Development of Akhlaq and Values in Students: What is the Suitable Application Technique?

Abstract

The aim of this study was to identify the application technique of instilling akhlaq and values in the secondary school students during classroom instructions. This descriptive survey study approach was conducted in the schools in the district of Kuala Muda/Yan in Kedah. A total number of Forms 4 and 2 students were selected as the respondents to complete the questionnaire. The study findings found that based on students’ perception, there were five techniques that gained overall moderately high mean value, namely modelling, lecture, discussion, positive reinforcement and negative reinforcement. Meanwhile, other techniques were at medium low level. In summary, this study has shown that certain application techniques in instilling akhlaq and values should be practiced by teachers towards developing balanced human talent.

Keywords: Developmentakhlaqvaluesteachingtechnique

Introduction

In this post-modernism era, the young generation has to be given appropriate attention because they are the most dominant group in determining the path for future religions, ethnics and nation. They are the heir of future leadership. Youth is an important asset in Islam. History stated that the glory of Islam started in the hands of the young generation who fought to uphold the religion brought by the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH). The adolescent stage is a perplexing and dynamic phase. Thus, youth has to be educated, guided, and cared for with neatly arranged education so as to produce righteous generation.

Youth is an important constituent in a society. They are said to be active, prospective and energetic (Syed Omar Syed Agil al- Attas, 2009).

The Malaysian system of education emphasises on producing human capital that are good, comprehensive and integrated in terms of physical, emotional, spiritual and intellectual. Elements of conduct, morals and values are important elements in ensuring that the National Education Philosophy is achieved. One of the important aspects evident in the National Education Philosophy is the formation of human with morally conduct. Hence, development of moral values in the students is very important because it is the internalized values that will determine the kind of human you want. Therefore, education and internalization of moral values cannot be separated. It can be claimed that education will be meaningless and imperfect without the internalization of moral values (Zakaria Kasa, Abdul Rahman Md. Aroff, Abdul Majid Mohd Isa, Rahil Hj. Mahyuddin, 1996). It is these values that shape the way an individual should behave, think and act; and this indirectly designs the culture and norms of a society (Mohd. Arif Hj. Ismail, Mohd Jasmy Abd. Rahman and Rosnaini Hj. Mahmud, 2005).

It cannot be denied that education is needed in a present developed society. According to Peters in Zakaria Kasa et al. (1994), the criteria for education that involves knowledge and understanding is a cognitive perspective that is constantly evolving over time. Education is the key for the country to produce capable human resources to fill the needs of national development. The role of education is no longer confined to national unity and human energy production only, but also focuses on the formation of human personality in line with human development. The education system is also implemented in schools to create a brilliant and knowledgeable generation. This is because the dignity of the nation depends on the possession, development and widespread use of knowledge.

In recent years, demoralization problems among the students often become headlines in the newspapers or in the community in this country. Social problems involving youths with loitering culture, drug abuse, theft, illegal sex and behavior that is contrary to the norms of society are exposed every day through the electronic media. Various efforts have been undertaken by various parties to help alleviate the problem of youth but these efforts have yet to bear fruit, instead the problems have become more rampant.

Several past studies have found that there is lack of moral values inculcated by teachers in the classroom (Habsah Ismail et al., 2007) which will lead to a lack of understanding and appreciation of moral values among students. Asmawati Suhid, Rahyl Mahyuddin and Abdul Rahman Md. Aroff (2001) stated that lecturers or teachers are the most important factors influencing the perception and understanding of morality in the students. This condition may exist because teachers are the persons who regularly interact with the students.

According to Mohamad Khairi Hj Othman, Asmawati Suhid, Abdullah Mat Rashid and Samsilah Roslan (2013), there exist many symptoms of anti-social, delinquency, crime and gangsterism in schools today. Therefore, the responsibility and the role of teachers should be reviewed as to what extent are its borders.

This phenomenon of misconduct stems from several significant shortcomings in the current education system in the country, especially in terms of curriculum implemented. This needs to be taken seriously in order to improve the quality and performance of education toward a society that is united, disciplined and trained as envisaged by Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad. Abu Hassan (2002), in fact, stated that if this situation is allowed to continue, progress and prosperity of society and the country will be affected where the continuation of life and the future of the nation and the country will also be threatened.

In the advent of realizing the vision 2020, it is unfortunate, that our beloved country is still plagued by social problems affecting adolescents and youth, including school students. The question that may arise in the minds of Malaysians today is how a country can achieve the desired progress if the issue of adolescent and youth involvement in social issues is still perceived to be a hindrance to the progress. In fact, social problems among adolescents and youth may be contained and risk factors inherent in youth and environment can be controlled if proper methods and techniques are used. Recognizing this, the researcher plans to review the appropriate techniques in developing moral values among school students.

