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Iranian universities to reduce intake in humanities programs

05/19/11 Source: Radio Zamaneh

Iran will reduce the number of students enrolled in humanities programs at universities across the country, the Ministry of Science and Technology has announced.

Protests at Azad University in Qazvin in December 2009. Banner says: "University Is Alive"
Iranian universities are considered a stronghold of the opposition

Fars news agency reports that 43 percent of Iranian students are enrolled in various humanities courses, according to the ministry's supervisory and evaluation board, and that will be reduced to 36 percent.

Back in 2009, student activists appeared to play a significant role in challenging the legitimacy of the presidential election and fomenting widespread demonstrations. At the time, Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei criticized the fact that two million Iranian students were enrolled in the humanities and said that there aren't enough professors committed to the principles of Islam to teach these programs.

These statements have led to dismissal or early retirement of several professors from universities and a review of curricula taught in several branches of the humanities.

The Minister of Science has repeatedly announced that it is engaged in an overhaul of humanities curricula, which the Supreme Leader reportedly supports.

The targeted programs include law, human rights, women's studies, economics, sociology, political science, philosophy, psychology, education, administration and arts administration.

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