Colleges fail to commence classes despite directives
Karachi, Sep 27: Despite instructions from the director-general (DG) of colleges in Sindh to start fresh science classes of Class XI in public-run educational institutes from Monday, a number of colleges were unable to follow the directions as they could not complete the official formalities required for the admission process.
As a result, classes, which were supposed to start on Monday, could not be conducted in government colleges and higher secondary schools (HSS).
Director-General (DG) Colleges Professor Dr Nasir Ansar had directed the principals and those in charge of the government colleges that they should start the classes of the science faculty of Class XI on Monday. However, the college staff could not complete official formalities like completing the admission process, preparing a list of class roll numbers of the students, and dividing the students' total strength in different sections on time to start the classes as per the DG's instructions.
Meanwhile, Dr Ansar said that there were over 130 educational institutions in Karachi and the majority of them had started science classes as per the directions. The remaining colleges would also start the classes in a few days, he claimed.
Overall 100,420 seats were allocated in six faculties ó pre-engineering, pre-medical, computer science, commerce, humanities and home economics - in the city's 132 public sector colleges (67 male and 65 female) and 24 higher secondary schools (12 male and 12 female).
According to the statistics provided by the Centralised Admission Policy (CAP) Committee-2011, 78,170 students (39,567 female and 38,603 male) have been accommodated in Class XI in various faculties in government colleges and HSS. As many as 22,250 allocated seats are still vacant.
Out of 95,000 forms sold, only 80,500 were received during the CAP admission process. The CAP Committee had rejected around 2,300 forms this year. According to the DG Colleges, who is also the chairman of CAP Committee-2011, most of the forms were rejected as the candidates, with a gap of more than five years, had applied to seek admissions and a number of students could not clear their matriculation examinations.
Replying to a question, he denied that the ratio of enrolment in Class XI in public-sector education institutes had dropped. "Last year, 73,688 students were accommodated in Class XI and this year figure reaches 78,170," he said.
However, "we have observed that students' preferences have been changed and a greater number have evinced interest in market-oriented subjects," he mentioned.Your Comments
CAP completes issuing placement results
Karachi: The Chairman Centralised Admission Policy (CAP)-2011 Committee and the Director-General (DG), Colleges, (Sindh), Professor Dr Nasir Ansar on Sunday announced the placement results of the Humanities (Female) Group.
The process of issuing placement results for class-XI has been completed with the announcement of Humanities list, he said. At least 7,624 admissions have been granted to female students in 60 educational institutes of the city, he further said.
The placement list issued by the CAP Committee reveals that a number of seats were left out as candidates did not show evince interest in various disciplines. Only 785 male students got admissions in the Humanities Faculty in Class-XI while there were around 5400 seats available in this faculty. Similarly, out of 17,380 total seats in Humanities (Female) Group only 7,624 female candidates got admissions.
Moreover, there were 5,740 seats in Pre-Medical (Male) but, only 2,881 students showed interest in this field. Interestingly, this figure is higher if compared to the last year. In 2010, 2,486 male students got admissions in the Pre-Medical Group.
According to Dr Ansar, as compare to last year, 4342 more admissions were given in 2011. At least 78, 170 total placements were made this year whereas, 73, 688 students took admissions in various faculties in Class-XI in 2010.
KU students deserve better
Karachi: Lately I've been hearing constant, poignant laments from Karachi University alumni. These are people in their 20s and 30s who feel that they got cheated out of a fulfilling university experience and now wish for another chance at a college/university education at an esteemed institution. But another shot at college is not on the horizon for them.
This could of course be a mid-life crisis talking or it could be a desire to be associated with a superior label than "KU" in a world and job market replete with high-powered university labels. Or it could be a justified yearning for a better, more rewarding college experience than the one they got.
As one KU-graduate put it, "Karachi University wasted four years of my life". He then went on to talk about how professors in the International Relations department would dictate notes to students throughout the duration of the class, there was no real discussion and intellectual growth, and political activists - not known to students for their high levels of tolerance and compassion - infiltrated campus classrooms and frightened the faint-hearted into silence or submission.
He talked of moral policing on campus, of "party boys" (which in KU-speak translates into 'members of political parties') telling male and female students not to sit together, and where to sit and where not to. He spoke of the use of outdated books and teaching methods that defy both logic and wisdom.
Most emphatically, he spoke of the impossibility of learning anything remotely useful in an environment as stifling and prejudiced as that of the KU classrooms.
Having personally experienced all of the above while I was a student at KU, I find it difficult to present a rosier version of things than the above stated. The fact that I studied at a university abroad as well allowed me to compare the KU experience to what a university experience should be, and understand full well that, sadly, there is an enormous gulf between the two.
