Good infrastructure and enrolment of students alone will not be able to ensure quality technical education if the teaching-learning process is not given focused attention, Chairman of the AICTE, Professor Anil D Sahasrabudhe said on Friday.
The chairman of the All India Council of Technical Education (AICTE) was addressing a national conference on ‘Crisis in Technical Education here.
“The process of learning in educational institutions needs to change as there is the need for the teacher to know what to teach to the student and how to do it. The problem is we are not addressing the problems that have been stalking the system,” Mr Sahasrabudhe said.
The two-day conference has been organised the at 49th Indian Society for Technical Education (ISTE) National Annual Faculty Convention.
“We cannot wish away that there is a problem and must find out why this crisis happened,” he said, adding the rote learning system promoted over the years had created this impasse. Teachers don’t appreciate when a student tries his hand at innovation or has a streak of creativity and inquisitiveness and “that is killing education,” the AICTE chairman said.
The National Education Policy (NEP) has all the ingredients to address the issues which had affected technical education in the country and overcome this crisis, Mr Sahasrabudhe said.
Professor Damodar Acharya, former Chairman of AICTE, who spoke as guest of honour, said the technical education system in the country was in ‘deep trouble’.
“Exponential growth in its capacity, acute shortage of competent faculty, inability of the system to produce quality, skilled, competent and employable graduates had seriously eroded the attractiveness of engineering, management, pharmacy and architecture education,” he said.
Explaining the problem, he said while the industry is looking for quality and competent manpower, the system has been churning out lakhs of graduates who are not fit to be employed.
Professor MK Surappa, Vice-Chancellor of Anna University,Chennai, Prof Amit Banerjee, Vice-Chancellor of SOA Deemed to be University, Professor AK Rath, Advisor, National Assessment and Accreditation Council, Dr PM Khodke, Central Project Advisor, National Project Implementation Unit of the Ministry of Human Resource Development and Dr Pratapsinh K Desai, President of ISTE, also addressed the function.
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Professor Sahasrabudhe said institutions which took pride in having facilities to educate students from ‘KG to PG’ had greatly contributed to the slide in the standard of education. He said the country’s Gross Enrolment Ratio (GER), which stood at 0.7 per cent prior to independence had reached 26 per cent today of which one-fourth of the students belonged to technical streams. The focus was on quantity but quality had been left out.
“But the NEP will be addressing this aspect,” he said.
Stressing the need for curriculum revision to make it relevant to suit the need of the day, he said 40 per cent of jobs available in several domains now will disappear making it imperative for the system to train students accordingly. The new policy would focus on examination reformation with 30 per cent of the questions being picked from the textbooks.
“The rest 70 per cent of the questions will centre around, among other things, innovation and creativity,” he said, adding there would be a need for collaboration between industries and technical institutions to turn the situation around.