Degrees no measure of students’ ability
Birinder Pal Singh

Our skilled personnel in science and technology have done wonders, but out of the country of their birth, education and training. The Silicon Valley is an example, replete with Indians. Premier research institutes have Indians on their faculty and the best universities have our students on its rolls.

Not rosy Down Under
Amit Bhardwaj
I am a student of horticulture (landscaping) in Australia. Indian students are heading towards Australia in droves. Melbourne has the maximum number of students. Students from Punjab outnumber those from Gujarat, Haryana and southern states.


  • Guru Jambheshwar University of Science and Technology, Hisar

  • Haryana Agricultural University, Hisar

  • Guru Nanak Dev University, Amritsar

New challenges in teaching
Achla Bhatia
The role of teachers has been changing in the modern scenario due to the pressure of social and economic changes. It has assumed new dimensions and society expects their leadership in making education an effective instrument in nation building. 



Degrees no measure of students’ ability
Birinder Pal Singh

Our skilled personnel in science and technology have done wonders, but out of the country of their birth, education and training. The Silicon Valley is an example, replete with Indians. Premier research institutes have Indians on their faculty and the best universities have our students on its rolls.

But this is a miniscule section of population. The larger section is doing much worse. Barring students of elite institutions, others cannot even write an application, not only in English, but in their mother tongue.

Recently I interviewed some field investigators. Most of them had got first division at the masters’ level and many of them were registered for Ph.D. All 14 persons who appeared in the interview could not speak a word about the title of the project for which they were to collect data. Most of them could not make even a simple presentation of their CV.

Over the last three decades, the situation has not been improving. Evaluating answer sheets for various examinations is often a “treat”. A student in M.A. examination had written on satyagraha: “This is a contribution of Mahatma Gandhi, the Father of the Nation. This word is made of two words, satya and graha. Satya means truth and graha means ghar or home. Thus, according to Gandhiji, the truth of life is that all of us should work only at our homes.”

Another “prodigy” had written about a sociological concept “interest group”: “…in today’s society, it is very important that interest is charged on everything. It is good both for the individual and the group. When both get interest, then society too develops. Therefore, we should have interest groups in society.”

It is more interesting to note the interpretation of Max Weber’s concept of “value neutrality”, so very essential for making sociology a science. A student answers: “This is a very important concept given by Weber. He tells us that the value of the Indian rupee is falling everyday and the dollar is going up. This phenomenon has neutralised the value of the rupee, which is why the prices are going up in India.”

This is only a sample of the performance of postgraduate students in Punjab, a model state and symbol of power and prosperity. The people do not bother about the state of affairs of education in the state. With the liberalisation of education, private entrepreneurs have jumped in in a big way to make profit.

In the name of rural development, the government gives rural land at subsidised rates to educational societies. Businessmen invest in educational institutions whose trainees are in demand. Earlier it was business management, computer and information technology, followed by engineering and medicine. Dental and nursing institutes are now coming up everywhere, virtually in every village. Colleges of education and law too are in vogue.

I had gone on an inspection to a college seeking affiliation to our university. On a rainy winter day, we reached the college at 10 o’clock, only to find a man in his sixties coming to receive us. We asked, “Where are the management people?” He quipped, “Sir, pardhanji (president) has just returned from Vaishno Devi at 4 in the morning. They are just coming.” We asked, “Who are you?” He replied, “Sir, I am the father of the president of the college management committee.” Finally, when the committee members arrived, we found that none of the young persons had education more than the 12th standard.

In Punjab, such educational centres have mushroomed in the rural hinterland. There are numerous reports that these managements are not serious about education. The vice-chancellor of a medical university narrated the story of mass copying in a dental college, where the principal, staff and management were in league with one another. When the VC sent a team to check copying, they were threatened with dire consequences.

Institutes of technical and higher education are mushrooming in Punjab, but school education is in the doldrums. There are no buildings for government schools, no blackboards and chalks, no tables and chairs, not to talk of laboratories and other equipment. According to a World Bank report, 552 government schools do not have a single teacher, 2,500 have one teacher each and in 7,000 primary schools, there are only two or three teachers. Each day, 36 per cent primary teachers abstain from work. Of the remaining 64 per cent, only half go to classes.

