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19 June, 2018 00:00 00 AM
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RU opens new depts despite lack of infrastructure

RU correspondent

Nine departments have been opened at the Rajshahi University (RU) over the past three years even without an adequate number of teachers, classrooms and essential materials. Moreover, the authorities are going to open a department on trade and commerce under the Business Faculty from next session.

Thousands of students have taken admission to these departments. But most of these departments have no own lab, seminar rooms, classrooms and teachers’ rooms. The authorities are admitting students every year without ensuring adequate facilities for teaching. As a result, the students are suffering. Classes are not held regularly due to lack of teachers. Even exams are also not held on time, leading to session jams.

Without ensuring proper infrastructure for the departments, the RU authorities in its 21st Senate session in 2015 decided to open some more departments. Accordingly, the authorities sent a proposal to the University Grants Commission (UGC) to open some more departments. These departments are: soil science, horticulture, nutrition & food science technology, business & commerce law, international & comparative law, personal law & society, civil engineering, and tourism & hospitality management departments.

From the 2015-16 academic year, the authorities had upgraded the fine arts department under the Fine Arts Faculty. They decided to open three more new departments under this new faculty. These departments are printing, Oriental art & printmaking; ceramics & sculpture and graphic design; and grafts & history of art.

But the authorities did not provide necessary equipment to run these departments.

An investigation by The Independent has revealed that the Fine Arts Faculty has only one computer ,which was given by former vice- chancellor Prof. Muhammed Mizanuddin in 2016. Students of three other departments are facing acute session jams.

Besides, there are shortages of classrooms and galleries. Paintings and sculptures lie scattered everywhere. Owing to session jams, students of these departments have already lost one and half years.

In the same academic year, the authorities launched a four-year bachelor's (hons) course under the Institute of Education & Research (IER). But students admitted from the science group at the HSC level could not get any opportunity to use the lab. They are now studying humanities and sociology as well.

In the academic session of 2015-16, the authorities opened the law & land administration department under the Law faculty, the physical education & sports sciences department under the Science Faculty, the clinical psychology department under the Life & Earth Faculty, and the electrical & electronic engineering (EEE) department under the Engineering faculty.

The number of students in these six departments is 802, while the number of teacher is 18. The student-teachers ratio is 44:1.

Earlier, the RU also opened the international relations (IR) department under the Social Science Faculty and the banking & insurance (BI) department under the Business Administration Faculty. These departments have seven teachers teaching 382 students.

In November last year, the third-year test for the IR Department ended. But the regular classes started in May this year. Only two teachers are holding the classes and there are only two class rooms. Most of the classes are not held due to shortage of teachers.  Rafiqul Islam, a student of the IR department, said: “Most of the classes are not held due to lack of teachers.” He blamed the university authorities and urged them to resolve the problem as soon as possible.

The banking and insurance department also faces acute shortage of teachers. The department has only four teachers.

There are only three teachers in the IR department. The clinical psychology separtment under the Life & Earth Science Faculty has only six teachers.

Torun Hasan, an assistant professor of the clinical psychology department, said: “We need at least 15 teachers, but there are only six teachers and two classrooms.”

“I heard a few departments have been approved by the UGC. I don’t know why the authorities are opening new departments without ensuring the quality of education,” he added.

The land administration department is being run by a departmental head and a part-time teacher.

University acting registrar Prof. Dr MA Bari said: “It’s the responsibility of the UGC to ensure an adequate number of teachers and employees. According to the new rule, the UGC must approve an adequate number of staff.

We’ve written to them several times asking for more teachers and employees. But they didn’t heed to our appeal till today.”

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Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman

Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman
Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

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