The Higher Education Commission (HEC) has barred 55 departments of the Punjab University from admitting new students to their MPhil/MS and Ph.D. programs. These degree programs range from pure sciences to applied disciplines.
The HEC has halted these programs over alleged violations of its regulations. The decision was made after a team formed by the Quality Assurance Agency (QAA) of the HEC visited and inspected various programs at the university.
The six-member team gave a set of recommendations after visiting the university. The HEC has taken the decision in light of these recommendations and has also published a review report of the university’s MPhil/MS and Ph.D. programs.
The report states that the qualified faculty for Ph.D. programs stands at 488 while the number of students enrolled in these programs is 2,090. Whereas, there are 249 MPhil instructors against 5,598 registered students.
The report also reveals poor management of the required documents, no provision of data by departments to the HEC officials, and students being supervised by supervisors with different specializations in these programs.
The courses taught in the MPhil programs were not in line with the approved codes of the Academic Council. Moreover, the students had to wait for a long time to get a supervisor. They also had to wait for dissertation defense after they had submitted their thesis.
The report maintains that under HEC’s rules, these programs have to be stopped from enrolling more students. Among these, the HEC has ordered to immediately stop all the activities of six Ph.D. and seven MPhil/MS programs while the rest will have to stop admitting further students.