In today’s world of intense competition and hi-tech research, we need a committed political will and ample funds to undertake original research. National-level bodies concerned with education must do serious thinking about the consistently falling standards of education at all three levels. Sixty years after Independence, regional universities have become colleges and colleges have become schools. Then where have the schools gone?


Not rosy Down Under
Amit Bhardwaj

I am a student of horticulture (landscaping) in Australia. Indian students are heading towards Australia in droves. Melbourne has the maximum number of students. Students from Punjab outnumber those from Gujarat, Haryana and southern states.

Most students are doing different courses, which can fetch them permanent citizenship. Most of them do courses accredited in the MODL list, a list of occupations highly required in Australia.

Travelling by a local train is one of the costliest modes of transport in Melbourne. Foreign students are not provided any concession by the government. On an average, an international student pays between $10,000 (Rs 3,50,000) and $20,000 (Rs 7,00000) per year.

Students are not safe even while going to a grocery store nearby. Police personnel come and write down some names, dates of birth and other details. The beating up of Indian students by drug addicts on the roadside is common. Areas west of Melbourne, where most Asians live, are racism-prone.

Scholarships provided by TAFE and other universities are just a few. Consultants owning big offices in Punjab, Delhi and Gujarat are committing a fraud by sending students abroad by providing wrong information to earn commission. They take commission from the institute overseas and charge between Rs 1000 and Rs 15,000 from the students.

Students can work for only 20 hours a week. Eighty per cent attendance is required for full-time courses. Some course curricula are stretched unnecessarily. Students sent by agents to irrelevant courses cannot change the course for an year.



Human values and management
Guru Jambheshwar University of Science and Technology, Hisar

A seminar on “Human values and management” was organised by the Department of Management Studies of Guru Jambheshwar University of Science and Technology recently. Former Mizoram Governor A.R. Kohli was the chief guest.

Addressing the gathering, Kohli asserted that the inculcation of good human values had definite fallout on the management of one’s life and functioning style. He said only those individuals who had strong human values could emerge successful in meeting various challenges of life.

In his presidential address, vice-chancellor R.P..Bajpai observed that good human values gave strength to our social fabric and were a valuable asset for a nation as well as society. “A society can be judged by the set of human values prevailing in it”, he maintained.

The registrar, R.S..Jaglan, and the head of the host department, Harbhajan Bansal, were also present.

HAU don invited to UK
Haryana Agricultural University, Hisar

Prof Indu Grover, former dean, College of Home Science, Haryana Agricultural University, had been invited by the Association of Commonwealth Universities, London, for a seminar on “Skills in career development”, held at Windsor, England, recently.

Professor Grover, who was the only expert to be invited from India, delivered a lecture on “Gender and career development”. A gender network was also launched at the seminar.

Dr Grover has 12 books and more than 150 papers to her credit. She is presently a review editor for a World Bank Global Report on International Assessment of Agriculture Science Technology and Development.

Plan to extend facilities
Guru Nanak Dev University, Amritsar

Abdus Salam International Centre of Theoretical Physics (ICTP), an organisation of UNESCO, was planning to extend state-of-the-art scientific and technological facilities available to developing countries for the promotion of science and technology, according to Prof K.R. Sreenivasan, director, ICTP. He was speaking on “Role of SCTP in science and technology in developing countries” here recently.

Professor Sreenivasan also evinced interest in reviving the earlier memorandum of understanding signed between the university and the ICTP for scientific academic exchange programmes, especially in physics and mathematics. He also appreciated the efforts of vice-chancellor Jai Rup Singh for taking a step to revive the agreement.

The ICTP director said it had been providing training to scientists from a number of countries and had training programmes in emerging areas of science and technology. He said Indian scientists had benefited from ICTP programmes by upgrading technology.

— Contributed by Sunit Dhawan and P. K. Jaiswar


New challenges in teaching
Achla Bhatia

The role of teachers has been changing in the modern scenario due to the pressure of social and economic changes. It has assumed new dimensions and society expects their leadership in making education an effective instrument in nation building. A teacher has not only to instruct, but also to inspire students; he or she has to influence the character of his or her students, and equip them with ideas and values to make them worthy citizens. Teachers must instil in students tolerance of different opinions and viewpoints, and acquaint them with the modern wisdom expressed in the dictum of famous French thinker Voltaire: “I do not accept what you say; but I will defend with my life your right to say so”.

