Ethnic studies

Malaysia is a Nation Without State. Negara Tanpa Bangsa. We are not like Indonesia yet where its citizens are identified as bangsa Indonesia. A person may be from a Chinese ethnicity but his name is probably Ari Wastroyo something. She may be a non muslim by the name of Siti Murni. In Malaysia, we are still identified by our race and religion. It’s not really a bad thing to be honest, in fact, multiculturalism is worth celebrating.

In this semester, ethnic studies or Hubungan Etnik is a mandatory subject. Browsing the topics, it looks a bit like history class. I am intrigued to see how the tutor is going to bring forth this subject in a neutral manner. This is because the last thing I want is for us learners to feel like we are being brainwashed in a camp. We’ve only had 2 classes so far and it seems OK. Of course, the topic will get more difficult and challenging as time goes by as we navigate around the sensitive issues of social contracts and such.

The Assignment

The question is about kesepaduan sosial dalam mewujudkan kestabilan dalam konteks Malaysia where we base our essay on the local animation, Upin Ipin. The essay is to be written in Bahasa Melayu. The assignment itself carries 70% of the total marks. That is a lot of weightage. Screw this up, it brings down the whole grade.

That was what happened with my Cognitive Psychology subject last semester. (sob)

The deadline for this assignment is next month. Time is running out. I need to start soon.

ODL and virtual study buddies

Open and Distance Learning (ODL) is an excellent choice for part time learners like myself. However, I do miss the identifying behaviours of a student in a tertiary learning centre.

  • listening to lectures in halls or classrooms
  • being in the library – either at a desk or just browsing through the books on the shelf
  • walking through the entrance of uni
  • sitting at the concourse or whichever common area to discuss something
  • spending time in the computer lab

It can be quite lonely ploughing through the course as an individual. Being a social animal, there are efforts to kind of connect with other learners through the uni forum or telegram group. The interaction was jovial in the beginning but it is quite hard to keep up the momentum of having an online communication. Especially when you are swamped with your other responsibilities towards work or family. Sooner or later, the telegram group just becomes quiet.

I recently discovered that there is an online website that connects learners around the world to study together. It is the brainchild of Ali Abdal. It is a virtual room where you connect to the internet, switch on your individual camera and just study. With other students who are doing the same thing.


There is this other thing that ARMY’s are doing. (I am a baby ARMY).

You go on Youtube and just study with BTS sat in front of you while on their camera. Of course, the video is an edit- the boys are well.. not really studying. Instead, they’d be doing whatever it is that they were doing during their LIVE videos.

My favourite is of course anything that have SUGA in it… I am very obsessed with the song Seesaw at the moment. I have it on repeat on my Spotify.

As of now, I am going through my e-weekly lessons and will be penning down the outline of my assignment essays soon. Will try to get it done by this weekend.