Indian Education is one of the most sought-after education in the world. We might be satisfied with our education, but we surely are not satisfied with the system that manages it. It can easily be seen by the fact that movies like “3 Idiots” need to be made to highlight this issue. Saying that the whole system is bad or wrong will be an over-statement but there are some short-comings and some loopholes in the system that are being misused by many. Also, there are some aspects of the system that are just not right. Rather than making well-educated students, it is making well-trained professionals. You might think what the difference is and after all, aren’t we all studying for the sake of jobs. But the thing is, education is what makes us lifelong learners and keeps us developing ourselves and the country. But when we see the fact that many of the students who pass-out from graduate courses only understand how they can get the job and the skills like a robot, rather than an educated professional. Being trained in your profession is important but that can also be learned by doing the work monotonously, why spend lakhs (that’s to our system again) of rupees for the process. If the standard of the trained professionals would have been up to the mark it would have been a different story. But according to the surveys and companies that are hiring these professionals, their value and skills as a professional are way below average.
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- Real and Fake Education Boards in India
Many readers might go against me and criticize these things but let me first defend my point with some facts:
- A study by the National Assessment and Accreditation Council showed that 90% of the colleges and 70% of the universities that the council graded were of middling or poor quality
- Shortage of teachers was endemic with even the IITs reporting a 20 to 30% shortfall in the faculty
- Just one out of nine children finishing school joins a college. India has one of the lowest higher education enrolment ratio of 11% only. In the US it is 83%
- A recent study showed that only one out of Ten Indian students with degrees in humanities and one out of four engineering graduates are employable
- The shortage of good institutions has seen cut-off percentages for entry into good colleges soar to genius levels. This year’s qualifying marks for RCom(Hons) course in Delhi’s SRCC was 98.75%
You see the cut-off, this means only the top 1% scorers will be able to get admission or else, the student will need to pay another lakh of rupees apart from the fees as the donation to get the admission. Creating more colleges or schools doesn’t solve the problem as these schools and colleges will take nearly a decade to get to the standard of education expected. And before that happens, there will be a proposition for a new school/college and the focus on the previously formed school/college will be shifted to this new one. The worst thing is that people end up spending for a castle and get a chawl. The increasing competition for marks, increasing the cost of education is increasing the mental stress on the students and resulting in hundreds of students ending with committing suicide.
The source of all this? The marketing scheme of our schools/colleges and the well-known coaching classes. It has been filled in the minds of parents and students alike that the numbers which appear on the report cards of the students are the only thing that can decide the future of the student and nothing else (guys, even there’s something like the students’ talent). The effect of all this is that the students, as well as the parents, don’t care about understanding the subject being taught or the excellence of the subject but rather want to score marks even if they know nothing about it. Making the matters worse is the fact that the knowledge of the child is not enough, the kid should be able to present it not just in a legible hand-writing but rather in a beautiful one. People with beautiful hand-writing have been given an advantage over others while paper corrections and simply in the stereotype that people with bad hand-writing are dull students despite the fact that in most cases it is writing need to be really good for that? It is agreed that having a good hand-writing is good, but do we need to force our students to have it? In today’s modern world, mostly no one will ever see anything written by you except for your signature.
The institute versus the coaching classes is just another story. The way the minds of students is filled with the marks resonates with the atmosphere in these coaching classes. The students start feeling that the institute doesn’t provide enough for the fulfillment of the students and the institute blame that the classes steal the thunder by teaching the topics ahead of the syllabus which results in the students being least interested in what is taught in the institute and doesn’t attend lectures regularly.
It can be criticised that all that has been done is point the issue. But knowing your problem makes the problem half solved. Well, what can you solve if you don’t know what’s wrong? So, my possible solutions? Giving a man a fish feeds him once, but teaching him fishing feeds him for a lifetime. A genuine interest of the students towards education must be cultivated and they need to be taught to understand concepts rather than memorizing them. The evaluation system needs to be re-organized. Evaluation of students should not just be centered about marks in the test, but also the participation of the student, projects, communication, leadership skills, etc. Now many curriculums do follow these evaluation criteria, but the rules of these have loop-holes which the students, institutes and coaching classes misuse alike.
The next thing is to demolish the career-pyramid which makes careers like engineering, medicine, and accounting superior and all others inferior. Students are not even told about any other career options apart from these. You think for yourself, was it the point-less professional talk of someone at a party/event that made your mood or the music of the DJ and the dance/singing of a performer?Did a doctor photograph your wedding and other important events or a photographer? Then why not make exceptionally talented ones by motivating them. These changes might not be the exact ones to do but they are better than nothing and a good place to start. The government may make the changes on their part or not is a different story, but these changes will not be possible or useful until the students and parents think about them and change their mindset.