A nation’s prosperity, progress and development is possible only when its citizens are dynamic, enterprising and responsible. Without such citizens, a nation cannot achieve progress in any field and education is the most important tool to create such types of citizens. Higher education plays a vital role in a country’s overall development and growth. It imparts in-depth knowledge related to different spheres of life. Furthermore, it not only broadens an individual’s cerebral aptitude within a narrow specialization, but also gives a wider perspective of the world around him or her. Higher education is no longer a luxury, it is essential for survival. The core mission of higher education is to educate, to train, to undertake research and to provide service to the community. In the context of globalisation, the scope and demand for higher education is increasing day by day and this demand can only be fulfilled by quality higher education. Improving the quality of higher education is the need of the hour. Pakistan’s higher education is not ranked anywhere among the world higher education systems in terms of quality. The quality of higher education depends on various factors such as favourable environment for teaching and learning, infrastructure, teachers, curriculum, effective feedback, research opportunities and monitoring systems. Higher education is a powerful and essential tool for building a modern, knowledgeable, cultured and peaceful society which can lead the country towards a bright future. It is also considered one of the most important and strongest tools for the development of any country. Primary education is necessary for creating a base, while higher education provides the cutting edge. Higher education contributes to the growth of a nation by providing specialised knowledge and skilled manpower. A change in attitude is needed from universities. They are not merely places of conferring degrees and distinctions. They have a responsibility to facilitate the wholesome development of their students The quality of higher education can be ensured through regular review of the institutions function, either through self-assessment or through outside agencies and through accrediting the institutions. The expansion of higher education over the years has also resulted in educational malpractices, which exist in the form of capitation fees being charged by the private institutions at the time of admissions in addition to the fees. The entry of large number of private institutions has also resulted in rapid increase in proceedings involving students, teachers, employees, management of higher educational institutions and universities as well as other stakeholders negatively impacts the quality of education and efficient function of the institutions. HEC rightly feels uneasy about the inadequacies in Pakistan higher education system, particularly in terms of quality and standards. The situation of higher education is not just completely unsatisfactory, it is alarming. That standards have been falling while the scope of higher education increases because of new universities makes everything more difficult to deal with. We have to therefore, gear up the education system’s machinery to fulfil the aspirations of the Pakistani people and be conscious about maintaining quality. A change in attitude is needed from universities. They are not merely places of conferring degrees and distinctions. They have a responsibility to facilitate the wholesome development of their students, turning them into fine human beings. This can only be achieved through the provision of a decent education, not just degrees. The people of Pakistan are neither deficient in talent nor in moral qualities in comparison to any other nation of the world, but about two centuries of foreign rule and blind imitation of Western attitudes and methods, unsuited to the genius and spiritual conditions of its people, have spoiled some of the areas virtues and have brought a bad name to the local people’s intellectual capacities. Pakistan is unfortunately really backward in terms of education, as in certain other spheres of intellectual activity, but luckily our people are not inherently incompetent or morally incurable. The problems plaguing the educational system of Pakistan are multidimensional. They include the population explosion, lack of resources, scarcity of qualified man power, inconsistency in the policies of various regimes, political instability, inefficient educational management system, wastage of resources, poor quality of intake, managerial inefficiency, overcrowded classrooms, inadequate student services, inadequate material resources, non-accountability of institutions, inefficiency in teaching, poor research and lack of research opportunities and poor implementation of policies and programs. The institutions have not only been multiplied, the student enrolments at colleges and universities have registered an exceptionally high rate of growth. The demands of higher education have thus increased by leaps and bounds. In spite of quality control and consolidation, these problems will continue to grow constantly for a long time to come. The condition of higher education in universities and colleges is not satisfactory in the eyes of students. Lack of physical and educational facilities is bringing much hindrance in the way of development. Teachers are less motivated to do certain research work. Most teachers are not competent, and they are teaching in higher education institutions. They have limited knowledge about subject matter they taught and many of them have no clear idea about the subject. Even in Pakistani universities, the teacher at M.Phil. and Ph.D. level, are not competent, to the extent that they find research work difficult due to lack of knowledge about research methodologies. The HEC has been providing financial assistance for programs of faculty improvement which enable teachers to keep abreast with the latest development in their subject and conduct research studies as well as interacting with experts in their own subject’s area and related field. These programs aim at improving the professional competence of teachers so that they can impart high quality instructions and contribute significantly to raising the standard of higher education in developing countries. It is really alarming that after spending huge amount of money on those scholars, the results are still the same as they were before. The right of academic freedom is important to be recognized in order to enable the faculty members, researchers, and students to carry on their roles. The courses and curricula are not designed in accordance with the standard of higher education of the present day. There is no continuity of some of the important courses: there is also no relationship between the related courses of common or similar knowledge. So many important and modern courses required for higher education are not taught at all. The curricula are not written in detail and are left to the professors’ personal likes, dislikes, interests or experience. In the terms of employment, the planners of higher education are handicapped in the assessment of the actual labour market needs for skills in various sectors of the economy. There is a marked mismatch in terms of the field and specialisation of graduates and the absorptive capacity of the labour market. Pakistan cannot progress until it higher education system is qualitatively strong enough because this poor quality is resulting in low employability, low performance of the specialised individuals, and lack of innovative and creative ideas. These are the key elements of success and progress in present time. All in all, there is a need to enlarge the adaptive capacity and quality of the higher education system so that it is more responsive to the changing world of work and meets the diversified needs of economy — both domestic and global. For that purpose diversification of the Pakistani higher education system has to be pursued as a goal. This can be achieved by having a proper mix of public and private, formal and non-formal institutions. Special initiatives are required to enhance employability. Curriculum and content has to be continually renewed through authorities and skill development network may be set up. Collection of data on job market trends, its analysis and dissemination is important. Drawbacks mentioned above need to be transformed into the strength of the Pakistan higher education system but this can only be done with strong willpower, determination and willingness to change. The writer is a PhD Scholar in Media and Crime. He has authored various books on International Relations, Criminology and Gender Studies. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org Published in Daily Times, May 27th 2018.