KARACHI, Sept 2: Participants of an interactive educational workshop on Saturday suggested introducing more optional subjects at high school and intermediate level, and giving more choices to students from a wide variety of subjects to select what they want to read at college-level education.

Most of the participants opposed teaching of Islamiat and Pakistan Studies at college level or rearranging them by introducing a new subject of social studies, having components of Islamiat, Pakistan Studies and other related subjects.

The workshop on “what subjects should be taught in colleges” was organized by the office of Sindh Education Manager and its recommendations would be sent to Federal Ministry of Education through Sindh education department.

Participants of the workshop, including people associated with Sindh education department and government-run colleges, educationists and students, were of the opinion that subjects being taught at the colleges these days were neither helping students in becoming good citizens nor qualified enough to become active members of the society.

They said subjects being taught at college level and combinations were restricting students ability to adopt a variety of professional fields and getting specialization in many other subjects at graduate and postgraduate level education.

Provincial Education Manager Sindh Dr Mohammad Ali Shaikh, who presided over the moot, said the holding of workshop was aimed at bringing reforms at college-level education and to develop consensus for teaching of subjects at colleges in accordance with changing demands of time and modern world.

He said currently students having biology at intermediate level could not get engineering education while those studying mathematics could not take admissions at medical colleges while on the other hand, they were repeatedly being taught similar things since start of their education in the name of Islamiat and Pakistan Studies.

“Our great leaders who founded Pakistan had not studied Pakistan Studies during their education while there are very good Muslims in our rural areas, who never studied Islamiat, which we teach students at our educational institutes” he claimed.He also spoke of improving and introducing modern teaching methodologies, upgradation of educational curricula, giving students more choice of selecting 'unconventional combinations of subjects' at colleges so that they could be able to go to any professional field of their choice.

Earlier, participants of the workshop, including teachers, college principals and students said that the range of subjects optional for students should be enhanced as subjects like nursing, ethics, sociology, political science, environment, gender issues, music, art, political science should also be included in the list of optional subjects at college level.

Some of the participants were of the view that all compulsory subjects at college level should be made optional and called for conducting a survey to ascertain market requirement of subjects and their introduction at college level education.

An educationist Fazl Suleiman was of the view that Persian and Arabic languages which used to be taught previously at our educational institutes, economic geography of the country and provinces, Constitutional history of the country, IT education and more importantly English language should form some of the optional subjects at college level.

Another expert, Tariq Kaleem said he was in favour of allowing students to select subjects of their choice at college level as in developed countries students were free to study whatever they wanted.

Prof. Ravi Shankar, Principal of DJ Science College said mathematics and biology should be taught simultaneously at college level education as it would enable students to get medical and engineering education at graduation level.—PPI

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