1. Universities in the world including some in Malaysia are after the THES ranking; some want to be come world-class universities as the likes of Harvard, Yale, Cambridge and Oxford. Some aspire to be among the greats in Asia as the likes of Tokyo, Hong Kong and Singapore. Some just want to be in the league ...so as to be noticed. There are many arguments on this locally, some made sense and some made non-sense.
2. I could only speak for my university, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia as I began in this university in 1974 as a tutor in biology department and retired as a professor of botany in 2004, some 40 years. I enjoyed teaching and supervising students on both levels, the undergraduates and the graduates. I cherished research in botany and later in biodiversity and published some good, some bad and some lousy papers ....these bore my name.
3. When I looked back I began to see some illusions in our educational aspirations and systems. We made mistakes by going English and we made mistakes by going three years for an honours degree. When I taught them in Malay the graduates went on to do well in their MS and PhD degrees overseas and they came back home to be somebody ....when I taught them 4 years of botany they learned many things useful and they could communicate botany very well. And now when I taught them in English in 3 years, many of them couldn't survive the interviews for jobs, may of them failed in their MS and PhD studies overseas. What went wrong with me?
4. Years ago I used chalks and over-head transparencies and now I use power-points; then I used to take them to field works now the university doesn't have money to pay; we used to have many more practical classes and now we cut-short our practical classes because of monetary problems. The labs have not been improved and the equipments were old and rusty. What went wrong with us? Since 1982 when we first occupied the Biology building, nothing has changed. We have not added any new labs and building ....and we aspire to be among the best in the country.
5. I wished I am the Minister of Higher Education as I will approve 100 millions to refurbish the labs and build new building to house post-graduate and lecturers research labs. I will buy new up-to-date equipments, I will add two more SEM machine, six more PCR, 4 more DNA sequencers and I will allocated some R & D funds to professors ....when would I be the Minister?
A Trip To Japan
2 months ago