National media workshop serial-4 starts at NDU

Two-week long National Media Workshop Serial-4 started at National Defence University (NDU), Islamabad. Over seventy participants including eminent journalists, from all over the country along with some parliamentarians and persons from other segments of the society are participating in this workshop. The aim of the workshop is to discuss the importance of media as an element of national power in the pursuit of national interests and also to debate core issues confronting Pakistan.

President National Defence University, Lieutenant General Agha Muhammad Umer Farooq, in his opening address highlighted the importance and scope of the National Media Workshop. He stressed upon the role of media in perception building, shaping attitudes and behaviours, developing ethical values and culture of tolerance in a nation.

Sexual harassment in educational institutions of Pakistan

The suspension of a teacher on charges of sexually harassing students at the University of Peshawar sets a laudable historical precedent and is an indicator that attitudes towards women’s rights in Pakistan may finally be shifting.

Patriarchal traditions have meant that for too long the harassment of women has been institutionalised in educational organisations. The systemic harassment of young nursing students by doctors shows that there is still a long way to go. Last year, a 22-year-old nursing student at the Jinnah Post Graduate Medical Centre in Karachi was severely injured when she tried to escape from a doctor trying to rape her. In educational institutions, women are routinely harassed by teachers and students, and often coerced into trading sexual favours for grades.

According to research, sexual harassment in educational institutions ranges from touching and standing too close to sharing vulgar jokes and sexual invitations. The problem is so deep-rooted that sexually harassing women is considered a form of recreation rather than a crime, with the focus squarely on the victim’s conduct and appearance rather than on the aggressor. For the past couple of years, a local NGO has taken efforts to introduce and disseminate a taxonomy of aggressors to shift focus away from the victim.

The suspended lecturer from the University of Peshawar now faces a provincial inquiry, and more female students — who have, so far, feared speaking out about their ordeal — are expected to come forward with their complaints. Earlier this year, with the passage of the sexual harassment bill, Pakistan became the first South Asian country to declare sexual harassment a crime. Provincial governments were called upon to appoint ombudspersons to hear the complaints of women against harassment but, though all legal and institutional mechanisms are present, implementing the laws has remained a challenge. This case is a welcome indicator that the good work the NGOs and the media have been doing in this regard may finally be showing some results.

Tevta Skills Expo 2011 to open on 23rd

The Technical Education and Vocational Training Authority is organising the two-day Tevta Skills Expo 2011 to showcase products made by students at Alhamra Hall from May 23. Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif is scheduled to inaugurate the event.

In order to select students’ products for the exhibition, Tevta organised student skill exhibitions at district and zone levels across the province. Some 500 students from 30 government colleges of technology presented 400 projects, 1,400 from 315 vocational training institutes exhibited 1,300 projects, 85 students from 13 service centres presented 100 projects and 50 apprentices from five apprenticeship training centres displayed 60 projects at district and zone levels skill expos.


Co-education boon or bane?

Gone are the days when co-education was generally viewed with skepticism. Now there is a mushroom growth of such campuses mostly in the private sector.

Co-education has always been a subject of debate in Pakistan. There are some merits and de-merits of co-education. Islam gives great importance to modesty in society. It wants cautiousness while dealing with opposite sex. Islam appreciates education of both men and woman but co-education is not allowed. Free mixing of both sexes causes more harm than good. It is a situation where necessity of veil or hijab is felt. There are certain things if followed in letter and spirit situations on co-education campuses can improve.


UoP teacher harassing girls

The administration of University of Peshawar (UoP) has suspended a teacher on charges of sexually harassing girl students. The UoP has also set up a committee to further probe allegations against him. Perhaps, for the first time in the history of UoP, a teacher has been suspended on charges of sexual harassment.

“It can be a tip of the iceberg as fears of girl students, suppressed due to moral and social inhibitions since long, slowly go away and they speak up against senior teachers, involved in sexual harassment,” sources at the university said.

The UoP spokesperson, said that it was moral responsibility of the university administration to take action against the teacher when enough proofs were found against him. The accused, a teacher of History department, was suspended and a four-member committee with Prof Sara Safdar, dean faculty of social sciences, as its head was formed to probe the issue further, he added.

Holidays in FDE institutions from June 1

The educational institutes working under Federal Directorate of Education (FDE) will be closed for summer vacations from June 1 to August 10. This was informed by Joint Secretary Education and Establishment of Capital Administration Development Division (CAD Div).

