Category: Education

I didn’t forget 20 plus years ago when I changed into getting my graduate diploma in Special Education and a pal of mine getting his degree in elementary schooling instructed me that his father, a college most important, stated that I, in all likelihood, should not waste my time getting a masters in Special Education. He said that Special Education would be subsequently fading out of public schooling. I am nearly done with my master’s at this factor, so I figured I could have taken my probabilities with it, except what different choice did I even have in any case at that factor?

I was given a Special Education job and taught for about 10 to 12 months. There have been many American downs over those ten years, and sooner or later, I determined that I wanted a change, so I was given certified and converted to school history. I remembered what my buddy had said a decade ago about this factor in my profession. I wondered if I had turned ahead of the curve on schools that no longer desired unique schooling instructors, although it was ten years later. I questioned if my task stopped being my new-found domestic inside the records department.

Well, I loved coaching history, but existence has its funny methods that are not aligned with us and what we need, so after a decade of coaching history, I was given primary elegance schooling on budget cuts, and my job became removed. Thankfully, I landed on my feet and returned to Special Education, consider it or now not.

It had been over two long, given that my old graduate faculty friend told me the need for special schooling teachers was disappearing. During the preceding two years, my buddy had gone from graduate college to essential college teacher to assistant, predominant to foremost, just like his father had completed. I had long gone from graduate faculty to important training teacher to records instructor to back to big schooling instructor as no person else that I recognize had finished. And consider it or no longer, there has been still a gaggle of special education jobs once I landed there for the 2nd time. As a count of fact, there have been truly lots of jobs there because there’s a shortage of special schooling instructors in 49 out of our 50 states. Imagine that… Two years later, I was told that Special Education was going away, and I discovered they still could not get sufficient special education teachers.

Fast-ahead some more years to today, and a new and thrilling twist affecting Special Education is referred to as complete inclusion. Now, inclusion isn’t a new issue to our faculties. As a count of reality, inclusion has a protracted thrilling record in our faculties.

The Supreme Court case of Brown v. Board of Education has been in force for a long time. In 1954, the new law of the land was incorporated into faculties for all races. Four decades ago, the floor-breaking law of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) started to take effect and help ensure that more than six million students with disabilities have the right to unfastened and appropriate training, which means that they, too, get to be included in with the overall training population.

To assist this, colleges should create a Planning and Placement Team (PPT) that meets and talks about a student’s Individual Education Program (IEP). After this region, the pupil’s precise academic placement is based on the student’s desires and the law. The placement also needs to be the least restrictive surroundings (LRE). I can nonetheless take into account my university professor describing the least restrictive surroundings in a short tale that one might no longer deliver a device gun to take care of a fly. Rather, one could convey a fly swatter to attend to a fly. In different phrases, if a kid’s disability may be handled in the community school, the child must not be sent throughout the metropolis or maybe to some other city’s unique college.

Today, many faculties are looking to enhance this inclusion model and the least restrictive environment by going from a fan of a full-inclusion model. Schools inside the Los Angeles School District have moved most of their college students out of their special education centers in the last three years and into neighborhood faculties. They are included in non-obligatory training like bodily training, gardening, and cooking. They are also integrated into mainstream instruction, but it is typically not the same diploma as electives.

Michigan faculty say they need to break down the walls between preferred education and Special Education, creating a machine in which college students will get greater assistance once needed. That support would not need to be in a separate training study room.

Some college districts in Portland, Oregon, are a touch further along than the Los Angeles faculties, which might be just bringing unique schooling college students returned from special faculties, and Michigan colleges that are simply beginning to try full integration of its college students and doing away with the maximum of the unique education school rooms.

Being alone within the system, Portland makes an exciting case examination. Many parents started supporting the integration of unique schooling students into everyday training classrooms in Portland. They are involved in approximately how the Portland Public School System is doing it. Portland is aiming for complete inclusion in the 12 months of 2020. However, some of the teachers in Portland pronounce, “Obviously, the unique education college students are going to fail, and they may behave out because we aren’t assembling their desires… If there is no proper aid there, that is now not appropriate, no longer only for the child, but for the overall training teacher as properly.”

A Portland determined said, “I could alternatively have my infant experience a success than for them to be ‘university ready.” She states, “I need my children to be correct, properly-rounded people who make the world a better place. I do not assume they must go to college to do that. Children are individuals, and while we prevent treating them as people, there’s a problem.” Sadly, many dads, moms, and teachers have left the Portland School District, and many more fantasize about it because they feel the whole-inclusion version is not operating as they pictured it might.

