BACKGROUND OF THE RESEARCH
In Malaysia, English has widely used during the colonial period as a tool of educational enhancement and socio-economic mobility. This colonial era started with the arrival of Portuguese, followed by Dutch and British. However, the independence on 31st August 1957 did not abandon the usage of English because it was used as an educational instrument and a primary tool for global interactions. There is a lot of technology that can be used for the students in learning. Malaysian students are no longer a stranger to internet based life destinations, for example, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and WhatsApp. As the internet ends up omnipresent and a need, online life locales as well, have turned out to be key to everybody particularly for university students as they not just give spaces to maintain and creating connection such as family relationship, friendship and significant others.
During this 21st century the era of modernisation, social media has cut across the social domain into the scholarly community and in various scholastic settings to give spaces for educating and learning. It improves the efficiency of class teaching and will make the lessons of English teaching more effective and efficient. Social media have facilitated millions of students in terms of their proficiency in English in this modern era. It is the latest online tool that allows students to establish profiles and share information with others. As mentioned by Singh (2012), many social networking sites offered the users many applications that make them easy to get any benefit including in English language learning. The higher population of it, the educators start questioning students grades of English language will not be influenced by how much time they have spent on the social media. Fuziah Hashim et.al (2017) further described, the ability to give and receive feedbacks is most important feature of the social networking site because if this feature was not there, the world of social networking would not be advance like today.
Any content that user share instantly starts receiving comments, likes, reviews, opinions, and additional information on that topic. Apart from that, According to Neha (2015) since media came into existence, it played a big role in molding and forming the thought process and lingua franca of all who came under its spell. Internet is the place for students to learn and this issue was already constantly tracked by experts even though the answer and solution still remained unrevealed. These also include reduced lexical and syntactic structures, use of abbreviations, emoticons, shortenings, clippings, contractions, non-conventional spellings, nonalphabetic symbols and the use of letter or number homophones, claimed by Zaemah et. al (2012). The use of technology become the most important factors that can influence student’s educational performance positively or adversely.
-40005659066502476724Besides, according to Statista (2018) in the statistics portal, the timeline shows a most famous social network sites worldwide in July 2018, that was ranked by number of active users (in millions). The result shown as below;
center4323080Figure SEQ Figure * ARABIC 1: Source: https://www.statista.com/statistics/272014/global-social-networks-ranked-by-number-of-users/ retrieved on August 1, 2018.
0Figure SEQ Figure * ARABIC 1: Source: https://www.statista.com/statistics/272014/global-social-networks-ranked-by-number-of-users/ retrieved on August 1, 2018.
The figure above shows the numbers of Facebook user which is an obvious that have surpass 1 billion registered users and display the strong user connection, compared to Instagram and Twitter. The result is collected amongst the active users which have also logged in the Facebook during the last 30 days before the figure shown. Amongst the users are college students who spend in this networks with up to 5 hours each day and more on weekends. Also supported by Maier et al., (2012) the experience of information overloaded being compressed at one time from the continuous browsed in Facebook has caused tiredness.
1.2STATEMENT OF PROBLEMS
Nowadays, social media plays important role in improving and gaining students’ knowledge of the English Proficiency. However, there is still no guarantee that the English language that students use in Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and others are appropriate and suitable for them to learn. It worries us much that the language that used in social media might be improper and contains a lot of grammatical error that might lead them to become worse in English instead of giving better educational need. According to Dhanya (2016) cited that students depend more on the internet and this issue was also constantly investigated by experts, but the answer and solution is still unknown. This issue is stated because we realize that social media is clearly influence the linguistic features of English language since the language we use to communicate with each other tends to be more flexible than formal writing that will lead to a rapid change of the language.
There are so many ways that social media can fracture the English language and it totally gives a bad effect to students. According to Mensah & Nizam (2018), student that spends excessive time on social networks become dependent on it and it is believed that their academic performance diminished proportionately. However, social media is still one of the best medium to improve students’ skill and to develop their communication in English. The gratification received from this social information helped users feel that they were a part of a peer network of knowing what was going on about events and activities (Quan-Haase et al., 2010).
1.3OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY
The fast development in science and technology has brought many advantages to learners of the English language. Most of the learners of the English Language students are youth who are also users of social media. Therefore, the objectives of this study are:
1. To measure the effect of social media usage patterns relate to time spent on academic performance.
2.To examine students’ perception towards the influence of online communicative language in enhancing their English.