Teachers have to be concerned with the total development of the child and not only with one or two aspects. He must be a philosopher illuminating the way of his intellectual and spiritual progress; he must be his guide in his moral and aesthetic advancement. In fact, he must be all to all his pupils, a physician, a mental hygienist, a philosopher, a moralist and an artist. The success of students depends on the competence of teachers, their dedication and their identification with the interests of students.

The role of the teacher only as a dispenser of knowledge is not relevant now. It is more important for him to initiate his students into the art of learning by helping them acquire the right mental attitude and learning habits. His delivery of knowledge has to be supplemented with his spending more time diagnosing learners’ needs, motivating and encouraging them and checking the knowledge acquired.

As an interpreter, the teacher has to place new knowledge and new experiences within the context of what is known and understood by students. In order to be a good mediator, he has to understand a great deal about the way in which people at various ages and stages of development perceive the world. As a guide, he has to teach student how to learn than to fill his mind with factual information.

Teachers are being challenged to utilise new approaches and develop new programmes and instructional strategies such as enquiry approaches, simulation games, contract approaches, computer-assisted instructions and programmed learning materials. Educators should endeavour to emphasise the need for discipline, character building and national integration.

The teacher of the future will be expected to perform the roles of planned organiser of curricula, innovator of educational ideas, practices and systems, writer of television and radio lessons and programmes, resource person in the propagation of ever-expanding knowledge, expert in the preparation of programmed texts, and motivator of learners in creative and unconventional ways. At the same time, he will have to be a good communicator, an efficient organiser of learning situations, and a democratic group leader.


Armed Forces

Indian Navy, Post Bag No 04, RK Puram (Main), New Delhi 110066

SSC Officer in Law Cadre, Executive Branch – August ’07 Course

Eligibility: Unmarried Indian men and women; degree in Law (55%)
DoB: 02 August ’80– 01 August ’85.
Selection: SSB Interviews: May ‘07 - July ’07; Medical Exam.

Application Form: Send application by ordinary post in prescribed format to the above address. Superscribe “Law Cadre – Aug ’07 Course; Educational Qualification ……Aggregate Percentage……%”

Details: Employment News (24 – 30 March 2007) / website

Application Deadline: 12 April 2007

Art & Design

Srishti School of Art, Design & Technology, PO Box 6430, Yelahanka, New Town, Bangalore 560064 (Kar)

UG & PG Diploma in Experimental Media Arts (2 years)

Eligibility: For UG: 10+2, 2+ years work experience in Art / Design / Science / Engg / Computing / Architecture. 
For PG: Professionals and graduates (or higher) in Art / Design / Science / Engg / Computing / Biology / Architecture.

Selection: Entrance Test (Round-1 in Delhi, Kolkata & Mumbai).

Application Form: Send Rs. 1000/- by DD favouring “SRISHTI”, payable at Bangalore at the above address / download from the website.

Application Deadline: 30 April 2007

Madras Craft Foundation, G 3, No 6, Urur Olcott Road, Besant Nagar, Chennai 600090 (TN)

Arts Management Internship Diploma Program

Eligibility: Bachelors degree

Selection: Entrance Test; Interview

Fellowship: Full tuition waiver of Rs. 50,000/- + stipend of Rs. 30,000/-

Application Form & Details: Website

Application Deadline: 15 April 2007

Engineering & Tech

University Institute of Information Technology (UIIT), Himachal Pradesh University, Shimla 171005 (HP)

BTech: IT (4 years)

Eligibility: 10+2 (Physics & Maths) (50%).

Selection: Entrance Test: 10 June 2007

Application Form: Send Rs. 800/- by DD favouring “UIIT, H P University, Shimla 171005”, payable at Shimla to above address / download from website

Details: Employment News (24 – 30 March 2007) / Website

Application Deadline: 31 May 2007

IIT Bombay, Powai, Mumbai 400076 (Mah)

1) MTech, PGDIIT
2) PhD, MDes
3) MPhil

Application Form: Send Rs. 300/ - by DD favouring “Registrar, IIT, Bombay” payable at the State Bank of India / Canara Bank, IIT Powai branch with a stamped (Rs. 30/ -) self-addressed cloth-lined envelop (27 cm x 12 cm) to the Deputy Registrar (Academic) at the above address / download from website.