Study Objective

The objective of this study is to:

1.Identify teachers’ techniques in developing values in the students based on the students’ perspectives.

Methodology

This study is a descriptive survey using quantitative methods. The sample comprised 100 Form Four and Form Two students in a secondary school in the district of Kuala Muda / Yan, Kedah who were randomly selected to answer the questionnaire. The research instrument was a questionnaire. Items in this questionnaire were constructed and modified in reference to previous studies such as Bahagian Perancangan dan Penyelidikan Dasar Pendidikan (1999), Robiah Kulop Hamzah (2001), Zaridah Othman (2005) and Noor Lela Ahmad (2008).

This study focuses only on techniques based on the seven domains of Value Development Approach (Superka et al., 1976; Teuku Ramli Zakaria, 1997; Robiah Kulop Hamzah, 2001). A total of 29 items was presented in the questionnaire using a five point Likert scale. To determine the reliability of the instrument and establish the items of the questionnaire, Cronbach Alpha test was run and the alpha value of each part of an item was found to be above 0.6. The overall value for the items of students' perceptions towards the application of techniques in the teaching of moral values is between .89 and .94. This indicates that the instrument has acceptable reliability.

All the items were analysed using Statistical Package for Social Science (SPSS) version 21.0 for descriptive statistics such as mean and standard deviation. To determine the level of students' perceptions of the application of techniques in the teaching of moral values, interpretation was made based on the calculation procedures developed by Bahaman and Turiman (1999) and in accordance with the formula suggested by Nunally (1978) as shown in Table 1 :

Table 1 -
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Study Findings

Table 2 presents the findings related to the mean and standard deviation distribution of students' perception of moral values in teaching. It was found that the overall score in dimensions of positive reinforcement techniques (mean = 3.15, SD = .82) was moderate to high. The item ’teachers give praise and encouragement when students behave according to the rules of the school’ has the highest mean score compared to other positive reinforcement techniques items although these items are moderately high (mean = 3.48, SD = 1.00). This means that teachers emphasize the practice of praising than other aspects.

In the dimensions of negative reinforcement techniques, the overall score was moderately low (mean = 3.21, SD = .62). The items ‘teachers scold students who are not polite’, ‘teachers penalize students who make noise in class so that the class is quiet’ and ‘teachers punish students who misbehave’ are moderately high (mean = 3.53, SD = 1.12), (mean = 3.51, SD = 1.10), and (mean = 3.25, SD = 1.08).

These findings show that positive reinforcement and negative reinforcement techniques have been applied by teachers during lessons. But teachers have not used a lot of these two techniques in teaching. This is evidenced through both mean readings which are high but only at a moderate level.

In Table 2 also presents the findings related to the mean and standard deviation distribution of students' perceptions for the simulation/re-enactment technique. Results showed that the mean overall for this dimension is moderately low (mean = 2.34, SD = .99) which means very few teachers apply this dimension in their teaching process. The item ‘teachers organize a re-enactment technique involving values in everyday life during a teaching session’ was moderately low (mean = 2.52, SD = 1.19). This shows that teachers practice less re-enactment technique involving values in everyday life during teaching sessions.

From the Table 2 presents the findings related to the mean and standard deviation distribution of students' perception for teachers’ modelling technique. Results showed that the overall mean score for this dimension is moderately high (mean = 3:37, SD = .94). The item ‘teachers show examples of values that can be practiced in daily life’ was moderately high (mean = 3.58, SD = 1.33). This means that teachers practice moral values that can be practiced in daily life which is commendable because teachers’ behaviors are often observed by students.

Consequently, Table 2 presents the findings related to the mean and standard deviation distribution of students' perception of lecture teaching technique. It is found that the lecture technique is moderately high (mean = 3.32, SD = .92). The item ‘teachers explain the school rules and regulations and provide the reasons students should abide by them’ is moderately high (mean = 3.53, SD = 1.21). By this, it shows that teachers always remind students to be sensitive to the school rules and regulations.

Table 2 presents the findings of students' perception towards discussion techniques. The overall mean score for this dimension is at a moderate level high (mean = 3.29, SD = .80). For the item ‘teachers ensure that all students are involved in the discussion’, it was moderately high level (mean = 3.57, SD = 1.21). This shows that teachers always emphasize to all students to engage in group discussions.

