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ERIC Number: ED154624
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1978
Pages: 21
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
English in Malaysia.
Wong, Irene F. H.
In the last 15 years or so, Malaysian English has begun to come into its own as a dialect peculiar to its own region and yet intelligible on the whole to English speakers everywhere. There is evidence that English is undergoing a transitional stage in Malaysia; use of English is progressively reduced as use of Bahasa Malaysia is increased. The language of instruction in non-private schools is Malay, with English being learned as a second language. Most English-speaking Malaysians use a local dialect in informal situations and when conversing with Malaysians. A more widely used speech form, modeled on standard British or American, is used on a formal level and with non-natives. There are deviations from standard English structure in both dialects, with the local dialect being less complex than the more widely used speech form and exhibiting more deviation from standard structure in terms of phonology, grammar, and vocabulary. Although, to a certain degree, adherence to a standard model of English is still demanded on the formal level, particularly with regard to written language and specifically in the area of grammar, there is a trend toward a more widely used speech form that is distinct from educated native-speaker English and that incorporates a number of the features of the local dialect. Accordingly, educational policy in Malaysia now stresses learning English for communicative competence, as a tool. Because there are no materials at present for teaching functional English, standard English is still used as a model. This will ensure mutual intelligibility between the native speaker and the educated Malaysian. (AM)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: N/A
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Malaysia