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PU Semester system under debate

Semester system under debate at PU
Lahore, Nov 10: One of the numerous reasons for the resentment against the semester system at the Punjab University is the disparity between academic achievements of the students studying at its campus and those studying at the university's affiliated colleges.

A number of PU departments as well as its constituent colleges have been demanding a shift from semester system to annual system on the plea that the latter was more suitable and convenient for teachers as well as students.

The issue was recently taken up during a meeting of the PU's Academic Council, which decided that a separate meeting of professors and chairmen would be called to discuss semester system in detail. It was decided that decision regarding giving the option of adopting annual or semester system in the departments/colleges/institutes would be taken in the next meeting of the council, scheduled to be held in December.

It is worth mentioning that most of the departments and institutes at the PU have been following the semester system introduced some years ago by the Higher Education Commission, whereas there are departments and constituent colleges which have been following the annual system. The affiliated colleges of the PU, both private and government, have also been offering education, exclusively, under the annual system.

The examinations are held annually under the annual system while under the semester system they are held at the end of each semester. At the MA/MSc level, there is no concept of supplementary examinations under the annual exams while re-sit exams are held under the semester system while facility of freezing the semester could also be availed by the students in special circumstances.

One of the other important factors which do not go in favour of the semester system at Punjab University is the teacher-student ratio. There are around 30,000 students at university while the total strength of teachers is around 600. Those who are against the semester system believe that the spirit of this system cannot be fulfilled under such circumstances. They believe that favouritism is also one of the worst aspects of semester system, adding that it deprives many brilliant students of their rights if the balance is not maintained by the teacher.

They argue the possibility of favouring certain individuals cannot be ruled out and at the same time integrity of a teacher can also be on stake while using various pressure tactics under the semester system.

It is important to mention here that last year the Punjab Education Department planned to introduce semester system at some selected colleges on the directions of the HEC. However, the plan could not be implemented as a number of issues later surfaced, including the mode of exam and capacity building of teachers.

A senior PU official, commenting on the issue, said the university was finding itself on the horns of a dilemma, especially in connection with semester system at the MA/MSc level. He said, besides some departments and constituent colleges at the university, all the affiliated colleges were following the annual system which was promoting academic disparity. He said academic gains of those studying under annual system were not the same as those studying under semester systems. He said the PU was producing different students as some university students were getting degrees under the semester system while others from within the PU as well as from its affiliated colleges were getting degrees under the annual system.

The official said former vice-chancellor of the university had introduced the semester system on the HEC directions while using his special powers. He said it was neither discussed by the university's academic council nor was it approved by the statutory body. He said chairmen, directors of institutes and deans of faculty had been asked to submit concrete proposals so that a final decision could be taken in this regard.

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Punjab University MA exam schedule
Lahore: The Punjab University has announced the schedule for MA, part I and II, Annual Examination 2009.

According to a press statement, MA part-I exam will commence from June 24,2009. Last date for receipt of admission forms with single fee by post is March 3,2009 and by hand is 11-03-2009. The form with double could be submitted by post till March 19,2009 and by hand till March 27,2009.

MA part-II exam will commence from July 16,2009. Last date for receipt of admission forms with single fee by post is April 4, 2009 and by hand is April 4-2009 while the forms with double fee could be submitted by post till April 20,2009 and by hand till April 29, 2009.

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PU Metallurgy Dept granted accreditation
Lahore: The Punjab University Department of Metallurgy and Materials Engineering has been granted national accreditation by Pakistan Engineering Council (PEC) for three years.

The inspection team of PEC visited the Department of Metallurgy & Materials Engineering on October 28 and 29, 2008 and registered their professional satisfaction about the level and working of departmental laboratories, classrooms, atmosphere, library status and performance of the faculty and allied staff.

The team included Prof Dr Fazal Ahmad Khalid, Convener, of the Committee as well as expert member from PEC along with another expert Prof Dr Shabbar Attique and Deputy Registrar Col (r) Zulfiqar.

During their process of observation, the team of PEC went through a thorough consultation of all the required documents, curriculum, laboratory manuals, library staff and faculty staff profiles. They also asked the opinion of students and discussed relevant issues with the faculty and allied staff of the department. Before departing, the members of the team had a brief meeting with the Vice-Chancellor and Controller of the Punjab University.

The PEC team expressed its satisfaction about the status of performance of the department and unanimously recommended the department for its reaccredidation for the next tenure of three years.

Earlier, Prof Dr Javaid Ahmad, Prof Dr Muhammad Taqi Zahid Butt and Prof Dr Rafiq Ahmad received the inspection team of PEC along with their faculty staff. In his presentation on multimedia, Prof Dr Rafiq Ahmad briefed the team about the history, educational contribution and present performance of the department.