The burning question of the hour is how many faculties integrate students’ unique training. In my opinion, a few integrations aren’t the best viable. However, it’s necessary. A few special education students may be in the everyday training lecture rooms with a little support.

A few years ago, I even had a non-talking paraplegic boy in a wheelchair who changed into a breathing respirator sitting in my regular education social studies magnificence. Every day, his para expert and nurse rolled him in and sat with him. He usually smiled at the tales I advised of Alexander the Great marching across eleven 000 miles of territory and conquering tons of the recognized world at that point. By the way, Alexander the Great also practiced his inclusion model by encouraging kindness to the conquered and his soldiers to marry the captured territory’s girls, which allowed you to create long-lasting peace.

Other vital elements to consider in unique schooling inclusion are the much-needed socialization and the saving of money integration. Kids study from other kids, and money no longer spent on Special Education might be spent on preferred training, proper? Hmm…

If you have noticed, I started a bit earlier than many special training college students can be integrated, but I did not say that all or maybe the maximum has to be integrated. Only a few students might eliminate an excessive amount of the teacher’s time and attention from other college students, including college students with severe conduct problems. When we put intense behavior problems in regular schooling classes, it is unfair to all the other kids there. Similar cases may be made for other extreme disabilities that call for too much of the primary-stream instructor’s character time and interest.

Hey, I’m not announcing to never strive out a child with an extreme incapacity in a well-known training setting. I am saying that schools want a better machine for monitoring these placements, fast-putting off students who aren’t running out, and taking precious getting-to-know time away from different college students. Furthermore, faculties wanted to do this without shaming the instructor because the instructor complained that the student wasn’t outstanding in shape and disrupted the academic getting-to-know the other college students’ system. Leaving a child in a besides-the-point placement isn’t good for any of the parties involved. Period.

Over the decades, I have worked with more education college students than I remember as a special education trainer and a regular instructor teaching inclusion training. I have discovered that I end up extraordinarily flexible and patient, so I have had several of the toughest and most needy youngsters in my classes. I have labored miracles with those children over the years, and I recognize that I am no longer the most effective trainer available doing this. There are many more available that are imilar to mine. But, I fear that because teachers are so committed and pull off day-by-day miracles within the schoolroom, districts, community leaders, and politicians can be pushing too hard for the total-inclusion version, wondering that the teachers will discern it. Setting up teachers and college students for failure is never a terrific concept.

Furthermore, I wish it is simply now not the cash that they’re trying to store while pushing this complete-inclusion version ahead because what we should truly be looking to keep is our children. As Fredrick Douglas said, “It is simpler to build strong kids than to restore broken guys.” Regardless of how the economic and academic pie is sliced, the bottom line is that the pie is too small, and our unique education teachers and our unique training college students shouldn’t be made to pay for this.

Also, I was a trainer for too long not to be, as a minimum, a touch skeptical once I listened to the bosses say that they were pushing for the total-inclusion version because socialization is so critical. I realize it’s crucial. But, I also recognize that too many people are putting their hats on that socialization excuse instead of training our unique wishes students and offering them what they need. I even have visible, unique education students whose abilities most effectively let them draw images in honors instructions. There is no real socialization taking place here. It simply doesn’t make the experience.

Well, sooner or later, coming full circle. It will be interesting to see where this complete inclusion factor goes. The wise ones might not let their special training teachers go or get rid of their lecture rooms. And for the school districts that do, I believe it won’t take long before they recognize their mistake and begin hiring unique training teachers lower back. To my pal and his now ex-primary father from all those years ago whose notion of unique education changed into going away, nicely, we’re now not there, but to inform you of the reality, I don’t think we ever might be.

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Education is the primary agent of transformation towards sustainable improvement, increasing human beings’ capacities to convert their visions for society into reality. Education not only gives clinical and technical competencies but also induces and provides social aid for pursuing and using them. For this motive, society should be deeply worried that much cutting-edge schooling falls short of what is required. When we say this, it displays the requirements throughout the cultures that allow anyone to be accountable and closer to first-rate enhancement.


Improving the satisfaction and revelation of schooling and reorienting its desires to understand the importance of sustainable development must be among society’s maximum priorities. It isn’t that we speak best about our surroundings; however, we also talk about approximately every element of existence.

