The teaching of Arabic in the Faculty of Islamic Studies in the National University of Malaysia
This study is concerned with the teaching and learning of Arabic as a second or a foreign language in Malaysia in general and in the Faculty of Islamic Studies of the National University of Malaysia in particular. Its main purpose is to evaluate the existing Arabic program in the Faculty, and to provide some suggestions for its improvement. This thesis is divided into seven chapters. Chapter one provides some background to the teaching and learning of Arabic in Malaysia. The historical development of religious teaching and learning institutions in Malaysia, and the teaching and learning of Arabic in the existing Arabic and religious institutions in Malaysia are discussed. In addition, this first chapter also discusses the role and the status of Arabic in Malaysia in order to lay the ground for understanding the actual needs for Arabic in Malaysia. Chapters two and three are concerned with the review of the literature in second and foreign language program design. They discuss the factors involved in SL teaching and learning, the general framework to be used in designing SL program, methods and approaches for specifying goals and objectives for such program, and the syllabuses and teaching methodologies for SL teaching and learning. At the end of chapter three, general criteria for the design and evaluation of Arabic programs are described. Chapter four is concerned with the teaching and learning of Arabic to noi cttive speakers. It focuses on the historical development in TASL, issues and problems in TASL, and the teaching and learning of Arabic in the Faculty of Islamic Studies. In addition, this chapter defines the research problem, scope of the study, hypo thesis, and the research methods followed. Chapters five, six and seven are concerned with the description, analysis and discussions of the results. The results reveal that the existing Arabic program in the Faculty of Islamic Studies is not compatible with the needs for Arabic in Malaysia and in the Faculty itself. It is found that the major components of the existing program, namely objectives, syllabus content and teaching methodologies, are not compatible with the present stated goal of the program. The prescription and the design of the program components do not seem to comply with general principles for SL program design. In the light of these conditions, suggestions are provided for the improvement of the Arabic program in the Faculty. These suggestions include some important areas for further research.