3.To determine students’ perceptions about the formality of English language use on social media.
1.4RESEARCH QUESTIONS/ HYPHOTHESES
Below are the research questions of the study:
1.How does social media usage patterns relate to time spent on academic performance?
H1Frequent social media usage has negative impact on students’ academic performance.
2.What are students’ perception towards the influence of online communicative language in enhancing their English proficiency?
H2There is high influence of online communicative language on students’ English proficiency.
1.5SCOPE OF THE STUDY
This research study analyses students’ perception on the English prociency under the influence of online communicative language, which was initiated in Kolej Universiti Poly-Tech MARA Kuala Lumpur. The questionnaires will be distributed to 100 respondents among students from Bachelor of Arts in Applied English Language Studies (BE201). Hence, convenient sampling techniques will be use in this research, as it offers the least expensive and least time consuming.
1.6LIMITATION OF THE STUDY
For this research, there are some limitations that will occur. The first thing is the time constraint. As the researcher has a limited time in doing this study with packed schedule of trimester, where it causes problem for the researcher to collect data in a short period of time.
In addition, during the collection of data, the researcher will face the limitation of meeting the needs where KUPTM students are not fully available to be the target in distributing questionnaires.
Lastly, references on previous study are quite limited as there is a small amount of research that is found to support my study. In short, more researches about students’ perception towards the used of English linguistic features through online communication should be carried out to build much stronger evidence later.
1.7SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
The main purpose of this research is to find out of analyses students’ perception on the English proficiency under the influence of online communicative language. This study is conduct to know the effects of using social media for students, in developing their English language.
The findings of the study are important to help the educators, teachers or curriculum developers in Kolej Universiti Poly-Tech MARA Kuala Lumpur to find the patterns of the English language in the social media. The result can also be used to design syllabus and lesson which encourage students to improvise their usage of English in writing or speaking, in a better way and confidently.
Lastly, social media is a part of linguistic activities of language learning that involve the practice of daily conversations. Therefore, learners will have the ability to use social media in English language proficiency in the future.
1.8DEFINITION OF TERMS
Perception is how an individual see others and how other perceive individual. It is stated that perception is a process to select, organize, and interpret the input from their sense (vision, hearing, touch, smell and taste). (George and Jones, 2006)
1.8.2 English language proficiency
Referring to the ability of a student to make use of the language to communicate in spoken and written contexts while completing their university studies. (Australian Universities Quality Agency, 2009)
Defined as a force one person exerts on someone else to induce a change in target, including changes in behaviour, opinion, attitudes, goals, needs and values. (Anita Hall, 2007)
1.8.4Online Communicative Language
Describes the use of informal patterns of language in both formal and informal settings, serving various purposes and functions or also known as digital language, or even ‘Netspeak’. (Crystal, 2006)
This section synthesises the previous literature that have been presented in the field of social media and English language proficiency. Summarized in the following review of the literature are divided in four sections. The first section is a few definitions of social media, the types and the act of using social media. Second section are the ways that social media is fracturing English language.
2.2DEFINITION AND THE ACT OF USING SOCIAL MEDIA
As we already knew, social media plays a good role in connecting and allows every single person to communicate as well as sharing information using the internet or mobile phones. According to Merriam Webster (2014), social media is a form of electronic communication such as websites through which people create online communities to share information, ideas, personal messages and many more. It has become a major form of communication in today’s day and age whereby language use has been impacted in various areas especially in learning and teaching. Sometimes the youth-speak has gone on to influence other areas of language usage. In academic writing there was a conscious effort to stay clear of social media’s language. The influence of social media has helped people especially students create a whole young generation who have their own meta-language, which provides an opportunity to analyse to what extent the English language is altered, as cited by Thurairaj (2015). This research should kick-start research on how the English language in these areas is used and whether the frequent use of it can develop or weaken proficiency in the language.
Social media is a phrase that we throw around a lot these days, often to describe what we post on sites and apps like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat and others (Nations, 2017). The term is used so unclearly because it can basically be used to describe almost any website on the internet today. As cited by Nations (2017), a lot of people user the terms social media and social networking interchangeably as if they mean the exact same thing. Although the difference is subtle, they are actually not the same. Social networking is really a subcategory of social media.
