Unfolding Workplace Skills through Oral Progress Report Activity (OPRA) (Merungkai Kemahiran Pekerjaan Melalui Aktiviti Laporan Kemajuan Lisan (OPRA))

Wahiza Wahi, Azwan Shaiza Nizam, Normazidah Che Musa

Abstract


In line with the changing nature of the workplace, Malaysian higher learning institutions are currently confronted with issues pertaining to graduates’ lack of ability to communicate confidently and fluently in English and to adapt effectively to the requirements of the workplace. This paper deliberates on the dynamic and constructive workplace skills demonstrated by undergraduate students through Oral Progress Report Activity (OPRA), introduced in an English language course. OPRA requires the students to carry out small group discussions in which they present and discuss the progress of their project work in a meeting-like situation. One student leads the group discussion while the others report on the progress of the project. After conducting the OPRA, the students are asked to write on their experiences, feelings and action plans in their reflective journals. Informed by the social theory of learning, this paper explicates the workplace skills involving communication skills, meeting skills and analytical reasoning. Data for this study are drawn from students’ reflective journals and focus group interviews. The findings of the study illustrate that OPRA enhances students’ communication skills, fosters critical thinking skills and increases students’ self-confidence. The findings also show that OPRA encourages them to become critical of their own performance and skills. The implication of this study suggests that the use of pedagogical approach promotes language and communication, and at the same time, emulates workplace skills is important to train students to acquire workplace skills.

Keywords: Oral Progress Report Activity; workplace skills; English language learning; higher education; reflective journals

 

ABSTRAK

Sejajar dengan perubahan keperluan alam pekerjaan masa kini, institusi pengajian tinggi di Malaysia berhadapan dengan masalah graduan yang kurang berkebolehan dan kurang berkeyakinan untuk berkomunikasi dalam Bahasa Inggeris. Malah graduan juga dikatakan tidak dapat menyesuaikan diri dengan kehendak alam pekerjaan. Makalah ini bertujuan membincangkan kemahiran berkaitan pekerjaan yang dipamerkan oleh pelajar prasiswazah melalui Aktiviti Laporan Kemajuan Lisan (OPRA). Untuk aktiviti ini, pelajar diminta melaporkan dan membentangkan kemajuan projek mereka dalam perbincangan berbentuk sebuah mesyuarat. Ketua projek mengetuai perbincangan manakala ahli lain melaporkan kemajuan projek. Selepas menjalani OPRA, pelajar diminta membuat refleksi diri untuk menilai pengalaman yang mereka perolehi melalui aktiviti ini. Mereka juga diminta menyatakan pelan tindakan mereka dalam jurnal refleksi. Berpandukan kepada teori pembelajaran sosial, makalah ini merungkai kemahiran pekerjaan yang diperolehi seperti kemahiran berkomunikasi, kemahiran bermesyuarat dan keupayaan berfikir secara analitikal. Data kajian diperolehi daripada jurnal refleksi pelajar dan temuduga kumpulan berfokus. Dapatan kajian menunjukkan bahawa OPRA mampu meningkatkan kemahiran komunikasi pelajar, memperkukuhkan kemahiran berfikir secara kritikal dan mempertingkatkan keyakinan diri. Dapatan kajian juga membuktikan bahawa OPRA mampu mempertingkatkan kemahiran kritikal pelajar dalam menilai pencapaian dan kemahiran mereka. Implikasi kajian ini menunjukkan kaedah pengajaran yang memfokus kepada latihan bahasa dan komunikasi serta pemupukan kemahiran berkaitan pekerjaaan perlu diserap dalam pengajaran untuk membantu graduan menguasai kemahiran tersebut.

Kata kunci: Aktiviti Laporan Kemajuan Lisan; kemahiran pekerjaan; pembelajaran Bahasa Inggeris; pendidikan tinggi; jurnal refleksi


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