We consequently want to clarify the concept of education for sustainable improvement. It has become a primary venture for educators during the last decade. The meanings of sustainable development in instructional setups, appropriate stability of peace, human rights, citizenship, social equity, ecological and development issues in already overloaded curricula, and ways of integrating the arts, the social sciences, and the arts into what had up-to-now been seen and practiced as a department of technological know-how training.

Some argued that teaching for sustainable development ran the risk of programming, while others puzzled whether asking faculty members to take the lead in the transition to sustainable improvement became asking too many teachers.

These debates were compounded by the desire of many, predominantly environmental, NGOs to contribute to instructional planning without the necessary understanding of how schooling structures work, how instructional exchange and innovation take a region, and of relevant curriculum improvement, professional development, and instructional values. Not knowing that powerful academic exchange takes time, others were vital to governments not acting extra fast.

Consequently, many international, regional, and national initiatives have contributed to an expanded and refined understanding of the means of training for sustainable improvement. For example, Education International, the principal umbrella institution of instructors’ unions and associations worldwide, has issued a statement and movement plan to promote sustainable improvement through education.

A common theme in all of these is the need for an incorporated method. All groups and government entities collaborate in developing shared knowledge and dedication to guidelines, strategies, and education packages for sustainable development.

Actively selling the integration of schooling into sustainable improvement in the neighborhood community.

Many men’s and women’s governments have also installed committees, panels, advisory councils, and curriculum improvement projects to speak about education for sustainable improvement, broaden coverage and suitable assist structures, packages, and assets, and fund neighborhood initiatives.

Indeed, the roots of education for sustainable improvement are firmly planted in such agencies’ environmental training efforts. Along with worldwide education, development training, peace schooling, citizenship education, human rights schooling, and multicultural and anti-racist schooling, which have all been tremendous, environmental education has been particularly sizeable. In its brief thirty-year records, contemporary environmental education has progressively striven closer to dreams and results similar to those inherent in the idea of sustainability.

A New Vision for Education

These many tasks illustrate that the international community now strongly believes that we want to foster – via training – the values, conduct, and existence required for a sustainable future. Education for sustainable development has become visible as a procedure of learning how to make decisions that do not forget the lengthy-term future of all communities’ economic systems, ecology, and social well-being. Building the capability for such future-oriented wondering is a key assignment of education.

This represents a new imaginative and prescient of training, a creative and visionary that enables newcomers to apprehend better the world in which they stay, addressing the complexity and inter-contentedness of issues together with poverty, wasteful consumption, environmental degradation, urban decay, populace boom, gender inequality, health, warfare and the violation of human rights that threaten our future. This vision of training emphasizes a holistic, interdisciplinary technique to growing the knowledge and abilities wished for a sustainable future in addition to modifications in values, conduct, and life. This calls for us to reorient training systems, guidelines, and practices to empower anyone, old and young, to make decisions and act in culturally appropriate and locally applicable ways to redress the issues that threaten our common destiny. We, therefore, need to assume globally and act domestically. In this way, humans of every age can emerge empowered to increase and examine alternative visions of a sustainable destiny and meet those visions via running creatively.

Seeking sustainable improvement via education requires educators to:

• Place an ethic for living sustainably, based on social justice concepts, democracy, peace, and ecological integrity, at the center of society’s worries.
• Encourage an assembly of disciplines, a linking of expertise and know-how, to create more inclusive and contextualized understandings.
• Encourage lifelong getting to know, starting at the beginning of existence and glued in life – one based totally on a passion for an intensive transformation of society’s ethical person.
• Develop the most capability of all humans for the duration of their lives so they can attain self-success and complete self-expression with the collective success of a viable future.
• Value aesthetics, the innovative use of the imagination, an openness to hazard and versatility, and a willingness to explore new alternatives.
• Encourage new alliances between the State and civil society to promote residents’ liberation and exercise democratic principles.
• Mobilize society in an extensive attempt to do away with poverty and all violence and injustice styles.
• Encourage dedication to the values for peace in this sort of way as to promote the introduction of new lifestyles and dwelling patterns
• Identify and pursue new human initiatives within neighborhood sustainability inside mundane attention and personal and communal consciousness of global obligation.
• Create a sensible desire in which the opportunity of trade and the real willingness to trade are observed using rigorous, energetic participation in change at the correct time in choosing a sustainable destiny for all.

