaborationprojects.In addition, this study supportsfurther research to increase the level ofengagement in collaborative team workand mitigate knowledge loss in a complexproject lifecycle.

Written Feedback on ESL Student Writers’ Academic Essays

Kelly Tee Pei Leng, Vijay Kumar and Mardziah Hayati Abdullah


Keywords: ESL student writers, speech act, written feedback


This paper provides an analysis of written feedback on ESL student writers’ academicessays to shed light on how feedback acts as a communicative tool between the lecturerand students. The objective of this study is to explore the types and usefulness of writtenfeedback on ESL student writers’ academic writing. First, it discusses the importanceof feedback and the theoretical framework of the Speech Act Theory. The data for thisstudy comprises written feedback and students’ interviews. The feedback was coded,and a model for analysis was developed based on two primary roles of speech: directiveand expressive. Based on this analysis, the paper discusses the types of feedback fromwhich students benefit the most, namely, directive-instruction feedback and expressivedisapprovalfeedback. The interview conducted as part of this study provided insightsonhow the students felt about each type of feedback. This study also suggests a possibility ofdeveloping a taxonomy of good feedback practices by considering the views of the giverand receiver of written feedback.

Postgraduate Student-Supervisor Interface: Issues and Challenges

Haliza Mohd Riji, Syed Tajuddin Syed Hasan and Shamsuddin Ahmad


Keywords: Learning, postgraduate education, culturaladjustment, competency


In this qualitative paper we discuss our face-to-face experience with 28 foreign (mainlyfrom Iran) postgraduate students who registered with the Department of Community Health,Faculty of Medicine and Health Science and 31 who registered with the Department ofProfessional Development and Continuing Education, Faculty of Educational Studies, UPM.The paper addresses itself to three principal areas of concern: firstly, the supervisor-studentrelationship; secondly, the students’ literacy and academic competency; thirdly, academicand social cultural interface. The discussions are predicated on our personal experienceswith these students over a three-year period. The influx of postgraduate students, particularlyfrom Iran and Middle Eastern countries made it necessary for us to pay due attention to ourencounters with them. The locus of tensions largely dwelt on UPM’s educational systemand values. Academic incompetence, language and cultural differences are major issues.Understanding of related issues will benefit both the students and UPM in its efforts tobecome a global player in higher education. We recommend that both qualitative andquantitative studies be conducted by supervisors to explore and determine the overseasstudents’ motivation and learning behavior. We postulate development of an intellectualcommunity that can stimulate challenges beyond the academic encounters. For bothfaculties, various forms of learning media for the promotion of effective communicationshould be developed and made availablefor flexible learning to occur. To helpstudents improve their academic literacy, itis important ‘to identify the epistemologicaland ontological dimension for a flexibleapproach to learning’ (Tavakol & Dennick2009). Formal counselling sessions canallow students to know what type of learnerthey are.

Lion Metaphors in Chinese and English

Wei, L. X., Wong, B. E. and Lim, C. B.


Keywords: British English, Conceptual MetaphorTheory, cultural similarities and differences, lion

metaphors, Mandarin Chinese


This study intends to explore the cultural similarities and differences between the lionmetaphors in Mandarin Chinese and British English. Most previous studies on animalmetaphors focussed on the expressions with human beings as the target domain by collectingdata either from questionnaires or dictionaries based on the Conceptual Metaphor Theory.This study, however, focusses on the expressions with non-humans as the target domainsand is based on data collected from authoritative corpora. Three hundred and ninety-sevenmetaphorical expressions in Mandarin Chinese were identified from the Modern ChineseCorpus compiled by the Centre for Chinese Linguistics of Peking University (CCL Corpus)and 241 metaphorical expressions in British English were identified from the BritishNational Corpus (BNC). After analysing the expressions from the perspective of the sourcedomain and the target domain, the results show that first, the metaphorical expressions inMandarin Chinese are mainly projected from the lion’s appearance to non-humans, butthose in British English are mainly projected from the lion’s characteristics to non-humans.Second, the expressions are mainly mapped onto seven target domains in each language;four are the same. In addition, the dominant evaluation of the seven target domains ineach language is mostly neutral. Third, ten conceptual metaphors were generalised fromMandarin Chinese and one from British English. All of these indicate the occurrence ofcultural similarities as well as differencesin the lion metaphors in the two languages.

