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  • English Language Teaching Centre, Ministry of Education Malaysia

English Language Standards and Quality Council

1.      Background

The Educational Planning Committee Meeting in its 198th meeting on 18th  January 2012 approved the establishment of the English Language Standards and Quality Council (ELSQC) and its commencement in 2012. 


2.      Membership of the English Language Standards and Quality Council

The Secretariat of the ELSQC consists of three (3) senior officers from the Ministry of Education and are put under the management of the English Language Teaching Centre (ELTC) where the Director of ELTC is appointed the Secretary of the ELSQC.

The ELSQC also consists of seven (7) panel members who are English Language experts from universities, English Language professional bodies and individuals who are active contributors in the fields of research, writing, English literature and/or teaching and learning of English Language appointed by the    Minister for a duration of two (2) years and this duration may be extended by the Minister. The chairperson is appointed by the Minister from amongst the members of the panel.


3.      Functions of the English Language Standards and Quality Council

The ELSQC may offer views and recommendations pertinent to any matter or issue concerning the standards and quality of English language. 


4.     Logo


ELSQC 2016 - 2018


ELSQC 2014-2016

Zuraidah Mohd Don is Dean of the Faculty of Languages and Linguistics, University of Malaya, Chair of the Council of Language Deans, and Chair of the English Language Standards and Quality Council. She is on the editorial board of five international journals, including ISI and Scopus-Indexed journals. She was awarded the Commonwealth Fellowship in 2003, and was an Honorary Research Fellow at Lancaster University. Her strength is in research and publication covering a wide field centred on the study of language, ranging from Discourse Analysis to Pragmatics, and English Language Teaching. She has collaborated with researchers in computer studies and engineering. She has over 150 publications, including contributions to Journal of PragmaticsDiscourse & SocietyLanguage and Communication, and Text and Talk.


Dr. Mohamed bin Abu Bakar was appointed as the Director of the English Language Teaching Centre (ELTC), Ministry of Education Malaysia on 2 February 2015.  Prior to his current appointment, he was attached to the Curriculum Development Division for 15 years and was the Head of the English Unit from 2005 till 2010 and thereon as Deputy Director of ELTC till 2015.  As an ardent advocate of reaching out to communities through English language, Dr. Mohamed has initiated various outreach programmes especially in oral and reading skills in line with the various initiatives outlined in the Malaysia Education Blueprint 2013-2025. His appointment as the Secretary of the English Language Standards and Quality Council further enhances his responsibility in ensuring that the role of English in the country is supported and strengthened by various sectors. 



Professor Dr. Anna Christina Abdullah is a Professor at the School of Educational Studies, Universiti Sains Malaysia, Penang. Prof. Anna’s areas of specialisation are Preschool Education, Curriculum and Instruction. Her current research interests are culturally responsive curriculum and preschool teachers’ professional development. Her work in English language education includes research & development of English language modules for primary schools, especially for rural and underachieving populations in projects such as Project InSPIRE-KBSR and Project InSPIRE-Sabah. Prof. Anna was also involved in the national-level evaluation exercise of the KBSR. Her community service includes being the Chairperson of the Preschool Education Committee of the Penang Education Council (PEC). This committee of the PEC is the convener of the Penang International Kids Storytelling Festival (PInKS-Fest) that is held annually since 2010. This festival has succeeded in providing opportunities for children and families to experience enthralling storytelling in different languages by professional and amateur storytellers both international and local.



Arshad Abd. Samad is currently an Associate Professor in Teaching English as a Second Language (TESL) at the Faculty of Educational Studies, Universiti Putra Malaysia.  He started his career in English Language Education as a teacher in Sekolah Menengah Raja Ali, a Malaysian secondary school in Kuala Lumpur, in 1985 after graduating with a Bachelor of Education in Secondary English Education and a Master of Arts in TESL/Applied Linguistics from Indiana University, Bloomington.  He later joined the Faculty of Educational Studies, Universiti Putra Malaysia as a lecturer and teacher trainer in 1990.  In 1999, he obtained his PhD from Northern Arizona University in the field of Applied Linguistics.  He is active in research and publication, focusing on areas related to language acquisition, grammar instruction and language assessment.  



Assoc. Prof. Datin Dr. Mardziah Hayati Abdullah is an Associate Professor in the Department of English, Faculty of Modern Languages and Communication, Universiti Putra Malaysia. She has a Diploma in ESL (Victoria University, Wellington), a Bachelor of Education (Hons) in TESL (UPM) and Master’s and PhD degrees in Language Education (Indiana University, U.S.A.). Prior to teaching in UPM, she served for 14 years as an English Language teacher in primary and secondary schools in Johor, Pahang and Kuala Lumpur. Her current work focuses on discourse in ICT environments, media literacies and ESL learning.