These responsibilities emphasize the key position of educators as ambassadors of trade. There are over 60 million instructors globally – and everyone is a key ambassador for bringing about the changes in existence and systems we need. But schooling isn’t limited to the classrooms of formal education. As a technique for gaining knowledge, schooling for sustainable development also encompasses a wide range of getting-to-know activities in fundamental and post-basic schooling, technical and vocational schooling, and tertiary schooling, and each non-formal and informal mastering through both younger human beings and adults within their households and offices and inside the wider network. This approach shows that everyone has crucial roles as each ‘beginner’ and ‘instructor’ in advancing sustainable development.

Key Lessons

Deciding how education needs to contribute to sustainable development is a prime undertaking. Choosing approximately what tactics to training will be regionally applicable and culturally appropriate, international locations, academic institutions, and their communities might also take heed of the following key instructions learned from discussion and debate regarding training and sustainable improvement over the last decade.

• Education for sustainable development ought to discover sustainability’s economic, political, and social implications by encouraging beginners to reflect critically on their regions of the arena, perceive non-viable elements in their personal lives, and explore the tensions among conflicting targets. Development strategies appropriate to the particular instances of various cultures in the pursuit of shared improvement desires might be important. Educational methods ought to take into account the studies of Indigenous cultures and minorities, acknowledging and facilitating their original and substantial contributions to the technique of sustainable development.

• The motion closer to sustainable development depends more on improving our ethical sensitivities than on the growth of our scientific understanding – vital as this is. Education for sustainable improvement can’t be concerned with disciplines that will enhance our understanding of nature, no matter their undoubted fee. Success within the conflict for sustainable development requires a schooling method that strengthens our engagement in aid of different values – particularly justice and fairness – and the notice that we share a not-unusual destiny with others.

• Ethical values are the fundamental factor in social consistency and, simultaneously, the handiest agent of trade and transformation. Ultimately, sustainability will depend upon changes in behavior and life, modifications that are to be encouraged by way of a shift in values and rooted within the cultural and moral precepts upon which conduct is based without an alternate of this kind, even the maximum enlightened regulation, the cleanest generation, and the maximum sophisticated studies will not succeed in guiding society closer to the lengthy-time period aim of sustainability.

• Changes in lifestyle will need to be observed through the improvement of ethical consciousness, wherein the population of rich international locations finds out inside their cultures the source of a new and energetic team spirit. This will make it possible to eliminate the vast poverty that now besets 80% of the world’s populace, as well as environmental degradation and other problems related to it.

• Ethical values are formed through schooling within the broadest term experience. Education is likewise crucial in allowing humans to apply their ethical values to make knowledgeable and moral choices. Fundamental social adjustments, such as those required to move toward sustainability, come about either because humans sense a moral imperative to change or because leaders have the political will to steer in that direction and experience that the humans will observe them.

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Being born and brought up in an English-speaking country will mean that you know how to speak the basic language that’ll help you do almost all the required work. But this does not mean you will have a great hand in the language. To get your tongue attractive, you must work hard on your vocabulary.

Language is essential to a person’s personality, and it is mandatory to keep it shinning. Many institutions and classes can help you, but you can do something independently with little effort. If you do the four things mentioned below, then in no time, you will be able to talk like a pro, and yes, this will help you stand out from the crowd.


1. Watch a good movie

Watching sitcoms and regular romantic love stories are great when you want to be entertained. But when you wish to learn from movies or videos, for that matter, you must look into the genre of the film first. Humans tend to learn faster when they observe and experience things; a video or a movie is a great way to experience something virtually. Thus, when people (Characters in the film or video) will speak and use good terms, you will be able to catch them faster rather than learning them out of a dictionary.

2. Read books

Books can be great when it comes to vocabulary. Not all books focus on great vocabulary usage, but most do. Writers are a stereotypical group believed to be sharper at recognizing and using different terms. Thus, when you read textbooks, you receive more and better. Be it fiction or nonfiction, you can choose any, depending on your choice. You don’t have to buy a book every time for this. You can borrow it from a friend or easily rent it from sites like

3. Online platforms

The internet is a vast space that has a collection of everything. Take some time out and search for speeches of great men and literary speakers. Their words have great power and motivation too. Even if you don’t get to learn many words from them, you will get motivated for life and the struggles.

4. Use synonyms

While you are writing or speaking for the matter, keep checking that you pick out an attractive synonym rather than just saying the basic word; for example, you can use artistic instinct instead of extreme self-obsession. This makes the text look beautiful and gives you more power and the context you are speaking out on. Also, constant use of such words will develop a habit of using these words again and again, ultimately resulting in upliftment in your vocabulary.