According to Dhanya (2016), social media has affected the preferred learning styles of young people wanting to learn English around the world. Therefore, in order to remain relevant and effective, teachers need to use ‘learning technologies’ to help students reach the world outside the classroom. Teachers now follow to innovative practices in teaching- learning process and have changed their roles into ‘facilitators’ (Dhanya, 2016). The role of teacher demands to promote more group tasks and stress- free learning environments. Social media is emerging in various forms to bring people together as communities. It is not denied that there is also a controversy on using new Social Media such as Facebook, WhatsApp or Web Chat. However, in the present global scenario, when millions live and breathe on social media, teachers are learning how to incorporate the medium into the classroom successfully. The social media tools help the language teachers to stay connected with their peers around the world and stay updated about their fields. Moreover, these online buttons give the language teachers the chance to help others in their fields, find solutions to their problems and improve their teaching language careers. In article by Hudson (2017) stated that social media is a series of websites and applications designed to allow people to share content quickly, efficiently and in real-time. Most people today define social media as apps on their smartphone or tablet, but the truth is, this communication tool started with computers. This misconception is proven that most social media users usually access their tools via apps. In fact, 50% of online users never engage social media.
Social media has become an integral part of life either in learning. According to Rouse (2016), social media is the collective of online communications channels dedicated to community-based input, interaction, content-sharing and collaboration. She also stated that websites and applications dedicated to forums, micro blogging, social networking, social bookmarking, social curation, and Wikipedia are among the different types of social media. For example, Facebook is a popular free social networking website that allows registered users to create profiles, upload photos and video, send messages and keep in touch with friends, family and colleagues while Twitter is a free micro blogging service that allows registered members to broadcast short posts called tweets. Twitter members can broadcast tweets and follow other users’ tweets by using multiple platforms and devices.
2.3WAYS THROUGH SOCIAL MEDIA IS FRACTURING ENGLISH LANGUAGE
Without having doubt, the emergence of the internet and the social media networks essentially have resulted the new types of written language. There is no denying that social media has a drastic impact on people we are communicating with other than being exposed to a different personalities, perspectives, and approaches to communicate. In this section we are discussing about certain factors that are fracturing the English language proficiency.
One of the most notable ways that social media has influenced the English language is through the appropriation of existing slang. As stressed in the article of Daily Sabah (2014), Internet slang and short message services have been shown to have an impact on the English language. The proliferation of informal language is making it difficult for graduates to prove themselves to potential employers, tutors and business colleagues. In defense of students and their ever-evolving lifestyle, trends and now even language, not keeping up with the latest slang will only result in feeling like an outcast. Solange Umwali, an ardent user of social technology says as a student and learner, we should be versatile with varying situations and have the ability to converse with friends physically using slang, on social media using short forms and write assignments and formal papers using correct grammar. But it probably comes down to the exposure that you give yourself through books and other reading material. It was estimated that 90% of school children owned a mobile phone, and 96% used text messaging. This shows that young people are active ‘texters’ (Plester et al., 2008). Internet slang was invented for the purpose of saving keystrokes. As typing is much slower than speaking, in order to counter this problem, people started shortening words and creating new words.
Technology has transformed the words we use into abbreviations and acronyms, for example, electronic mail became e-mail which then became email. Other than that, ‘OMG’ and ‘LOL’ are widely used acronyms that save time in writing a message. These types of abbreviations have been thought to ‘dumb down’ language and spelling skills (Bains, 2014). Abbreviations are the most prominent trend in the language in which it is a direct result of the technological world that we live. According to Gourney (2012), though abbreviations do allow for faster communication, they take away the eloquence of the language and lead to a less professional impact and potentially a loss of understanding between people. Instant messaging and texting have created a need for our messages to be delivered now, and in order to make this occurs a fraction of second faster, abbreviations came into existence. “OMG” is not only a coined phrase, but there are different variations and plays on the abbreviation to keep in circulating and in us.
2.3.3Shortening of words
With every generation come cries that people are destroying the language with their new words which is on the way casual language used in texts and other types of social media inhibits them from understanding how to write and speak properly. Based on the journal written by Muhammad Akmal (2017), social media has provided a leeway for communication with persons from different geographical areas and from different backgrounds. It is also very fast in passing messages and most of the time people require a faster response. Sometimes the senders of these messages are forced to shorten their words so that they can be able to pass the message fast enough. They may also be communicating with different people simultaneously and they may feel like they are running short of time, leading them to cut short the words or phrase the words in short sentences. One school of thought has pointed out that the constant use of social media language often makes users feel lazy to spell words in full whenever they are writing, that is why students tend to use those abbreviated words in their schoolwork (Bonney, 2015).
