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- 1 Discuss the basic elements and unified approach of teaching Pakistan Studies. Why is it ever more important to teach Pakistan Studies in present time?
Since 2013 Pakistan Studies has been taught in GCWU Faisalabad as minor subject whereas in Inter-section it is taught as a compulsory subject. The department is offering the course Pakistan Studies as minor subject in various departments with the course code PST-321.The Social Studies as compulsory subject was introduced at elementary and secondary level in 1960. Later on in 1976 the name of the course Social Studies at secondary level was changed to Pakistan Studies and remained as compulsory subject. The subject is taught by means of a unified approach which involves the geographical historical political and civil background of Pakistan the Muslim Ummah and the World. At each level appropriate emphasis underlies the development of the subject as an integrated whole of Pakistan the evolution of Pakistan in Muslim Ummah and the World. The students are taught about the natural resources industrial resources business and trade of their own country set in a broad World context. They learn about the genesis of the idea of Pakistan the freedom movement which brought about its development into a nation. The state of Pakistan is consolidated on the objective resolution and the state policy. It includes the study of people, culture education system world affairs and the relation of Pakistan with entire world. The students also acquire an understanding of their rights and duties which leads them to comprehend their responsibilities and obligations of citizenship.
The vision of teaching Pakistan studies as compulsory subject at higher education level is to bring awareness among students about ideological creation of Pakistan. It will educate the students to understand the approach of Quaid-i-Azam and Allama Muhammad Iqbal as well as intensify patriotism and creative modernization. The course curriculum strives for developing critical and analytical capabilities of students to broaden their vision. The multidimensional course inculcates the hard work qualities among students to enhance their first-hand knowledge and abilities through learning about every aspect of Pakistan.The vision of teaching Pakistan studies as compulsory subject at higher education level is to bring awareness among students about ideological creation of Pakistan. It will educate the students to understand the approach of Quaid-i-Azam and Allama Muhammad Iqbal as well as intensify patriotism and creative modernization. The course curriculum strives for developing critical and analytical capabilities of students to broaden their vision. The multidimensional course inculcates the hard work qualities among students to enhance their first-hand knowledge and abilities through learning about every aspect of Pakistan.
In the line of University mission of providing instruction research and dissemination of knowledge of the world to students the department is committed to develop its capacity in all fields of Pakistan Studies. For this purpose the scheme of studies of the Department is three fold focusing on Pakistan Muslim World and rest of the World. The Department of Pakistan Studies is dedicated to pursuit the excellence and diversity. We would like to see our students after graduation from Government College Women University Faisalabad excelling in all fields of life.
PAKISTAN Studies is a subject that aims at enhancing students’ knowledge about history, culture and geography of Pakistan and to inculcate patriotism in the hearts of students so that they may become a good citizen.
Although Pakistan Studies is a compulsory subject from Class IX up to the university level, it is an astonishing fact that many of the students are unaware of important historical figures and events.
Even if they know some, it’s just the names of some of the famous personalities and not the details about their achievements, life and causes of success or downfall.
The books on Pakistan Studies of different levels cover the topics which are repeated in all of them.
There is no need to teach about those selected topics at each level. Instead the need is to include more topics, which could be informative, as well as beneficial, for the students.
Besides history, there should be topics of current issues and problems which our country is currently facing. Human rights and its importance must be taught to eradicate social evils and problems which our country is facing.
Moreover, the content presented in the book should not mould students to become narrow-minded and parochial. Aims should be to open the faculty to accept past follies and learn to rectify the mistakes.
This would create enlightenment in students and encourage them to get what their ancestors did not achieve. It is highly important that textbooks are free from indoctrination and any kind of bias or stereotyping and should give actual facts and figures. This does not mean that textbooks should only contain facts and figures, rather they should be presented in an interesting way so that students enjoy learning and reading books.
It should create and develop interest towards the subject and help widen their outlooks and open new vistas of knowledge. There should be a variety of questions, as well as activities, for learners so that they can learn with fun. References and sources must be given in the books for further study.
I hope the implementation of suggestions will be beneficial in attaining the objectives of teaching of Pakistan Studies. Authorities concerned should do the needful.
