100,000 university students enrolled for e-education

Updated 20 March 2016

100,000 university students enrolled for e-education

RIYADH: The number of Saudi students who have enrolled for their university education through e-learning has reached 100,000 in different Saudi universities.

“Of the total number of students during the current academic year, male students account for 52 percent and females 48 percent,” local media reported on Saturday, quoting statistics.
Well-informed sources were quoted as saying that the Ministry of Education is planning to conduct a feasibility study of these programs, or what is called the “developed enrollment,” to know about the quality of the learning process.
E-university is one of the learning patterns of higher education that offers the unorthodox system of “integrated learning” based on information technology and communication and e-learning systems. The university presents accredited scientific degrees in programs and specializations endorsed by the Ministry of Civil Services and the relevant authorities, the report said.
The Ministry of Education has called on the rectors of Saudi universities to reduce the number of students admitted during the next academic year for undergraduate and postgraduate studies by 50 percent. This, it said, is to balance the bilateral or tripartite ratios of applicants to the college of education to about 85 percent. This will improve the situation in colleges, it said.
In a circular, the ministry has stressed the need to comply with the new controls for admission to colleges for the coming academic year, emphasizing on the importance of meeting the conditions by those who wish to seek transfer from other colleges.
The ministry explained that during the preparatory year, the condition for admission is that the applicant should have scored up to 3.75 out of the total 5 points, or 2.5 out of 4 points, in addition to to personal interviews and written tests.
In another issue, the King Abdulaziz and His Companions Foundation for Giftedness and Creativity (MAWHIBA) and the Ministry of Education said the scores of more than 28,000 male and female students were monitored for the National Project to Identify Gifted Students.
The foundation said the educational services available for those accepted in the program will start on the first date of the program. The service will continue during the coming years if the required standards for future programs were met.
The National Project to Identify Gifted Students is aimed at identifying talented students through a method based on scientific basis and best practices to identify gifted and talented students in the scientific, technical and creative fields.

Saudi Arabia eases coronavirus lockdown restrictions

Updated 51 min 16 sec ago

Saudi Arabia eases coronavirus lockdown restrictions

  • Curfew to be eased on Sunday, except in Makkah, as domestic travel permitted
  • All curfews in Saudi Arabia to be lifted by June 20

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia announced the easing of restrictions that has halted much of the activity in the country due to the coronavirus pandemic.

As of Sunday 31, May, the curfew on all areas of the Kingdom will be eased, except Makkah. Movement in cities and within the regions of the country will again be permitted, the Saudi Press Agency reported on Tuesday.

The easing will mean the Kingdom’s 24-hour lockdown is relaxed with a curfew from 3 p.m to 6 a.m until Sunday, after which the hours will change to 8 p.m. to 6 a.m.. Makkah will remain under a full 24-hour lockdown.

On June 21, all curfews in the Kingdom will be lifted and prayers at Makkah’s mosque will be permitted.

Before then, social distancing guidelines must continue to be adhered to and gatherings of more than 50 people will continue to be banned.

Authorities have also allowed the attendance at ministries, government agencies and private sector companies, and the return of their office activities.

Some economic and commercial activities will also be allowed to take place including those at wholesale and retail shops, as well as malls. Cafes will be permitted to operate once more.

However, all job sectors where social distancing rules are harder to achieve such as beauty salons, barbershops, sports and health clubs, recreational centers and cinemas will remain closed.

Umrah pilgrimage and international flights will continue to be suspended until further notice.

The new rules are subject to constant evaluation at the health ministry and can be changed if the situation warrants it.

Earlier, Dr. Tawfiq Al-Rabiah, the health minister, said: “The phases start gradually until we return to normalcy, with its new concept based on social distancing.” 

He added that the precautionary steps taken by the Kingdom early in the outbreak helped to limit the spread of the virus. 

Now, he said, the ministry has developed a plan for the next phase that relies on two main factors: The capacity of the health care system to cope with critical cases, and the expansion of testing to identify new infections as soon as possible.

Reassuring the Saudi nation on Monday, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman said: “The bad conditions will pass, God willing, and we are heading toward the good, God willing.” 

The Kingdom recorded 2,235 new cases of COVID-19 on Monday, taking the total to 74,795, and the death toll rose by nine to 399. Worldwide the virus has infected more than 5.5 million people and killed nearly 350,000.