The Tempinis diaries

March 9, 2009

We can be truly global if we do it all in English

Filed under: Uncategorized — toru @ 3:15 pm

Some eminently sensible words from a young man. Proof that wisdom is not monopoly of the old.
We can be truly global if we do it all in English

I AM a second-year medical student studying in Universiti Malaya. During my secondary school years, Science and Maths were taught in Malay. Upon entering local matriculation, the two subjects were taught in English and many of us had problems adjusting to the language. Some lecturers had problems teaching in English too.

Even in university, we still had a text book in Malay in our first year. However, it was a big leap for us as lessons were conducted in English and international text books are all written in English.

Many of us struggled.

But does this mean that we give up teaching Science and Maths in English?

No, I believe the answer is not in reverting back to Malay as it would seem as if we have given up trying. Struggling to learn a language will only make us better with it. Much progress has been made in the mastering of English by both students and teachers.

It will only be a waste of resources if we do not continue this good effort.

In the medical field, the number of journals, textbooks, teaching and learning resources in English is enormous. International conferences are almost always conducted in English. Only by mastering the English language can we wisely use the resources that God has blessed Malaysia with in the global arena.


Unity and Community Affairs Bureau,

Student Representative Council,

Universiti Malaya, Kuala Lumpur.


  1. Hmm you want the original letter sent to the Star?
    Half of it got edited away. =P

    And yes this is the real timothy here.

    Comment by Timothy Cheng — April 13, 2009 @ 7:15 am

    • why don’t you post it here?

      Comment by toru — April 13, 2009 @ 7:27 am

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