PhD admissions & ineligible students

'Ineligible students' given admission in PhD
Islamabad, June 28: The International Islamic University (IIU) has allegedly violated the admission rules in PhD and granted admission to some students without following the basic criteria.

According to well-placed sources, many students have been allowed to get admission in PhD despite the fact that they have not completed their M.Phil, which is mandatory for getting admission in PhD. "The blue-eyed students have completed their one year coursework of PhD before completing their M.Phil thesis," they alleged.

According to the set standards of the Higher Education Commission (HEC), it is mandatory for a student to have M.Phil degree before getting admission in PhD in any discipline. But the university has allegedly ignored the criteria by giving admissions to ineligible students in the Department of Political Sciences during the academic session 2010-2011.

Sources revealed that the admissions for PhD opened in July 2010 for which an advertisement was published in newspapers. It was clearly mentioned in the advertisement that a candidate needs to have 60% marks or three CGPA in M.Phil.

Sources alleged that Faculty of Social Sciences Dean and Department of Political Science Chairman Dr. Nazarul Islam have exploited his powers and gave admissions to some of his favourite students despite severe disagreement by some members of the admission committee.

As many as 14 out of 20 students were declared eligible for PhD - 10 male and four female. Except for two, all were internal candidates (students of IIU) who have not allegedly completed their M.Phil before getting admission in PhD.

Sources alleged that two students have completed their M.Phil in January 2011 while rest of the students have not completed their thesis of M.Phil till May 2011 despite the fact that they have completed their PhD coursework during September 2010 to May 2011.

The more astonishing fact is that after the completion of PhD coursework, the process of viva of M.Phil of these students has been started. According to university rules, no one could be a student of two courses at a time.

Sources claimed that two members of the admission committee strongly resisted the decision of Dr. Nazar regarding violation of admission rules but he didn't listen to them.

Dr Nazarul Islam, who has recently left the post of chairman of the Political Science Department, when contacted said that no violation of rules has been done in PhD admissions. "There is a special rule for internal candidates that they could get admission in PhD after completing their coursework. Thesis could be conducted after getting admission in PhD," he said.

However, officials of the university believe that no such rule has ever been introduced for internal students. "Have there been such a rule, it's a clear violation of HEC rules," they said.

Sources alleged that the relevant officials of the university have misused the provision of 'result awaited' students. "It has been written in the advertisement that the 'result awaited' students could apply. But it doesn't mean that those who have not completed their thesis could apply," they said. They lamented that by giving admissions to ineligible internal students many eligible external students have failed to get admission in the university.

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HEC asks universities to strengthen quality culture
Islamabad: Higher Education Commission (HEC) Chairman Dr. Javaid Laghari has asked universities to strengthen their indigenous quality culture and make wholehearted efforts to improve their international visibility.

He was addressing, through video conferencing, the focal persons of public and private universities of Balochistan, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Punjab on Monday, in connection with the HEC initiative to carry out quality-based ranking of higher education institutions (HEIs) aiming at international compatibility, primarily based on the QS Ranking System acceptable widely across the world.

In this regard, all public and private universities of the country have been asked to provide data by July 15, 2011. The Statistical Information Unit (SIU), HEC, held an orientation session for universities of three provinces on Monday while a similar session will be held for universities of Sindh and Islamabad on Tuesday.

NUST Quality Enhancement Cell (QEC) Director Dr Muhammad Ismail was the facilitator who shared his experiences of NUST in the context of QS ranking while HEC QEC DG Zia Batool introduced different initiatives of HEC in the context of quality assurance.

The chairman said that the HEC has taken various initiatives to bring HEIs of Pakistan at par with international standards. "Ranking is one of the measures to scale the success of efforts to achieve international competitiveness in education research and innovation. Since QS World Ranking is considered as one of the effective quality based ranking of HEIs at international level so HEC has desired to build the capacity of Pakistani universities to get more international visibility through reflection in international rankings including QS Ranking," he said.

While requesting the universities to meet the deadline for provision of authentic data, Dr Laghari said that university rankings are very important for students, parents, employers, government organizations, policy makers and other stakeholders. "The results of rankings change the context in which universities function. It is basically a self-learning and self-improving exercise which benefits the academic and research communities programmes of the country."

"Universities which failed to provide data will be ranked zero by placing them at the bottom in the ranking list to be published through print media," he added.

In his presentation, Dr Ismail explained the significance of university ranking as well as various ranking systems currently prevalent around the globe, while focusing on status and process of QS Ranking through responding to queries on this ranking system. The news

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Summer camps dismay students in hot, dry weather
Islamabad: Summer camps that are aimed at keeping the students in touch with studies are now annoying for majority of them because of the scorching heat and dry weather.

Different educational institutions especially private schools arrange summer camps to help students in studies and stimulate their creativity.

Amir a parent of a school going boy said children dreamt about summer vacation during which they have a lot of time to play games, go for outing, watch movies and sleep when they want to. "We wonder why summer holidays are announced when we have to trudge through summer camps with all notebooks and text books to write, memorize and do all the burdensome math exercises and quirky science questions," a student Zaheer said. Summer vacation are inevitable as sun burns hot in months of June, July and August and for students it is difficult to continue studies in unbearably sultry rooms and travel in high temperatures. An official told APP that Federal Directorate of Education (FDE) would not hold summer camps this year due to the severity of weather.

FDE used to hold summer camps in the past while some private schools came up with the idea of arranging online classes so that students could keep in touch with their studies while staying in the safe environment of their homes.

However, while expressing his views a student said: "Holidays are holidays and what satisfaction there is even if they are told repeatedly that summer camps are for their own good as practice makes perfect and the effort will result in good marks in examinations."

Teachers have best interest of students in their mind but even that sincerity is not enough and students and parents are divided over the issue.

Some think holding classes in summer camps help students to retain the knowledge gained in the past months. But the critics say summer camps are a kind of over schooling and they believe that children need two three months of holidays to relax.

In this time students also keep away from problems they face in schools where they often have to bear teachers punishment, and stress while making effort to come up to the expectations of others in studies and examinations.

A portion of students wants to spend vacation on their own but schools have different plans.

Shagufta, a private school teacher said the camps are organized with very specific activities in mind.

The camps are mandatory for students, who had to appear in board examinations of fifth, eighth and matric classes, she added.

Most parents approve such camps but many have reservations about camps for little children at montessori level or early stages of schooling.

Like in everything, it comes to what kind of resources you have to plan summer vacations for kids.

Expensive schools offer fun filled and interesting activities like painting classes, swimming and games during summer camps.

But while at home, children can do a lot, they can remain glued to their television or play all the video games with all the super heroes fighting evil while going through holidays work at a leisurely pace.

And if nothing is satisfying enough, families can pack their bags, check list of relatives that they can visit and take off. app

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HEC best teacher award for SUIT prof
Peshawar: Engineer Hamid Jan, head of the Department of Computer Science & Information Technology, Sarhad University of Science & Information Technology (SUIT), Peshawar, has been selected for the Best University Teacher Award by the Higher Education Commission (HEC), Islamabad for 2010. A press release said the award consists of a certificate and cash prize of Rs100,000. The award will be conferred upon him at a special ceremony in the HEC Auditorium, Islamabad on July 12. Hamid Jan has been serving at the Sarhad University for the last 10 years. He has got two MS degrees. The news

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