Video conference arranged by the Higher Education Commission to discus distance education system in place of external/ private program.
The Public sector Universities will be introducing distance education system to produce quality graduates in replacement of external/ private program while as a pilot project the directorate of distance education will be setup in 6 public sector Universities.
The issue in this connection was discussed in a meeting through a video conference arranged by the Higher Education Commission from Islamabad. The video conference was attended by Prof.Dr.Nazir A.Mughal Vice Chancellor University of Sindh, Prof.Dr. Pirzada Qasim Raza Siddiqui Vice Chancellor University of Karachi and Prof.Dr.Azmat Hayat Khan Vice Chancellor University of Peshwer along with key officials of respective Universities and also key officials of Higher Education Commission. Dr.S.Sohail H.Naqi Executive Director of Higher Education Commission from Islamabad addressing the meeting through video conference highlighted the objectives of the Distance Education system to produce quality students. He said that presently the Universities have been running different systems of education one is regular University degree programs at campuses, and others are in affiliated colleges under which one is for regular students in colleges get registration , attend classes and appear in the examination while another category of students is to just appear in examination by filling of examination forms at affiliated degree colleges as external candidates and added that candidates appearing as external candidate in examination are not really productive. He said that the HEC had been always emphasized on quality of education, physical development of Universities, recruitment of quality of teachers, research, digital libraries, and many other facilities programs to develop Universities to meet the needs of the world market.
He said that presently total population of University students stands at one third of higher education only, while an other number of students appear from affiliated colleges or get education under distance education which is run by the Allama Iqbal Open University and Virtual University. He said that private students passing the examination is miserable and they are not fulfilling needs of job market and new distance education system aiming to improve the quality of education to those who appeared as external candidate .
He said that while learning from the experiences of best Universities with required material the distance education system , the distance education system will be launched with assistance information technology and added that technology has opened new doors which will surely helpful in distance education system too. He said that in our Country there is a large educational market and lot of people wish to get higher degree education and also are willing to pay which can be revenue source for the Universities.
Dr. Naqvi pointed out that 6 year back virtual University project was launched with One billion funding and presently virtual University students representing better in job market. He said that key purpose of distance education system is to produce best quality of students in the Country. He said that distance education system is long term program, HEC is roviding forum to the Universities. He also advised the Universities to setup directorate with proper required staff and added that presently Punjab University, Gomal University, University of Peshawar, University of Sindh and University of Karachi are working on it. The Vice Chancellor University of Karachi while sharing his view point informed that this is excellent program and we will be implemenenting in joint venture of the University of Sindh. He pointed out that University of Sindh and University of Karachi are jointly going to start gradually this new system and in first phase it will be introduced at M.A Level starting from M.A economics by converting external into distance education system.
Prof.Dr.Parveen Munshi Dean Faculty of Education from the University of Sindh sharing her point of view informed that the University of Sindh and University of Karachi is launching this program with M.A Economics. She said that University of Sindh has chalked out time plan and developing the material and also pointed out that registration under distance program will be started in March. She said that by 2012 distance program will replace all subjects of M.A external program and by 2013 all external programs will be replaced with distance education system. She informed that the University of Sindh has prepared advertisement for the recruitment of the required staff.
From the University of Sindh, Vice Chancellor Prof.Dr.Nazir A.Mughal, Dean Faculty of Education Dr.Parveen Munshi, Advisor Planning and Development Muhammad Hussain Shaikh, Director Planning and Development Muhammad Ali Pathan, Director Institute of Information and Communication Technology (IICT) Dr.Imdad Ali Ismaili, Deputy Registrar Academic Abdul Majeed Panhwar and others attended the video conference.