The majority of academics haven’t exactly been the vanguard of the people or agents for social change, observes Rom Nain.
Why are foreign students able to study in institutions of higher learning in Malaysia, when locals, like John Inbaraj, who do not have a credit in Bahasa find themselves unable to register as on-campus students.
Zaharom Nain notes that as long as the rigid feudal politically and racially-tainted civil structure remains, there is little hope of stemming the rot in higher education.
In pushing for meritocracy, we have to be careful that we do not entrench the reproduction of privilege especially in university entrance exams, writes our special correspondent.
While Professors and lecturers of many other Islamic universities elsewhere dabble in issues such as ‘Islamic biology’ or scientific theories of Djinns and spirits, the Islamic scholars of Indonesia have shown that one can be a Muslim and a scientist at the same time, observes Farish A Noor. The rational spirit of social scientists like Ibn Khaldun lives on, in Indonesia…
After a heated debate in Parliament over the textbook or guidebook for the Ethnic Relations course at Universiti Putra Malaysia, Prime Minister Abdullah Badawi’s Cabinet decided to withdraw the book. It was a slap in the face of Higher Education Minister Mustapa Mohamed for inexplicably defending what Lim Kit Siang characterised as “the indefensible”. Many Malaysians are no doubt relieved over the Cabinet’s decision.