Higher Education Commission (HEC) has informed a parliamentary panel that the country requires upto 10 Science and Technology parks to meet modern world requirements.
Sub-committee of the Senate Standing Committee on Federal Education and Professional Training was informed that educational institutions for 7.1 million students in the country to get higher education are not sufficient, nor are enough teachers available for the purpose.
The committee met with Nauman Wazir in the chair to deliberate on how to improve the educational system of Pakistan as per requirement of changing times, strengthening link between academia and industry, roles of federal government and provincial governments.
Nauman Wazir said that education system of the country needs to be brought as per the modern world requirements for bringing development and prosperity in the country. To bring revolution in the industrial sector, it is required to make curriculum according to the industries’ requirements.
Until and unless industries related subjects are not added in the curriculum and students don’t have hands-on practical experience, development and progress in the industrial sector is not possible, he added.
Sub-committee sought recommendations from Federal Education ministry, HEC, secretaries of four provincial education ministries, NUST, Air University, University of Engineering Lahore, Taxila and Peshawar representatives for bringing improvement in the curriculum according to the requirements of the modern world.
Convener of the committee said that even after passing five years of engineering studies, due to lack of post engineering practical experience, students are not even able to weld. It is vital to frame such curriculum for higher educational institutions which is co-related to the industry and country’s requirements.
For the second, third and fourth years, internship should be made compulsory for the students. By making credit hours compulsory, interest of students could be increased.
Secretary Federal Education informed the committee that service provision in the education sector has become the province’s responsibility. Private institutions are also playing vital role. It would be better to conduct a detailed study in higher educational institutions where recommendations should be framed according to industries requirements and for improvement in curriculum.
On this the convener recommended that HEC and federal education ministry take steps in collaboration with all stakeholders where uniform standard for educations can be formulated and set. If there is a requirement of any amendments or bills, Parliament is ready to support it, he added.
Executive Director HEC informed the committee that Germany and France in this regard have played crucial role as both countries have laid stress on practical experience of students. On this the convener recommended for taking thorough review of both countries’ strategy and frame recommendation for the country.
The director also said that it is compulsory for the students of Textile University to carry 80 percent practicals, and HEC is making efforts to include members from the industry in curriculum committee.
HEC said that since the country came into being, 11 education policies were framed and every policy stressed on improving standards. Currently there are 180 universities and 30 research universities that would be established in the country during next 10 years. By allocating 4 percent of GDP for the education sector, many problems could be resolved, he added.
The committee was informed that NUST and HEC were establishing Science and Technology Park and NUST has conducted feasibility study in this regard. However there is need of 8-10 more science and technology parks in the country to meet its requirements.