The higher education commission (HEC) has shown that most Pakistani universities in the country do not have sufficient equipment for online education. The details show that out of only 40 of the 205 universities, e-learning support is provided by fully functional learning management systems (LMS).
Pakistani Universities as in other parts of the world have been forced to use online education to protect students, staff. And teachers from the coronavirus pandemic. The world bank has committed $400 million to Restructure. Pakistan’s higher education sector, including a new part to support continuing education for all people in a crisis like covid-19.
The cost of implementing this component is $93 million. And will allow every university in the country to provide online education in the event of an unforeseen crisis and university lockout. To date, the world bank has contributed $65 million to promote research excellence in economic strategies. Improve education and learning, and strengthen higher education governance.
Pakistani Universities HEC Policy for the Reform of Higher Education:
The higher education commission of Pakistan (HEC), in accordance with its latest university policy. Has recently issued credit and non-credit hours for internships, internships. And general education (GE), including subject studies. In an effort to develop the ability to write clearly and concisely, the policy states that students should now take courses in quantitative reasoning and report writing.
For practical learning, also compulsory, students will have the choice between entrepreneurship, youth club, or sports. While Pakistani studies and religious studies, as part of social studies, will soon become compulsory in the (GE) department. In addition, the aforementioned policy also established mandatory internships for four and five-year degrees.
The Higher Education Commission Has Divided Curricula Into Five Different Types:
According to a study by the express tribune on (HEC) new university policy, the first category is four-year bachelor studies. The second is a four-year professional degree (bachelor of engineering, bachelor of dental surgery, bachelor of nursing). The third type is a five-year professional degree (bachelor of architecture, bachelor of oriental medicine and surgery, bachelor of homeopathic medical sciences, doctor of veterinary medicine, doctor of pharmacy.
- The fourth is a four-year degree with the relevant council that includes agriculture, business studies, computer science, education, and technology, while the fifth type is a two-year degree.
- According to the policy, in order to be eligible for the degree, each student must complete the 120 credit hours. For a three-hour credit program, students must study at least 40 courses during the four-year period.
- Based on which, for each semester, five courses must be selected, each of the 3 credit hours. However, for the first time, students with written permission will also have the freedom to enroll in more than five courses or less. The categories of the degree program are based on three elements.
- The first is general education (GE). The second concerns discipline, while the third component will be based on practical learning.
- These categories are further divided into subcategories. An undergraduate student must take two courses in three general disciplines (arts and humanities, national sciences, and social sciences) in the first (GE) category.
Pakistani Studies and Islamic Studies
- Likewise, relevant courses in Pakistani studies and Islamic studies will be part of (GE) in the language and culture skills section. Although based on 120 credit hours, (GE) will represent 39 credit hours across four-year degree programs. A total of 13 courses will be held. According to the policy, a student should take 13 courses of 39 credit hours during the first three or four semesters during graduation.
- Failure in any of these courses until the beginning of the fourth semester will exclude the student’s promotion in the fifth semester. Additionally, each university will endeavor to appoint an academic advisor to guide students.
- As part of non-credit courses or activities, students following the fourth semester will need to enroll in a nine-week internship. Students can apply for internships at government institutions, local administrations, autonomous institutions, government agencies, companies, educational institutions, and NGOs.
- Students should choose entrepreneurship, youth club, or sports facilities offered by students to students as part of their learning practice. Therefore, the creation of an entrepreneurship laboratory, a youth club, and a sports club is necessary.
The Student Union Will Be Part of the Youth Club
The workshop will host lectures, group work, writing sessions, computer labs, presentation sessions, fundraising events, start-up events, and marketing events. Likewise, the acting club, the book reading club, the university magazine and newspapers, the university tv and radio station, the discussion club, and the student union will be part of the youth club. Students wishing to carry out workshops through sports activities will choose sports activities.
Furthermore, the policy also requires universities to issue a two-year degree to a student who wishes to study for only two years of a four-year degree program. The (APSUP), which contained detailed objections, wrote a letter to the head of the (HEC).
The internship is a custom that cannot be called mandatory. But has become mandatory in the new policy, adding weight to universities. Furthermore, there is still some ambiguity as to who holds the authority to issue internship certificates. The host organization, or the university. Likewise, the association argued that with the existing infrastructure most universities are not suitable for practical learning.
Private Universities Are Already Having Problems With Covid-19:
The letter further highlighted the ambiguity surrounding the 39 credit hours forge courses. Private universities are already having problems with covid-19. Therefore, its implementation without preparation, skills development, human resources support, or training is impossible. We are ready to support (HEC), but first, we need to take care of our reservations.
On the other hand, the vice president of the Kid-e-Amh university, Dr. Muhammed Ali Shah, who is also the head of the VC committee of public Pakistani universities, has strongly criticized the policy. Will the university close its other campuses if all students choose a single course? It is an American model, which cannot be applied in Pakistan.