Faculty of Education, Social Sciences and Law

Sociology and Social Policy

Research Student: Rashidah Mamat

National identity,ethnicity and Islam:Malaysian students perceptions in the UK

Building a national identity and forging national unity presents considerable challenges for most of the newly independent nations; particularly in a multi-cultural and multi-religious country like Malaysia. While the university students are considered as the future elite, who are assumed to be the future leaders; as influential moulders of public opinion civic and political leadership that wil help mould national identity. 

This research will employ qualitative case study research method to investigate the nexus of national identity, ethnicity and Islam measured from the perceptions, interpretations and experiences of 48 Malaysian undergraduate students who are stuying in three selected universities in the UK: University of Leeds, University of Sheffield and University of Manchester. Those students will be divided into two categories; the first and final year students.

Analysis will involve examination of contents of interview transcripts concerning the impact of study abroad, the meaning of national identity, perceptions of Islam, and sense of belonging. Emerging patterns from narratives will be developed into themes and categories and compared for linkages with the research questions and literature. Interpretations from themes and categories will be used to derive a framework of how the study abroad influences Malaysian students’ perceptions towards national identity, ethnicity and Islam.

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