Kuldip Kaur Karam Singh is a leading English as a Second Language educationist in Malaysia.  Her expertise lies in English Language Pedagogy, Teacher Education, Applied Linguistics, Blended Learning and Qualitative Research Methodology.  In November 2014 she was appointed to the English Language Standards and Quality Council, Ministry of Education, Malaysia. Dr. Kuldip served as Professor, Deputy Dean and Associate Professor at the Faculty of Education and Languages, Open University Malaysia from 2003 till 2013.  Prior to that she was Associate Professor at the Faculty of Education, University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur.  In January 2013 Dr. Kuldip was awarded the Fulbright Scholar Award, for which she researched issues in ESL teacher education at Penn State University, USA. In August 2013, Dr. Kuldip was appointed National Consultant for UNICEF Malaysia’s Digital Citizenship and Safety project, as well as Research Coordinator for UNICEF’s initiative toward the Digital Citizenship and Safety.  She thus supported UNICEF’s efforts toward policy advocacy and raising awareness among children and youth for responsible use of information technology. Dr. Kuldip’s professional affiliations include the National Evaluation Panel for programmes in Education, Malaysian Qualifications Agency, the Malaysian English Language Teaching Association, as well as with Khalsa Diwan Malaysia, an organisation devoted to Punjabi language research and development.  She has also been a trainer for online distance learning courses with the United Nations System Staff College in Turin, Italy, and has worked on several research projects with the Ministry of Education and MOSTI, Malaysia.



Y.Bhg. Dato’ Dr. LEE BOON HUA is the General Manager (Operations) in LeapEd Services Sdn. Bhd., an education service provider that is currently engaged in implementation of the Trust School Programme under the Ministry of Education (MOE), Malaysia. Prior to his retirement, Dato’ Dr. Lee was the Deputy Rector of the Institute of Teacher Education, MOE, from February 2011 until his retirement on 17th June, 2014. Before that he was the Deputy Director (Social Science) of the Ministry’s Curriculum Development Division where he first started in 2007 as the Principal Assistant Director for Language & Literature. From 2003 to 2007 he headed the Language and Technology Department in the English Language Teaching Centre, Kuala Lumpur. He also served as the principal of the Methodist Secondary School in Sitiawan, Perak. He obtained his doctorate from University College of St Mark & St. John / University of Exeter, United Kingdom, in 1999. Dato’ Dr. Lee’s research interests are school transformation, teacher thinking, classroom practice, and use of new technologies in TESL. 




Ms. Janet Pillai.is a former associate professor at the School of Arts, University Science Malaysia, Pillai is now a researcher, and project consultant in culture education, specialising in creative pedagogy, cultural research and community outreach. She established Arts-ED, a non-profit educational organisation which works in community area revitalisation projects in partnership or consultation with artists and professionals, local agencies and community. Pillai also contributes as expert resource person with the education training units of UNESCO Bangkok and APCIEU Korea and has authored numerous articles and two books.

























































ELSQC 2012-2014







  1. Sarina Salim
    Head of Secretariat (DG52)

    I am passionate about creating learning opportunities for children to achieve their true potential. With skills gained from my experiences as a secondary school teacher, Assistant Director at the Curriculum Development Division and Senior Lecturer at Institut Aminuddin Baki, I work with the panel of experts to map out strategies to transform English language education in the country to ensure that our students become competent users of the language and compete in this globalised world.

    Postgraduate Certificate in Trainer Development - English Language Teaching (St Mark & St John University, United Kingdom, 2014)
    MEd in Educational Psychology (University of Victoria, Wellington, New Zealand, 1999)
    BA (Hons) in Modern English Language Education (University of Lancaster, United Kingdom, 1991)

    Contact details

  2. Mohamed Khaidir Alias
    Secretariat Officer (DG48 (M))

    I obtained my Dip. TESL from Maktab Perguruan Ilmu Khas in 1991. I then furthered my studies at Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM). In 2001, I graduated with a B.A. in English Language. In 2013, I was awarded an MEd. In Educational Administration. I have 18 years of teaching experience in both primary and secondary schools. I then spread his wings to gain experience as an Assistant Director in the Management and Special Projects Unit at the Curriculum Development Division before embarking onto greener pastures at ELTC.

