Is the Indian Higher Education System Globally Relevant and Competitive?
We are living in an age of rapid technological changes. By the year 2020, there will arise an increasing demand for about 3.3 billion workforce in the services and intensive-manufacturing sectors. This phase of structural transformation is not only focused globally, but is also expected to play out in India where 75% employment opportunities will arise in fields of services and manufacturing sectors. This structural shift in employment will increase demand for sophisticated workers, innovators, and thinkers who can thrive in a globally-connected and dynamic economy. And this can only be achieved if our prevalent education system is able to create an academic curriculum that is not only globally pertinent and competitive but is also able to serve the needs of both the domestic and global industrial standards.
The first and foremost step in this direction is to integrate the Indian education system with a relevant and updated academic curriculum that will cater to the various industry standard needs and give higher education in the country a much needed boost of elasticity and compatibility. Any academic foundation is balanced on mainly two pillars – faculty and students. In the prevalent times, teacher should realize that the purpose of teaching is not just to cover the entire curricula but also to educate the students of elements beyond education. Students on the other hand, needs to be motivated enough to pursue knowledge not just within the walls of a classroom but also beyond it. Self learning and exposure to the latest technologies coupled with a focus on ‘entrepreneurship on campus’ by introducing active incubation/entrepreneurship cells, increased collaboration with leading corporates and proper coordination between the stakeholders – students, faculty, parents, government bodies, corporates – will also work towards facilitating a practice of designing globally competitive academic curricula for the students pursuing higher education in India.
Pedagogy or the activities of educating is another decisive factor in shaping a globally competitive higher education system in a country. The foundation of pedagogy stands on the vortex of strong academicians who are not afraid to devise newer ways to impart teaching, to make pedagogy more adaptable to the needs of time and interesting to the millennial students. Gone are the days when an academician was considered to be ‘good’ if he had sound theoretical knowledge. In today’s world, a faculty should not only have sound theoretical knowledge of his subject but he should also have an equal amount on industry exposure in order to be considered competent enough during pedagogy delivery and faculty audit.
Apart from a balanced and updated academic curriculum and pedagogy style, the third most important step towards global relevance and competitiveness of the Higher Education system in our country is to adopt and adapt to high-end technologies in addressing the various evaluation and delivery needs of our academic institutions. In this millennia, Technology Adoption holds as much importance as other traditional meaning of academic delivery. It has the potential to make the education system more dependable and trustworthy, by aiding the various systems and processes of an academic institution.
We, as a country, are at a juncture where we have the unique opportunity to make a difference in the lives of the younger generation. Individual differences, competencies and learning styles of the students need to be recognized too! The focus should be more on hands-on experiential learning with globally relevant curriculum standards that are assisted by digital technologies, and new-age pedagogical approaches needs to be delivered by competent faculty with strong industry knowledge. It is a process that has yielded many results in various educational systems around the world and definitely has the potential to transform today’s learning environments in India as well.
Sources: http://www.businessworld.in/article/Future-Of-Higher-Education-In-India/06-10-2018-161606/ Image Source: https://www.publicdomainpictures.net/pictures/230000/nahled/graduation.jpg