PhD courses in Pakistan's universities
Universities stop running PhD courses
Islamabad, Dec 12: PhD courses that had
flowered in the country`s universities during the last decade with encouragement
from the Higher Education Commission (HEC) have been petering out, according to
They said the reason was that the universities preferred to hire visiting
professors to teach the courses they offered, rather than hiring permanent
HEC had laid down the criteria for the university to have at least three
permanent faculty members for introducing a PhD course. But the mushrooming
private universities make do with visiting professors on the plea that academics
meeting the HEC criteria were available in few numbers in the country.
In view of the shortage, the HEC started a programme of offering scholarships
to university teachers to study for PhD abroad and return to teach or supervise
research students in Pakistani universities for at least five years.
Though more than 700 scholarship holders have returned home after completing
their four to five-year PhD courses so far, the private universities have
largely carried on with visiting professors, to keep their operational costs
Normally, a visiting professor is paid between Rs2,500 and Rs4,000 as he goes
delivering lectures from one university to another.
When the HEC sought the universities measure up to its criteria for running
PhD, many universities decided to discard their PhD courses, according to the
Some universities offered the excuse for their action that they would have
sponsored their faculty members for doctorate courses but could not because of
the HEC condition that a PhD candidate must be a permanent member of the
HEC rules require that a university offering PhD courses must have minimum
three permanent faculty members to supervise the courses.
Allama Iqbal Open University (AIOU) met this condition still it dropped its
PhD in Journalism course two years ago. Other universities too are discouraging
students desirous of doing doctorate because they find PhD courses not
profitable to run.
An officer of HEC said on condition of anonymity that some grants were
announced on HEC website for doctorate courses abroad but no university came
forward to benefit from it and sponsor its students for the same. Eventually the
scholarships were wasted because the offer of foreign donors financing 60 per
cent of the scholarship lapsed, he said.
Iftikhar Ahmed, a lecturer at a local college, said that he wanted to do PhD
in Journalism and first contacted National University of Modern Languages (Numl)
but its administration said they were not offering PhD as, according to them,
they did not have three PhDs to supervise the course.
Then he met Dr Siraj and Dr Saqib Riaz of AIOU but they also they also
refused and said at present the university could not offer the course.
The sources said that at present there were 18 PhDs in Journalism all over
the country and out of them 10 have crossed the age of superannuation and the
rest are overburdened with workload.
Another student of PhD said that in Long Distance Learning Courses (for
working persons) workshops and lectures were held at 2pm which suited the
government employees but persons working in private offices could not spare time
because their normal office timings were from 8am to 5pm.
Director Media of HEC Ayesha Ikram said that HEC ensured that quality
criteria should be observed. If any university wanted to offer PhD course, it
should find PhD supervisors. "HEC is always ready to guide the universities and
students," she said.
The AIOU public relations officer, Qasim Haider, said they discontinued
offering PhD because there was rush of students in MS and M.Phil programmes,
but, he said, it has been decided that from next year PhD courses will be
started again. Dawn
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FC College University resignation
The vice rector of the FC College University, Dr
Marcia Grant, has resigned from the post, it is learnt. According to sources
said Dr James has been given additional charge. No FC College University
official was available for comments.
"Dr. Marcia was one of the few people after Dr. Armacost who could transform the FC College culture. Current leaders are not capable of effectively running the university."
City, Country: Lahore, Pakistan
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Punjab government suspends all BISE chairmen
Rawalpindi: The report of the Judicial Commission regarding delay in announcement of Secondary
School Certificate (SSC) and Higher Secondary School Certificate (HSSC results
coupled with faults finally prompted the Punjab government to suspend chairmen
of eight boards of intermediate and secondary education in the
According to the sources, the decision was taken after the
Judicial Commission submitted its report stating that result delayed because of
fault in the online system as well as negligence of the concerned officials. It
mentions that results of all eight boards of the Punjab province were full of
errors and the rechecking process also took long time.
Sources said that in the first phase, the Punjab government has decided to suspend all
the chairmen of eight boards and after that education department would decide
about the fate of controllers of examination of the boards. They said that
induction of online system was not wrong, but favouritism and poor system
multiplied problems for the board officials as well as students.
said that despite suspension of concerned officials, the results are still not
announced and it has become very difficult for the Rawalpindi Board of
Intermediate and Secondary Education (RBISE) to produce error-free results.
Sources said that the secretary education Punjab has already suspended RBISE
chairman Dr. Muhammad Qasim, who was working round the clock for addressing the
problems hindering the announcement of the result. He had also pointed out many
flaws in the RBISE.
Sources said that Director Colleges (Rawalpindi)
Muhammad Ashraf who has been given the additional charge of the chairman was
also working on the same post when the board had announced faulty results.
When contacted RBISE spokesperson Arsalan Cheema, he said the
Punjab government is taking these steps in order to ensure error-free results
hoping the results would be announced very soon.
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'14,000 teachers to be recruited in Sindh'
Islamabad: Provincial Education Department of Sindh has announced recruiting at least 14,000 new
teachers in Sindh in the month of January, 2012. After the triumphant operation
against the ghost teachers, the Sindh government was considering to appoint new
teachers on merit while the decision in this regard has been finalised at last,
private news channel reported. According to the decision made public by the
Sindh Education and Literacy Department, the proposed number of 14,000 teachers
would be recruited at primary and secondary schools all over Sindh. The decision
is aimed at providing quality education to poor students at initial academic
level. The news
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Violation of quota: Senate body to look into QAU appointments
Islamabad: A Senate special committee will meet today
(Monday) to ascertain if the quotas of provinces had been violated in
recruitments at Quaid-i-Azam University (QAU) Islamabad.
The committee has also been probing why and how quotas of provinces were
ignored in OGDCL, PIA, PPL, PSO, universities and other departments.
According to sources, the committee was formed after parliamentarians from
Sindh, Balochistan and KP expressed concerns over the recruitments in
In July 2011, all major political parties were asked to nominate their
senators as members of the committee headed by leader of the house in Senate
Syed Nayyar Hussain Bokhari.
According to Esta Code, all employees up to grade 4 have to be appointed from
the local population where a project or department has been working. From grade
5 to 16, however, employees have to be hired directly but still quota has to be
followed while appointments of officers in grade 17 and above should be made
through the Federal Public Service Commission (FPSC) or its criteria should be
followed. But it has been observed that in most of the departments, quotas of
provinces have been violated due to which the sense of deprivation has been
increasing in the three provinces.
Member of the committee Senator Syed Tahir Hussain Mashhadi said that in
most of the semi-government departments, the managements had ignored quotas of
small provinces. "On Monday, the committee will look into the details
appointments made at the QAU from 2007 to January 2011." The management of
the QAU has been directed to provide details about the appointments made on the
basis of quotas.
He said his party, the MQM, believed in open merit because over six decades
after independence "we have no reason to say that appointments should be made
through quota. But we have respect for other parties."
He said in past Pakistan army used to claim that they recruited officers on
merit due to which there were Punjabis in Baloch and Sindh regiments; but now
residents of Balochistan and Sindh are being encouraged to join the army.
Although through the FPSC appointments are made as per provincial quota, but
most of the officers in grade 20 and above belong to one province. It shows that
merit is not followed even at the time of promotions. "We should develop the
institutions to ensure that there is no violation of merit and after that open
merit system should be introduced," Mr Mashhadi said. Dawn
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