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New Delhi: The government plans to rank states based on their performance in education—from the quality of their school infrastructure to learning outcomes. The idea is to instill a spirit of competition among states and improve the quality of education that their students receive, two government officials said.

The other measures they will be ranked on, the officials said, requesting anonymity will be the other measures they will be ranked on, how well they use their resources, educational institutions, and research outcomes to undertake innovative projects. The central government’s policy thinks tank Niti Aayog, in collaboration with the human resources development ministry (HRD ministry), is working on the index the states will be ranked on.

Niti Ayog has consulted independent education experts. The index is likely to be launched in a couple of months, one of the two officials said.


“The Niti Aayog and the PMO (Prime Minister’s Office) are very interested in such an index. The whole exercise aims to make education output-driven than the present input-driven system,” said one of the experts who Niti Ayog consulted. The expert, who, too, requested anonymity, said the performance would be tracked “on a real-time basis,” and any swings in the ranking of states can be seen on a dedicated website.

Niti Aayog chief executive Amitabh Kant earlier this month indicated such rankings are in the works. “The quality of education needs to be improved. We are focusing on learning outcomes. We will make states compete on the quality of education and learning outcomes,” Kant said at an event in New Delhi. He said the government had already “put in four months of hard work in building this” and had consulted several top educationists across the world.

Kant said the central government intended to support the states, but it isn’t clear what the support would entail and lead to changes in the funding mechanism for education. India has one of the largest education systems in the world, with nearly 330 million students in schools and colleges. The country has over 1.4 million schools, nearly 45,000 colleges, and around 720 universities.


The quality of education remains a challenge from the primary to tertiary level, several studies have found. More than half of Class V students could not read a Class II text in 2014, according to the Annual Status of Education in Rural India report of 2015; in the global league tables, Indian universities lag far behind peers elsewhere. Just two Indian institutions—Indian Institute of Science Bangalore and Indian Institute of Technology Delhi— found a place in the top 200 universities list of QS World University Rankings and none in the Time Higher Education (THE) World University rankings in 2016. Both QS and THE are global university ranking agencies based out of the UK.

The second government official cited above said the effort to compile state rankings is well-intentioned but conceded it has potential pitfalls. “Education is largely a state subject, and taking all states on board is important. States for years are demanding more funds, and a differential funding pattern will have political consequence,” he said.

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With an abundance of human capital and an increasing per capita income, India is fast marching towards becoming one of the world’s largest economies and further competing with countries like the US and China. Millennials in India believe that while the world is brimming with opportunities, they are not confident enough when they are pitted against their global counterparts.

This gaping void is slowly but surely giving way to a change in the Indian education system. One can no longer be satisfied with one’s academic achievements alone as they are fast becoming redundant in a digital economy. New skills have to be learned each day. Set against this backdrop, International educational institutions (IEI) and innovative learning models are becoming increasingly popular in the Indian market. There is no dearth of examples to qualify this growing trend. Facebook’s recent investment in the Indian Education market with $50 million in By is evidence of that fact and their faith in India’s opportunities.


Indian-education-system Education as an opportunity in India

From a statistics standpoint, the Indian student population today is the largest in the world at around 315 million, of which around 120 million students are in the age group of 18-22 years. The education market in India is expected to reach over $200 billion by FY17. Currently, higher education constitutes 59.7 percent of the market, school education 38.1 percent, pre-school 1.6 percent, and technology and multi-media the remaining 0.6 percent, according to a study compiled by the India Brand Equity Foundation (January 2016).

The de-globalization wave impacting Europe with Brexit shows how we have to be self-sufficient and catering to our own economic needs. Clearly, there is no better way than to invest for the future in Indian millennials who are rearing to become a formidable workforce.

So, where do all these mind-blowing facts lead to? We need to open at least 1,000 universities in the coming decade to cater to this spiking demand. I don’t think the solution lies in the existing education system. We need to embrace and adopt world-class facilities and education systems.

Need for the globalization of Indian education

International educational institutes have realized this trend and potential and are looking to set up their campuses or partner with Indian institutes to cater to this burgeoning Indian student population. Nearly 14 percent of the students in US universities are from India. Imagine the impact of those very same universities were to come into our own country to provide us with the same education. We would save a lot on student debts and further be able to build a cohesive education system right here in our backyard.

