“The imposing tower of misery which today rests on the heart of India has its sole foundation in the absence of education.” - Rabindranath Tagore
Posted 25 days ago in Education & Knowledge.
1.5 million schools,260 million students,751 universities,35539 colleges.
These are some of the latest figures which paint a dim picture of the state of education in our country. Literacy is the basis on which all social and economic growth can stand a chance. A major challenge rests on our hands to make education more inclusive and accessible. There are numerous steps that can be taken to improve the state of affairs and make a push towards a more educated and literate society.
1. Encouraging students to learn essential skills: Instead of neglecting technology and taking a blind eye to the effects of technology, students can be encouraged to learn essential skills like basic computer skills and coding. They can be made to write articles and post them to get feedback from peers. Outdated syllabus can severely affect the value of education and thus needs to be dynamic and regularly updated. It can be often found that fresh graduates lack the prerequisite skills needed for a job and has to undergo additional training and coursework before he/she can apply for the position.
2. Using technology in classroom learning: We use technology throughout our day from the most mundane of tasks like searching for information through Google to essential things like bank transactions and payment. Why not incorporate the same technology into our classrooms?
This does not mean allowing smartphones into classrooms. Instead it can be as simple as showing presentations in classes and using multimedia to keep students engaged. Listening to podcasts and watching educational videos can encourage students to engage in learning beyond class hours.
3. Scrapping rote learning and encouraging competency based learning: Rote learning which is widely prevalent in India and is the de facto method of teaching from preschool till college. Competency based learning involves ensuring students learn the knowledge and skills they are required to learn as they are promoted from class to class.
Our traditional education system focuses on ensuring students get a minimum grade which is usually kept at 40% or grade D. Thus, there is a widespread learning gap from student to student and even from school to school since there is hardly any universal curriculum or grading system in middle or lower schools. In our existing education system, it has been seen that students who are in class 7 or 8 but fail to solve simple addition or multiplication problems. Competency based learning ensures that students who get promoted do so on merit alone.
The problems in our traditional education system are many and varied. However, it is upon us to find solutions to these problems and try to remedy them on our own, without completely relying on the administration or system. Students can take the help of internet and connect and collaborate to learn and share knowledge rather than being dependent on schools and institutions. Teachers too can find ingenious ways of reaching out to more children and spreading their message. It is not an option but a necessity in a country such as ours.