    Dip. TESL (Maktab Perguruan Ilmu Khas, 1991)
    B.A. in English Language (Universiti Putra Malaysia , 2001)
    MEd. In Educational Administration (Universiti Putra Malaysia , 2013)

    Contact details

  3. Dr. Looi Lin Eng
    Secretariat Officer (DG48)

    I have been teaching English to secondary students for the past 26 years. I held the position of Senior Subject Teacher since 2002 before joining ELTC. I graduated with a Diploma in TESL in 1990. In 1999 I obtained my M. Ed from University of Malaya and in 2012 I was awarded a Ph.D in TESL from Universiti Putra Malaysia. I am passionate about exploring diverse teaching strategies for diverse learners. My area of interest is multiple intelligences and writing.

    B.A (Hons) in Creative and Descriptive Writing (University Malaya, 1988)
    Diploma in TESL (Maktab Perguruan Persekutuan, Pulau Pinang, 1990)
    M. Ed in Language Education (University Malaya, 1999)
    Ph.D in TESL (Universiti Putra Malaysia, 2012)

    Contact details
The Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (“CEFR”) is all about the global proficiency scale and the “can do” statements. The global proficiency scale categorises learners as:
A (“basic user”)
B (“independent user”), and
C (“proficient user”)
To be of value, the common reference levels need objective definitions. This is done by means of positive “can do” descriptors, e.g. a student at level A1 “can
interact in a simple way provided the other person talks slowly”, and “can introduce him/herself and others”. The CEFR “can do” statements are concerned with the
learner’s ability to interact successfully in social situations using the target language. This goes beyond the traditional four skills, because social interaction typically requires different skills to be combined, e.g. a conversation requires both listening and speaking skills. The CEFR statements do not refer to linguistic form, but they do presuppose that the learner has sufficient knowledge of form – including vocabulary, grammar and relevant aspects of the spoken language – to interact in the manner described. 
The details of the CEFR framework are written up in a Council of Europe document entitled “Common European Framework of Reference for Languages: Learning, Teaching, Assessment”. 
Below is the global scale for your reference:
The Malaysian Education Blueprint (MEB) 2013-2025 or better known as the Pelan Pembangunan Pendidikan Malaysia (PPPM) 2013-2025 was published in line with the Memartabatkan Bahasa Malaysia dan Memperkukuh Bahasa Inggeris (MBMMBI) policy. Cambridge English was commissioned to conduct a study to ascertain the standard of English among our students and teachers in 2013 and a baseline report was submitted to the Ministry of education (MoE). With the MEB, MBMMBI policy and the Cambridge Baseline Report as the foundation, the English Language Standards and Quality Council (ELSQC) was asked to produce a roadmap for English language education in Malaysia.
Our task was to complete the preparations, and produce a time-tabled plan to be implemented between 2015 and 2025. Targets based on the Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR) have been set for the various levels of education; from preschool to university including teacher training.
Two documents have been produced:
  • English Language Education in Malaysia: An Agenda for Reform 2015-2025

              click on image to view/download


  • English Language Education Reform in Malaysia: The Roadmap 2015-2025

               *click on image to view/download

These documents state where we are, where we want to be and how we get to the aspirational targets that have been suggested for the various levels of English Language education in Malaysia with reference to the CEFR. In order to strive to make this reform a reality, the ELSQC is continuously increasing its efforts to convince the different stakeholders – including teachers, administrators, parents, employers and the general public – that the benefits will outweigh the cost and effort involved.
For further information on these documents, please contact:
Sarina Salim at 06-7979193 or email sarinasalim@eltc.edu.my
Prof. Zuraidah Mohd Don, the Chairperson of the ELSQC has a 12-fortnightly column on the Roadmap in the Learning Curve section of the New Sunday Times starting 12 June 2016.
Below is her first article and we will be updating them as the weeks go by.
Prof. Zuraidah's second article is concentrated on introducing the CEFR and how it lays a path towards a common goal in English Language education in Malaysia.

The following weeks, Prof. Zuraidah continues to talk about the Communicative Approach, Models of English Grammar, Pronunciation and Phonics.









Evaluation Study 2017

Article by Haslina Aziz on texbooks

Articles in the newspaper on the CEFR and Roadmap


KPM-CE Joint Management Meeting

ELSQC Panel of Experts 2018-2020


Roundtable Textbook Discusssion


Discussion on the setting-up of the Tamil Standards and Quality Council


English Language Lab with PADU


Workshop by Lembaga Peperiksaan in ELTC


Workshop by BPK on the CEFR-aligned Curriculum in ELTC


Formative Assessment Training - Master Trainers with their trainers from Cambridge English


Formative Assessment Training by Cambridge English in ELTC


Roadshow by ELSQC Panel of Experts in Mantin, Negeri Sembilan


MUET Workshop


CFS Foundation Programme Expert Panel Workshop in UTP


Discussion on Formative Assessment Research in ELTC