Wednesday, January 25, 2012

CNY at my house... non MUET related but i like this video: Enter the dragon(s) with a huge bang(s)... :P

Happy CNY to all...

sorry guys.. hv been busy celebrating CNY with family and friends, so hvnt managed to check emails or blogs due to computer down in the house.. power surges problems are killing my cpu. anyway... will try to answer the comments now from the cyber cafe... pity pity...

as for when I'll be in UTHM.. I really dont know, it depends if they invite me again or not. basically this time if i go i will require each person to bring a sample of their essays and we will do a writing workshop because that is the area that i can help you the most. cheers.

catch up later k!

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Sheen's Essay - Edited

tq sheen for your essay that you willingly share with others so that they may avoid the same mistakes you've done. i've only edited for word class, word order and basic grammar errors (there are many unmarked) without touching on the content.. you may leave comments here about what you think of the essay. alternatively.. you may submit your essay to me (although i don't guarantee that i can mark/edit each and every one that i receive)... so what do you think of this essay?

Need help...

Hi guys.. I know I'm not very tech savvy.. but does anyone know how I can upload a microsoft document (with edited comment) onto the net? I looked into google docs but it means I have to retype everything including adding new comment boxes. How can I share this essay in the simplest way? Hmmmmmm....

I edit quite a few MUET essays but have yet to figure out the best way to share them. Comments please...

Friday, January 13, 2012

MUET appeal procedures

Rayuan Penyemakan Semula Keputusan Ujian MUET Akhir Tahun 2011 akan dibuka mulai 12 Januari hingga 27
Januari 2012. Rayuan yang dikemukakan selepas tarikh tersebut akan ditolak.

go to the link above now if you want to submit an appeal. it costs rm70. :P a lot of money? maybe, maybe not. depends on how much you desire a second marking.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

My thoughts on the MUET results..

Well the big day has come and is almost gone and I've endured a roller-coaster of emotions.. Firstly, I'm super proud of my SMK Majakir school students who took the exam and broke all records, or at least records that matter to me. Bear in mind that I taught the best class and the ahem.. 'least best' class and from the two we scaled many new heights. My star student Joanne Gan managed to garner a Band 5 (we havent had one since 2007, be reminded that we are on the outskirts of the city so for a small town school, to me that's a great achievement) and the cherry on the sundae is the fact that she scored 45/45 (perfect!!!!) scores for the listening paper. Va-va-voom! Good job, Joanne! The other class I teach has 21 students and only one obtained a Band 1 (I measure my success by eradicating hardcore failures, footnote: this is my personal yardstick and I don't expect anyone else to follow in my footsteps). Even he scored 95, 5 marks shy of the minimum target I place on them, so I'm still proud that he tried his best.

However, there were a few people who did not hit the 140 target (B3), and one person in particular whom I truly feel for as she has tried many times and fallen short, this time a single mark (139) dividing between a pass (which translates to graduation vs. non-graduation) and a fail. Sighs.. I wish the fates had been kinder to her. Never mind, as I've mentioned in an earlier post, it's not how hard you fall, but how fast you get up. In addition, consider it one of those tricky learning curves life boomerangs at you and you just have to duck faster or catch it with more precision. Anyway, time to dust off and get back to the drawing board. Good luck for the next round!

My next blog is courtesy of a blogwalker who's emailed me his essay and I've edited it. He's allowed me to share it with you all so that you can see how a person's word order and sentence order can affect your scores even if you have relatively good grammar and vocabulary. Right, so for all out there gearing up for the next MUET exam, you need to work at it starting now. Even now can be considered 'too late' as learning a language (esp one as complicated as English) is NOT an overnight phenomenon. :P Stay tuned!

Wednesday, January 4, 2012


Head to MPM's page for your results by 9am. But I've also known students to get their results via sms at midnight so if you're dying to know u can try in the wee hrs of the morning on the 12th.

Did you get your desired result? Did my blog help you in any way? What else would you like me to blog about regarding MUET? If you're new to MUET (many ask me for advice) I'll repeat again and again that you should trawl my whole blog archive and read up on all my tips and sample answers.

Also dont forget to let me know if my reading 800/3 answers are accurate. for the mid year answers I was 2 questions out of sync with MPM's so that makes my total 43/45 which is not bad cos even I admit that some questions are tricky.

Fingers crossed esp for all my students, seminar participants (UiTM, UTHM, various schools in Sabah) n all my blog followers. God bless you all. If you did well, good job! If you didn't, just remember that it's not how hard you fall, but how fast you get up. :P

Monday, January 2, 2012

4 muet writing samples

MUET Writing Question 2 sample answers for 350 word academic essay

Below are 4 samples of good essays... Band 4 or 5... Band 6 essays will demonstrate a much better command of linguistic fluency and accuracy as well as show more mature and critical thinking skills.


“People are becoming more materialistic. They are concerned with making more money and what money can buy.” What is your opinion on being materialistic? You should write at least 350 words. [60 marks]
They say that money makes the world go round. And indeed it does as without money, life would be very difficult as in today’s society, nothing is free. The side effect however is that people are becoming more materialistic; more concerned with making money and what money can buy. But how much money is enough? Is it ever enough? To some, it will never be enough. In my opinion, I truly believe that this statement is true and that people are becoming more materialistic in nature. In this essay, I will discuss how materialism has affected modern society’s way of life on an individual level, the country’s economy as well as our spiritual and moral beliefs.