Finally, Table 2 presents students' perception of value in teaching techniques for the dimension of role playing techniques. The study found an overall score of this dimension at a moderate level low (mean = 2.80, SD = .88). For item ‘teachers give students the opportunity to play in situations related to issues/concepts learned’, it was at a moderately low level (mean = 2.91, SD = 1.29). Teachers give students less opportunity to play in situations related to issues/concepts maybe because teachers did not get response from students. For item ‘teacher conducts activities so that students can play a role in the circumstances and understand the feelings of others in trouble’ also scored at a moderately low level (mean = 2.66, SD = 1.16). From both findings, it can mean that either the students were not given the opportunity to role-play or they themselves were too shy to role-play when being asked by the teachers.

The summary of the findings showed that there are seven techniques applied and practiced by the teachers during the teaching and learning sessions such as positive reinforcements, negative reinforcements, simulation/re-enactment, modeling, lecture, discussion and role-playing. There are techniques that were at moderately high and moderately low levels and these techniques can still be applied by teachers to develop or instill moral values in their students during lessons. The most frequently used technique is the modeling technique (mean=3.37, SD=.94) followed by lecture, discussion, negative reinforcement and positive reinforcement techniques. Meanwhile the simulation/re-enactment and role-play techniques were at moderately low level. This does not mean teachers do not apply the techniques, instead it simply means they practice it lesser than the other techniques during teaching and learning.

Table 2 -
See Full Size >

Discussion

Overall, the students’ perceptions of the teachers’ development of values during teaching in the effort to inculcate good moral values in the students showed that the practice is at moderately high and moderately low levels. This shows that these study findings are in concordance with the value development theory by Superka et al. (1976) that techniques practiced in the teaching and learning process are exemplary (modeling), positive and negative reinforcements, simulations, role-play, discussion and lecture.

Consequently, the study findings showed that the highly practiced technique based on students’ perceptions is the modeling technique (mean=3.37, SD=.94). This result is similar to the finding by Mohd Khamdani Sairi (2010) which found that principals apply the modeling technique in instructional leadership whereby through this technique, principals make use of their own moral values and their leadership values as models for the teachers and staff. The finding indirectly confirms that modeling technique is important to develop students’ moral values and significant for teachers since students are exposed to the teachers in schools for the most part of their daily lives, and therefore teachers have to be aware that they should also be at their best behaviors.

Lecture and discussion techniques were the next moderately high level practices observed by the students mean=3.32, SD=.92) and (mean=3.29, SD=.80). This result concurs with the result in a study by Noor Lela Ahmad (2008) which found that accounts teachers used lecture technique in developing moral values in the students during the teaching of accounts.

The result for discussion technique was at moderately high level. This means that this technique is practiced widely in developing moral values in the students. The result of this study is similar to the study by Noor Lela Ahmad (2008) which also found that in the development stage of teaching, trainee teachers apply a lot of discussion techniques and this has inculcated the value of cooperation among the students.

Consequently, this study found that positive reinforcement technique collected overall score of mean=3.15 and SD=.82, negative reinforcement (mean=3.21, SD=.62) which are moderately high whereas, simulation/re-enactment (mean=2.34, SD=.99) and role-play (mean=2.80, SD=.88) which are moderately low based on the students’ perceptions. It can be summarized that teachers in this school practice these seven techniques to develop moral values in their students during teaching and learning sessions. Positive reinforcement technique such as praising can increase students’ self-efficacy to behave more appropriately. This is in line with the claim made by Mohd Khamdani Sairi (2010) that praise is important in increasing students’ motivation and as acknowledgements to the students.

In this study, role-play and simulation/re-enactment techniques, on the other hand, were moderately low. This means that teachers practice these techniques less during the teaching and learning sessions. It could also mean that the teachers do not practice them because when they had tried them, they did not get good response from the students. This is similar to the finding by Robiah Kulop Hamzah (2001) which found that the simulation and role-play techniques were less applied by the teachers during class.

Conclusion

Overall, it can be summarized that teachers do practice several techniques during the lesson in the effort to develop moral values in the students. The result findings of this study showed several techniques that are either highly, commonly or less practiced by teachers in this school. These techniques should be enhanced and applied during teaching so as to increase students’ akhlaq understanding and development towards realizing the National Education Philosophy and the Malaysian Education Blueprint 2013 – 2025 in the context of producing human talent that are stable and harmony.

Acknowledgements

This study is funded by the RAGS grant and this article is just part of the study findings.

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Publisher

Future Academy

First Online

18.12.2019

Doi

10.15405/epsbs.2016.08.119

Online ISSN

2357-1330