Lahore: Association of Private Sector Universities of Pakistan (APSUP) has welcomed the rejection of new undergraduate and PhD policies during Vice Chancellors Committee meeting concluded on Friday at Bhurban, attended by vice chancellors both from public and private sector universities.

The meeting of Vice Chancellors Committee was organised by Higher Education Commission (HEC) in collaboration with British Council. Out of 180 participants, 178 rejected undergraduate and PhD policies which were introduced by HEC last year.

APSUP, being representative of private sector universities, through its letter dated 14th December 2020, conveyed its reservations to senior management of HEC on new undergraduate and PhD policies. Based on seven countrywide consultation sessions, which were attended by 190 vice chancellors, senior academics and experts, recommendations were also communicated to HEC.

The spokesperson APSUP Mian Imran Masood said that the reservations expressed by the vice chancellors during the recent Vice Chancellors Committee are the same, which were communicated by APSUP ten months earlier. Instead of paying attention, unfortunately, all these important recommendations of the stakeholders were ignored by HEC.

He said that the closed-door policies, non-aligned with ground realities could not yield positive impact unless end-users and relevant stakeholders are not involved from policy formulation to implementation process. It is quite misfortune that instead of reviewing and updating existing policies, after ten years, new policies are being introduced in higher education sector by the hired consultants without any proper consultation process, home work and provision of required resources & training.

The Mian Imran Masood also recommended that for making any policy in the future, HEC should trust and rely on higher education leadership and faculty of Pakistani universities, rather than relying on the services of consultants. APSUP, being important stakeholder and representative of 84 private sector universities which caters more 50% enrolment in higher education sector, assures its cooperation for promoting higher education in Pakistan and demands for respect for autonomy of universities, recognition of role of private sector in higher education sector and consultation based policies.

Author

Arsalan Haider is a reporter at Academia Mag and has worked with leading national dailies and news channels. He tweets @arsalanhaider14

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