Take the case of Suresh from an upper-middle-class family. He got the best education available in the city that he lived in. Suresh has now completed his engineering graduation. His father aspires to give him an Ivy League education towards a fruitful career and can also afford to pay the course fee. But he now finds himself in a quandary as the overall costs are prohibitive when sending his son abroad, taking care of his expenses, and other related costs. Add to this, having to stay away from their child during his education is another scary dimension.


Millions of Indian Millennials like Suresh harbor dreams of studying in universities like Harvard and Stanford. However, despite having the true potential to succeed in these challenging assignments, it continues to be a dream simply because of the economic and cultural hurdles limiting them. Millennials strongly believe that the Indian education system, the government, and other stakeholders in the market should recognize this condition and take the necessary steps to make quality education accessible, relevant and economical.

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Education ring in Ghaziabad traps over 100

According to victims, two people — who identified themselves as Ajay Singh and Ashish Gupta and ran an office called ‘Media tricks’ out of Ansal Plaza in Vaishali — had contacted them over the phone and subsequently convinced them to shell out money on the promise of arranging MBBS seats for their wards under the ‘Nominee’ category, which are reserved for the children of disaster-affected persons.


The victims realized they had been duped when the admission letters from the respective medical colleges did not come by September 26, as promised by the accused, as September 30 was the date of commencement of the academic session. When they went to Ansal Plaza, they found the office locked.

“I received a call from an unknown number, and a girl named Riya asked me about my son’s admission prospects into a medical college. After I told her about his details, she offered to let me speak to her boss (one of the accused) who promised me to get my son admitted to a government medical college,” said Arvind Kumar, a Noida resident, who had paid Rs 15 lakh for his son’s admission.


“He had even asked me to meet him at his office at Ansal Plaza and to prepare a demand draft of Rs 38,500 in the name of ‘Secretary, Medical Council Of India,” he added.

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He is considered the International Baccalaureate (IB) father, having played a key role in designing the curriculum back in 1968. Nearly four decades on, Professor Jeff Thompson still believes a better understanding of international education is needed.

In Bengaluru to sign a MoU with Indus Training and Research Institute (ITRI) to launch teacher certification programs in international education, Thompson, Emeritus Professor at the University of Bath, UK, spoke to TOI about the curriculum’s growing acceptance. Professor Mary Hayden, head of, department of education, also shared her thoughts. Excerpts:

International education not about promoting western point of view 8

Is India a big market for international education?

India is home to a burgeoning number of institutions teaching international education. There are 584 international schools in the United Arab Emirates alone. China has 547. If we look at the numbers on another day, there will be more shockers because the curriculum is definitely growing. We need to promote curricula that are not regular, and that’s why it’s exciting to come to India.

How would you define an international school in today’s context?

Let’s first look at what we are not about. International education isn’t about promulgating the western point of view. Our own research has strongly indicated that people trying to forego their identity in the name of international education are actually farther from the truth. With diversity as the essence, people should be more competent and confident about their own identity. They should contribute to the cause of international education to promote a global mindset.

How did it begin?

The idea behind formulating the curriculum was pragmatic – the International School of Geneva is facing a problem back then. Having students who were the children of diplomats, United Nations workers, or heads of multi-national companies from different countries, the school had to prepare them for re-entry into their respective nations’ higher education system.

That’s when the need to have a curriculum that could embrace education worldwide and which universities could accept was felt. After a pilot program in the school, the International Schools Examination Syndicate was formed, metamorphosed into International Baccalaureate.

How arbitrary is international education since it has to be in sync with the world?

The curriculum is permanently evolving. It will continue to do so as the world is changing every day. We have to keep students updated with information about different cultures and countries. Initially, when the curriculum came into effect, the most frequently asked question was `what shall we teach.’ Now it has changed to `how shall we learn.’ When we at the University of Bath get students from India or interact with teachers during workshops and conferences, we feel they have a common characteristic -they are open to change.


What about affordability?

No doubt that affordability is a big challenge. Governments and NGOs in different countries have made efforts to make education more affordable. An interesting pilot program in North Africa looks at designing low-cost schools which follow the IB curriculum.

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The failure of the Indian education system is stark when seen in the light of the fact that thousands of students every year go abroad for a college education. European universities and even the European governments seem to have a more definite plan for Indian students than India. A graduate degree in India is mostly a farce in most colleges. There is hardly any education imparted, and it is seen as more a stepping stone for masters or a necessity to do something else. Students file into colleges spend their time in everything but education. Courses are outdated, and the faculty is inept, illiterate to the changes around them.