Q.2 Highlight the objectives of teaching Pakistan Studies at Elementary Level.
Pakistan is a country with a great multitude of population. “Even though the literacy rate is low, however the educational administration is constantly improving because of the concerted efforts on the part of successive governments. But the lack of political virtues in its citizens puts a big question mark on the quality and nature of education being imparted to the citizens. Lawlessness, impatience to differing opinions, fundamental tendencies among the most educated class and the denial of the equal opportunities to the women are some indicators to be considered seriously. The education system of Pakistan is also not supporting the progress and development of democracy.
The educational system promotes rote learning and in this way students are not taught critically. Curriculum is devoid of any practical knowledge of politics and political issues. As a result, Pakistani students are not well aware of the basic political knowledge and information. This situation leads to detachment of the students towards the issues related to their society. Any change of the policy and curriculum, though may be the first step, could improve the students’ political knowledge and make them active and informed members of the society
According to UNESCO (2007) a lot of studies in Pakistan have shown that the political knowledge of the students has been very poor and the educational institutes have also been paralyzed in performing and promoting the critical and political skills among the students. There may be many factors behind this situation but the role of education is the prominent one and at any cost could not be minimized in this regard. The teachers’ role and the available degree of the contents regarding this situation cannot be ignored. The subject of Pakistan studies is often treated and taken for granted with a perception that each and every graduate may communicate it further to the students without having specialization in it.
In most of the Pakistani secondary and higher secondary schools, improper and irrelevant teachers are teaching this discipline in a most traditional and conventional way. Secondly, the frequency of basic political knowledge has been meagerly reported too much insufficient in books 1 and 2 at secondary level. These two factors altogether have worsened the situation of political awareness at secondary level in Pakistan. Keeping in view the same notion in mind, the researcher was interested in finding out the real situation of political awareness among the secondary level students in the Punjab province of Pakistan
Education is believed to be a powerful instrument for the socialization of students by promoting the desired social and political values, create political awareness which prepare the students to perform their duty effectively for the progress and betterment of their nation. To develop a political ideology in the young ones is not an easy task and cannot be achieved over night. Educational institutions and schools are considered as potential agents of socialization and awareness. Schools can play a pivotal role in formation of values and attitudes among the students
In secondary schools, the development of political awareness in students may differ and changes often with teachers, friends, fellows, and environment. Furthermore, many students of secondary schools believe that having a political knowledge and being active in politics is the duty of adults and the students having these beliefs are considered ignorant of their duties. Many students of secondary schools follow the views of their parents and relatives without developing their own opinions through meaningful thought to the political issues (William, 2007). Accepting the views of others blindly and without pondering over these issues on their own puts a question mark on the performance of a social studies teacher. The main duty of a social studies teacher is to create civic sense and political awareness in students and to keep them aware about the beliefs and values of nation
One of the main objectives of the curriculum of Pakistan Studies at secondary level is to prepare the students to become good citizens and to understand the human values and political system of Pakistan. Civic education in Pakistan has been neglected over the years and there was found no clearly defined boundary between it and Pakistan studies. So, there is a need of such curriculum that is relevant to and functional in Pakistan. A transparent political system is the outcome of the balanced and efficient educational system as no system can flourish without proper education. Politics and education have been considered by many other researchers also. The concept of sustainable development is also about the investment in the educational sector for the development of stable economies and stable democracies. So, for a stable and working democracy it is imperative to introduce an equitable and representative political system
No doubt that for the best citizenship and political awareness in a state, the campaign regarding understanding the basic political concepts at secondary level is imperative and essential. Students’ understanding and involvement in the political process has been reinforced in many research projects. There are many international organizations involved to popularize the involvement of the young people in the political process. With the passage of time, turns out ratio in elections of different countries have raised the concern in relevant departments, specially the detachment of the youth from the politics and political process is not a very good indicator.
Education and political participation run parallel for the development of political engagement but adversely happened in our educational system. It was because that high involvement in political process was due to the high level of awareness. As is commonly presumed, more education means more awareness and resultantly more participation in political process. But one deplores the fact that the higher is ones level of education and literacy, the lower is the involvement in the political process and politics in general
If socio-political development is rightly figured, engaged, then it paves a way for progress in the society comprised of dispensation of true justice to all. It is an established fact that socio political development is the best way towards the establishment of a true, equitable and just democratic and political system. Politics influences society and is influenced by the society. Consequently, there goes on a give and take process. This process is a healthy one for the betterment of the society and over all well being of the citizens. Political awareness comes through the channel of education which in the long run teaches the society and the individual social adjustment.
