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PSLE Malay Language Syllabus & Exam Format

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PSLE Malay Language Overview

Located at the heart of the Malay Archipelago, Singapore is in a region of heavy Malay influences, culture and traditions. As such, we need the PSLE Malay Language syllabus and examinations encourage our students to be better Bahasa Melayu readers and speakers.

Being a Mother Tongue Language, the Malay Language can be less intensive and content-heavy than other PSLE subjects as the focus is to encourage our P6 students to speak, write and read proper Malay and hopefully fall in love with the language.

However, Singaporean students often find the Bahasa Melayu more difficult as English is the official spoken and written language in schools and in Singapore. More Malay families are also speaking English at home instead of Malay.

Therefore, many parents are unable to help their children improve their Malay language alone and relies on Malay tuition classes and Malay reading materials. There’s no need to fear the PSLE Malay Language exams if you can secure a strong foundation in the Bahasa Melayu!

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Learning Objectives of Bahasa Melayu

Singapore’s education system has a bilingual focus, so students must take both English and a Mother Tongue Language (MTL). As such, being able to read, write and examine the Malay Language well is equally importantly as English for Malay P6 students. This can be seen in the goals of PSLE Malay to be able to:

  • Develop students to be proficient in Bahasa Melayu and can communicate effectively
  • Encourage more Malay language usage and learning
  • Enhance cognitive development of the students through the learning of the Malay language
  • Nurture motivate and self-directed Bahasa Melayu learners

PSLE Malay (0006)

How is PSLE Malay graded as a subject?

PSLE Malay is a comprehensive assessment for your Malay language proficiency. Like PSLE English, it tests you on your writing, comprehension, argumentation, critical listening and verbal communication.

This will be in the forms of contextual writing, multiple-choice questions (MCQ) and open-ended questions. Every student will sit a combined examination duration of 3 hours 10 minutes.

In total, the PSLE Malay Language examinations has a total of 200 marks. Every student’s total score will be translated into a percentage out of 100% for their Achievement Levels (AL) Score calculation.

What will be tested in PSLE Malay?

The PSLE Malay Language examination focuses on four main components to assess your Bahasa Melayu proficiency:

  1. Listening – Listening Comprehension
  2. Speaking – Oral Communication
  3. Reading – Comprehension Paper
  4. Writing – Composition Writing
What Bahasa Melayu dictionaries are approved for PSLE Malay?

Malay printed and electronic dictionaries that are pre-approved by SEAB will be allowed for Paper 1 of the PSLE Malay Language examination.

As of 2020, these are the dictionaries approved by SEAB:

Dictionary PublisherDictionaryApproved Period
Dewan Bahasa dan PustakaKamus Dewan (Edisi Keempat)Until 2021
Kamus Pelajar Bahasa Melayu Dewan (Edisi Kedua)
Kamus Pelajar Bahasa Malaysia (Edisi Kedua)
Oxford Fajar Sdn. Bhd.Kamus Komprehensif Bahasa Melayu
EDN-Media Consultant Pte LtdGlobal Translator / Model M188 e-dictionary

More information on the approved list of printed and electronic Malay dictionaries is available on the SEAB website and Approved Dictionaries List (2020).

What is the examination format of PSLE Malay?

PSLE Malay Language (0006) tests students in four components across three papers.

1Composition Writing4020%50 minutes
2Language Use and Comprehension9045%1 hour 40 minutes
3Listening Comprehension2010%30 minutes
4Oral Communication5025%10 minutes
Total200100%3 hours 10 minutes
Malay Paper 1: Composition

PSLE Malay Paper 1 has a single component of Composition Writing. Your composition writing must be based on either the question or picture provided in the examination paper.

You may choose to attempt either option and your final submission must be more than 150 words in length.

Paper 1 is 50 minutes long and is fully open-ended. The use of an approved Malay dictionary is allowed for this paper.

Malay Paper 2: Comprehension

PSLE Malay Language Paper 2 uses a mix of MCQs and open-ended questions to test your inferential and understanding of various Bahasa Melayu passages. There are two parts to Paper 2, which is 1 hour and 40 minutes long.

You are not allowed to use any Malay dictionary for this paper.

Language Usage40MCQ in Booklet A
Comprehension10MCQ in Booklet A
Complete the Dialogue8Fill in 4 blanks in Booklet B
Comprehension32Answer MCQ and open-ended questions on the provided passage and use of language in Booklet B
Malay Paper 3: Listening Comprehension and Oral

PSLE Malay Language Paper 3 comprises of the Listening Comprehension paper and Oral Communication. Although these two assessments are within the same paper, they are taken separately.

Listening Comprehension (20 marks)

The Listening Comprehension component is a fully MCQ assessment. It is one of the least demanding papers in the Malay language examination, taking up only 30 minutes in duration.

A variety of verbal text such as news, announcements, advertisements, instructions, conversations, speeches and stories will be read out. You will then need to answer questions that requires you to infer and examine the texts.

Oral Communication

The PSLE Malay Language Oral Examination, is an open-ended, verbal assessment. Students will be required to read and converse with the examiners for the Oral Communication. It is also one of the more intense exams in the PSLE, given the short 5 minutes of examination.

Starting 2017, the conversation component is replaced by a. Students will watch a short video clip and will then have to answer prompts based on the content on the video. You need to extend your responses by giving opinions, explanations, experiences, examples or suggestions.

Important PSLE Dates for PSLE Malay

Keep track of the next upcoming PSLE Malay examination so that you can plan and prepare yourself adequately for this important examination paper. Remember, you can perform well in any PSLE subject paper when you are well-prepared with the knowledge, well-equipped with the right stationery and mentality and well-rested the night before.

Date Upcoming PSLE Dates for English Time
Oct 05 Malay Paper 1
08:15 am
Oct 05 Malay Paper 2
10:15 am
Oct 07 Higher Malay Paper 1
08:15 am
Oct 07 Higher Malay Paper 2
10:15 am

Score in the PSLE Malay Language with PSLE Malay Tuition

Do you find Bahasa Melayu incredibly challenging and difficult? Or do you need professional guidance to learn Malay effectively, efficiently and easily?

With PSLE Malay home tuition, you can now get exceptional and personalised help in the Malay language in the comfort of your house. Our Bahasa Melayu tutors are well-equipped to teach the latest PSLE Malay syllabus and are professional to make sure you can learn, revise and practice more effectively than ever.

Don’t go into battle by yourself. We are ready to give you the help you need to excel in the PSLE Malay language examination.