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English Language Studies

The English Language Studies section offers the following two undergraduate programmes:

1) BA in English Language Studies
2) BA in English Language and Literature Studies

The English Language Studies programme commenced in 1970 and was revamped in 1992 while the English Language and Literature Studies programme was approved in 1991. The aim of these two degree programmes is to produce competent and knowledgeable graduates who have acquired relevant language and literary skills in and knowledge of English that would enable them to meet and adapt effectively to the demands of a changing global society, especially in the fields of language, literature and education. The graduates will acquire skills and competencies in some of the following key domains: English language, linguistics, relevant literary skills in order to be able to appreciate, analyse, discuss and evaluate various types of literary texts and discourses, knowledge of various types of English, relevant generic skills, critical and creative thinking and intellectual skills. The aims, objectives and learning outcomes of these undergraduate programmes are in line with and supportive of the vision and mission of USM. These degree programmes aim to produce graduates who are well rounded as they will be equipped with a number of lifelong and sustainable skills, namely communication, entrepreneurship, management, social and ethical skills. These skills will empower future graduates to function effectively in their future globalised workplace environments. The achievement of learning outcomes for both these programmes are evaluated through a range of assessment strategies such as tutorial presentations, student presentations, mid-term tests, quizzes, course assignments, project work and written final examination.

In addition to the undergraduate programmes, the section has been offering a mixed mode Master of Arts in Linguistics and English Language Studies since 1999 to serve the needs of graduates who are interested in furthering their studies in linguistics and English language studies by coursework and dissertation. The mixed-mode structure is designed for graduates interested in pursuing a coursework-based M.A. programme that is flexible. The flexibility of the programme lies in the dissertation component that allows candidates to do research on a particular area that is relevant to their experience and interests. Candidates who join this programme have the option of studying on a part-time or full-time basis to suit their personal and work schedule. The section also offers a PhD degree programme by research mode where students are competently supervised by section staff members on a range of topic areas in linguistics and literature.

There is currently active research among the section’s staff and postgraduates in many areas of linguistics and literature including English for Specific Purposes (ESP), English as a Second Language (ESL), multiliteracies, reading, writing, sociolinguistics, phonetics and phonology, grammar, stylistics, critical discourse analysis, language pragmatics, linguistic politeness, varieties of English, modern English and American literature, Malaysian Literature in English, Romantic Literature, Feminism and Critical Literary Criticism, periodical writing, colonial writing, postcolonial literature and Shakespeare translation, adaptation and performance. Niche research areas in corpus-based lexis studies, indigenous language documentation and language maintenance and language shift are also being actively developed by some staff members.