UNIVERSITY OF KARACHI

S.KAMAL HAYDER KAZMI,
(feedback@pgeconomist.com)
Research Analyst
, PAGE
June 20 - 26, 2011

The University of Karachi is recognized as one of the top leading research and teaching institutions in Pakistan. The mission of the university is to advance knowledge and educate students that will best serve the nation and the world in the 21st century.

LEVEL OF EDUCATION (%)

LEVEL 2008-09 2009-10
TOTAL MALE FEMALE TOTAL MALE FEMALE
A. Literate 57.4 69.3 44.7 57.7 69.5 45.2
B. Illiterate 42.6 30.7 55.3 42.3 30.5 54.8

The University of Karachi was established through the parliament as a federal university in 1951 and spread over 1200 acre of land. In the year 1953, it started its teaching and research activities at two faculties of arts and science. Opened with an initial intake of 50 students, the university is now a sprawling structure of 53 departments and 20 world class and highly reputable research centers and institutes under eight faculties of arts, science, Islamic studies pharmacy commerce and business administration, law, education and medicine. At present, the enrolment of a regular student at the campus is slightly over 24,000. There are about 700 teachers and more than 2500 supporting staff. Research programmers leading to M.Phil and Ph.D are offered under all the faculties.

Regular holding of selection boards has enabled the university to add more than two hundred new teachers to various faculties and departments in 2006-07. Many departments in faculties of science and arts are strengthened by modern facilities. These include departments of physics, chemistry, statistics, food science and technology, biotechnology, computer science and mass communications.

For common facilities for science in various scientific disciplines, a centralized science lab has been established. It has further enhanced the capabilities for scientific research.

The University of Karachi is also an affiliating and examining body and at present, 145 colleges and institutions are affiliated to the university. The courses of studies for these institutions are approved by the university and examinations are also conducted under its auspices. The university conducts examinations of about 150,000 students studying in these colleges/institutes, prepares their results and awards degrees.

Science faculty which consists of 23 departments and five research institutes can be said to be the biggest scientific centre in the country. The research institute like HEJ research institute of chemistry is the prime research institute of the country and has high level research faculties for chemical science particularly natural product chemistry.

Other institutes are Dr. Punjwani centre for molecular medicines and drug research, Khan institutes of biotechnology and genetic engineering, Dr Afzal Hussain Qadri biological research centre, which is a common research facility for all the biological science departments, the Marine resources collection and research centre, which is the biggest repository of marine life from the Arabian sea, and National Nematological Research Centre, which undertakes research in plant pest control.

It is noteworthy that the number of M.Phil/Ph.D in science produced by the Karachi University far exceeds the number produced in any other university of the country. So far, about 600 M.Phil, 300 Ph.D, 7 D.Sc and 7 D.Litt in science have been awarded by the university. The teachers are also involved in various research projects and contribute regularly to publications of home and abroad.

Furthermore, the library of the university is one of the largest libraries in the country. Housed in spacious building, it has a collection of 360,000 books, and 110,000 copies of national and foreign journals and periodicals.

The University of Karachi introduced the evening program in 1995 to provide an opportunity to the professionals to pursue higher education in the evening. The latest development is the introduction of four year degree program at the University to bring the university education at par with the international standards. In the revised curricula of four years program a number of new subject has been added to enable the passed out students to have wider opportunities in the job market.

The University of Karachi witnessed a new era of speedy developments in all spheres when Dr. Ishrat Ul Ebad Khan became Governor of Sindh and Chancellor of the universities in the province. His deep personal interest and commitments in the university affairs is an ongoing source of continued interest in academic, research, and management activities.

The university has now embraced a gigantic process of multifaceted progress with emphasis on capacity building and quality enchantment. Ever since its inception, constitutional and statutory bodies of the university are holding meeting with regular intervals, further bolstering the process.

CONCLUSION

The University of Karachi strives to attract and nurture outstanding scholars from around the world through excellence and innovation in teaching and learning, research and knowledge exchange, contributing to the advancement of society.