Published On: Thu, May 2nd, 2013

President asks universities to promote culture of excellence

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While urgent steps are being taken to fill the vacancies in universities, we can evolve new ways of employing technology-based learning and collaborative information and communication sharing, opined President of India, Pranab Mukherjee.

Speaking at the convocation ceremony of Sido Kanhu Murmu, he said “University Lectures by eminent professors could be transmitted to educational institutions situated away from the main towns and cities using the facilities offered by the National Mission on Education through Information and Communication Technology (NMEICT).”

He said that refresher courses conducted by Academic Staff Colleges may also be similarly transmitted. He said, “Every university should identify a group of 10 to 20 teachers who can ignite the minds of the students beyond the textbooks. If such teachers regularly interact with each other as well as with students, the quality of teaching could be considerably enhanced. Their lectures could also be relayed to remote educational institutions through NMEICT Networks.”

Stressing on the need of distance education, President said, “Open and Distance Learning can also aid in enhancing the reach of higher education. It is gratifying to know that enrolment in such programmes increased from 27 lakh to 42 lakh during the Eleventh Plan period.”

“We must promote a culture of excellence in our education system. At least one department in every university should be transformed into a Centre of Excellence. To achieve this, the Ministry of Human Resource Development, the UGC and the Universities would have to work together in close collaboration,” he said.

Talking about the vice chancellors’ conference in Rashtrapati Bhavan he said, “With a view to evolving a time-bound action plan and making innovative changes in the higher education sector, a conference of Vice Chancellors of Central Universities was organised in Rashtrapati Bhavan in February this year.”

“The Conference identified certain immediate, short-term and medium-term measures that are being worked upon by the Ministry of Human Resource Development. I hope to see substantial progress in the implementation of these measures by the time next conference is held in February 2014,” he added.