Universities asked to follow quality criteria for PhD degrees

The PhD degrees granted by the public and private sector universities will not be recognized unless they strictly conform to the minimum quality criteria laid down by the Higher Education Commission (HEC).

In this regard, Chairman HEC, Dr. Atta-ur-Rahman has written to all the Vice-Chancellors of public and private sector universities to strictly conform to the minimum quality criteria.

The criteria includes prescribed course work at M. Phil and Ph.D level, passing of international subject GRE examination with certain minimum specific percentile score, evaluation and recommendation of Ph.D. theses by at least two experts in technologically advanced countries and publication of at least one research paper in a reputed international journal.

The HEC intends to publish a list of universities later this year which have not implemented the HEC criteria for Ph.D. level studies and the Ph.D degrees of which are not recognized.

Students passing with such unrecognized Ph.D. degrees will not be eligible for jobs in the government or in universities.

Moreover, universities which fail to implement HEC criteria for appointments and promotions of faculty members as well as the quality criteria for Ph.D. level studies will not be released development grants and will have their recurring grants curtailed.

The matter of quality of higher education was extensively discussed in a presentation to the Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz recently who has given his full support to the HEC to strictly enforce quality criteria in all universities and link the funding of various universities to such critically important governance issues.

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