First and foremost, each individual is affected by materialism to some extent in this day and age because hedonism is becoming an uprising trend. This is because today's generation are geared towards making more and more money so that they can enjoy the carefree lifestyle that is so popular these days. Moreover, people now are striving to earn more income in order to afford things that are more expensive and branded. For example, people spend their hard earned money on material objects like genuine LV and Coach handbags, expensive gadgets like Iphones and Tablet pcs and so on which in my opinion is a waste of money when regular goods may prove to be good enough. Therefore, while individuals become more focussed on their pursuit of material wealth and improving their standard of living, they may forget that what matters most in life is quality time spent with family and friends and not the quantity of their material goods.

Secondly, when society starts spending in a materialistic manner it will surely have a domino effect on the country’s economy. This means that the spending power of society will help boost the economy and create more business opportunities for the booming trade. However, when a society overspends, using plastic money or credit cards, or when they take loans they cannot afford to repay, then the country’s debt margin will be higher. For instance, USA today is facing an economic crisis because banks have approved home loans to people who aspire to own bigger houses than they can actually afford and this is causing the collapse of the country’s economy there. Thus, while a society’s spending habits helps our economy to grow, overspending due to materialism will have an adverse effect to the country’s financial stability.

Last but not least, materialism affects our spiritual and moral beliefs. This is due to the fact people who are materialistic may become ‘amoral’ whereby they disregard their spiritual and moral upbringing and instead turn to crime to satisfy their materialistic needs. In fact, the crime rate is increasing because criminals these days have developed many ways to gain more money from society. Take for example, there are more reports of snatch thefts, burglaries, kidnapping for ransom, credit card fraud, internet banking hacking and others that are driven by materialistic criminals. Hence, when people lose sight of their spiritual and moral beliefs and believe instead in the greed of materialism, therefore the crime rate is bound to increase.

In a nutshell, materialism is a common agenda in the 21st century as more people are working hard to afford things beyond their reach. While this may spur individuals to work harder to improve their standard of living, overspending due to materialism may cause the downfall of a country’s economy and their morality. In my opinion, I still firmly believe that materialism has a strong hold on today’s society; both positive and negative effects. Our government can encourage society to be less frivolous and wasteful in spending by running campaigns such as ‘Consumer Awareness’ and ‘Buy Malaysian Made Products’ in order to educate our younger generation for the prosperity of our nation.


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. [60 marks]

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 free 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.


The most valuable thing in life is friendship. Do you agree? Discuss. You should write at least 350 words.
[60 marks]

It is true that no ‘man is an island’ meaning that no one in this world can live alone without friendship. That person would be very socially challenged as he or she would miss the camaraderie and life experiences that come with friendship. However, I completely disagree with the statement that the most valuable thing in life is friendship as there are certainly more important and priceless things in life besides this. In this essay, I will outline how life itself is more valuable than friendship, and elaborate on why family and the individual’s principles in life are ranked higher.

First and foremost, before one can enjoy the beauty of friendship, one must surely value life itself or in other words, we should value our health. This is because, the quality of our life is the single most important criteria in life if we are to live a meaningful and wholesome life. Moreover, without good health, we will be hard pressed to do even the simplest of tasks like feed ourselves or relieve ourselves without the help of doctors, nurses and caregivers. For example, if we are paralysed, lost our sight, hearing or ability to speak or even a simple case of a fever or allergic reactions, then the quality of our life is greatly reduced and no amount of friendship can make us healthy again. Therefore, while friends can stand by us in our time of need, pristine health is still the most valuable asset in our lives.

Secondly, we are no one without our family as indeed blood is thicker than water. This means that however you analyse it, friendships will almost always play second fiddle because family always comes first. Furthermore, if we do not value our family above others, then there must be a problem among the family members that has caused their relationship to be strained. For instance, people tend to turn away from family if the family member(s) themselves are the ones to cause them to react negatively such as divorced parents, abusive parents or siblings and so on. Thus, when people consider friendship to be the most valuable thing in life, more often than not they may come from a troubled household.

Last but not least, a person’s principles in life is by far more valuable than friendship alone. This is due to the fact that each person needs to have a code of ethics, quite often prescribed by their individual religions. In addition, this code will guide each person to live their lives according to the good and right principles. Take for example, if an individual has set his principles to do good, then no amount of friendship especially negative influence from friends, can shake his hold on his principles and cause him to commit undesirable deeds like smoking, stealing, raping, murdering and others. Hence, if a person values friendship so much to the point where he is willing to break his principles, then he has done a serious misdeed against himself and will most likely regret his actions later in life.

In short, friendship is the rainbow of life as it colours our horizons with invaluable experiences but without good health, a supportive family and strong principles, life becomes empty and meaningless. In my opinion, it is beyond a shadow of a doubt that I still firmly believe that friendship is not the most valuable thing in life. Our government can encourage people to prioritise health, family and principles in life by organising awareness campaigns especially in primary schools where the younger generation should learn about priorities in life because they are the leaders of tomorrow.


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.
[60 marks]

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.