In Perspective of Computer Science Educational Activities in Bangladesh

The experiences and observations on the activities among students of Computer Science.

Zakir Hossain
Zakir Hossain
Mar 18, 2010
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Abstract - Here I have tried to discuss and analyze the experiences and observations on the co-curricular and extra-curricular activities among students of Computer Science. It is a critical overview of the computer education curricular facilities, culture and activities in most Universities in Bangladesh.

Importance of Computer Education: Computer Science is the most prospective area of research today; whether it is scientific, economic or philosophical point of view, computer science aids its intelligent steps. It is the science with which today we are trying to define human intelligence and logic. Bangladesh is a developing country and we have the resources that can do a lot for our country. The world of technology is bringing us the opportunities to reach and overcome every obstacle in our way of development. If we can use these technologies properly then we will be able to boost up our business and could expand through out the world to bring prosperity to our country. In every aspect of business, medical, technological, scientific or any other issues computer has become inevitably useful. Technologies are coming within the reach of every general people. Desktop computers and mobile phones have been a huge successful business in Bangladesh; also the other handheld portable devices and laptop computers are becoming popular everyday. But, unfortunately the investors from Bangladesh are not getting an action in it. They are not having profit doing business in technology sector. One important reason for this is that we don’t have an effective computer education system and most people are not educated in this field. I think computer educational institutes have a lot to do in this sector.

Activities among Computer Science Students: The university students are often related with several co-curricular and extra-curricular activities. These are some of the essential parts of the education with which they actually implementing and practicing maturities they are gaining from the education system. The popular co-curricular activities in most universities are, programming contests, software fair, hardware fair, technical publication and re-creational researches. There are extra-curricular activities that students are involved, such as indoor and out door sports, debate, participating and organizing cultural functions for activities like, recitation, singing, dancing, stage drama etc. Usually there are organized clubs who controls the student activities.

Co-Curricular activities among Computer Science Students: Though the facilities are not appropriate in most universities, the students have proven several times that they can be better then any other students from any country in mathematics, physics, even programming. We have our programmers in almost every major software development and engineering firms throughout the world. And have been doing very good results in both national and international programming contests including the most prestigious “International Collegiate Programming Contest”, “International Olympiad in Informatics”, “The UVa online Judge”, “Top Coder” etc. Several universities have earned a very good name in these competitions and brought glory to Bangladesh. A huge number of alumni of our universities are in several foreign universities doing research successfully.

Extra-Curricular activities among Computer Science Students: A number of Musical Bands have evolved based on the university musical facilities and activities. The branch of `moncho natok’ in media has been practiced by the students of several universities. The recitation of Bangla Poetry has been mainly maintained by the students. Most of the musicians and singers have started their first performance from the stage of their universities. It is a way to keep our civilized and traditional cultural practice of edict and norms intact. A very popular extra-curricular practice in most universities is debate. The debating competitions based on proper topics make the students think about it and reason with each other in a civilized manner. And also it brings the enjoyment and refreshing feelings to all the students that boosts up their enthusiasm for study. These functions re-energize and help sharpen the student’s view to others. Some re-creational publishing medium is very popular among most students of different universities. Some student magazines have been so popular that have been maintained over decades. Also students have proven several times that they can be very useful in social works. Another activity worth mentioning, which is the student politics. It is a way of participating in the national politics in student life. But the student politics have been polluted so much in last many years that it is not considered as a good practice any more.

Mismanagements and Organizational faults in student activities: The results and the output of any institution depend on the arrangement and facilities of the institution. If the arrangements are not appropriate then good results can not be expected. In several cases these student activities which help them to become a better scientist or engineer, suffer from the mismanagement and organizational faults.

Most of the performances are poorly arranged and maintained. The judging facilities are not very appropriate. Many examples are there when in a national competition with other universities had the tendency that the hosting university will have some advantage from the judges. In some competitions there are even examples of keeping a few top rankings to the hosting university even if they do not have the quality. These examples can even be found in mathematical or professional competitions. In many examples the judges of the competitions have given wrong decisions.

