Punjab Higher Education Commission (PHEC) under the PHEC Act, 2014 (1 of 15) has mandate to undertake various faculty development programs for improving the quality of teaching and research in the institutions, take measures including allocation of funds, for award of fellowships, scholarships, travel and research grants, facilitate organizing conferences, seminars and symposia in the institutions of higher education (public and private sector universities and public post-graduate colleges) for the promotion of culture of research.
As per its mandate in true spirit, PHEC has specified a separate team forming one of the core divisions of PHEC i.e. Human Resource Development Division (HRD). HRD has been actively involved in initiation and implementation of various programs for the capacity building of the public sector teaching faculty and promoting a research culture among higher education institutions. Successful projects initiated and implemented by HRD, PHEC are as follows:
- Chief Minister Faculty Development Program (initiated by HED and transferred to PHEC. Now being administered by HRD, PHEC
- PHEC Foreign PhD Scholarship Program (initiated and administered by HRD, PHEC)
- Funding Grant for Seminars/Conferences (initiated and administered by HRD, PHEC. Transferred to Academics and Research Division, PHEC at the end of this year)
HRD under the umbrella of PHEC has envisioned that these activities will help the concerned faculty improve their research & teaching skills and equip them with required knowledge mandatory for degree awarding institutions engaged in research and capacity building of faculty.
FUNDING FOR THE CAUSE OF EXCELLENCE THROUGH WORKSHOPS AND CONFERENCES
PHEC funded workshop on SPSS & NVIVO for faculty members and researchers
The Punjab Higher Education Commission (PHEC) funded a workshop on SPSS to develop a comprehensive understanding of research tools and techniques. The training course on SPSS & the use of NVIVO was held at Government College Women University (GCWU), Sialkot, in collaboration with PHEC.
Seventy-seven faculty members and researchers from GCWU attended this training workshop. It shows that there is an urge on the part of faculty members to learn substantial and effective research techniques for self-development. Modern research methods form the essential rivets in equipping researchers to make the research more accurate and precise in terms of research outcomes.
PHEC funded workshop on assessment mechanisms for young faculty members
The Punjab Higher Education Commission (PHEC) organized a workshop on assessment mechanism at the University of Sargodha, Bhakkar campus. The Punjab Higher Commission allocated a substantial budget for this workshop. This workshop was organized for young faculty members to enhance their understanding for the assessment of young faculty members. The aim of the workshop was to design specific key performance indicators to assess the performance of teachers in the classroom and their role in the betterment of classroom environment. The assessment of teachers’ performance is important to carry out as it allows exploring various facets of pedagogy to be improved.
PHEC holds National Conference on “Punjab Past and Present” at Govt. College University, Faisalabad
The Punjab Higher Education Commission (PHEC) funded a two-day conference at Government College University Faisalabad on “Punjab: Past and Present” in June, 2016. It was organized at the department of History and Pakistan Studies. Local and national press widely appreciated the conference and the relevance of the theme. Chief Operating Officer (COO) PHEC, KhurramJehanzeb represented PHEC in the conference. He assured that PHEC would certainly fund these valuable conferences in the future too.
PHEC financed International Conference on “Contemporary Pakistan” at University of Gujrat
A two-day international conference on “Contemporary Pakistan” was organized at University of Gujrat (UoG) in collaboration with Punjab Higher Education Commission (PHEC) from 2nd June to 3rd June 2016. The aim of the conference was to find sustainable solutions to Pakistan’s internal as well as external problems within the current international scenario. Vice Chancellor University of Gujrat, Prof. Dr. Zia-ul-Qayyum, chaired the conference, Dr. Mathew and Dr. Rashid Ahmad Khan participated as experts in the conference.
The focus of the conference was on capacity building of students and the faculty. The conference contributed towards policy recommendations regarding important contemporary issues faced by Pakistan. One of the objectives was to promote linkages between academia and policy-making at a provincial as well as national level.
Seminar on Trends in Literature and Linguistics in Pakistan
PHEC organized a seminar to create awareness regarding linguistic national identity amongst the students. A seminar on “Trends in Literature and Linguistics in Pakistan” was organized at University of Education (UOE) on 7thApril 2016 in collaboration with the Punjab Higher Education Commission (PHEC). PHEC’s Director Human Resource Development (HRD), Mussa Hassan, was the guest of honour. UOE Vice Chancellor Prof. Dr. Rauf-i-Azam chaired the seminar.
