KUALA LUMPUR: More young Malaysians are interested in becoming teachers based on the number of applicants for education degree courses which has risen by 35 per cent this year.
"Normally, we only receive an average of 80,000 applicants annually," he said after the Bachelor of Education in Teaching English as a Second Language (TESL) graduation ceremony 2008 at the International Languages Teaching Institute yesterday.
A total of 122 graduands received their degrees after completing almost six years of study at the institute and five foreign partner universities.
The foreign universities are the College of St Mark and St John, Plymouth, United Kingdom; the University of Auckland, New Zealand; Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand; Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane, Australia; and Macquarie University, Sydney, Australia.
"The stringent vetting is to ensure the quality of future teachers."
He said the ministry also received 60,000 applications for the Graduate Teacher Training Scheme for which 14,228 would be selected.
Razali said these were among the measures taken to address the shortage of teachers and to improve the teacher-class ratio.
"We have increased the ratio from 1.5 to 1.7 teachers per class.
"For instance, if we have 10 classes, these classes will have 17 teachers."
The New Straits Times Online: 1 Jun 2008