PU procession to pay homage to Iqbal: Punjab University Vice Chancellor Prof Dr Mujahid Kamran along with teachers, students and administrative staff will pay homage to the great Muslim poet and thinker, Allama Muhammad Iqbal, and lay floral wreath at his Mazar in connection with Iqbal Day on November 9(today). According to a press statement, special buses will leave for Old Campus from the New Campus at 7:45am. This procession led by the VC will leave Allama Iqbal Campus at 8:30 for Mazar-e-Iqbal. All the students are invited to attend the event.

The VC said, "Today Pakistan is passing through a phase of security, economic and other crises and we as a nation could overcome these crises by following teachings of the man who first had the dream of the creation of our beloved country." The News

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PU faculty commemorates Iqbal Day
Lahore: The faculty of the Punjab University (PU), along with Vice-Chancellor (VC) Dr Mujahid Kamran, offered fateha and lay a floral wreath at the Mizare Iqbal on Sunday to commemorate the national Iqbal Day holiday.

According to a press release issued by the PU, special buses left for Allama Iqbal Campus from Faisal Auditorium Campus at 7.45am. The procession, under the leadership of VC, then left the Allama Iqbal Campus at 8.30am for the Mizare Iqbal. All the PU faculty members would be invited to join the procession.

PU VC Dr Mujahid Kamran said that the country was passing through a phase of security and economic crises, adding that these could be overcome if the nation followed the footsteps and teachings of the man who first envisioned the country. He said that today's youth should focus on education reflected by the poetry and addresses of the great poet, adding that the youth should adopt the concept of Iqbal's poetry as it would help them cope with the problems they faced today.

"November 9 is a very special day for every Pakistani and on this day, we all must make a firm commitment to work for the country in our own capacity. We can pay tributes to the great leader, philosopher and poet only through practice," he said. Daily Times

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FPSC proposes candidates for lady lecturers
Islamabad: The Federal Public Service Commission (FPSC) has recommended candidates for appointment against posts of lecturers (Female) in BS-17 in F G colleges for women.

From Punjab Shahida Rasool (Merit), Rabia Kayani, Shakeela Saif, Farhat Habib, Amna Saeed, Safia Gulzar, Zakia Anjum, Amna Abrar, Shazia Aslam, from NWFP Mehvish Taj, Farzana Iftikhar, from Sindh (Urban) Sidra Abdul Saleem Khokhar, Tabassum Bibi, from Sindh rural Urfeen Qazi, Naila Parveen, Rabia Anwar, from AJK Shazia Ashraf and from NAFATA Somia Khattak have been selected.

Omer Farooq (Punjab), Nazia Gul (Punjab) are recommended for appointment against the posts of research officers/planning officers/survey officers. Dawn

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LUMS defeats UMT in rugby finals
Lahore: The Lahore University of Management and Sciences (LUMS) took the initiative and arranged the country's first ever inter-university rugby tournament on Sunday, with the varsity's team defeating the University of Management and Technology (UMT's) team by 19-12 in the final match of the tournament.

Scores: The two-day event started on Saturday with LUMS defeating Ghulam Ishaq Khan Institute (GIKI) with a score of 28-0 and the UMT defeating the Bahria University (BU) by 19-7. Similarly, LUMS defeated the Government Degree College Fort Abbass (GDCFA) by 36-0 while BU defeated GIKI by 17-5 in another match.

Also on Saturday, UMT defeated GDCFA by 12-10, LUMS defeated BU by 17-0 and UMT defeated GIKI by 29-0. LUMS qualified for the finals by defeating BU in the semi-finals and UMT reached the finals after defeating GDCFA. The final match was played between LUMS and UMT teams but the hosts managed to secure 19 points against their rivals, who could only score 12 points in the deciding match. The GDCFA team secured the third position in the tournament.

LUMS Sport Director: LUMS Sports Director Babur Khan said that the university was not only striving to promote non-conventional sports like rugby, baseball and basketball in the region but they had also worked towards promoting the sports culture among women.

He said that his team worked day and night to win the tournament while the university students dedicated their time to sports without allowing their academics to be affected. He added that more than 700 of the 2,800 students had been participating in different sports activities within the university.

He said that the university aimed to organise 20-20 cricket tournaments, women's squash tournaments, baseball, volleyball and tennis tournaments from Eid until March next year. He said that the university, in collaboration with the Higher Education Commission, was allocating lots of resources to promote sports in the country. "For the past few years, LUMS has been very active in rugby. After holding a national level tournament last year, LUMS is now actively promoting rugby in other local universities," he added. Daily Times

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