He said that the decision was taken in a meeting of the officials of CAD and FDE on Wednesday. Meanwhile, Director of Colleges Tariq Masood said that the institutes will be opened before August 14 and so that the Independence Day could be celebrated by the students in befitting manner. About delay in provision of textbooks, he said that the almost all the textbooks have been provided to the students from Class I-X.

Education Sector of IT in Pakistan

Pakistan is struggling hard to promote IT education in the country. It is still moving towards its boom in IT industry. Other countries like America, Europe, Japan, China, etc pay special attention to education of IT in their countries. However, education sector in Pakistan is in its infancy. It is the duty of our Government to take positive steps to put IT education on the right track. Government has already taken many actions to promote education of IT in the country, but more needs to be done.


Government must invest money to save our local industry of hardware. It must provide opportunities which this industry can employ people for its success. The same case remained with the education sector. However, the policy of our government was comparatively better in this sector. Many workshops and training sessions were organized in collaboration of Intel, Microsoft and Oracle which helped teachers in understanding the new technology. These sessions were not only organized in private sector, but, government schools, colleges and universities also benefited from such opportunities. Many imperative actions were performed for the promotion of IT education in 2009. Some of these events include organization of science Olympiad, agreements with UNESCO and ED-Link which were planned not only to make IT education common in cities but also in rural areas. In addition, education awards were organized for promoting education of Information Technology. Successful students were awarded these awards which increased their courage to move forward in this field. Not only this, many NGOs are also participating in this task which will contribute greatly for the promotion of Information Technology. All this seems worthwhile, but when comparing to other countries, Pakistan is a little behind in education of IT.


There are numerous people who are using latest technology in their lives, but majority of these do not understand it completely. IT specialists claim that up to 2012, this situation will be controlled. It is also hoped that in near future, local hardware industry will also stand on its feet. Whereas, software sector is concerned in 2009, it remains the same. According to Pakistan Software Housing Association (PSHA), Pakistan has a big export market of software. These softwares are exported to many countries where these are employed successfully.


The education sector of Information Technology in Pakistan is not flourishing with the pace as in other countries. Japan is a prominent country in which people are well aware of IT and their manufacturing industry is booming day by day. Japan has just made a new prototype robot, Humanoid, which acts like a human and serves as a watchman in daily life. If this model becomes successful, then such robots will be seen in other organizations. America and Europe have produced driverless cars and this concept is becoming popular day by day. These cars run with the help of GRS system. The speed at which China has made advancement in the sectors of Information Technology and other related ones, helps everyone to understand that within next few years, China will dominate the whole world in information technology, telecom and electronics sectors. Every other day, they launch new gadgets, devices and appliances with smaller sizes and bigger efficiency. Its basic reason is least production cost in China as compared to rest of the world. The time is not very far when everything we use directly or indirectly in our lives will be stamped as “MADE IN CHINA”.


Levels of Education in Pakistan

Education is the preparation of the body and the mind for life. It equips ones with the means of physical existence, spiritual development independent approach and art of living. No doubt education is the key to success both for an individual and a nation.

Education in Pakistan is divided into five following levels:

  • Primary (grades one through five)
  • Middle (grades six through eight)
  • High (grades nine and ten, leading to the Secondary School Certificate)
  • Intermediate (grades eleven and twelve, leading to a Higher Secondary School Certificate)
  • University programs leading to graduate (undergraduate) and advanced (post-graduate) degrees.

All academic education institutions are the responsibility of the provincial governments. The federal government mostly assists in curriculum development, accreditation and some financing of research.


A child may begin his/her schooling at a pre-school at the age of 3. Over the last few years, many new kindergarten (sometimes called Montesorri) schools have sprung up in Pakistan.

Primary Education:

Formal education in Pakistan starts from around age 5. The first 5 years of school are referred to as primary. Thereafter, the next 3 are referred to as Middle and the 2 after as High school.

Secondary Education:

At the completion of High school, students are required to sit for board examinations referred to as Secondary School Certificate examinations or more commonly as ‘Matric’. Those that receive passing marks (normally 33%) on this examination are awarded a Secondary School Certificate or SSC.

