Exploring English as a Second Language Educators’ Challenges of Teaching Communication Skills in Blended Learning Environments: A Malaysian Scenario

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Sangeeth Ramalingam, Melor Md Yunus, Harwati Hashim


Blended learning approach has been employed in Malaysia as the Ministry of Education gives prominence on the integration of Information, Communication and Technology in teaching and learning dyad as stated in the Malaysian Education Blueprint (2015-2025). Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, tertiary institutions have started to practice the blended learning approach widely in English as a second language education. Numerous social media tools, mobile technologies, learning management systems, and other web-based educational tools have been extensively deployed by English as a second language educators for language teaching and learning process in blended learning classroom. These tools are crucial in blended learning as it is an approach which combines both online and face-to face component after careful consideration. Past literature discussed a lot about combination of the two components, nevertheless, less studies focus on the challenges encountered by the educators in blended learning ESL classroom particularly in teaching communication skills. Thus, this research aims to explore ESL educators’ challenges of teaching communication skills in blended learning environments. Data for this study was gathered through an open-ended survey which were participated by ESL educators from public and private higher learning institutions. The findings of this study revealed various significant categorical of themes with regards to the educators’ challenges in teaching communication skills using blended learning approach. This research proposed several suggestions for teaching communication skills in blended learning environment at Malaysian tertiary institutions based on the identified challenges. The outcome from this research is substantial to ESL educators to make crucial decisions on the application of blended learning in classroom.

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