Like in the other countries, 'Education Science' has become an independent discipline in the academic arena of Bangladesh. Keen interest in this discipline is growing day by day among the academics, education policy makers, researchers, development professionals, students and general people. Dhaka University's Institute of Education and Research (IER) is the pioneer in researching on education. IER conducts 4-year Bachelor's and Master's, M Phil and PhD programmes in education. A good number of public universities are also offering graduate and postgraduate degrees in education. Teachers' Training Colleges of National University conduct Bachelor's as well as Master's courses in Education for secondary school teachers and other professionals. Bangladesh Open University also has Certificate, Bachelor's and Master's courses in Education. Moreover, today many private universities are offering Bachelor's and Master's programmes in Education. Through these institutions the study of 'Education Science' has been growing strong day by day. But it is an irony that there is a lack of standard texts and reference books on education in the country. In this regard, the book 'Shikkha Bigyan O Bangladeshey Shikkha'('Education Science and Education in Bangladesh') is a very timely and noble initiative from the authors. The University Grants Commission (UGC) of Bangladesh published its first, second, third and fourth editions in 2007, 2009, 2012 and 2014 respectively.
The book contains sixteen chapters. The first chapter titled 'Introducing Education' discusses the concept, aims, functions and scope of education. Actually, the theoretical aspects of education are presented here. In the second chapter, the authors delve deeper into an analysis of the concept 'Education Science'. In general, we are familiar with the principle 'Education as a learning process'; however, we are less acquainted with the concept 'Education as a Science'. The authors attempt to explain how 'Education Science' has become a special branch of knowledge. Chapter 3 deals with child education. Some very important topics like 'Children's Growth and Development', 'Learning, Attention and Motivation'; 'Intelligence and Personality' etc. are discussed in this chapter. This chapter also sheds light on child-centric education and its main characteristics.
The fourth chapter titled 'Education in Bangladesh' begins with a discussion on education in the Constitution of Bangladesh. Mentioning various provisions in our Constitution, it reminds us of the responsibility of state to ensure education for all citizens. This chapter also examines the various educational commission reports formulated after the independence of Bangladesh. Especially, the aims and objectives of education described in the latest 'National Education Policy-2010' are explained in detail in this chapter. In the fifth and sixth chapters, the writers elaborate on the structure, curricula, administration and management of education in Bangladesh. Chapters 7 and 8 discuss 'Teaching Methods and Techniques' and 'Evaluation Management'. The latest developments of assessment and evaluation system in our Secondary level i.e. School Based Assessment (SBA) and creative questions, are discussed elaborately in chapter 8. However, the authors believe in the current socio-economic and political contexts of Bangladesh, introducing SBA may create many unwarranted situations in the education sector. The next chapter deals with a very important topic: Teacher Training in Bangladesh. Historical background of teachers' training and different types of teachers' training for different levels of education sector are presented here.
Another very important topic 'Education and Human Resource Development' is discussed in chapter 10. Education's role in human resource development and Bangladesh's position in Human Development Index (HDI) by UNDP are explained here. In the chapters 11 and 12, the writers discuss 'Education Financing in Bangladesh' and 'Efficiency and Wastage in Education'. The authors rightly observe that the allocation of money for education sector in our national budget is inadequate. Major wastages (dropouts, unemployed educated, over-production of highly qualified persons, brain drain etc.) in education sector of Bangladesh are described in chapter 12. Chapter 13 deals with quality education. Some important topics like quality education in Bangladesh, government's initiatives taken for improving our education and barriers to quality education in Bangladesh are discussed in this chapter. Chapters 14 and 15 focus on 'Educational Development Planning in Bangladesh' and 'Problems and Issues in Education of Bangladesh'. The authors analyse different 'National Education Commission' and 'National Education Policy' reports and draw our attention towards the challenges and issues of our education sector. In the final chapter (16), the writers focus on 'Education in Global Perspective'. How various UN and international organisations deal with education is described here elaborately.
In selecting and organising the topics, both theoretical and practical aspects of education in Bangladesh have been given emphasis in the book. As a reference, the book is unique. It is a highly informative and recommended work. The authors have extensive working experiences in the field of education. Professor Dr. Abdul Maleque and Professor Dr. Mariam Begum have been teaching and researching at Dhaka University's Institute of Education and Research (IER) since 1988 and 1996 respectively. Dr. Fakhrul Islam is working as a Joint Secretary with the University Grants Commission of Bangladesh and Sheikh Shahbaz Riad is an Associate Professor at the Government Teachers' Training College, Dhaka. With a Foreword by Dr. Siddiqur Rahman, former Director and Professor of Dhaka University's Institute of Education and Research, the book contains abundant food for thought for academics, researchers, policy makers, students and educational professionals a whole. For people interested in the challenges, issues and developments in Bangladesh education, it might prove a must-read.
The writer is an
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