Factors of Code Switching Among Bilingual English Students in the University Classroom in Malaysia
Paramasivam MUTHUSAMY PhD
This study aims to identify and evaluate the factors that affect code switching in the university classroom in Malaysia. The participants of the study comprised twenty bilingual international students studying in a language college in Malaysia. The data were gathered by mean of semi-structured interview with the students and classroom observation. The findings from the study revealed that the primary factor of code switching in international classroom is incompetence in the second language. Other noted factors were: to maintain privacy; to make it easier to speak in their own language than to speak in English; to avoid misunderstanding; being unfamiliar with similar words in English. However, code switching can be a useful strategy in classroom interaction if the aim is to make meaning clear and to transfer the knowledge to students in an efficient way. This study can have some implications for language learners, teachers and curriculum developers.