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Day Two: Malay Oxford Living Dictionary at Universiti Putra Malaysia

On Monday the 27th of February, 2017, the Malay Oxford Living Dictionary returned to Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM) for our second talk on the digital use of the Malay language. We were kindly hosted once again by the Sultan Abdul Samad Library (PSAS), and this time around, we changed things up a little.

The Sultan Abdul Samad Library

On this day, our attendees were PhD students reading a variety of courses, from languages to Engineering to English Literature. Because not everyone was Malaysian or knew how to speak Malay, this day's presentation was held in English (whereas the first had been held in Malay).

Some of you may know that UPM boasts a widely international student body, with students hailing from other continents across the globe. This was why our second session here had a special focus on discussing the benefits of using the Malay Oxford Living Dictionary website for learning Malay, as well as for native Malay speakers to expand their English vocabulary.

The translation challenge at the end of the talk, which is a customary feature of all workshops and sessions by the Malay Oxford Living Dictionary, also saw a change in structure. 

In the previous session at UPM, all attendees were asked to translate 5 particular words from English to Malay (read about it here). However, the attendees of this second day were divided into groups of three, and each group was shown a different image. From those images they were asked to lift some words that they could associate with it, and translate it - either from English to Malay or from Malay to English.

This was a useful introduction to using our online dictionary, with a walkthrough on both the word search function and the word submission form. We also covered some formatting rules common to all dictionaries, such as the use of only lower-case letters (in most cases).

Thank you once again to the Sultan Abdul Samad Library for having us, to Associate Professor Dr. Zaitul Azma binti Zainon Hamzah for all your help in making this event happen, and to the PhD students for your interest! We hope that you enjoyed the discussion about the digital status and use of the Malay language, as well as all that you discovered about it from the articles we showed you on this day.

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