Academic Freedom and Educational Responsibility in Malaysian Higher Institutions of Learning

  • Che Noraini Hashim Kulliyyah of Education, International Islamic University
  • Syed Marwan Mujahid Syed Azman Institute of Islamic Banking and Finance (IIBF), International Islamic University Malaysia
  • Sharifah Nur Asmaa’ Syed Azman Ahmad Ibrahim Kulliyah of Laws (AIKOL), International Islamic University Malaysia

Abstract

New challenges of academic freedom and educational responsibility in Malaysian higher institutions of learning had been of great concern to all parties alike. However, academic freedom needs to be accompanied by educational responsibility. In Malaysia, serious research regarding academic freedom and academic responsibility, is yet to be undertaken. This paper identifies the relationship between academic freedom and educational responsibility; highlights major challenges faced by academicians in exercising academic freedom, and analyses responses from academicians. In addition, the paper suggests some improvements to the current practices of academic freedom in Malaysian higher institutions of learning. A semi-structured interview schedule was designed to gain insight on academic freedom and educational responsibility from randomly selected senior academicians attached to three Malaysian universities. Findings show that there exists a strong positive relationship between academic freedom and educational responsibility. Respondents also perceived that the regulations and restrictions imposed upon academicians did not act as obstacles to voice opinions, if the regulations and restrictions were taken positively and are used as measures to exercise academic responsibility. Their perceptions suggest that the main challenge faced by academicians comes, perhaps, from their own fears and inhibitions. The prognosis is that academic freedom in Malaysian universities can be realized by students and academicians alike, if they express their views within certain limitations; but the society and the government should be more tolerant and be receptive to constructive criticism.

 

Abstrak

 

Cabaran baharu kebebasan akademik dan tanggungjawab pendidikan dalam institusi pengajian tinggi di Malaysia memang diberi perhatian oleh pelbagai golongan.  Bagaimana pun, kebebasan akademik perlulah disertai oleh tanggungjawab pendidikan.  Di Malaysia, kajian yang serius tentang kebebasan akademik dan tanggungjawab pendidikan, masih belum lagi dilaksanakan.  Kertas ini mengenalpasti hubungan antara kebebasan akademik dan tanggungjawab pendidikan; menjelaskan cabaran besar yang dihadapi oleh ahli akademi dalam melaksanakan kebebasan akademik, dan menganalisa respons mereka. Tambahan lagi, kertas ini mencadangkan beberapa penambahbaikan dalam amalan kebebasan akademik semasa di institusi pengajian tinggi di Malaysia.   Satu jadual temubual separa berstruktur telah dibina untuk mendalam pandangan beberapa tenaga akademik senior daripada tiga universiti yang dipilih secara rawak tentang kebebasan akademik dan tanggungjawab pendidikan.  Hasil kajian menunjukkan wujud hubungan positif yang kuat antara kebebasan akademik dan tanggungjawab pendidikan.  Responden juga berpendapat bahawa peraturan dan batasan-batasan yang disyaratkan ke atas ahli akademik tidak menjadi halangan bagi menyuarakan pandangan, jika ia diterima secara positif dan digunakan sebagai langkah-langkah bagi tanggungjawab akademik.  Pada pandangan mereka cabaran paling utama yang dihadapi oleh ahli akademik timbul mungkin, daripada perasaan dan batasan mereka sendiri.   Prognosisnya ialah kebebasan akademik di university di Malaysia boleh direalisasikan oleh kedua-dua mahasiswa dan ahli akademik, jika mereka mengungkapkan pandangan mereka dalam batasaan tertentu;  tetapi masyarakan dan kerajaan wajar bersikap lebih toleran dan menerima kritikan yang membina

 

Published
2014-06-30
How to Cite
Hashim, C. N., Syed Azman, S. M. M., & Syed Azman, S. N. A. (2014). Academic Freedom and Educational Responsibility in Malaysian Higher Institutions of Learning. IIUM Journal of Educational Studies, 2(1), 1-11. https://doi.org/10.31436/ijes.v2i1.30