To strengthen the political mechanism, education plays a key role but Pakistan having a lot of shortcomings and pitfalls lacking behind in the education sector. The way to progress lies in the development of a progressive and dynamic educational set up. It is generally accepted truth that more education means more democracy. Therefore education needs to be established on a sound footing. The faulty and weak educational system results in the production of undemocratic citizenry which is unable to develop a strong democratic political system. This is the experience of developing democracies on the international political scenario
Civic skills, knowledge and political attitudes, political culture lag behind in our schools as well as in educational curriculum. The results of the numerous research studies are evident that in our school system, curriculum is not developed in line with modern democratic theories. In most of the schools, there is lack of the democratic culture and positive working atmosphere. The gap could have been abridged by the democratic curriculum, but the inefficiency in this regard has resulted in the non-existence of democratic attitudes prevailing in educational institutes. Political culture, if nurtured in the educational setting, would have rescued the situation and forwarded new democratic leadership
Political awareness is the requisite and can play a pivotal role in the development of economy and poverty eradication. The norms and symptoms of political awareness seem missing in the developing countries as well as in the developed ones. Preparation of the informed citizens has been the prime job of the educational institutions. This would have been the strongest measure for the sustainable development. This tool would have rescued many nations of the world from the chain of poverty and would have proved the strongest tool against poverty. But alas! This has not happened and the effort to eradicate poverty and combat backwardness has been seriously damaged. Political knowledge and education may prove the panacea for the under developed nations and the strongest tool for the developed nation. But as ill luck would have it, not only the underdeveloped nations but the developed nations have badly failed in this front.
Rural education system very clearly lacks the prosperity and progress in the field of political development. At the lowest level, the programs need complete revision as most of the literacy programs lack the spirit of progress and are just trying to maintain status quo. We need revolutionary ideas to get the rural areas at par with the developed areas and progressive localities. Educational reforms may change the scenario in education as well as in social sector as well (Russell et al, 2007). Public schools cannot infuse the new paths and vistas for the progress, growth and balanced political re-vitalizing system
Q.3 Explain the principles of curriculum and content selection of Pakistan Studies.
- In curriculum development, we think about the type of learning experiences to be given to a child at various age and grade levels.
- It needs systematic and sequential planning to widen the sphere of the learning experience at each level by keeping in view the principles of integration and correlation.
- The curriculum is usually concerned with two questions
- What should we teach? What should be the content of education?
- How should we organize it and how should we teach?
To answer these questions we should now discuss the principles of curriculum development.
(a) Suitability to the age and mental level of the children
- What is to be given to the children in the form of learning experiences at a particular age and grade level should suit their age and mental development
- The capacity for understanding, how children grow with age. The content of the study in any subject should be formed to suit their mental ability.
(b) According to the specific interests of students
- Children will be able to learn better in fields where they have special tastes and inclination of the mind.
- It is also found that at different stages of age groups, children have different interest patterns.
- Interests of children also change according to circumstances and situations.
- Therefore learning experiences should be designed to suit the interests and tastes of the age group of students.
(c) The curriculum should be environmentally centered
- The content of the learning experiences for children should be linked with the needs of the environment in which they live.
- For example, children from rural areas can understand and grasp easily the information which is directly concerned with their experiences in their own rural environment.
- The same thing applies to children in a various environments like urban areas, hilly areas, etc.
(d) The principle of the comprehensive curriculum
- The curriculum must have the necessary details. List of topics to be covered does not solve the purpose.
- Both teachers and students should know clearly what is expected of them, what is the beginning and what is the end of the topic for the particular class.
- Material, aids, activities, life situations etc. should be listed in the curriculum.
(e) Principle of co-relation
- The curriculum should be such that all the subjects are correlated with each other.
- While designing the curriculum, it must be kept in mind that the subject matter of various subjects has some relation to each other so that they help the child eventually.