The Indian history of education dates back prior to 4th century B.C. where India had a well-developed & organized system of higher education having processes analogous to modern universities. Takshashila, Nalanda and Vikramashila were the prominent universities where teaching and learning process revolved around the Gurukul system. The Gurukul system continued till the arrival of Europeans to the Indian subcontinent and had created the required human resources for construction, agriculture or warfare. Unfortunately, these traditional schools did not survive and the modern higher educational institutions were established during the British period.
With over 1.6 million schools, India is now one of the largest education systems in the world. The education boards in India uniformly follow the "10+2+3 (or 4)" pattern of education which is categories as Pre-primary & Primary education, Secondary & higher secondary education and the Graduation. Higher education or a degree level education takes three to four years to complete and it qualifies someone to work in a professional field or undertake advanced research activity.
"Indian students prefer to do Masters from universities abroad than Indian counterparts giving topmost preference to STEM courses"
The Indian education system lacks certain aspects that make Master's degree from an international university more lucrative. Indian students prefer to do Masters from universities abroad than Indian counterparts giving top-most preference to STEM courses. An Industry 4.0 revolution sees rapid progress in automation where Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence are challenging the traditional job markets. The existential Indian universities lack practical hands-on training that would have generated job/industry oriented candidates. In line with the changing technology, Indian education is yet another industry that needs to be enhanced and revolutionized with Professors having good academic skills and practical/industrial training relevant to newer upcoming technology.
As per Wissenschaft Weltoffen Kompakt 2019 report, Germany, the land of ideas and innovations, is the most coveted higher education destination for Indian students standing alongside the US, UK, Canada, and Australia. Despite the language barrier, international student mobility is highly increased and is influenced by certain initiatives taken by the German government like enhanced immigration policies, "Blue Card" legislation implementation, strategic internationalization of universities, better integration of international students, access to jobs/labor markets of most EU member states, increased funding for transnational partnerships and international marketing. India ranks second in enrolling students at German universities first being China.
The education system in Germany begins with "Grundschule" (foundation school) which is similar to the education till 10th class in India. Based on the academic ability of the student, the state uses a "tracking" or "streaming" mechanism through which, after parent consultation or by schools' recommendations, the students can choose "Hauptschule" or "Realschule" at the lower secondary stage in vocational track, or enroll with university-preparatory schools. Realschule are academically more demanding since they consist of wide ranging vocational programs and also permits access to university-preparatory upper-secondary education on successful completion. Upper-Secondary Education -The Vocational "Dual System" has a variety of vocational programs that follows full-time classroom instruction method with a focus on practical training. This "dual system" may be viewed as an ideal model by all the Nations having high rates of unemployment. Though there is a 3 years diploma or ITI courses in India, due to lack of strong industry tie-ups and practical/on-job training, its effectiveness is questionable. Higher education or tertiary education in Germany comprises of recognized institutions providing Bachelors, Masters and Ph.D. degrees courses leading to a profession which caters to the needs of the local and international job/labor market. Almost over 90% of German universities are publicly financed or state-run with tuition-free education and others are privately-funded and distinguished as Technische Hochschulen/Universitten, Universities of Applied Sciences, Art and Music Colleges, Higher Education Institutions for Federal Armed Forces, Higher Education Institutions Offering Dual Studies, Institutions of Continuing Vocational Education. Contrary to Indian education, the German education system has established a close link between industry and academia, right at the secondary education phase, making it a world-class education.
Studying in Germany is a lifetime opportunity with numerous advantages like many courses taught in English, world Class Technical Education with focus on practical knowledge, no tuition fees at public universities in Germany, comparatively lower funds in blocked account, numerous work opportunities (120 full working days or 240 half working days, allowed to work for up to 20 hours in a week and full-time during vacations), no special permission for part time jobs, short weekend exotic breaks with one Schengen visa and Eurail-pass, excellent faculty and infrastructure, numerous prestigious scholarships for deserving candidates, low cost of living, 18 months stay back option by providing job search visa for jobs across Europe and the list is endless. Thus Germany is a now hot cake for education /jobs in various fields such as biotechnology, medical sciences, engineering, renewable energy, and IoT based industries.
Though the Indian aspirants will continue to explore educational opportunities abroad, India must ambitiously enhance its institutional set up to keep pace with the world-class universities and to survive the global competition.