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Tuesday, January 04, 2011 - 05.48 GMT

Online external courses in 3 languages


Sri Lankan universities are to commence online courses in all three languages enabling the expatriates Sri Lankans to study in the language of their mother tongue.

All universities in the country have been instructed through a Road Map as to how they should restructure their external courses programmes in future. Once this restructuring is done the universities will be able to recommence their external degree programme and initiate online courses for first degree, said Chairman University Grant Commission (UGC) Prof Gamini Samaranayaka.

He said several expatriate Sri Lankans have made enquiries about such courses and university systems are being geared up to meet this demand.

All external degree programmes conducted by universities were suspended recently on the instruction of the main regulator of universities -the UGC. Mr Samaranayake said that all these time the external courses were conducted in a traditional manner but it lacks quality and control. The number of external students far exceeded that of internal students which led to deterioration of the quality of graduates to certain extent.

Under the new road map universities will be allowed to have external students in double the number of internal students and they can decide on the modalities of the courses inclusive of new programmes and extension of courses.

The UGC also proposes to conduct awareness session for students about the private tuition classes and selection of subjects in order to ensure the quality of the programme.

“Hereafter, all tutorials conducting classes for external degrees will have to be accredited by respective universities. The main criteria for such accreditation will be the qualification of the teachers concerned” Prof Samaranaya said.

Mr Samaranayake said that external degrees should tally with the socio economic conditions of the country. It is the quality and not the quantity that matters. Therefore, we have instructed the universities to add some additional components to external courses too as in the case of internal degrees.

“All these days circulars and instructions issued by the UGC covered only the internal courses. Hereafter we will issue such circulars covering the external courses too. The UGC has issued a Hand Book to universities where it has been specified that each university should start a fully fledged separate department within the system for external courses” Professor said.

He also said that UGC proposes on more inputs to enhance the quality of external degrees. Accordingly English and computer studies will be added as new components of the external study programs. The external candidates will be able to select a combination of new core subjects and this would enable the students to enter into the job market with a qualitative degree.

He also said that at the moment Moratuwa and Colombo universities have recommenced their BIT external programme and some of the private institutions have been accredited to conduct courses. In addition Medical faculty of the Kelaniya University, Wayamba and Peradeniya Universities have commenced some external program after the restructuring program of their external courses.

Mr. Samaranayake said that apart from this, University of Jaffna has expressed interest to begin online courses in Tamil medium for expatriate Sri Lankan students as many Sri Lankan living in Canada have expressed their willingness in this regard.





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Last modified: January 04, 2011.

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