I learnt invaluable lessons at KU; unfortunately not many of them were academic. While KU certainly shaped my social consciousness and introduced me to Pakistan in a microcosm, which my largely sheltered schooling couldn't possibly have done, it didn't provide academic excellence and serious intellectual stimulation. It didn't challenge; at least not academically, and not to the extent it should have. And it didn't provide a safe, free and congenial environment in which I could grow and excel.
Dealing with the administration was a nightmare - everyone there had an exaggerated sense of self-worth and a diminished sense of student-worth; getting permission to bring my car inside campus an unnecessary ordeal; and the classes - the less said the better.
Numerous professors either wouldn't show up for class on time, or at all, and it rarely seemed as though they had made any effort to plan their lectures ahead of time. Some unashamedly used class time to forward specific agendas that they personally held dear, others were dead bores who just read from their notes and failed to engage. Still others treated students with such contempt that it would be a punishable offence anywhere else in the world; but here it is rewarded with teaching positions.
To be fair, there were a few better ones in the middle who were also wonderful, kind-hearted people, but they were too few and far between. By and large there was little value placed in challenging ideas and thought processes, in writing quality research papers, and in getting serious work done. Hence, unless you were driven and entirely self-motivated, there was little learnt that would be of use in the real world.
I skipped my graduation ceremony because I couldn't bring myself to sit through any more of the chaotic ineptitude that permeated the place. In any case, it was more of a good riddance than a good bye. I was off to put my time to better use.
A lot of KU students have similar stories to tell but some temper their critique with variants of "it wasn't all that bad", "I met some wonderful people there" and "at least I went to university". Those who say that their KU experience had its brighter moments nonetheless agree that it still left a lot to be desired.
I am positive that together we can all come up with some redeeming things to say about KU if we try. But the point is not to gratify egos and to be a KU apologist. It is not to drop the bar of standard out of kindness or a fear of ruffling feathers. It is to acknowledge that there are areas where KU, to the detriment of all those who receive/d an education there, is found wanting; areas where it can and should improve.
I went on the official university website to reacquaint myself with the place where I too was once a student. My efforts to learn more about KU from KU were rudely interrupted by this sentence that glared at me from the "Karachi University Today" section of the website: "The Karachi University today is the biggest university of in the country."
That's not a typo. It's the official website talking.
Wait, there's more. I tried to find out exactly what kinds of classes were being taught at KU these days. So I began looking for course titles and descriptions. I didn't come up with anything except the requirements for getting into the programme whose details I was searching for. The exact nature of the programme itself and the content covered in the coursework were nowhere to be found.
I did however stumble across an exhaustive section on the University Vice Chancellor that detailed exactly how many countries he had visited (for academic purposes) and how many publications have featured articles on him, to date. Misplaced priorities indeed.
I can't help wondering how many aspiring students who want to find out what courses the university offers will find reassurance instead in the knowledge that the VC has been to more countries than they can probably find on the map and has been written about in more publications than they could care to remember.
That, to me, is the essence of KU's problem. In an archaic web of protocol, procedure and paperwork, the wretched KU student, is the least important part of the KU equation. Hardly anyone in a position of importance lies awake at night concerned for his/her intellectual well-being and future employability. So while the students hang from university points to get to classes that are unlikely to inspire or inform, the university high-ups slumber in their rooms, never deigning to venture out of their own little bubbles, never wanting to make KU better than it is.
You'd think the country's biggest university would have a reasonably well-designed website featuring comprehensive information about the thing that matters - namely, the education being imparted there - in sentences written in correct English. After all, that's not such a lofty goal is it? You'd also think that it would enjoy some degree of real - as opposed to imagined - prestige; that it would be a university that younger students would aspire to get into. No such luck.
In the modern world, there is no room for pedagogical approaches that discount the very people they are meant to cater to. KU cannot continue to keep its students alienated and dissatisfied. It cannot continue to waste their time. The country's biggest university has to raise its standards; the experience it offers its students cannot continue to be so fruitless so as to cause large numbers of them to look back with such a profound sense of regret. The news
Private medical institutions to refund fee
Karachi: The medical colleges and universities in the private sector have decided to refund the fee of all those students who also got admission on merit to public sector medical colleges and universities in Sindh.
A decision to this effect was taken in a meeting of the heads of all private sector medical colleges and universities in Sindh at the Governor's House on Saturday.
The meeting was assured that the fee, including admission fee, of all those students, who had first got admission to private sector medical colleges and universities but later got admissions on merit to public sector medical colleges and universities in Sindh, would be refunded.
The meeting also constituted a six-member committee to be headed by the vice chancellor of Karachi University to work for the solution of problems being faced by private and public sector medical universities and colleges.
The committee would also design a calendar on a permanent basis to finalise the last date of admissions to enable the students and their parents to take a final decisions with regard to admissions.
The meeting also extended by one month the last date of admission to public sector medical colleges in Sindh in view of losses caused by heavy rain in the province. app