'Allow varsities to offer inter, multi-disciplinary courses'

TIRUCHI, JULY 24. The Vice-Chairman of the University Grants Commission, V.N. Rajasekharan Pillai, has underlined the need for evolving an educational policy allowing colleges and universities to offer inter and multi-disciplinary courses, eliminating the demarcation between basic and professional curricula.

Declaring open a multi-purpose building at the Bishop Heber College here today, Prof. Rajasekharan Pillai said basic science and arts disciplines were inter-linked but a line of separation had come to stay in the educational institutions.

Universities should be authorised to start multi-disciplinary courses on agriculture, medicine and engineering technology.

This would facilitate the `inter-fertilization of courses' in both universities and their constituent colleges.

There was a missing link between the academic proficiency and research efficiency. For instance, although the country had produced a large number of engineers, their contribution to the development of engineering science and research was "negligible."

Making out a strong case for improving primary education, he said 30 million children in the age group of six to 14 had to be given free and compulsory education. This would require the appointment of 6.5-lakh additional teachers. Unemployed graduates could be provided training to fill the gap, he said.

Dropout rate

The Bharathidasan University Vice-Chancellor, C. Thangamuthu, said

underutilisation and non-utilisation of infrastructure had become the `grey' area in the higher educational system in the present-day context, especially in the engineering colleges, due to decreasing intake.

Dr. Thangamuthu called for checking the alarming dropout rate in primary, middle and high schools.

D. Swamiraj, Director, Bishop Heber College, said the building was constructed at an expenditure of Rs. 2.65 crores.

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