Details: Website

Application Deadline: For 1: 30 March 2007
For 2: 4 May 2007
For 3: 15 May 2007

IIT - Madras, Chennai 600036 (TN)

MTech 2007-2008
In Engineering D/o: Aerospace / Chemical / Civil / Computer Science & Engg / Electrical / Mechanical / Metallurgical and Materials / Ocean / Applied Mechanics, Maths (Industrial Maths & Scientific Computing) / Physics (Solid State Technology).

Eligibility: Bachelors degree in Engg / Technology / Architecture / Masters degree in Maths / Physics / Life Sciences or related subjects / AMIE with a valid GATE score. IIT BTech degree holders with CGPA of 8 or above can apply without a GATE score.

Application Form: Send Rs. 400/- by DD on a nationalised bank favouring the “Registrar, IIT, Madras” payable at Chennai with two addressed slips (50 mm x 100 mm) with your address in bold to the Chairman, MTech Admission Committee, GATE Office at above address by 11 April 2007.

Details: Website.

Application Deadline: 16 April 2007

Indian Institute of Information Technology & Management - Kerala, Park Centre, Technopark, Thiruvananthapuram 695581 (Ker) /

MS (IT) (2-year)

Eligibility: BE / BTech / MCA (60%)

Selection: Online Entrance Test: 9 June ’07; interview: 7 July ‘07

Application Form & Details: Employment News (24 – 30 March 2007) / Website
Application Deadline: 23 April 2007


Bharati Vidyapeeth Deemed University, Bharati Vidyapeeth Bhavan, Lal Bahadur Shastri Marg, Pune 411030 (Mah)

All India Entrance Test for Medical PG Diploma Courses - (MEDPET – 2007)
(at Medical College, Pune) 
Diploma in Medical Radio Diagnosis 
Diploma in Clinical Pathology

Test: 12 April 2007

Application Form: Send Rs 600/- by DD drawn on any Nationalized Bank favouring “Registrar, Bharati Vidyapeeth University,” payable at Pune to the above address / download from website

Details: Website.

Application Deadline: 7 April 2007

Baba Farid University of Health Sciences, Kotkapura Road, Faridkot 151203 (Punj)

Post Graduate Entrance Test (PGET-2007) 
(For PG Degree / Diploma / DM / MCh Courses at Government Medical / Dental Colleges in Amritsar, Patiala & Faridkot & Dayanand Medical College & Hospital, Ludhiana)

Details: Website

Application Deadline: 11 April 2007

Christian Medical College, Thorapadi PO, Vellore 632002 (TN)

DM Course (Cardiology / Clin. Haematology / Gastroenterology / Nephrology / Neurology)
MCh Courses (Neuro Surgery 3 & 5 years / Paediatric Surgery / Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery / Thoracic Surgery / Urology)
DNB Courses (Endocrinology & surgical Gastroenterology)

Application Form & Details: Website

Application Deadline: 23 April 2007

Ahilya Bai College of Nursing, Lok Nayak Hospital, 2, Jawahar Lal Nehru Marg, New Delhi 110002 (G/o NCT)

BSc (Hons) Nursing (4-year)

Eligibility: Women candidates only; 10+2 (PCB & English, 50%). 
Age: 17 years (on 01 October ‘07).

Test: 10 June ‘07.

Application Form: Send Rs 100/- by IPO favouring “Medical Superintendent, Lok Nayak Hospital, New Delhi” with stamped (Rs 50/-), self-addressed envelope to the Vice-Principal at the above address by 10 April 2007. Superscribe “Application for the Prospectus of BSc (Hons) Nursing Course” on envelope.

Application Deadline: 28 April 2007


United States Educational Foundation in India (USEFI), Fulbright House, 12, Hailey Road, New Delhi 110001

Fulbright Fellowships 2008-09 
(for Indian Researchers, Lecturers, Teachers, Professional & Students)

Application Form: Send request with a stamped (Rs 25/-), self-addressed envelope (10” x 7”) to the above address.

Details: Website

Application Deadline: 16 July 2007

— Pervin Malhotra