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FROM THE VICE CHANCELLOR'S DESK

The core function of any academic institution includes three dimensions. The first is regarding the formation of academic frame, the second is to conduct various researches and thereby to improve/ advance the academic structure and the last one is to inculcate a tradition of innovation pertaining to its basic motif of establishment. In this connection, I am of the view that most of the academic institutions be it in state or even across the nation stringently follow the frame provided by the Western models for the achievement of these core goals. However, by saying so, I do not mean to devalue the Western frame nor do I contest the authenticity of its academic prowess. However, after spending years in the pursuit of my academic goals, I have come to the point that there is a strong need for overhaul in terms of our structural mode of gaining these targets. In this article, I will take up the first among the three.

What does the academic frame stand for and how can it achieve the status of tradition generating a chain of innovative minds as its consequential fruits? The answer lies in its academic and administrative structure and it begins with the formation of innovative syllabus, for without it the base will remain weak. Then the question may arise, how can one frame it? There can be multiple answers to it, but to me, the only way to make it innovative and accessible both at times, is to make it grounded in the regional and national traditions. For instance, in the formation of M.A. in English, I have strictly advised to my staff to add Indian dimension along with focusing on the level of the students coming from the Gujarati background. What is the point if your syllabus does not provide your students the core skills of sustaining life along with in-depth knowledge? Perhaps this is the reason why do we have good professors of philosophy but scarcely any philosopher. We have a big lot of students studying in different disciplines such as engineering, medical school, languages and so on, but we lack good engineers, researching doctors, fluent language speakers and writers. In the field of education, we have thousands of big schools across the state but in vain, as they fail to produce the culture of off-bit teachers in modern India. Hence, I strongly believe that what we need in our syllabus formation is this knowledge of ground reality along with its core set-up. After the making of syllabus, what we need is academically sound teaching faculties. On my many visits to different schools of different disciplines, I have observed that we have inapt teachers teaching innovative pedagogy; we have half-wit teachers dealing with diversified young minds and as a result of it, the frame of innovative curricula may prove of a little use. This situation needs to be changed and for that people at the helm will have to inculcate the virtue of objective selection method so that the best of intellectual asset may get rewarded well and can be preserved. After achieving these two goals what remains left is the supportive administrative structure. Here, along with many developing countries, we are also lagging behind. That’s why our system suffers academic paralysis as we do not provide enough administrative support to our academic staff. Is there any way out to fill this gap? And the answer lies in the shaping of multi-skilled workers who are good at many forms of skills. Moreover, this can also be resolved with the help of technology and improvement of dated attitude

If we can bring about this overhaul within the contemporary academic frame, then I assume, the spring time will certainly follow Indian academics soon. Then the final question arises what calls for such change and the solution will certainly the tradition of research. If the realm of research can provide innovative ideas and help academicians find the shortcomings along with remedies pertaining to respective fields, the desired frame of academics is in the offing, and I personally want our journal to establish and inculcate a tradition of support to such innovative researches, for they will pave the way for the generation to come in the making of great Nation. With this brief note of good wishes, I would rest my pen. Good luck to all ignited minds.

Prof. (Dr.) K.S. Likhia,
Vice-Chancellor,
Children's University,
Gandhinagar-382020,
Gujarat.