The focus of the seminar was to broaden the horizons of English language and literature students. Students greatly benefitted from this seminar funded by PHEC, as they said their understanding of literary criticism and the depths of regional influences on language was augmented through current themes of literature.
A seminar to promote self-evaluation of the existing examination system in Punjab
A one-day seminar was held on 21 April 2016 at Fatima Jinnah Women University Rawalpindi in association with Punjab Higher Education Commission (PHEC). It was titled, “Promoting inquiry about informed practices concerning teaching and assessment of higher order thinking skills at higher education level.” The focus of the seminar was to provide an opportunity for educationists to come together for deliberations on the alignment of learning outcomes, pedagogical and assessment practices in the field of higher education. They critically reviewed the major challenges for measuring the performance of the students in an annual as well as semester-wise assessment system and tried to come up with practical suggestions for the improvement.
The faculty members and educationists appreciated the efforts of PHEC for organizing this seminar and thanked it for providing a fresh stimulant on vital issues being confronted by the education sector.
One-day Seminar on Nurturing Epistemic Debate in Scientific Research
The University of Sargodha in collaboration with Punjab Higher Education Commission (PHEC) organized a one-day seminar on “Epistemological Foundations of Qualitative Research” on 30th May 2016. The chief guest of the seminar was Chairperson PHEC, Prof. Dr. Mohammad Nizamuddin and the guest of honour was Vice Chancellor University of Sargodha, Prof. Dr. Zahoorul Hassan Dogar.
The purpose of this seminar was to empower teachers and research scholars so that they may reconsider the epistemological foundations of qualitative research. The seminar’s main aim was to enable social science researchers to produce worthwhile research publications in reputed journals.
The participants applauded the efforts of PHEC for taking this initiative for promoting research. PHEC hopes that the seminar significantly contributed to the understanding of epistemological foundations of qualitative research, as it provided a platform for teachers and students to enhance their exposure.
PHEC awards fully funded Foreign PhD scholarships to 22 faculty members of public sector higher education institutions (HEIs)
Punjab Higher Education Commission invited applications from eligible public sector university faculty/college teachers in Punjab for the award of Foreign PhD scholarships (initially for 3 years) in QS Top Ranking 500 universities of 2015-16 as per PHEC mandate. The scholarships were meant to support faculty to improve their research and teaching skills. 63 candidates applied for the foreign PhD scholarship program and after thorough evaluation including panel interviews 19 candidates were awarded with scholarship. 3 candidates who had not yet secured admission at the time of interview were selected subject to admission in QS top 500 world universities. These 3 candidates have now secured admission and are awarded with scholarship award making total successful applicants to 22. Fully funded scholarship covered university tuition fee, return air fare, living stipend, books/research allowance, settlement allowance and health insurance. PHEC has provided tuition fee up to the limit of USD 303,763 for FY 2016-17.
Chief Minister Foreign PhD Scholarship Award Distribution Ceremony
A grand ceremony was arranged by Chief Minister Office which was chaired by Provincial Minister of Education Madam Zakia Shah Nawaz on Chief Minister’s behalf. Madam Minister congratulated the successful applicants and encouraged them to avail this opportunity. She further applauded PHEC on its efforts to successfully launch and administer Foreign PhD Scholarship Program. Dr. Mohammad Nizamuddin, Chairperson congratulated the scholars on award of Foreign PhD Scholarship and said that PHEC will keep on working for capacity building of public sector faculty. In personal accounts the successful scholars exclaimed that this scholarship will greatly benefit in promoting culture of research and development among the faculty and thanked PHEC for this effort. On direction of CM Punjab, laptops were distributed among the scholars as a good will gesture from the Government of the Punjab.
PHEC awards Fully Funded 1 year Foreign Master Scholarship under Chief Minister Faculty Development Program to 2nd Batch of 09 public sector college faculty members in collaboration with British Council
Chief Minister was pleased to transfer CM FDP to the Punjab Higher Education Commission on November 14, 2015. The CM FDP is meant for faculty of public sector colleges in Punjab with admission in QS top 300 world universities. PHEC successfully administered the CM FDP and shortlisted 1 candidate for award of scholarship of 1 year Master from University of Aberdeen. The candidate has almost completed his foreign degree now. Immediately after the first batch PHEC identified prospective eligible candidates and worked with British Council to secure their admissions in QS top 300 foreign universities. 9 such candidates have now confirmed admission and are awarded with fully funded CM FDP scholarship. This is the first of a kind and major step for capacity building and promoting research culture in the public sector faculty of colleges in Punjab.