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A Meeting Held to Assess the Pros and Cons of Having Private Universities in Kerala

Jan 7, 2014 17:51 IST

    A three-day international meet on transnational education held in Thiruvananthapuram ended on 4 January 2014, in the concluding session of which the committee urged that the Kerala State Higher Education Council (KSHEC) to mull over the prospects of approving private universities to invest in the higher education sector of state Kerala.

    The conference approved the proposal of considering the same and stated that the council will have an expert committee to undertake this study followed by making recommendations to the government. This study will interpret the pros and cons of having private universities in the State, said the Vice-Chairman of the council and organizing committee chairman, T.P. Sreenivasan.

    Sreenivasan told that private sector investment in the higher education sector wasthinkableby means of establishing universities or funding of government universities. He, however, hinted the resisting for opening private universities in Kerala.

    The declaration urged the private sector education providers in Kerala to elevate Kerala’s reputation as a global tourist destination. This will market the state across the developing world as the one who delivers quality higher education at an affordable cost which shall attract more international students to this place.

    Mentioningof the budding global education platforms such as Massive Open Online Courses (MOOC), Niche Open Online Courses (NOOC) and flipped schools, Mr. Sreenivasan told that these can be helpful to supplement the conventional courses in the state as well.

    The universities and engineering colleges especially those who face acute shortage of qualified faculty were called upon to consider the potential of MOOC and flipped classrooms which could enhance the current training approaches.

    The conference witnessed participation from 13 international experts and 22 speakers from India besides, 43 college principals, faculty and researchers were also present.

    The meet requested the State government to make a committee that must include representatives from academic institutions, the private sector and the Malayali diaspora who will assess the prospectsshaped by the Union government’s decision of allowing international branch campuses.

    Another resolution stated the University Grants Commission and the All India Council for Technical Education are required to form a system of credit transfer that will increase the mobility of student’snationally.

    Furthermore, to create a better trained workforce, the document has invited universities and private sector organizations to unite for assessing the potential of technology-enabled transnational education.

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