A recent experience in Guru Gobind Singh Indraprastha University really brought all these issues upfront. The outreach cell of the university organized a seminar on globalization. It roped in a public sector company as a sponsor, tied up with a one-person think tank from Chandigarh. Invited to speak, I was piqued as it seemed like an interesting effort. It seems only the invitation was genuine. Neither the university nor the organizers were actually interested in a seminar. All that they were interested in was getting to know a minister. The obsession of academia in Delhi with politicians is not new. Most faculty appointments are at the behest of the politicians. Huge physical infrastructure but the inferior soft infrastructure is not just true of public universities like Guru Gobind Singh Indraprastha, but it is even worse in private universities.

Higher education

Representational imageRepresentational image

The highway from Delhi to Roorkee is dotted with shells of buildings posing as private universities. Actually, on any national highway anywhere, if you see a glass or fancy building with nothing around, it will be a private university. Everything is new and shiny, designed to grab a student’s attention. Large rooms are labeled labs with hardly any equipment inside, a huge campus with a skeletal staff, and even less faculty.

As of 2014, there are 677 universities, 37,204 colleges, and 11,443 stand-alone institutions in India, as per the statistics from India’s HRD ministry website. There is no dearth of institutions willing to give a degree of money; education or skills are not the concern. Higher education is in rot at all levels, and the irony is that these numbers are touted as an indication of the prowess of our education system. Not a sign that this rapid mushrooming has created an edifice that is destroying an aspirational class. There are very little debate and discussion on the fact that our higher education system has completely collapsed.

A study done by a private body says that approximately 18.43 percent of engineering graduates are employable, which means 80 percent of them are unemployable. The situation is worse for plain graduates, and that is where the real malaise lies. Employers say just 5 percent of the graduates in other disciplines are actually employable. What these figures mean is that in sum, higher education or college education has collapsed. Do we see any concern around this collapse? NO.

The IITs, AIIMs, IIMs, are cited as examples of success, not because they have great faculty but also because of them. How many faculty members from our so-called Institutes of National Importance have done anything worthy. A committee under Anil Kakodkar was formed in 2011 to revamp the 30 NITs, the second rung of the IITs, and not the 37,204 colleges or the 11,304 institutions. According to the preamble to this committee, the rationale says that these 30 NITs can aid in ‘nation-building.’ So what will the lakhs of students in thousands of colleges do? If they are not involved in aiding the nation-building exercise, then we have a much bigger problem on hand.

Kakodkar’s report is a bundle of homilies, generalities, and advice from geriatrics. It was submitted in 2014 to the then Education Minister Smriti Irani. Here is a sample of the Kakodkar committee’s recommendation: “ICT for the NITs acts like a force multiplier. NITs must deploy and upgrade the IT infrastructure and associated facilities. Each institute must facilitate extensive use of computer-aided / on-line teaching, virtual labs, e-learning resources, connectivity with National Knowledge Network, etc.”. This is a recommendation in 2014, in the world of MOOCs, Coursera, and availability of free lectures from MIT or any other university of repute. In a world of mobile internet, ubiquitous internet access. It’s recommending a National knowledge network !! Will a student go there or see and hear the latest lecture from a noble laureate. Even the term ICT referring to Information computer technology harks back to the ’60s when some committee members actually did their education.

This is the saddest and the most ironic part of higher education. The system is ossified because of its sheer reliance on age, hierarchy, or seniority. At the same time, the world that their students live and learn in has changed. Higher education will not be revived or pulled out from the depths of its failure by people who do not have a stake in its future. A retired nuclear scientist, more than a bureaucrat, should not be recommending anything about the future of anything, let alone higher education. Bureaucrats should be kept far away when it comes to reinventing.

While we struggle with higher education, Europe seems to be eyeing the conscientious Indian student. More and more students are now traveling abroad for education. Earlier costs used to be the big barrier for foreign education. But as our higher education system is collapsing, other countries are seeing it as an opportunity. German chancellor Angela Merkel has approved a six-year plan to attract Indian students to Germany. Under fire for her liberal immigrant policy, she pushes German universities to attract Indian students waiving off tuition fees for them. Daria Kulemetyeva, Germany’s largest public university, Georg-August-Universitat Gottingen, says Indian students will have to pay just the administrative fees of 300 euros per year if they are selected in a course. The travel and accommodation costs are separate. The rationale, according to Kulemetyeva, is to seek diversity in the student population.

