Wednesday, April 28, 2010

OLD FORMAT: NOT APPLICABLE ANY LONGER Question 1 MUET Mid Year Writing Paper 800/4 sample answer


Here's a sample model answer for the lastest MUET exam.


The world today is turning more to electronic communications such as the e-mail, Facebook and Short message System (SMS). What is your opinion of this growing trend? Discuss. You should write at least 350 words.

Generally, in answering academic essays, you need to really focus on a higher level of thinking which befits a Band 6, university style response. If you were to just answer that this electronic communication trend is good and that you can chat with your friends and keep in touch, then you really haven't explored the question in a mature and critical way.

How do you train your mind to be more critical and mature in approaching the question? Well, you need to focus not just on the effects of the concept to yourself and the people around you, but focus on how it will affect society not just in your country but globally.

Anyway, have a read of the sample answer below. Take note that I'm sticking to my writing template, but better students can use a more creative style to show their flair in writing effective compositions.

Everywhere we turn today, the world is crowded with people busy typing SMSes on their Nokias or iPhones or someone is staring unblinkingly at a Facebook or Yahoo page on the computer screen. Whether you like it or not, the age of Information Technology is upon us, and we can either learn new skills and adapt to this new technology, or be forever lost and stuck in the older generation. In my opinion, I am fully convinced that this growing trend is the way of the future, and it brings countless benefits to mankind. In this essay, I will discuss three positive effects of electronic communication, namely its efficiency, enhances communication and creates a borderless world community.

First and foremost, more and more people are relying on e-mail, Facebook, Short Message System (SMS) and other types of electronic communication tools because of its high efficiency. This is because in today's age of globalisation, we need information at the tip of our fingers. Moreover, with the use of these tools, we can increase the speed of getting the necessary and relevant information within seconds and this will increase our productivity. For example, gone are the days of using 'snail mail' or regular letters using stamps and envelopes and many more examples of 'old' technology because it is simply too slow and inefficient. Therefore, these e-communication tools increases the access to important information which is why the new generation is fully accepting this growing trend.

Secondly, this form of technology enhances communication among people today. This means that when we use SMS, e-mails and websites like Facebook, we are able to communicate clearly and directly to our target audience. Furthermore, people today find that the message is more important than the form it comes in as an e-mail in short but clear sentences is just as good or even better than a long and formal letter. For instance, an SMS can give clear instructions in just a few words and this communicates what needs to be done quickly and directly. Thus, when the intended message can be spread clearly using short and clear information like in SMSes and emails, communication can be enhanced and there will be less problems of miscommunication.

Last but not least, e-communication creates a borderless community in the world we live in today. This is due to the fact that the boundaries that separate each country becomes less relevant when information is transferred without limitations. In addition, the world would be a better place because there is a sense of 1-World commitment, respect and tolerance for the global community through efficient and clear e-communication. Take for example, we are able to connect with people on an international basis using Facebook, Friendster, Tagged, Hotmail, Yahoo and others. Hence, these tools will enhance global unity and create a more peaceful world.

In a nutshell, this growing trend has many positive effects not just to individuals but the global society in terms of efficiency, enhancing communicative skills and shaping a borderless community. In my opinion, I still firmly believe that this latest trend is the best way forward and if we do not catch up, we will be left behind by the tide of development. Our government can encourage the proper usage of electronic communications by increasing communication amenities and broadband accessibility especially in rural areas so that they can enjoy the same facilities as city-folks therefore balancing the development of our country towards achieving Vision 2020.

So what do you guys think? Please give me some feedback. ;-)

Tuesday, April 27, 2010


Hi everyone,

I've gone through the mid year paper and these are my answers. MPM's answers may be slightly different as even I admit that most of the questions are tricky. Anyway, this is just to help you guage your level. When you get your result (x) do some calculation to predict what you may get for the final result. x times 120 divided by 45 then you can get your reading paper marks of x/120.
Eg. if u scored 20 x120 /45 = 53 points /120.
Then you have to pray you did well for the other papers..


So, how did you do? A good target to aim for is at least 25/45 in order to get band 3 or higher.

Stay tuned for sample answers for the report and academic essay in my next blog post.


Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Thanks everyone!

The winning team!
Everyone showing off their creative thinking skills!
Ours is the winner! Not! hehee.. but good try ok!

Hey i've been getting some great MUET enquiries and replies either in my inbox and also comments here. Seems like people do read my blog and it is really helping them. I'm keeping my fingers crossed for all the students who are taking the mid year muet exam this sat... hopefully with my extra help your results will improve greatly! don't forget to sms or email or comment here on your results ok! hehe..

as for my students, these are pics of when i had a newspaper activity in a combined class.. the winners created a mini tv model and then they justified their invention.. haha.. a good way to combine fun and authentic use of the language! well done Majakirians!!!

