The University of Peradeniya ranks as the leading higher education institute in the country according to many recent international higher education research organizations’ ranking results. Having realized the limited opportunities available for all qualifying students to enter national universities, the University of Peradeniya initiated the first ever external degree programme in the country in 1964. Since then the University of Peradeniya was able to produce more than 15000 graduates in Sinhala, Tamil and English media and they currently serve the country at various capacities to uplift the living standard of the people of Sri Lanka. The Vision of the Centre is to provide equal opportunities for all aspiring to further their career goals.
As the new director coming from Sociology background and twenty seven years of teaching Sri Lanka Society, my vision for the Centre is to continue our pursuit for academic excellence while remaining in top as the pioneering institute in providing distance and continuing education in the country. All the planning and developmental activities related to the Center will be implemented in accordance with the University of Peradeniya strategic plan for the next ten years. Thus, during the next three years, the foremost important activity of the Center is to enhance its academic programmes to produce employable graduates from multidisciplinary backgrounds. The priority will be given to revise some of the existing academic curricula and encourage those faculties that are not currently involve in offering such programmes to develop appropriate distance academic programmes to meet the national demand. At present, only Arts, Management and Science faculties involve in offering various academic programmes through the Centre. In addition, in order to place distance and continuing education on far with internal university education in Sri Lanka, the Center affiliated students will be provided better accessibility to use large pool of human, digital and physical resources affecting the current national, regional and global needs.
At present, the Center has a well-trained administrative and academic support teams. However, under my directorship staff members are trained to provide multiple tasks to run day-to-day functions of the Center more efficiently. Especially, periodic worships on work ethics, standard operation procedures, language training programmes in the two national languages and information technology will be organized with the assistance of subject experts.
In order to enhance, physical and academic learning environments of the Center, a new building, a student center and landscape activities will be carried out in accordance with the University Peradeniya architectural and aesthetic traditions. The progress of the Center activities will be monitored periodically based on the recommendations made by the Board of Management, the Board of Studies and the Quality Assurance Unit of the Centre.
The Center will be governed as a public institute with utmost transparent, responsible and accountable manner and it never betrays the image of the University of Peradeniya. During my tenure, we accept any suggestions, proposals and recommendations from any individual irrespective of his/her class, caste, ethnicity, religion and any other differences to improve the quality of our services. In conclusion, I would like to state that the Center will march forward to accomplish excellence in all academic and administrative spheres in distance continuing education. In this regard, we have the capacity to do so since our Center is located at an ideal location with an easy access to seek the service of eminent teachers belonging to nine faculties attached to the University of Peradeniya.
Director Professor Rathnayake M. Abeyrathne
Professor in Sociology
BA (Bowdoin, USA), MA (University of Washington, Seattle, USA), MA (Mahidol University, Thailand), Ph.D. University of London), Medical Anthropologist, Professor, Former Head/Department of Sociology, University of Peradeniya) Currently Visiting Lecturer (PGIHS) Peradeniya), Currently Visiting Lecturer (PGIS, Peradeniya), Currently Visiting Lecturer (PGIA) Peradeniya), Currently Visiting Lecturer (FGS, Kelaniya), Currently Visiting Lecturer (Faculty of Allied Health Science, Peradeniya), Currently Visiting Lecturer (Kandy Nursing Training School).