Tutor Profile: Shanmuga Shares His Views

Interview by Nazrai Ahmad Zabidi

SHANMUGA NATHAN A/L RAMASAMY has been tutoring at OUM for the last four years. He shares his views on the role of modules in the teaching and learning process at OUM.

Nazrai: When did you begin tutoring at OUM and what were the subjects you taught?

Shanmuga Nathan: I have been tutoring at OUM since 2005. I began tutoring at the Likas Learning Centre in Kota Kinabalu for the open market programmes. Later, I coordinated the KDP 14-week programme at my college level. The courses which I have been teaching are HBEF 2103 Psikologi PendidikanM and OUMH 1103 Learning Skills for Open and Distance Learners.

Nazrai: What is your opinion of OUM modules in general?

Shanmuga Nathan: I find OUMH 1103 one of the best modules OUM has produced. It is a quality module and I use it as my reference when teaching students in other programmes. As for the HBEF 2103 module, I find it covers most of the required areas.

Nazrai: Do you only use the module or other extra learning materials as well?

Shanmuga Nathan: I use other sources and materials too but I emphasise to learners the need to use their module as the core reference.

Nazrai: Do you think OUM modules are well-written and easily understood by learners?

Shanmuga Nathan: Depends on which module you are referring to. But for the above two modules, I fi nd them well-written.

Nazrai: Can learners rely on the modules alone or should they refer to other materials too?

Shanmuga Nathan: If they want to just pass their exams, the modules are suffi cient. However, for the purpose of gaining knowledge and better understanding, they defi nitely need to refer to more resources.

Nazrai: What changes would you recommend to further improve the modules you are using in the tutorials?

Shanmuga Nathan: Keep improving the contents and presentation of the modules.

Nazrai: How can tutors contribute to the improvement of modules in the quest for quality?

Shanmuga Nathan: They should be involved in workshops to discuss and improve the modules.

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In order to benefit both tutors and learners, OUM modules should:

Be concise and touch on fundamental facts and theories
Cover important facts in greater detail, like a textbook
Touch on fundamental facts but include more thought-provoking questions
Include content and exercises that are relevant to real-life situations
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