Nov 19, 2005


n. Psychology Reversion to an earlier or less mature pattern of feeling or behavior.
Just a few days ago, I had several mumbo-jumbo talk a.k.a. bird talk with this mamat. Our agenda loosely revolved around the falling ranking of UM, the quality of education in UM during our first year and now. This mamat pointed out that he used to look down upon the teaching quality back in his secondary school until he came to UM, and ever since, thanked the heaven above for the learning opportunity in his own high school.
Just the same, I always had this voices (not auditory hallucination) in myself saying "uni teaching sux" (U.T.S.). In fact, it is actually "uni teaching relatively sux". Forgive moi. It is the system or just the teachers, or it is the teachers in the system. It is a vicious cycle perhaps. Bad system produces bad teachers, and bad teachers creates a worse system, and so on and so forth. However I will not neglect the rule number 1: do not generalize. Although "UTS", there are still plenty of good lecturers around us. Perhaps they are the one that let us see the light, the distinction between a good and bad lecturers, the hope to strive on, and perhaps the cure or a mild relief from UTS.
Since my secondary school days, I had always been brainwashed by some of my dearest teachers (rule no 1 observed) that in uni, everything is D.I.Y. and the lecturer is only there to help out. I also heard the myth (or is it?) that lecturers would just tell the student frankly where and which lines in the textbook that is deemed important. Important, not in a sense that it will professionally makes you better, not in a sense that it will makes you more knowledgeable knowing it, not in a sense that it will help out in your general social well being, but IMPORTANT, in a sense that it will be coming out black and white, perhaps word for word, in the coming semester examination.
Good to have some foreigners in our local uni soon. If UTS persisted, let it be known to the global communities. Hope our neighbouring countries, esp Singapore, Thailand and Indonesia won’t be ROTFL.
In UM, lots of lecturers (rule no 1 observed) had this typical Tourettoid (see Tourette syndrome) slogans "I WON’T SPOONFEED YOU ALL! I WON’T SPOONFEED YOU ALL! I WON’T SPOONFEED YOU ALL!" Deep in my heart, I really would like to reply "Fine!", completely pissed not because I wanted to be spoon fed so much, but I felt I am among a bunch of idiots (which we’re not!) that can’t wait to be spoon feed.
On the other hand, a handful of lecturers gain popularity by having the awesome technique and afinity to spoonfeed. I still remember, back in Klang, when Dr. Ravee, on his first day appearance, stated "I truly believe in spoon feeding" and it was followed by loud applause (really loud, hysterically loud, unbelievably loud) by all my group members. Dr. Ravee was different. He does not really exclusively spoonfeed us. That’s what made his teaching special and memorable. It let us have an illusion of being spoonfed.
There had always been thoughts over which method of teaching is the best - "neglect" vs "spoonfeed", but I think what we all really looking for is the fine line of balance between this two at the appropriate stage of learning. Let there be a solid guide to what’s really important, a ardent motivation to get there, and persistence in both.
In the right mind, one should be reminded that UM ranking is perhaps a symbol of the quality of education in Malaysia. There had been lots of debates about the ranking, but one thing for sure, UM is just a small pawn that were being punished over our dropping quality of education in Malaysia, despites all the A’s at our public examination. Just take the long compilation of past years public exams papers, even a blind man/woman can see the (dropping) trend.
My dear PM Pak Lah (if you’re reading this, just in case, god knows, you are an internet savvy guy), I had 2 suggestions:
  1. how about getting a independent body to review our public examination’s standards?
  2. get a few reporters (professional ones) to go undercover to write a few stories about a day work of a government servant I bet you’ll probably regret making this move.
Sweet memories as I stroll down, revisiting my primary school.
Once a Xavierian, Always a Xavierian. Touché.
Xavierian spirits flying high (had to stand there for hours to capture this)
the great founder of Lasallian schools
the porch - main hanging out place
canteen - main base of fun during camping times
the school compound - classes, PE hours, loitering around
Special announcement:
Happy Birthday to you my dear buddies!! Live live to the fullest, ok!
10 Oct Jen
16 Nov Miss Teoh
17 Nov Cheh
03 Dec Hoon Hoon - tak tau malu, ask for present so soon. he he.

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