Higher Secondary School Certificate:

After matriculation students may choose to undergo 2 years of additional schooling after which they sit for the Higher Secondary School Certificate (HSSC), more commonly referred to as ‘Intermediate’ exams. Students normally read about 5 subjects in a chosen stream such as pre-medical, science, humanities, pre-engineering etc.
Technical Education:

Students can enter a plethora of technical institutes for technical certificates and degrees. The entrance requirements for these courses vary greatly with some such as carpentry requiring the applicant to be literate whereas others such as B. Tech in automation require HSSC.

Students can then precede to a College or University for Bachelor of Arts (BA) or Science (BSc) or Commerce/Business Administration (BCom/BBA) degree courses. There are two types of Bachelor courses in Pakistan namely Pass or Honours. Pass constitutes two years of study and students normally read three optional subjects whereas Honours are three or four years. It is important to note that Pass Bachelors is now slowly being phased out for Honours throughout the country. Students may also study for professional Bachelor degree courses such as engineering (B Engg), medicine (MBBS), vetrinary medicine(DVM) law (LLB), agriculture (B Agri), architecture (B Arch), nursing (B Nurs) etc. which are of four or five years duration depending on the degree

After getting master degree, there is PHD Education as well in selected areas. One has to choose specific field and the suitable university doing research work in that field. PhD in Pakistan consists of minimum 3-5 years. Owing to the failure of public schools to provide quality education to the children of Pakistan, many parents have enrolled their children in private schools. Although traditionally, private schools have been a luxury only the rich can afford. Nationally,


Traditional VS Advanced Education System of Pakistan

The biggest difference in both systems found is that the reading habits and behaviors have changed. In traditional systems the students were used to focus on their reading as well as writing. But it the new system it is found that some private schools in Pakistan do not bother for reading and writing but they have new strategies like personality and character building. They use internet in their curriculums and explain things while using pictures and videos and books are not used anymore. Though it is a good technique but it is not enough for making reading habits. According to these schools, the books have old data and information but internet provides them latest and up to date information. Whereas the schools which follow the traditional styles use the same patterns of study in which the teachers have enough focus on book reading then by using blackboard they maintain the good copy work and finally the students learn them and prepare for final exams.

If we talk about the merits and demerits of both systems then in conventional education system the students have much focus on book learning where in the new system students are given stress on conceptual learning. While learning the books, many things become clear and stick to our mind but now pictures and videos are shown to students and then they are asked to write what they perceived. The other thing is co-curricular activities during school timings. In the past there was only break or one game period was given to students but these days they have arts, library, swimming, games, athletes and many more periods. To accommodate these periods in school timing the schools actually cut short the time for other periods. These activities may be beneficial for mental health but they are not making students able to work hard in studies. The stress of making efforts for good results is not found much in students these days.

Last but not the least is less focus on Islamic studies. The private schools have no concern for making their students a good Muslim but they want their student a top swimmer or debater. There should be practical classes about Islam where students can learn how to offer prayer and know the basics of Islam. To implement all these things Government should take some necessary steps.


How to control misconduct cases in examination centers?

Every year thousands of students appear in examinations and the number keeps on increasing. The purpose of examination is to check how much student has learned but in Pakistan it is taken as game of percentage and grades. This competition led the students towards shortcuts and misconducts during exams. Our purpose is to highlight this issue that there should be a proper examination system for all levels.

For an ideal examination system, few things should be consider before and during exams. Now a day a major problem is sitting arrangement of the students. Congested classrooms and high number of students can raise the cases of cheating and other misconducts. The students take advantage of this and due to no space between them they even share the answer sheets with each other. Second thing to be considered is invigilation. Invigilators are normally appointed from government schools and there is only one invigilator appointed in each hall. One invigilator has many responsibilities like paper and answer sheet distribution, circulating attendance sheet, answering queries, if any, and many more. In such conditions he or she cannot have a proper eye on each student. To control these situations Government should focus on establishing more examination centers and should appoint dedicated and loyal invigilators.

As we discussed few things that could control during exams but precautions should be taken before exams as well. In Pakistan, not everywhere but in few areas the students use to bribe the examiners before paper. Secondly students and their roll number slips are not properly checked while entering in examination hall due to which some fake students are also caught. The other thing is the accessories, the student bring with them in examination hall, should not be other that writing material. In few places the students are caught with books and while talking on mobile phones. So there should be proper measures to check students before exam and Government should take serious action on bribes cases.

Misconduct and using of unfair means during exams and bribes, all are the forms of injustice with those students who prepare for exams throughout the year but in the end they never get the fruit as those who use unfair means.


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