The Academy of Language Studies (ALS) was established in 1972 for the purpose of co-ordinating the learning and teaching of English as a Second Language (ESL), as well as that of other Asian and European languages to all the students of UiTM. It was then known as the Language Centre.
Prior to this date, the teaching of these languages was decentralised according to the needs of different disciplines. With the setting up of this nerve centre, UiTM’s language curriculum was formulated to cater for the ever-growing number of students who need to be proficient not only in the English language, but also in a third language. This language competency gives UiTM students a competitive edge in the job market. The Academy of Language Studies prides itself on having more than 500 lecturers, with 256 serving in various faculties in Shah Alam and the rest in the branch campuses all over Malaysia.
There are 3 departments :
Department of English Language and Linguistics
Department of Malay Studies
Department of Asian and European Languages
The Department of English and Linguistics is the largest department in the Academy and caters to all the English language needs of the university. Apart from that, the English Language lecturers are also very involved in writing not only course materials and manuals, but also text books which are currently used by the students and staff of UiTM and other institutions of learning.
The Malay Studies Department (JPM) caters to all Malay language needs of the university. JPM also offers courses to foreign students who are registered as UiTM students and helps foreign universities in designing Malay Studies Programmes and teaching the Malay language as a foreign language. JPM lecturers are also very involved in writing research papers, course materials and manuals, textbooks and presenting papers at national and international levels.
The Department of Asian and European Languages caters to the need for third language courses by the university students and staff, as well as those requested by external organisations. The department is actively involved in establishing links with a number of foreign universities in China, France, Germany and Thailand.
In July 2006, ALS created history by offering its new programme called Applied Language Studies with a focus on English for Professional Communication. Coded as LG220, the programme started with a small group of 37 students. After 3 years, it has grown slowly but steadily and growing stronger with each semester. Its current enrolment is 281 students. The first cohort is graduating this October 2009.
In December 2007, ALS created another milestone when it offered another new programme called Applied Language Studies (Hons.) Malay Language for Professional Communication.
Academy of Language Studies was awarded the ISO 9001:2000 certificate on 16 April 2004, followed by a renewal certificate on 28 April 2007.