Monday, April 5, 2010

Sample MUET essay on fuel price

The rising fuel price has pushed up the price of other consumer products. How will this affect the society? Give your opinion. You should write at least 350 words.

When tackling this question, one should think in terms of : 1. short term effect, 2. mid term and finally 3. long term. This question gauges a student's level of critical thinking and prediction.

I would like to stress that it is unnecessary to pepper the entire essay with bombastic words. Better to keep it short and simple.

Note: affect (verb), effect (noun)

Here's a sample answer.

Money is always an issue in today's era of materialism. Most people need it for basic survival while the lucky few indulge in luxuries without worrying about money. In my opinion, I strongly agree that the rising fuel price has pushed up the price of other consumer products and this will definitely affect the society. In this essay, I would like to touch on the effects this price increase has on society today, namely increasing vice activities, widening the gap between the rich and the poor and affecting the population trend in the long term.

First and foremost, society will immediately be affected by the rise in fuel prices because consumer products will be more costly and this leads to an increase of vice activities. This is because basic necessities such as rice, flour, sugar and so on will be in great demand and some warehouses will store or hoard the items to further increase the price of the product. Moreover, in the newspapers today, reports of smuggling of these items prove that this vice activity is on the rise. For example, the recent sugar price hike caused a furor among the Malaysian society as it costs more fuel to travel to and from the supermarket and when arriving, most places had run out of stock even though the government had allocated 2kg of sugar to one person. Therefore, the fuel price increase had definitely caused more hardships to society today.

Secondly, it is undeniable that the rise in fuel prices leads to the widening of the gap between the rich and the poor. This is due to the fact that people are greatly affected by the price of basic necessities such as food and fuel in particular. Furthermore, the rich people will still be able to afford such things but the poor will face greater challenges as the popular saying goes: "The rich get richer, and the poor get poorer." For instance, when money is used to purchase consumer products that are necessary for survival, then less money will be spent on health and dental check-up, educational purposes and others. Thus, it is clear that the fuel price hike will further stress on the differences between the rich and the poor which is such a tragedy.

Last but not least, in the long term the population trend or demographics of the society will be greatly affected. This means that new families will consciously decide not to have too many children in order to increase their quality of life. In addition, society is now more aware of birth control and family planning so this will greatly reduce the population as most families will have 1 to 5 children instead of more. Take for example, new families with less children will surely spend less on basic necessities like food, clothes, transport and many more. Hence, the demographics of the whole country will be affected and this in turn will reduce our workforce which will affect our country's productivity and prosperity.

In short, there are many short term to long term effects of a fuel price increase which includes more crimes like hoarding and smuggling will occur and this leads to the widening of the gap between the rich and the poor as well as a change in the society's demographics. I still strongly believe that the rising fuel price has pushed up the price of other consumer products and this will surely cause a negative impact to society. The government must find a way to stabilise the fuel price at a reasonable rate so that it does not affect the productivity of this country towards achieving the aspirations of the nation for Vision 2020.

The comeback.. ;-)

Thanks Nancy n Suzie for a well organised workshop. ;-)

Looking good!
Almost 100 participants showed up. Thanks for the support and good luck!


It seems I have left this blog unattended for too long. ;-) I guess that laziness is a disease that afflicts even teachers. hahahah... or is that common knowledge?

This year I've already done 3 MUET workshops.. the pics here are from the whole day workshop I did in Universiti Mara Malaysia at the KK campus. Had a great time guest lecturing them on reading comprehension, listening and writing. I've modified the lecture to include model tests and hands-on workshop and that was a good move as I could tell the students were able to follow well. The whole 4 hours flew by easily and smoothly as the UiTM students definitely had a stronger basic command of English. Their advantage is that they have all their lessons in the English medium. Therefore, I can definitely anticipate great things for these achievers.

I have also lectured at KK Highschool this year, and they seem to be a proactive bunch. Very easy to relate to but I do find them more wary of others as they are indeed a more intelligent bunch and therefore may find fault with those who try to teach others but are themselves not up to scratch. They focused well on the issue at hand and managed to complete the workshop productively even if it was quite a long session.

As for SMK Benoni, the 30 students were more grateful to have me there to help them as most of them had average to low proficiency. We focused more on writing, listening and speaking skills and tips. All in all, it was an enterprising day.

I'm thankful that I can give back to my society, in no matter how minimal a way. I like to consider myself an expert in MUET but I also know that my knowledge is not all encompassing. Thus, it is such a joy to teach others and share my knowledge and after every session, I find new ways to tweak my presentations in the hope it is on track to perfection. So all you students and fellow colleagues with the same agenda out there, congrats and thanks for all your support. Good luck in teaching or in achieving a higher band and I hope I have truly helped to raise you up.