2.3.4Rules of grammar
In the world where conversations and language learning that happen through social media such as blogs, tweets, and Facebook posts, using proper grammar is important as it reflects back on the writer and the words they are representing. In the article written by Nguyen et al (2014), fast and short message composing habits make user dismiss or misuse grammatical rules, such as capitalize proper nouns, tenses, punctuation marks usage and so on. In specific structures there are some considerable sentences that we can see everywhere on social network, such as ‘Like us on Facebook.’, ‘Forgot your password?’ or ‘Ask me anything!’. These specific sentences focus on easy to understand and remember, therefore the structure was simplified, often violate common grammar rules. According to Wood (2014), adults’ tendency to use ungrammatical word forms such as ‘does you’ was positively related to performance on the test of written grammar. Grammatical violations were found to be positively associated with growth in spelling for secondary school children. However, not all forms of violation were observed to be consistently used in samples of text messages taken 12 months apart or were characteristic of typical text messages.
In this chapter, the procedures to carry out this research will be elaborated by the researcher. This research will only focus on the major English students’ perception on the English proficiency under the influence of online communicative language. Respondent of 50 students from BE201 will be chosen as the respondents of this study. The data for the research will be collected through quantitative method or questionnaires.
3.2 TARGET POPULATION OF THE STUDY
The target population for this study is English students in Kolej Universiti Poly- Tech MARA Kuala Lumpur from Bachelor of Arts in Applied English Language. The purpose I choose them as my respondents is because they share the same academic background and also easier to approached. The study applied is by using the convenience sampling method.
The variables that are involved in the study are the influence of online communicative language from social media, the time spent on social media and students’ academic performances in English Language. The independent variables are the influence of online communicative language from social media and the time spent on social media. The dependent variable is the students’ academic performances in English language. This is to understand how the average time spent on social media has given an influence towards students’ English proficiency in term of less focus during lecture, the temptation to procrastinate and other impacts. The more students are exposed to the social media such as Facebook, WeChat, Instagram and Twitter, the more in fluency of online communicative language will be seen that impact their academic performance.
The convenient sampling is used to distribute the questionnaire as the Bachelor of Arts in Applied English Language students appear as the possibility to be sample of respondents. This sampling is useful for the students to be selected randomly as a respondent because it is less cost and easier to gain responds for the data. Based from Alvi (2016) after a target population is selected, any person within the population target can be chosen as a respondent.
The data then will be analyzed using SPSS. It is hard to comprehend without the statistical software. According to Arkkelin (2014), Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS) is to help to interpret well the data analyzed in the research. The features designed will make the process more understandable to perceive.
Before the actual data is being proceed, a pilot study will be conducted, so that it can measure the validity of the research instrument. The study will be conducted by using quantitative method.
The sections in questionnaire are divided into four parts. There are Section A, B, and C. The result in the end will come out more effective with these separations of different sections. The total of 50 respondents amongst a population of 106 BE201 students were given a set of questions to be filled.
This research utilized quantitative method. The instruments used to collect the data were questionnaires. A set of questionnaires containing 21 questions was developed based on used previously by another study (O’Brien, 2011). The questionnaire will be piloted to a group of five students to assess its validity before it was distributed. Only two types of questions will be used in the questionnaire which is a yes-no and a likert-scale.
The different sections of the questionnaire were demographic information, information on social media activities such as frequency and the trouble they got into as a result of academic use. The questionnaire was piloted to a group of five English major (BE201) students in KUPTM to check on its validity before it was distributed.
The data from the respondents was analysed by using the Statistical Package for Social Science (SPSS). This SPSS helps to facilitate data clearing and checking for logical in consistencies. The data mining process was carried out before the actual data analysis was made. The statistical analysis procedure was performed to test the hypothesis and the result will be presented through frequency counts with other descriptive statistics.
3.9 RESEARCH SCHEDULE
Task / Time Week
Title Introduction Problem Statement Research Questions Objectives Scope of the Study Literature Review Methodology First Draft Final Draft Presentation
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