It is not just German universities; almost every country in Europe and its public universities are keen to attract Indian students. Universities from Sweden, Norway, Spain, and France have been working very hard for the last few years to attract Indian students. They have adapted their courses in English, offering free language lessons for immigrant students, etc. A combination of the aging population and a fall in interest in higher education among the current generation is forcing these universities to India. British universities have always found India a fertile ground for students.

John Sanders of the University of Sussex says the lack of standards in Indian higher education means that our Indian student population has always been growing year on year. Harish Lokhun of the University of Edinburgh says, now Indian students go for even liberal arts and humanities whereas earlier they were only interested in engineering and the likes. Even the oldest university in Europe, Sweden’s Uppsala University, is looking for Indian students, and for a reason. Lina Solander, of Uppsala University, “When we are looking at health problems, Indian students would have a much more different view of health policy than a local Swedish student.”


Spain has formed a consortium of four universities to target Indian students. Matilde Delgado Chawton represents Universidad Autonoma De Madrid, one of the leading universities part of the consortium. She says that the gaps in higher education in India mean that only a small number of students get access to quality; we are looking at bridging those gaps by offering quality education with European exposure. Spain is also looking at funding Indian students. Indian students have traditionally looked at just US universities for graduation; now, they have more avenues opening up.

If India does not look at the collapse of its higher education closely, not only will we be leading to a new brain drain but a collapse of aspirations. This is especially of concern to the new government that has come to power on the rise of this aspirational class.

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The US has always been a magnet for Indian students, and now the figures suggest an increase in the number of those joining universities there. The Open Doors, an annual report on international students in the US compiled by the Institute of International Education, says that in 2015 there was a 30% increase in students from other countries going to the US over the previous year. India is the second leading place of origin for students, and 13.6% of the international student population is Indian.


The US system has several attractions. The courses are very varied and flexible. A student getting into a graduate course has to stick with the subjects chosen; in the US, the student can change midstream if he or she wants to. Students who need financial resources can access these from various sources, and universities help them in this process. In India, private scholarships are difficult to obtain, and the conditions for getting a government grant are tough and restricted largely to students in the reservation quota. Students abroad can get internships, which helps them later in the job market. Perhaps the one major attraction is the synergy between academics and industry. Many courses are tailored to help students get jobs, again quite a departure from India’s largely academically-oriented curriculum. Research opportunities are also limited in India as many higher educational institutions do not have enough infrastructure or faculty.


The US sinks about $300 billion in higher education. India should consider investing much more in higher education as this will benefit our students and be a potentially huge revenue generator. Students from neighboring and African countries see India as an attractive education destination since it is cheaper and the medium is English. We should cast the net wider. One thing that ought to be done without delay is to ensure that international students feel welcome here. This has not always been the case, especially with African students, who face racial slurs and even violence. We must have a proactive policy of going out and seeking students once we have a more flexible and student-friendly system in place. The returns on this could be enormous, and we should not miss the bus. There are many lessons we can learn from the US, and how to structure higher education and attract a wider variety of students are certainly some of them.

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Union HRD Minister Prakash Javadekar said the answer to the country’s sustainable transformation lies in its education system. He underscored how India was once prosperous due to universities like Nalanda, Takshila, and Vikramshila.

“I always say India had 25% of the world GDP and 35% of world trade for centuries together. Today, we are not even 1% of world trade. We are lagging as far as GDP is concerned,” he said. “And therefore, how the nation can sustainably transform is the real thing. The answers lie in our education system,” he said.

Answer to India’s transformation lies in its education system: Javadekar 12

Javadekar spoke through a video link at an international conclave on higher education organized in Gandhinagar as part of the pre-Vibrant Gujarat Investors’ Summit. He could not come here due to an injury that prevents him from traveling for 10-15 days, he said.

Javadekar said that had there been a ranking system in the past, universities like Nalanda, Takshila, Vikramshila would have ranked number 1, 2, and 3 in the world.

“Indian universities were the best. The world’s talent used to come here to learn. So I believe that only those countries can prosper which have the best of universities,” he said, stressing the need to improve higher education in the country Planet Amend. For making higher education better, he said, we first need to improve “the learning outcomes of primary and secondary education

” In primary education, we have to inculcate and promote inquisitiveness in a student. Because that is the foundation for any innovation, there will be no new thoughts unless you promote inquisitiveness, and people won’t be able to inculcate innovative attitude,” he said.

“But at the higher learning centers, a government’s duty is to provide an atmosphere for research, innovation, and improvement of quality,” he further said

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