Empowering for excellence

Last Updated 26 March 2014, 14:12 IST
By 2030 India will be among the top 5 countries in the world in terms of research output and will have more than 20 universities among the top global 200 of global universities according a Report on Higher Education in India: Vision 2030 by the Federation of Indian Chamber of Commerce an Industry.

To realise all this India has to adopt a transformative and innovative approach featuring critical interventions in all levels of higher education. But currently India is characterized by a poor education system which fall below the global standarads.The suggested Interventions are:

Adopting a learner centered paradigm of education, introducing multi-disciplinary, industry oriented, entrepreneurship, and skill based courses, and adopting new pedagogical techniques such as blended learning, flipped classroom and experiential learning.

Easing faculty recruitment norms, implementing tenure based and rewards based systems to retain quality faculty, promoting teaching as an attractive profession, and incentivizing and facilitating faculty development and exchange.

Attracting and incentivising best in class faculty to conduct research, adopting various models to develop research capabilities in institutions in India, promoting collaborations amongst international institutions, industry, and research centers for generating high quality basic and applied research.

Strengthening industry academia linkages and collaborating with skill based training providers for development of employable talent

Incentivising high quality private and foreign participation in higher education, andwidening access through virtual classrooms and Massive Online Open Courses (MOOCs)

Promoting individual based funding, providing competitive access to public research grants, encouraging corporate and alumni funding and linking public funding to institutional.

Most of these suggestions focus on the critical role of teachers in upgrading the education system of the country to meet the future challenges.

Apart from domain knowledge and traditional methods of content delivery tomorrow’s educators should be equipped with the skills required to inspire minds. What is expected of a teacher is not just the delivery of knowledge but the ability to facilitate the convergence of various fields of knowledge. They are not just   broadcasters of knowledge but in an important sense key agents preparing for a future civilization.

For learning to become a rewarding experience the teaching style of the teacher should match with the learning style of the student. If students cannot learn the way the teacher teaches them the teacher will have to learn to teach them the way they can learn. Creative teaching is like a mother teaching her child to walk. The mother should bend to the child’s comfort, hold the child’s hand applying appropriate pressure, adjust her pace and walk along with the child.
Three aspects of creative teaching are content, class room management and content delivery.

Learning style of students vary. There are visual learners learning through seeing and auditory learners learning through listening. There are also read write learners learning through reading and writing. Kinesthetic learners learn through activities and projects. A good teacher will have to train him or herself to cater to the need of these different types of learners.

Ideal teaching is not replicating the best student’s notes. Teaching should not be restricted to just constructs and theories. Applicability of theories is important.

Today’s students are customers and credibility builders. Brand equity of a school or college will no longer help a teacher. A teacher will have to create brand equity for him. Today’s teacher requires niche skills. YouTube video clippings and case studies could be used. The possibilities of Khan Academy and coursera should be utilized to the fullest extent possible.

Such emerging platforms can revolutionise teaching methodologies. A proven successful strategy for a 1 hour session is to combine instructor led learning, class workshops and movie clips of equal time duration. The success of a teacher depends on his ability to communicate and on his mastery over his subject.
(Published 26 March 2014, 14:10 IST)

Follow us on