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State of Higher Education in India

By Vijaya Kalavakonda, Professor and Head - Department of Information Technology, RMK Engineering College | Tuesday, 08 Aug 2017, 04:09 IST

Education System at the primary, secondary and higher secondary level, in our country teaches only rote learning. During tertiary level of education, students are expected to develop the skills to understand, apply, analyze, evaluate and create. Students get tuned to memorizing and reproduce as their goal is just to get good scores and not to acquire knowledge on the subject being taught. Creative thinking of the students is snitched during their primary level of education itself.

The majority of students enter their tertiary level of education without having any idea of what interests them and what they want to become. Instead of guiding their wards to make a career decision, most of the parents impose on their wards to pursue a career that was unachieved by them. Thus, majority of those who join higher education either don’t have any career plan or interest in what they pursue. As they do not have a defined goal, they just try for something and if they do not get that, they move onto another profession.

With Private Engineering Colleges mushrooming across the country the quality of education has and continues to deteriorate. Some of the major contributors are running majority of these Private Institutions by people with no education background and mostly by active, semi-retired or retired politicians whose only motive is making money, non-availability of skilled / adequately trained faculty; no proper teaching learning process being followed or any system of evaluation put in place.

Teaching-learning process followed in most of the institutions ensures that only the memorizing ability of the student is developed or enhanced. The teaching learning process that is defined in most of the educational Institutions is not based on the standards that are to be met. There are two main reasons as to why learning does not happen the way it should happen: first, methods or tools used for teaching is not attracting the students to learn and second, students are not interested in gaining knowledge but interested only in securing marks to clear the course. With new technologies and avenues, the teaching process should be improvised so that students will be more interested to learn.

When they are at school they need to be taught to develop the ability to understand and remember, but invariably most of the students who enter Engineering (& Medical) schools have developed only the ability to memorize and vomit in exams. Situation does not improve after they join the Engineering schools; and there also they continue to learn by memorizing rather than realizing that they are learning to practically apply. Hence, when they graduate out of these schools, they are unable to cope with the expectations of their employers. Evaluation system should be changed to test the ability of their understanding of the concepts and apply it to solve new problems.


July 2018
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