Historical Poetics: Revisiting Gender in Isabella Bird’s Polychronotopic Account of Malaya

Forough Barani and Wan Roselezam Wan Yahya


Keywords: Time, space, chronotope, history, gender, Bakhtin, Malaya, England

This paper investigates the representation of time and space in Isabella Bird’s The Golden Chersonese and the Way Thither (1883), her travel narrative on Malaya, through aBakhtinian discussion of the chronotope. The study examines the historical poetics of thetext and compares the intra-textual relation between time and space, as described by Bird,with an extra-textual account of the historical cultural condition of Malaya in 1883. Thispaper further seeks to underline the issue of gender and its influence on the narrative. The Golden Chersonese can be seen as a portrayal of an imperial look at the land and peopleof Malaya; whilst the narrative thus points to the costumes and religion of the Malays,it cannot escape the influence of its narrator’s gender. Bird’s individuality as a femaletraveller against the background of her native land is discussed with regard to her gender. Inaddition, chronotopes of 1883-Malaya, with greater focus on social, cultural and religiousissues, and 1883-England as an imperial power, besides the perception of gender, are alsocompared. Finally, by examining various chronotopic units in The Golden Chersonese, thepaper concludes that Bird’s narrative is a polychronotopic text. This research fills the gapin literature regarding a Bakhtinian perspective on travel narrative writing, with referenceto time and space.

Engaging ESL Students in the Writing Classroom Through the Multiliteracy Approach

Malini Ganapathy and Sarjit Kaur


Keywords: English as a Second Language, Information and Communication Technology, learning element,literacy, multiliteracy approach, multimodal, writing


The consensus on ‘socially responsible’ practices in today’s literacy pedagogy indicatesthat the parameters of school literacies have been significantly extended with the rapidcultural and technological changes in literate forms of communication in recent years.Increasingly, educators around the globe experience dilemmas in engaging with the issueof what to do in literacy pedagogy due to varying cultural identities and the proliferationof multi-channelled communication technologies. Such concerns are also important inMalaysian ESL classrooms. This paper presents the findings of a case study of teachingwriting by an ESL teacher using the multiliteracy approach. The respondents were37Form Four Science students in a Chinese school in Penang. The research instrumentsused included semi-structured interviews with the ESL teacher and Teacher Rating Sheetswhich were used to evaluate the students’ progress in continuous writing. The findingsshow that the students’ continuous writing performance improved as they experiencedactivities assisted by Information and Communications Technology (ICT) in various stagesof writing. Findings also revealed that the students’ engagement in the process of writingwas instrumental in developing their ideas for their essays and simultaneously promotedtheir motivation during the writing lessons. The implication of the results suggests thatliteracy educators must take into consideration various pedagogical practices which willserve effectively in the teaching and learning of writing through technology as a medium.

Comparing Physical Activity of Malaysian Malay Men and Women Before, During, and After Ramadan

Soh Kim Geok, Aminuddin Yusof, Nur Surayyah Madhubala Abdullah, Soh Kim Lam and Ong Swee Leong


Keywords: Physical activity, gender, Malay, sportinvolvement, pedometer, Ramadan


The aims of this research were to investigate whether there is any difference in thephysical activity levels between Malay Muslim men (Muslim) and Malay Muslim women(Muslimah) at Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM) before, during, and after the month ofRamadan, and also to determine the factors restricting their involvement in physicalactivities. Fifty-three UPM Malay Muslim male staff and fifty-four UPM Malay Muslimfemale staff participated in the research. The Yamex-Digi walker CW700 pedometer wasused to measure the physical activity level of the staff for four consecutive days. Resultsshowed that there was no significant difference in the physical activity levels of the MalayMuslim and Muslimah in UPM before, during, and after the month of Ramadan. Thereported t-test results comparing the two genders before, during, and after the month ofRamadan were f=0.003, p<0.96, f=1.047, p<0.31, and f=3.106, p<0.08, respectively. Itwas reported that the lack of self motivation/laziness played the most important role inrestricting the involvements of both genders in the physical activities.

Relationship between Sources and Teachers’ Sense of Efficacy among Novice Teachers in Selangor, Malaysia

Saw Hooi Chin, Samsilah Roslan, Suhaida Abdul Kadir and Rahil Mahyuddin


Keywords: Teacher self-efficacy, sources of efficacy, novice teacher, Malaysia, educational psychology


This study investigated novice teachers’ sources of efficacy in relation to the applicationof knowledge in Educational Psychology. The questionnaires were administered to asample of 160 novice teachers from 102 secondary schools in Selangor, Malaysia. Thefindings indicated that the novice teachers demonstrated a moderate level of teachers’sense of efficacy. The three sources of efficacy, namely, mastery experience, vicariousexperience, and social persuasion were identified as the predictors of teachers’ sense ofefficacy [Adjusted R2 = 0.50, F (3, 155) = 53.16, p<0.01]. The implication of the study onthe theory and practice of the teachers’ sense of efficacy was also discussed. Suggestionsand recommendations were offered to enhance and foster senses’ of efficacy among thenovice teachers.