The lack of information is another problem, most of the people do not know how to perform a particular art. In an intra department debating competition such example can be given where a team has been declared champion when the winning team could not even speak for the given particular period of time. While they have not even introduced a single reasonable proposition and tried to discuss the counter logics in during the time when they were suppose to present their own logic. And no one even corrected them while they were absolutely ignoring the topic and was saying unreasonable and irrelevant things. Such fallacious decision, when such a team wins over another team, which did not at least make a mistake, actually raises the question of misjudgment.

A common offensive practice is to prefer glamour more then talent. Such examples can be given where students have been preferred only because of the out looks or exposure. These practices inspire students to use their body more then their mind, and not all inspiration is healthy. Whereas the institutions are supposed to teach the students how to build up their knowledge, instead they are just trading by showcasing them. This increases and causes crimes and every other reason that can bring up the mischief.

The lack of organization causes the problem for which performance suffers significantly. In many examples the students are not properly dressed when they are performing in drama or a stage show which leads to indecent activities that causes the bad reputation. Such organizational faults should be avoided. There is a common misconception is indicating a stylish or fashionably trendy student as a talented performer when that student may not have any talent at all. Since following a trend of fashion can not be a talent. This kind of misguidance can inspire students to get engaged with indecent activities and think of them something that they are not.

There is also a practice that many co-curricular activities are not as much appreciated as extra-curricular activities. The appreciation from the professors and authority has a great importance for the students. There are many universities which lets the students to have curricular credit based on their co-curricular activities. But in Bangladesh, in most universities there is no such facility for the students who are participating in the events that are closely related with their professional education. Though there are some public and private university has the facility for training the students but the students do not participate in the training program because they are not appreciated or facilitated like they can be in other extra-curricular activities. These can even cause failure in the system. Some times the university authority gives priority on some less important events over some truly important events. Examples can be given that publishing media are not as appreciated as the sports. Also there is a tendency that mostly students who are related with the organization are blamed and criticized whenever a mistake is encountered while their supervisors are not.

In many cases the students are not even properly informed about the organization of any activities. To solve the lack of communication with the students, several universities use student coordinator or publishing media such as student magazine. But many of the institutions have no student coordinator or any regular publishing media at all. Most students are not properly trained or properly guide lined. Because of the misinterpretation many students do things that are uncivilized and hence cause indiscipline. Some students mix up the idea of following cultural activities with harmful addictions. They get involved with unlawful activities with other students during the club activities and suffer later.

Importance of student activities in Computer Education: The student activity inspires the students to do better in their professional life. Computer science is closely related with the implementation of the science. These activities lets the students have the chance to implement their thoughts and experience their mistakes.

I would like to define programming as the process of reasoning and choosing the proper instructions that actually ensures a desirable output. The definition says this process is required in every aspect of science and it is necessary for every human being, and for this reason programming education is so important. But unfortunately, still there are not many effective ways to teach or learn programming within a certain time. Computer education is enriched with all the interesting and useful field of science. The main advantage in computers over any other electronic devices is that the same device can be programmed or re-programmed to do several works where in other cases it might require complete re-designing or re-building. So, the basic advantage of using systems like this is `programming’. Since the computer actually has been developed to aid in the calculations that are tedious for human, the research on computer actually is related with all kind of methods of reasoning and engineering which is generally called `programming’. And now eventually computer science has improved so much that it can do much more then just being a calculating help to mathematicians.

Therefore, programming contests, software fair or hardware fair, technical publishing directly affects the students to learn and understand their study and enriches the educational quality. I think this can directly affect the reputation of a university because students are the best advocates of any educational institute.

For any comments or further information, references feel free to contact the author via email. *Abdullah Al Zakir Hossain,

Author's note:

Abstract - Here I have tried to discuss and analyze the experiences and observations on the co-curricular and extra-curricular activities among students of Computer Science. It is a critical overview of the computer education curricular facilities, culture and activities in most Universities in Bangladesh.

Keywords: Computer Educational Activities in Bangladesh, Computer Education, Activities, Computer Science, Educational Quality, Programming Contests, Music, Technology

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